What’s Your Favorite Financial Magazine?

I’ve been a reader of Money Magazine for a long, long time. And despite the proliferation of electronic media, I still derive a certain pleasure from sitting down with a hard copy of a magazine and reading through it. Unfortunately, I typically plow through each copy of Money within a couple of days of its arrival, leaving me with a several week gap before the next issue arrives.

I’d like to subscribe to another publication (or two) but am unsure of which to choose. I should note that I’ve recently subscribed to Consumer Reports Money Adviser, though the first issue hasn’t arrive, so I can’t really comment on it (yet). So… I wanted to ask you preferences when it comes to finance-related magazines.

What do you like? What do you hate? And, just as importantly, why?

Below, I’ve compiled a partial list of what’s available, but feel free to branch out to things I might have missed.

» Business Week
» Consumer Reports Money Adviser
» Forbes
» Fortune
» Kipinger’s
» Money Magazine
» Smart Money

23 Responses to “What’s Your Favorite Financial Magazine?”

  1. Anonymous

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  2. Anonymous

    As a total investing/financial novice, I still find that Kiplingers and Money are the easiest to comprehend. My husband and I have subscribed to the Consumer Reports Money Advisor, but I’ve been disappointed with it….it is more like a newsletter than a true periodical, the topics are not covered thoroughly, more like headlines with one or two paragraphs following, much like you would see in a newspaper. It also only comes once a month. We don’t plan to re-subscribe to this one.

  3. Anonymous

    Does the Economist count? It is really useful for it’s economic analysis and general business trends. I also read business week but I find it so shallow that I typically just take about an hour to flip through it every week.

  4. Anonymous

    Yep, that’s it.

    I Don’t mean to demean your effort there, it’s certainly a fine intro but since I’m such a newbie, I didn’t understand that the margin account would be involved and that it was an additional downside.

    I had read about it in other places as well, and none of them mentioned that the extra cost was going on…or they may have called it a “margin account” which is meaningless to me (though I’m now beginning to understand more…)

    All told, I really understood that I shouldn’t be messing with “shorting” until I understand a LOT more about investing in general.

  5. Anonymous

    I found copies of Better Investing in my local library. It’s a bit more technical than I’m ready for, but they do seem go to a lot of effort to do cover some basics as well as step through an analysis of a real company’s information and talk about why it is or isn’t a good investment.

    For instance, I learned a little bit on a blog (FMF?) about “short selling” which I’ve always wondered about. Part of the discussion was that you borrowed shares from the broker. What I DIDN’T realize from that discussion (and others) was that you needed to open a margin account and that you would likely be charged interest while you held your stocks. I learned that in a similar discussion in Better Investing. (at least, if I’m remembering it correctly). Nothing earth shattering to those who are experienced I’m sure, but I’m a newbie.

    I haven’t rigorously researched it to see if it has some sort of bias.

  6. Anonymous

    I subscribe to both BusinessWeek and Money. I really enjoy reading both, and the information is relevant and timely. I really like the BusinessWeek is weekly (duh) and Money is monthly. It’s the perfect amount of reading for me. I used to get the WSJ, but the amount of information every day was like trying to drink from a firehose.

  7. Anonymous

    Oh the irony of a financial blog with the motto “because money matters” asking for subscription magazine recommendations! Don’t waste your money on dinosaur media. They’re cutting staff and shrinking their page counts. Go online where it’s free, where it’s AT, baby! On the Internets! As invented by Al Gore.

  8. Anonymous

    I’m with Debbie here. I don’t read magazines either. Whether in electronic or paper form.

    Blogs are great and I can almost always learn something neat.

  9. Anonymous

    If you really want to take your financial knowledge to the next level, a daily subscription to the Wall Street Journal is the best way to achieve it. You will find that it is not only for brokers and New York bankers. It has a wealth of personal financial articles (even a section devoted to it each week). By reading a few of the leading articles each day, you begin to understand the bigger picture of finance and economics, translating to a better understanding of money. An instructor at my local college required it of his finance students, and it has made all the difference to me.

  10. Anonymous

    I don’t subscribe to any magazines, but I do read their counterparts online. Most of the time I find myself reading Business Week, The Economist and Kiplingers.

  11. Anonymous

    I haven’t liked any of the financial magazines I’ve seen except for Consumer Reports (not the Money Adviser but just the regular magazine). They tend to focus on day-trading issues and rich-people issues. I don’t care what the hot stocks are and I don’t care where to get the best luxury accommodations in exotic vacation resorts.

