How to Create Young Financial Geniuses – pt 1

October is a Spooky Month for Investors

It’s Never Too Early or Too Late to Invest

Finance Has A Shocking Gender Gap

The Term Wealth Management Explained

Don’t Be Held Back: Learn How To Travel With Little Money

The History Behind Modern Day Investing

How Can We Use Our Money To Pursue Happiness?

Money is Like Oxygen, You Need it to Breathe – pt 3

Money is Like Oxygen, You Need it to Breathe – pt 2



It begins at home! Finance is something which we are surrounded by and interact with on a daily basis. Yet, many people don’t learn about personal financing until they have already entered adulthood, due to its common negligence in school curriculum. Thus, it is the responsibility of parents and guardians to educate and prepare our children for the future.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost - Oct 29 2018


What is money and how does it work as a medium of exchange in society? Kids begin exploring questions like these from a very young age. The concept of money is largely introduced in the homes and it develops into understanding of earnings, budgeting, and investing. As kids grow up, the basic counting knowledge of 3-5 year-olds turns into understanding of loans around senior year of high school to prepare for university studies. There are many financial terms to learn, and to avoid it being too overwhelming, while preserving the interest in the subject, it is important to consider the timing of when to introduce these topics. Talking about credit reports with a four-year-old might be a bit excessive.

Financial Literacy

The possession of skills and knowledge to make effective and informed financial decisions is known as financial literacy. The focus tend to be on personal financial education, rather than viewing the inabilities of many to manage their own finances as a broader social concern. Taking into account the successive financial scandals, such as the 2008 financial crisis, it would be preposterous to blame the individual. Therefore, it is argued that financial literacy should include bank and governmental behaviours as well.

Parents’ and Guardians’ Responsibility

While literacy is a fundamental part of the education system, financial literacy is often left out. However, there is a movement to include more finance-related courses through elementary- to high school. Yet, parents and guardians remain the primary educators in teaching children the necessary skills and knowledge to develop strong and life-long financial expertise.


Many adults avoid this responsibility as they themselves are unsure about their own finances. More than eight in ten parents believe it is of high importance to teach children about money, yet one in six are not comfortable initiating this conversation. The experiences and perspectives held by parents is something which children do not have. Thus, sharing this knowledge, regardless of your confidence and expertise of personal finance, will provide basic financial insights and initiate the money conversation. Money, like many other subjects, will to an extent be discussed outside of the home; commonly with friends and through social media. This may seem harmless, but there is a risk of misinformation. Thus, it is important to carry out this discussion in the home, and there are many ways to educate your children about finance. Financial experts recommend two things; to start early and to talk often.


To provide children with an allowance can have many benefits, including the knowledge of budgeting. Budgeting is a fundamental concept in personal financing and by providing kids with an allowance, it will teach them how to handle their own finances and plan for larger purchases. However, deciding the amount to give the children as well as what will be paid for directly by the parents, can be a difficult decision to make. These decisions will be unique to each family depending on their own financial standing as well as their goals.


Clothing could be a good starting point; where you asses how much you spend on clothing for your children, then provide that money in allowance so that they can spend it on clothes as they wish. This is a simple starting point and can be integrated to other products or services as well, including cell phones, social activities and travels. It is important to be completely clear about what the allowance covers. In regards to clothes, does that include sports wear and school uniform, or is it strictly leisure clothes? To make certain restrictions on what is not allowed to purchase may be of interest as well.


It will take time for the child to learn how to budget. Therefore, it is important to consider the time scope. A year long allowance may result in all money running out by the first few months. Therefore, a good idea is to start off with frequent payouts and then begin spreading them out over time. It is recommended to start giving your kids an allowance when they begin grasping the concept of it, which is around five years of age. This will introduce them to the concept of money and budgeting at an early stage.



