So I’ve never really been that much of a reader. Sure, I do read industry related content every now and then on popular blogs and I do follow some digital marketing influencers such as Neil Patel and Jon Loomer. However, I’ve hardly read any books, especially non-fictional. I’m not really proud of it and I’m always trying to work on it, but meanwhile, I did discover another form of content I enjoy and digest a little easier: Podcasts. In this blog post, I try to break down a list of the best personal finance podcasts and tell you why I think each if worth listening to.
The podcast industry has been growing rapidly for years. Listening to podcasts has become more common and more popular. In 2017, 110 million Americans listened to podcasts on various topics and 42 million, representing 15% of the US population, listened weekly according to Edison Research, Triton Digital and Jay Baer of “Convince & Concert”, a digital agency headquartered in Indiana.
Why Personal Finance?
For me, the ideal length of a podcast episode is around 30 minutes, good enough to get something meaningful while not being too long to listen to on a commute. The beauty of it is that you just plug your headphones into your ears and then immediately start listening while on your commute, morning run, dog walk or even the gym (if that works for you). Makes me feel like a master multitasker (because I’m generally not that much of a multitasker).
So why personal finance? If you're using a good financial tracking app such as mint to keep track of your finances, that's a good start. But there's a lot more you can do. Personal finance is among the topics that are almost guaranteed to be universally beneficial to everyone. Doesn’t matter how much money you make, how old you are or what you do for a living. This sort of knowledge benefits everyone and helps them be smarter with money management, investing, meeting their financial goals and achieving financial independence.
The Best Personal Finance Podcasts
So how have I chosen the podcasts presented below? Well, mainly two criteria: practical value and entertainment value. It’s pretty easy to get distracted when listening to a podcast (at least for me) hence why I think it’s important for the host and the guests to be able to maintain your attention whether through humor or otherwise.
Some podcasts also seem very generic. Meaning, by the end of the podcast you’re still wondering what you should do next. Or you’re thinking “okay good talk, but how do I apply that?”. In the list below I’ve tried to put together the podcasts I felt provide the most practical and entertainment value. Of course, the popularity of the podcast, as well as its host and the reputation of its guests, were also weighed.
Below I break down the list and tell you why each podcast got an entry on the list! Please note that the podcasts were not “ranked” in any particular order, the order you see below is random.
1) Planet Money
Planet Money is a very popular personal finance/economics podcast. It airs twice a week and the episode spans 15-30 minutes. I find that while Planet Money may not go as in-depth as some people might like, it offers great answers to questions that may commonly come to mind but are forgotten minutes afterward. It does not focus solely on building wealth and investing but it does really help you “understand the world better”.
The show’s production and guests are high quality and the tone is straightforward and consumer friendly. As of writing this, the show has produced 850 episodes. If you’re looking for answers to questions such as why ISIS keeps accounting records, why Argentina decided not to pay its debts or why Coke’s price hasn’t changed for close to a century, then this might be the show for you.
Going through reviews to see if people had any reservations, I actually found a few complaining that the show was once politically neutral but now shows liberal bias, but other than that, most reviews seemed overwhelmingly positive. Here’s an example from iTunes:
“I just recently started listening to this podcast because I heard about it on Invisibilia. If I remember correctly, the host said it is a great podcast about economics for people who don't like economics (or something similar). That is a very accurate statement because the stories in this podcast are so entertaining, and you do learn about economics! I love listening to this on my commute to and from work.”
2) Stacking Benjamins
Unlike Planet Money, Stacking Benjamins focuses more on personal finance rather than generic economics. It was named the Best Business Podcast of 2017 at the Academy of Podcasters & Hall of Fame Ceremony. It's hosted by Joe Saul-Sehy and a character that goes by the name “The Other Guy” or “OG”. The host worked previously as a financial planner and gave financial advice on radio for 15 years, so it's safe to say he does know what he's talking about.
The show is both informative and incredibly entertaining, it focuses on wealth building related topics such as managing investment accounts and portfolios, passive income and how to create multiple income streams. The show discusses a couple of headlines that are economics related, then goes into a 15-20 minute interview and then finally answers some listeners’ questions.
A lot of the guests actually have very interesting stories about how they got out of a bad credit card debt or how they’ve accumulated wealth. These stories are often the focus of the podcast. Example episode titles include “Should You Trade in Your Friends for Richer Ones?”, “Do You Have What It Takes To Be a Millionaire?” and “From $100 to $1 Million”. Here’s an example review from Stitcher:
“I don't know how long I've been listening, probably close to a year. I must say, the SB podcast is incredibly well done – the structure, variety of segments, and the guests and hosts all mesh really well. I think what makes it really stand out is the little things, like transitions from one segment to another, sound quality, and overall flow make it sound really professionally produced. Funny, entertaining, and accidentally informative! Keep up the good work!”
3) Listen, Money Matters
“Listen, Money Matters” was started by Andrew Fiebert, an ex-investment banker. He started the podcast when he felt there wasn’t enough info online about personal finance to really help the average joe. The podcast focuses on paying off debts, budget (expenses and spending) management as well as wealth building related topics such as investment.
