Building Wealth: Priorities and Practices

Building WealthHOW READERS WILL BENEFIT
Building Wealth: Priorities and Practices is a book of inspiration and instruction, and readers will:

Understand that God has eternal rewards and earthly financial blessings in store for those who abide by His principles.

Learn how to reap God’s blessings on their finances.

Learn how to sow seeds for blessings in business and investments.

Learn what spiritual capital is and how to appropriate it in the capital markets.

Learn how to build wealth like a veteran money manager by using a system for analyzing stocks and managing their own stock portfolios.
BECAUSE THE BOOK WILL
Provide an in-depth scriptural lesson in God’s plan for their spiritual rewards and earthly prosperity.

Set forth the main priority and the three personal characteristics that God uses as conditions for blessing their finances.

Provide stories and testimonials of inspiration from the author and five entrepreneurs in their wealth building ventures based on Godly principles.

Explain how the capital markets on Wall Street work and the terminology and ratios that stock analysts use in evaluating stocks.

Demonstrate point-by-point analysis of a stock, determine a fair-value buy price, and project the probable five-year price of the stock.

Teach the process of selecting and managing a diversified stock portfolio, including when to sell a stock and how to avoid catastrophic loss in a portfolio.

Set up an investment strategy (system) for the reader which provides step-by-step procedures that can be easily implemented.

Discuss the common investment mistakes to avoid and how to deal with the emotional roller-coaster of the stock market.

WHY THIS BOOK IS NEEDED NOW
Many working Americans are not prepared to manage their investments and this shortcoming is critical, since the trend of businesses and professional practices is shifting to individual management of retirement plans. To complicate matters, millions of “baby boomers” reached the early-retirement age of 62 beginning in 2008, and they will receive substantial lump-sum payouts from their retirement plans.

Americans who remain in the workforce already are required to manage their 401 K plans, and within a decade, they likely will have to manage a portion of their Social Security investments.

Based on the poor performance of mutual funds during the 2008-2009 economic recession and stock market crash, many individuals may want to become their own investment manager.

Likewise, many single parents and other adults yearn to improve their standard of living and dream-fulfillment by investing in the stock market, but many have lost money and have become discouraged. Certainly, the losses in the stock market crash of 2008-2009 must be recovered.

All of these conditions are complicated by the fact that many Christians do not understand and/or apply Biblical principles which address financial matters.

The purpose of this book is to (1) review Biblical principles that are the priorities for prosperity and (2) teach wealth-building practices by using an uncomplicated and low-risk system of investing that the author has developed over 25 years of investing professionally.
WHAT IT IS NOT
Sometimes the best way to define what you are intending is to state that which you are not intending. Therefore, this is not a book on or about:

Prosperity Theology-In the sense of offering God a contribution with the expectation of a quick fix for a problem. Of course, God is sovereign, and He may bail us out. But His way is to build a life of generosity and hard work, and He blesses our efforts.

Name It Claim It Theology-In the sense of claiming a blessing without taking profound steps of faith in combination with your own effort. God honors our faith and by our words we can enhance or derail our faith, but God’s plan is for us to seek a vision for a comprehensive plan for our lives, including our prosperity, and then to take steps of faith to implement His plan.

Putting Savings at Risk-There is a place for savings in any financial plan, but there is also a place for some risk, which is managed and based on high probability of a minimal downside.

Limited to Youthful Investors-It is never too late to build wealth. I did not start a successful business until I was 45 years old, and my wife and I did not open IRAs until we were 58 years old. Plan your wealth-building program and implement the plan ASAP.

Limited to Financial Elite-Investing is not rocket science or mastered only by wealthy Wall Street types. Successful investing and building wealth is achievable by the ordinary person who applies a user-friendly system and is patient.

HOW IS THIS BOOK DIFFERENT?
Building Wealth: Priorities and Practices offers an integrated discussion of the Biblical and secular approaches to improving the reader’s financial well-being. The Biblical principles are authenticated by testimony of the author and five entrepreneurs who demonstrated the practicalities of this Biblical approach to building wealth.

Also, the book teaches a method of building wealth by investing in common stocks of outstanding U. S. corporations. The instruction is a hands-on approach that applies systems, methods and resources used by the leading money managers, although most money managers have proprietary models that are more expensive than the average individual investor would care to use. Building Wealth identifies and provides instruction in the use of the software, Internet sites, and other research sources that are free or low-cost and model the proprietary tools used by professional money managers.

