T Nation

Financial Planning Tools

I need to run some “complicated” figures having to do w/investing in stocks, bonds etc. Compound interest and all that. I have different variables to plug in, so a simple “Compound interest” calculator probably is insufficient.

Any free websites with these tools?

I’d appreciate any help

[quote]Sonny S wrote:
I need to run some “complicated” figures having to do w/investing in stocks, bonds etc. Compound interest and all that. I have different variables to plug in, so a simple “Compound interest” calculator probably is insufficient.

Any free websites with these tools?

I’d appreciate any help[/quote]

Yahoo! Finance at finance.yahoo.com, Smart Money at smart.money.com, CNN/Money at money.cnn.com, and The Motley Fool at fool.com are the places I would search (and probably in that order).

[quote]Sonny S wrote:
I need to run some “complicated” figures having to do w/investing in stocks, bonds etc. Compound interest and all that. I have different variables to plug in, so a simple “Compound interest” calculator probably is insufficient.

Any free websites with these tools?

I’d appreciate any help[/quote]

Mind if I ask- is this all part of your job?

I’m really keen on improving my knowledge regarding corporate finance & investing.

http://www.google.com/search?q=compound+interest&start=0&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official

First search result.

[quote]grew7 wrote:
http://www.google.com/search?q=compound+interest&start=0&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official

First search result.[/quote]

thanks for the reply but I specifically stated a simple compound interest calculator is insufficient. I had already found that.

What specifically are you looking for? Present value? Future value with a variable payment stream or variable interest rate?

I was never in finance per se but I did have instances when I needed to use financial calculations. I usually just developed my own in Excel because that way I got exactly what I wanted. If your problem is complicated, chances are you won’t find anything free to meet your needs.

You need to give more details about what figures you want to plug in. We are not psychics. My guess is, what you are looking for doesn’t exist because it’s not posible

[quote]MikeTheBear wrote:
What specifically are you looking for? Present value? Future value with a variable payment stream or variable interest rate?

I was never in finance per se but I did have instances when I needed to use financial calculations. I usually just developed my own in Excel because that way I got exactly what I wanted. If your problem is complicated, chances are you won’t find anything free to meet your needs.[/quote]

True that. How good is your math? Your best bet would probably be to learn how to do the calculations yourself. They’re generally not too bad as long as you have a spreadsheet. Any old corporate finance or investment textbook should do. Here are two you can try:

Principles of Corporate Finance by Brealey and Myers

Investments by Bodie, Kane, and Marcus

[quote]Sonny S wrote:
I need to run some “complicated” figures having to do w/investing in stocks, bonds etc. Compound interest and all that.[/quote]

Performance measurement is not overly complicated. My first stop would be an Excel spreadsheet, where you can calculate almost anything. It will even do regressions, but not multivariate regressions. For that you need to buy a statistics package. Any will do, I have used Stata and Minitab and they’re both good.

The Motley Fool has some online calculators that you can use: http://www.fool.com/calcs/calculators.htm?source=LN
and it’s free (you may have to register though).

-J

(BTW who the hell gave this thread 5 stars???)

-J

[quote]Sonny S wrote:
I need to run some “complicated” figures having to do w/investing in stocks, bonds etc. Compound interest and all that. I have different variables to plug in, so a simple “Compound interest” calculator probably is insufficient.

Any free websites with these tools?

I’d appreciate any help[/quote]

Excel has these formuals preprogramed.

Thanks for the advice, I’ll check Excel and those websites.

To poster asking about what I need to do:

I’m running some numbers comparing home ownership versus renting a home in my 'hood and investing the money I save.

I also want to run different scenarios in terms of investments. 1 scenario would be just stocks, another stocks and treasury or municipal bonds, another would be mutual funds and CDs, etc etc.

I would strongly suggest to go the The Motley Fool website first. I think they have a rent vs buy calculator for homes.

Regarding running different scenarios on investments, I’m not sure what you are going to accomplish by this. Unless you’re running a portfolio optimizer with reasonable assumptions, you won’t get very far.

As a general rule, if you need the cash in 5 years or less, don’t invest in stocks (or bonds for that matter, given where interest rates are likely headed).

Read up on TMF. They have lots of articles for beginners and tons of useful tips. Don’t make things more complicated than they need to be.

-J

[quote]JuliusA wrote:
I would strongly suggest to go the The Motley Fool website first. I think they have a rent vs buy calculator for homes.

Regarding running different scenarios on investments, I’m not sure what you are going to accomplish by this. Unless you’re running a portfolio optimizer with reasonable assumptions, you won’t get very far.

As a general rule, if you need the cash in 5 years or less, don’t invest in stocks (or bonds for that matter, given where interest rates are likely headed).

Read up on TMF. They have lots of articles for beginners and tons of useful tips. Don’t make things more complicated than they need to be.

-J[/quote]

Don’t know what a portfolio optimizer is, hence the purpose of this post. I’ll try and read up on the websites this weekend.

FYI:

I bought a condo a year ago and am having a hard time understanding how much its worth because its a rapidly changing neighborhood. In my situation, an APPRAISAL is WORTHLESS, b/c of the rapid change.

Soooo…for fun, and based on a convo w/my roommate who’s a programmer for Bear Stearns on Wall Street, I decided for fun to run different scenarios using investments.