Halloween season is here, and that means we’re in a historical month for stock market crashes. The Great Crash of October 1929 (Black Monday) and the 23-percent one-day crash of October 19th 1989 (Black Tuesday), to mention a few. October is associated with some scary memories of investors.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost - Oct 22 2018


Boo! October is here. One of the most feared months in the financial calendar, known as the October effect. A theory regarding stocks declining during this month. It is mainly considered a psychological expectation rather than an actual phenomenon, but there are past examples supporting the theory. These events are, however, few although bearing large consequences.


The events which have given October it’s bad reputation over the past century include:


The Panic of 1907 (October 1907) - The first global financial crisis of the 20th century which led to the creation of the Federal Reserve System by inspiring the monetary reform movement.


Black Tuesday, Thursday and Monday (October 1929) - The Great Depression, affected by a crash in the stock market, lasted for 10 years and left a big mark on the world. Central banks have since learned and gained knowledge of how to utilize monetary policies to manage the economy in order to prevent an event like this to occur again.


Black Monday (October 1987) - One of the largest one-day market crash in history, where the Dow lost its value  by 22.6% on October 19th. As a result, a system of circuit breakers was implemented to prevent stocks which plummet too quickly from being traded.


These events have cause traders to be particularly nervous in the month of October. This October, the S&P 500 dropped 5% in hours with an average down of 4% at the end of the second week of October. The market did, however, rise 2% last Tuesday. The uncertainty still remains with little over a week left of this month. Especially considering the rising anxiety about the looming trade war with China.


Why October? According to market historians, the financial woes could be linked to the crop cycles. October meant harvest season and thus large amounts of money would leave the banks for purchasing of food and grains, resulting in pressures on the financial markets. Consequenting in a higher vulnerability to panics.


However, this does not explain the modern October phenomenon. Instead, some argue that the harvesting season has been replaced by the earnings season. In October, a majority of public traded companies release their 3rd quarterly earning report and provide outlooks for the 4th quarter as well as the upcoming fiscal year. These reports provide information on corporate profitability, and thus insights on the state of the economy. In other words, if an economy is growing, that should be reflected in the companies’ revenue streams. For our current market insights, this October is reporting a strong third quarter.


In fact, there have been more historical downs occurring in the month of September. For example, The Financial Crisis of 2008, the worst economic disaster since The Great Depression of 1929, began with the bankruptcy of the Lehman Brothers on September 15, 2007.


Despite the positive outlooks of the latest quarterly reports, financial headlines keep warning us about the stock market heading towards another crash. Historically, we are currently in one of the longest-running bull market with over nine years and counting. The household wealth is exceeding the household income, which could be signaling another crash. In the UK, the British households grow less confident about their finances as the October earnings from employment rose at its weakest rate since February. This is just one out of many examples which should alarm anyone with substantial amount of personal wealth in stocks. The bull market will eventually reach an end, and the question is when?


One of the most effective ways to avoid severe consequences when the market is churning, is to follow one of the main investment rules: to diversify systematically. Meaning that you should not put all of your eggs in one basket and ensure the baskets are of different materials. It is not the quantity of investments options held, rather it has to do with carefully spreading your assets, avoiding duplicates.



Investment can seem daunting at first. Then, once you get into it, you’ll easily find yourself looking back at those early days and wondering why you waited so long with making your first investment. Taking an interest in your financial future is highly important, so let this article encourage you to start your investment journey today.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost - Oct 16 2018


No matter what stage in life you are in, having savings is important; whether it is for your college education, a new car, an emergency fund or retirement. By investing your current savings, your money will accumulate over the years. One of the oldest cliches in personal finance advice is “pay yourself first”, which is a cliche because it works.


Difference between investing and saving

Let’s begin by distinguishing the difference between investing and saving. There are multiple ways to save money, buying items at discounted rates and setting aside a portion of your salary are easy ways to start. Refer to this blog post for more on this. Investing, however, refers to what you do with the money you have set aside. Instead of leaving the money in a piggy bank or on a savings account, you put your money to work. There are numerous ways to invest, refer to our blog post on Effortless Investing for more information.


Why invest?

