Richard Coffin

The Plain Bagel (YouTube)

"Stock analysis isn't that simple, and there's no single indicator for predicting a stock's movement."


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accurate as of 05/15/2023


Richard Coffin is the creator of The Plain Bagel. As a finance enthusiast, he also has a passion for teaching and video editing.

The Plain Bagel covers topics like investments, economics and personal finance, while Coffin hopes to provide education that will help empower users to make their own financial decisions.

He is also an investment analyst for WDS Investment Management and is working toward becoming a portfolio manager.

Why He’s a Top Money Expert:

Richard Coffin has taken his own knowledge in the finance industry and uses it to teach others in a way that works best for them.


You’re passionate about increasing financial literacy. What topic do you wish people were more informed about, and why is it so important to have an understanding of this topic?

The importance of saving (and investing) for retirement early. Most people wait until later on in their career to start planning, with some unfortunately realizing too late that they won’t be able to fund the retirement they were hoping for. Starting early is not only a great way to establish a productive habit, but it gives you a longer time horizon over which you can compound your savings for building that nest egg. This greatly reduces the overall burden of saving for retirement – for a given savings goal, regularly contributing to a 6% returning-investment over a 40-year period, compared to 20 years, cuts the total amount of money you’ll need to put aside by more than half.

There’s a lot of great financial advice on YouTube – but also a lot of not-so-great advice. How can viewers determine what advice they should and shouldn’t follow?

YouTube is a great resource for learning finance basics, but I’d caution anyone from using it to inform specific financial decisions since financial advice should be tailored to an individual’s unique situation. You should also take everything you hear online with a grain of salt, with consideration for the poster’s qualifications, conflicts of interest, and the reasonableness of their advice (the adage of “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is” goes a long way here). Finally, if you aren’t sure what to make of something you’ve heard online, reach out to a trusted, registered professional – there’s a reason financial advice is such a heavily-regulated field!

What’s the worst financial advice you’ve seen being given (on YouTube or elsewhere), and why is this bad advice?

TikTok is full of pretty bad stock pick and day trading videos, where the poster claims a stock is about to take off using a singular trading pattern or indicator as their evidence. Better yet is when they don’t provide any justification and just start listing stocks that will blow up next year (ironically, many of the ones I’ve seen end up plummeting). Short-term trading is a questionable practice to begin with, but if there were a winning strategy, you wouldn’t see it summed up in a 15-second TikTok video. Stock analysis isn’t that simple, and there’s no single indicator for predicting a stock’s movement – if there were, institutions would have already found and exploited the relationship, thereby taking the opportunity away from others.

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