This is a weekly podcast that airs for about 50 minutes and aims to “free your inner financial badass”, according to the creators. The show also covers more high-level topics such as mindset and tactics, but it doesn’t fall short in tackling specifics as well, such as real estate investing. The show has also done a great job at building a community around it. Here’s a review that sums it up pretty well (from iTunes):
“I was not expecting to love this podcast as much as I do! Andrew and Matt break down financial concepts in a way that is easy for a newbie like me to understand. They take it one step further by giving practical tips and advice based on real-world scenarios. Also, their constant banter keeps the conversations interesting and keeps me laughing on my daily commute!”
4) So Money
So Money’s host, Farnoosh Torabi is a best-selling author, TV host and award-winning financial strategist. The highlight of the show is its guests. It has featured people like Seth Godin, Tony Robbins, Robert Kiyosaki, Simon Sinek and more. The show provides in-depth insights into how these people manage their finances and how they approach and think about money and wealth in general.
On the weekends, the show answers fans’ questions about career, money and more. It goes on for around 35 minutes.
Here’s an example review from Stitcher:
“I wish I would have had the So Money podcast 10 years ago, and I could have been a millionaire by now! Since starting to listen to the podcast a few months back, both my money mindset and financial situation have improved dramatically by applying the tips from the podcast. I am impressed by how Farnoosh, despite being busy with a podcast nearing 1 million downloads and having high profile guests such as Tony Robbins and Seth Godin on the show, still takes time to personally answer listeners' questions. Farnoosh's pep talks and inspirational guests give me confidence that financial abundance is possible also for me!”
5) Masters in Business
As the name suggests, Masters in Business is a broader business-related podcast with a slight tilt towards personal finance and investing. However, the host, Barry Ritholtz tends to interview quite a wide range of people with diverse backgrounds which can be both a pro and a con. The diversity helps broaden your knowledge but at the same time if you want something strictly focused on personal finance and growing your wealth, then this podcast might not be for you.
I do think that it’s worth tuning in just for the big name guests that are featured, even if it wasn’t all about personal finance. The show airs weekly and has exceeded 150 episodes since inception.
Here’s an example review that I think does a good job in summing up what this podcast is about:
“Barry does truly a great job at having a straightforward and insightful conversation with occasionally bits humor. Every time I listen I learn something new and his diverse array of guests prevent his podcasts from being too focused in one business area. Since I started listening my only complaint is that he hasn't produced more content, because I am blowing through his tracks!!”
Other Notable Podcasts Worth Checking Out
While I don’t have the space to talk in-depth about all of the recommended podcasts, I also felt I wouldn’t be doing you justice if I was to leave them completely off the list, so here are some more personal finance podcasts that I highly recommend checking out:
- Well Kept Wallet
- Invest Like the Best
- Freakonomics Radio
- Money for the Rest of Us
- Bigger Pockets
6) Bonus: Our Very Own Podcast!
Okay, so some shameless self-promotion here. Although our podcast here at Niche Pursuits isn’t exactly about personal finance, it’s main theme is about creating and growing your online business. In fact, the entire Niche Pursuits website is about helping you earn a living online, not just the podcast. If you’re new, start here.
If you’re a regular reader but haven’t listened to our podcast before, you’re missing out! Check it out here.
Personal finance is mostly about making money, right? Well, Niche Pursuits helps you make money online. Guess that’s personal finance in some way at least. Maybe. I think.
Alright, so a quick Google search for “personal finance podcasts” will yield dozens of different podcasts. This blog post lists different podcasts you can listen to, just like other posts do. However, if you’re like me, you probably don’t have the time to go through all of them. You might be confused as to what to start with. And, even if you do go through them all, you most likely won’t tune in to all of them regularly.
So how do you choose? Well, I’d personally choose based on this criteria:
- Goal: What is your goal? General knowledge and entertainment? Actionable personal finance tips? Interviews with big names?
- Duration: You might have a set time for listening to podcasts, during your daily commute for example. If your commute is 30 minutes and the podcast is 1 hour, that won’t really be ideal, would it?
- Tone and personality: Well let’s be honest. No matter how good the content is, sometimes you just can’t stand listening to some people. This is obviously highly subjective. Maybe you think their jokes suck, maybe you just don’t like their voice. You’ll simply find that you can connect and relate to some hosts and guests more than others, and that will also dictate which podcast you’d enjoy the most.
Still can’t decide? Well, I can give you a personal recommendation. Personally, if I have the time, I’d go for something broad and entertaining like “Planet Money”, and another one that focuses more on personal finance and practical tips. Maybe “Stacking Benjamin” or “Listen, Money Matters”.
If I were to choose 3, it’d probably be “So Money” just to listen to the big names and their philosophy when it comes to dealing with money (even if what they say isn’t immediately actionable, I think it’d still be beneficial, at least on the mindset level).
Are you already listening to any of those podcasts? Do you have feedback you’d like to share about one in particular? Please let me know in the comments section. And as always, let me know if you have any questions!