There are only two ways to increase your assets in today’s world; by working for either yourself or someone else, or by having your money work for you. Having your savings hidden under your mattress or on a bank account with zero percent interest rate, means in most cases that you over time will be losing money due to inflation. Your saved £1,000 will buy you more today than what it will a year from now, according to the time value of money. Thus, if you don’t put your money to work, you will in fact be “losing” money over time.


Don’t let fear stop you

One of the main reasons people choose not to invest is due to the lack of knowledge. Many people believe that investment is difficult, and thus shy away from it. Only 21% and 35% of men hold an investment in the UK, and UK citizens own 12.3% of UK shares while the majority (53.9%) is owned by businesses or people overseas. In fact, investment is not as difficult as many believe.

Another reason people don’t invest is because they believe it will take up too much of their time. It will take up some of your time, and some advice for that is to allocate time in your schedule for it. Some timeworn advice is to work on the most important project for the first hour of your day to ensure other committments don’t intrude. Take this advice for investing, to “pay yourself first”.


Anyone can learn to invest

No one was born an investor. You learn through research, conversations, and, above all, trying it out. Begin by taking baby steps. Remember that every investment journey starts with the first pound. You will learn a lot from your first investment, and continue to learn for every investment thereafter. Make sure that the amount of money you choose to invest, you can afford to lose. There is never a guarantee that you will be earning money, however, once you become more immersed in the world of investment, your understanding of it will help you make better decisions.


Investing is individual

It does not matter how you do it, whether it is through funds, stocks, real estate, options, a small business or a combination, the objective is the same; to generate more money through these investments. A recommendation is to start off by assessing your own investment situation; whether you are young and new to this field, middle-age and building a family, or old and self-governing. These age segments, as well as your income and outlook, will have an impact on your investment strategy.

Read this article for recommendations on how you should invest according to your age.


Bottom line

Do not shy away from investment because of your age, or any other situation you may hold as an excuse. Instead, see this as an opportunity to begin learning and involving yourself with this field.

We hope that this article will encourage you to take the first step into your investment journey!



Out of the Fortune 500 companies, there are 26 female CEOs and 58 female CTOs. The number of women holding senior positions is increasing, but there is still a long way to go in order to achieve gender equality. In the financial industry, the gender gap is even more prominent, including both a lack of female participation as well as unfair differences in salaries.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Oct 08 2018

Despite efforts for a change in culture, the progress towards gender equality is slow. Today, only 14% of partners at private equity firms, hedge funds and other financial services companies are women. According to data provided by the Financial Conduct Authority. Out of the 9,957 partners, 1,381 (14%) were women, which is less than 1 in 7. The number has only increased by 2% in the past 5 years. A diverse employee group is likely to provide significant benefits for a company in the long run. Research conducted by McKinsey showed the correlation between diversity and success within companies;  the firms at the top quartile for diversity were 15% more likely to see their financial return above the national median within their industry.


The attitude women have towards the financial industry could explain why there are so  few womens holding senior positions within the financial sector. Women chose not to apply for positions within trading and investment, resulting in more resumes received from men than women in the recruitments by these firms. Job positions including brokers and financial researchers tend not to be very popular amongst females, partly due to the “macho” culture the financial industry fosters. Instead, women tend to gravitate towards work environments consisting of other women. Yet, the interest in finance and investment remains. Thus, a lot of support groups have been established to provide assistance for female investors. This includes the International Finance Corporation’s: Banking on Women, and various female investment clubs.


In order to minimize the gender inequality, the issue needs to be tackled at a much earlier stage. The ABC of Gender Equality in Education found that girls, even if they were high achievers, tend to express strong feelings of anxiety in subjects such as mathematics compared to boys. As a plausible result, there are less females studying these subjects at university level. This attitude are much likely passed down from teachers and parents.


Hetty Green (1834-1916), the witch of Wall Street, was a pioneer of her time by being a model of groundbreaking financial intelligence and independence. Her unconventional ways led to extraordinary financial success. She opened her first bank account at age 8, received much of her education through reading financial papers, and traded the family fortune, which she was handed, on the stock market. She told the New York Times in 1905 “I buy when things are low and nobody wants them. I keep them until they go up and people are anxious to buy”.