The author, who is a veteran money manager and former academic, claims that he has “never seen another book that provides the detailed hands-on approach to investing using the proven investment methods of seasoned money managers like that in Building Wealth. In addition, the resources that are used in the investment model are free or low-cost. Likewise, the Biblical discussion is much more in depth than any book I have reviewed on the wealth building subject.”
CONTENT OVERVIEW
Building Wealth: Priorities and Practices is organized around four themes:

1. Out of Favor and Out of the Money. Some Christians never ask God to favor them, particularly with wealth. They think it is selfish at best and sinful at worse to ask God to bless them financially. On the other hand, most Americans, including Christians, seek to increase their financial standing for different reasons, many by investing. However, many people who seek to improve themselves financially fail as entrepreneurs and/or as investors. The Bible is explicit that God gives the ability to prosper, but there are conditions (priorities) set forth for His blessings, and there are eternal rewards for those who righteously use the gifts and money that God bestows on them. Likewise, there are systems and methods (practices) for success in the investment world, which can be learned by anyone willing to study and perfect a disciplined investment strategy.

2. Biblical Priorities for Realizing and Retaining God’s Favor. If Christians are to unlock God’s favor on their finances, they must be faithful stewards of the financial assets that God already has entrusted to them. Faithful stewardship accrues the spiritual capital that can be appropriated in times of financial uncertainty and can bank (underwrite) Christians’ financial ventures when they step out in faith. Likewise, if Christians are to experience God’s continuing favor on their finances, they must evidence attitudes and behavior that are Christ-like. Diligence, humility, and discretion are the keys to retaining His blessings and realizing a compounding effect on their finances.

3. Profiles in Stewardship, Diligence, Humility, and Discretion. Many people at some point falter in their quest to improve their financial well-being, much less to reach the point of financial independence. Investors and entrepreneurs learn by watching or reading about others, and they gain inspiration from successful people, particularly achievers’ dealing with the inevitable barriers to financial success. The author gives his stewardship testimony and profiles five other entrepreneurs who discuss their wealth-building practices and give their testimonies about God’s direction in their lives.

4. Wall Street Methods. In order to proceed orderly in building wealth by investing in stocks, investors must establish goals; therefore, they need to:

Understand that the nature of wealth is relative to the person and not absolute for everybody.

Understand the mind-set and habits necessary for success in investing, the language of Wall Street, and the data and measurements that professional analysts and strategists follow.

Learn about general economic data which affect stock prices and understand the psychological factors inherent in the stock market volatility.

Develop an investment strategy, which includes their investment style such as growth, value, or momentum and an investment discipline (plan), which specifies their stock buy/sell criteria.

Learn to use (1) a software program that will facilitate their stock analysis, and (2) specific resources available on the Internet.

Develop a routine to follow each time they analyze a stock or review their portfolio.

Understand and avoid the common mistakes investor frequently make and learn to deal with their emotions in up and down markets.

Each of these themes is addressed in depth, and scriptures, illustrations, charts, figures, and appendices are used to explain or substantiate key points.
THE AUTHOR
Dr. Stephen C. “Steve” McCutcheon

Over 25 years experience in investment management as founder, chairman, and president:

1986-present: Southern Capital Management-Investment Management

2000-present: Southern Capital Management-Investment research and education

1987-2000: Southern Capital Management Company-SEC-registered broker/dealer firm

1988-1998: SCM Portfolio Fund, Inc.-SEC-registered mutual fund.

1984-94: West Georgia College Foundation, managed investments with committee of trustees

Education:

1961: Bachelor of Arts, Auburn University, in Mass Communications with minors in Economics and Psychology

1964: Master of Science, Florida State University, in Student Personnel Administration with minor in Guidance and Counseling

1968: Doctor of Education, Indiana University, in Higher Education Administration with minor in Guidance and Counseling

Additional Experience

Served as an administrator at Florida State University, Wofford College, Indiana University, and West Georgia College (University of West Georgia) before entering investment management.

Wrote 50 monthly stock analysis columns for Georgia Trend, business and political magazine.

Taught two investment courses in continuing education: mutual funds and securities investments.

WHERE TO BUY
BUILDING WEALTH:
Priorities and Practices
The book is available through most book stores and on www.lifewaystores.com and Amazon.com at a list price of $19.99.(ISBN 978-1-58169-344-7)