Holiday gift ideas that build financial knowledge

WASHINGTON — A holiday gift of financial knowledge will last longer than a gift card or a fruitcake (OK, maybe not a fruitcake) and pay off for the rest of the recipient’s life. An area financial adviser shared her recommendations for some great choices.

Dawn Doebler, senior wealth adviser at Bridgewater Wealth, in Bethesda, Maryland, and co-founder of Her Wealth, gave WTOP some advice recently on gifts that can help recipients of different ages strengthen their financial knowledge.

Her first suggestion, the book “Own Your Financial Freedom,” by Andrea Kennedy, is written primarily for women going through divorce and other “families in transition” due to divorce, illness or death, but “it’s a great book, really, for any woman who wants to be financially savvy,” Doebler said.

“It talks about balancing the need to manage your emotions — because they can get in the way when you’re making financial decisions — with really understanding the basics of investing.”

It’s a thoughtful gift, she said, that will “acknowledge where people are, that it might be a difficult time, and give them some hope with some information.”

You can start a kid on the road to financial literacy with a gift from the website Give a Share, which lets buyers purchase one share of stock in their choice of more than 100 companies, and have it mounted and delivered to the kid of their choice.

Doebler calls it a great way to “teach them how to track the stock” and start teaching kids about how stocks work. “Start teaching them about finances early; it’s never too early.”

Young adults struggling to create a long-term financial plan while under the weight of student loans will appreciate the 2008 book “You’re So Money,” by Farnoosh Torabi, Doebler said.

“They want to have a lot of great lifestyle spending, but also build long-term financial security,” Doebler said of millennials, and the book helps them with “balancing the emotion of wanting something in the present with making really good practical decisions and building long-term financial security.”

Particularly for young newlyweds, Doebler said, “It’s a great way to start them off.”

Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2013 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He's the author of "A Walking Tour of the Georgetown Set" and "I Got a Song: A History of the Newport Folk Festival."

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