    Even Consumer Reports has major problems for me: they sometimes are too ignorant to even know what to test (electronics, especially) and then tend to test only big-ticket items. Also, they pretend to be catering to the entire US, but it’s clear they are based in the northeast–they often talk about regional retailers that aren’t available to me, gardening practices that would be very loopy for people in hot climates to follow, etc.

    I prefer blogs. Seeing what regular people are dealing with on a daily basis is much more valuable to me. And that’s true even though most of you guys are much younger than me, have much higher salaries than I do, and are still getting out of consumer and/or student loan debt. For example, I learned about online savings accounts, money-saving recipes, and strategies for making your spending fit better with your values from blogs.

    I’d also rather re-read The Tightwad Gazette and Your Money or Your Life than to read those magazines. They get me back in the proper mindset when the commercializing brainwashing has gotten to me again! Those money magazines feel like part of the brainwashing.

  12. Anonymous

    Don’t do it — it’s not worth the time to read anything besides Money. I’ve let all my subscriptions, except for Money, expire.

    But if you insist, the only other one I’d recommend is Kiplinger’s.

    Now if you want real fun and a GREAT magazine, go for The Family Handyman magazine. 😉

  13. Anonymous

    I’ve really been liking Kiplinger’s recently, I have found a lot of articles that really appealed to me on everything from credit to careers to investing.

    @KC, I have to chuckle when you point out that SmartMoney is elitist. My first job was writing for SmartMoney, and I learned how to sound as snobby as possible in as few words as possible. That said, I’ve often thought SmartMoney might be hurting themselves with that tone.

    They write for the readers they think they have, but I’ll bet more of their readers are ambitious but still struggling than already-made millionaires.

  14. Anonymous

    You may be able to get free subscriptions to some of the personal finance trade magazines like Financial Planning, Investment Advisor, Wealth Manager, Financial Advisor, Journal of Indexes, employee benefit advisor, etc, as a personal finance blogger (may be worth trying). If not, you may be able to get discarded issues from local financial professionals when they’re done with them.

    Money is really the only one you mentioned that I regularly find to have interesting content. Business Week and Kiplinger’s are hit or miss and Smart Money, Forbes, and Fortune are mostly miss, IMO. I actually currently get them all thanks to expiring Delta frequent flyer miles. I don’t have much experience with CR Money Advisor but I like CR.

  15. Anonymous

    I have been a subscriber to Money magazine for probably 6+ years. I have found this to be my favorite, and the one I am most likely to read all the articles in. I found that I didn’t care as much for Kiplingers and Forbes — both seemed to spend to much time promoting activities I wasn’t interested in: mainly, actively trading stocks and/or funds, hyping the latest high performing funds, and promoting active management. As an indexer, following a more “stay the course” technique, these 2 magazines just weren’t interesting enough to me.

  16. Anonymous

    I subscribe to Business Week. Its not really per-se for investment I think but more if you are interested in knowing whats happening in the business world. I like the background knowledge I get from it in order to round up my knowledge needed to make good investments. I am also interested in subscribing to another financial magazine so I will interested in hearing what other’s find useful.

  17. Anonymous

    I have a paper subscription to Kiplinger’s, which is really easy on the eys. Everything else I read comes from my massive RSS feed reader, but you pretty much covered all the periodic publications.

  18. Anonymous

    Of the ones you mentioned I take Money, Smart Money, and Kiplinger’s. I least like Smart Money – it really isn’t geared for me. It’s geared for people who are wealthier (middle class millionaires). They talk about antiques, expensive wine and chocolate, buying art, Cadillacs and renting villas in the Carribean. It’s a bit elitist for my liking (and I have 2 grad degrees and married an MD – I thought I’d be the elitist). But I still take the magazine and read it – some interesting information available.

    My favorite is Kiplinger’s. I like both it and Money. But Kiplinger’s won me over when it ran a Green Issue a few months back focusing on ways to make money by “going green and investing green.” At first I read it as any other magazine (I’m not exactly a “greenie.”) But Kiplinger’s took a lot of backlash for that issue from conservatives and they defended their point by saying they don’t take a political stance, but rather look at ways to save their reader’s money, and that was what the issue focused on. I liked their opinion and gumption to stand up to the bullies. My guess is the majority of folks at Kiplinger’s are conservative, but they realize their mission is to save money for their readers and that’s what they were doing. I really respect their viewpoint now regardless of their or my political leanings. We are focused on the same goal – saving and making me money!

  19. Anonymous

    I only read the electronic versions, but I enjoy both Money and Kiplingers. I also love The Economist and the Wall Street Journal, even if it’s not technically a magazine. I have found interesting articles in Smart Money from time to time, but they focus too much on investment hyperactivity for my tastes.

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