Greece Fact of the Day: A Grexit Probably Doesn’t Apply to You

Just in case you missed the headlines, news reports, and talking heads, I thought you should know, Greece voted “no” on its referendum:

Should the deal draft that was put forward by the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund in the Eurogroup of June 25, 2015, and consists of two parts, that together form a unified proposal, be accepted?

The first document is titled “Reforms for the Completion of the Current Program and Beyond” and the second “Preliminary Debt Sustainability Analysis.”

I’m not sure Greeks knew what they were voting for or that they realised they were voting on a dead deal.

But they were happy enough to celebrate the results.

I mention this news because based on the flood of stories filling my stream, it must be BIG news.

And maybe it is, but I’ve yet to see a story that mentions the vote and Greece’s problems in the context of my financial affairs.

I’d consider this fact odd except for one small, but vital, point: What happens in Greece doesn’t change my financial goals or plans.

Yes, the markets may move around.

There may even be a (gasp!) market correction.

But whatever the outcome, we need to remember that our plan should, in theory, have some flexibility to accommodate unexpected events.

I’m so done with the idea that our financial decisions should be based on the metaphorical finger held up to test the direction of the wind.

We know where we want to go.

We know what we can control.

The rest of it qualifies as a boring sequel to all the other financial pornography that fills the 24-hour news cycle.

Maybe Greece will leave the Euro. Maybe they won’t.

But please don’t lay awake at night worrying if it will hurt a low-cost, well-diversified portfolio.

Of course, if you’ve been gambling on the odds that you could predict which way this mess will swing, well, that’s a different story.

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Carl Richards


Carl Richards is a Certified Financial Planner and a columnist for the New York Times, Morningstar magazine and Yahoo Finance. He is author of 2 books, The Behavior Gap & The One-Page Financial Plan. Carl lives with his family in Park City, Utah. You can find his work and sign up for his newsletter (which has an international audience) at

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