General Principles of Financial Planning

The fundamentals of financial statements, cash management, financing strategies, financial institutions, economic concepts and business law.

Here are the topics covered in the General Principles of Financial Planning:

  • The Financial Planning Process
    • Purpose, benefits, and components of the financial planning process
    • Steps of the financial planning process
    • Responsibilities of the planner, client, and other advisors
    • How to create a financial plan
  • Financial Statements
    • Personal Financial Statements
      • Balance Sheet / Statement of Financial Position / Net Worth Statement
      • Cash Flow Statement / Statement of Cash Flows / Income Statement
    • Business Financial Statements
      • Balance Sheet / Statement of Financial Position/Condition)
      • Income Statement / Statement of Income / Statement of Earnings / Statement of Operations
      • Statement of Retained Earnings
      • Cash Flow Statement / Statement of Cash Flows
      • Pro Forma Statements
  • Cash Flow Management
    • Budgeting
    • Emergency fund planning
    • Debt management ratios
    • Savings strategies
    • Rule of 72
  • Credit, Debt, and Personal Financing Strategies
    • Consumer credit and credit management
    • Long-term vs. short-term debt
    • Secured vs. unsecured debt
    • Buy vs. lease/rent
    • Mortgage financing
    • Leases
    • Insolvency and bankruptcy
  • Financial Institutions: Function, Purpose, and Regulation
    • Banks
    • Credit unions
    • Bank, Thrift, and Credit Union Deposit Insurance (FDIC, etc.)
    • Brokerage companies
    • Insurance companies
    • Mutual fund companies
    • Trust companies
  • Financial Services Organizations: registration, licensing, regulations, and requirements
    • Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)
    • Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
    • Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB)
    • National Futures Association (NFA)
    • Reporting
    • Compliance
    • State securities and insurance laws
    • Registered Investment Advisor rules
  • Consumer Protection Laws, Organizations, and Resources
    • Bankruptcy law
    • Fair credit reporting laws
    • Privacy policies
    • Identity theft protection
    • Consumer fraud and protection
    • Identifying and Avoiding Securities Fraud
  • Financial planning for special circumstances
    • Divorce
    • Disability
    • Terminal illness
    • Non-traditional families
    • Job change and job loss
    • Dependents with special needs
    • Monetary windfalls
  • Behavioral Finance
  • Economic concepts
    • Supply and demand
      • Fiscal policy
      • Monetary policy (Federal Reserve System)
      • Economic indicators
      • Business cycles
      • Inflation, deflation, stagflation, mass inflation, hyperinflation
      • Yield curve
    • Economic Points of View
      • Keynesian Theory of Economics
      • Austrian Theory of Economics
    • Business Law
      • Contracts
      • Agency
      • Fiduciary liability

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