Another issue within the financial industry is the great differences in compensation. Finance accounts for six out of ten jobs with the greatest gaps in pay between genders. The financial sector alone has a 22% pay gap on average, while the UK national is at 9%. The number is even higher for bonuses, with a 46% difference in pay on average. Of people earning above £1 million, 4,600 of them are men while only 400 are women. To address this problem, attitudes needs to be changed at the top. Big tech firms are far more willing to accept women into senior positions. Financial positions within charities are also more likely to have a better female to male ratio. Out of the 100 largest charities in the UK, there is a record 31 female directors with chief responsibility for finance. Overall, the gender inequality is diminishing, and there have never before been so many high-qualified women who earn well and want to invest their money.

Wealth Management


New to investment or having a difficult time explaining the term “wealth management”? You’re not alone. In fact, a lot of professionals have a difficult time defining the term and it is often thrown around in boardrooms, in articles and in trade. In actuality, wealth management is very straightforward; it encompasses all parts of an individual’s financial life with the goal of solving or enhancing the financial situation through providing a range of financial services and products.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Sep 29 2018

The large quantity of financial resources and tools, once only available to financial professionals, are now accessible by the general public. Thus, many individuals delve into the world of investments and an increasing number of investors consider themselves to be a least partly self-directed in their financial decisions. However, the world of investments is becoming more complex and require a higher time commitment. As a result, many turn to high-level experts for guidance. The wealth manager will have an influence on your financial future, and therefore selecting the right wealth manager can be a highly critical decision.

A Wealth Manager

A professional who works within the wealth management service is generally called a wealth manager. These professionals have an in depth knowledge of investment markets and personal finance. In essence, a wealth manager can provide any existing financial service. In reality, the professionals often specialize in a specific area based on the expertise of the wealth manager. These areas include accounting and tax services, financial advice, investment management, legal or estate planning, and retirement planning. Depending on the business, the wealth managers may operate under different titles, for example financial advisor.


Wealth managers are either a part of a wealth management firm or they are standalone practitioners. The approach towards wealth management is often holistic, where a single manager coordinates all financial products and services needed to manage the client’s money and future planning. Depending on the business structure, a client may have access to multiple members within a wealth management team. Wealth managers focus on delivering their service in a consultative manner by meeting the needs and wants of their clients. Thus, the industry is truly client-centered.


Initially, the wealth manager will meet with his/ her client to better understand their needs and wants in order to begin developing a plan that will maintain and increase the client’s wealth. This is based on the financial situation, goals, and risk level of the client. Regular meetings ensure that the plan is updated appropriately in accordance to any changes to the individual’s wants and needs.

Selection Process

In your wealth manager search, there are a couple of things to consider. Overall, it is important to match their characteristics, level of experience, temperament and client profile to your own. The more you know about your own financial situation, investment objectives, and risk level, the easier it will be to understand and evaluate the wealth managers. Other things to consider include:

  • Background and Experience: Make sure to check the credentials of the wealth manager to understand their level of expertise. Think of it as hiring an employee; ask for their qualifications, certification, track record and network of clients. The professional you choose will have an impact on your financial future, and therefore finding a trusted individual should be the number one thing you look into.
  • Payment Options: There are multiple ways wealth managers make their money. Some charge a flat fee, while others charge a percentage of your investments. In investment firms, advisors generally earn their money through commissions on products and services since that is how the company makes its money. These professionals need to adhere to certain standards of suitability when recommending products and services, but they are not required to place the interest of their clients first.
  • Dedication for Professional Guidance: Recommendations by any wealth manager should not be considered unless the person has done a thorough assessment on their client’s financial situation, goals and risk level. One thing you could do is to ask the wealth manager for equivalent product offerings available at different fees. Be cautious and assess whether the professional has the best interest in you and your finances or if you are confronted by a salesperson.
  • A Good Match: After assessing the above criteria, start to consider the personal match between you and the wealth manager. This is an individual who you will be in contact with over a longer period of time, and thus it is important to find an advisor who will provide conflict-free investment advice.


If you are considering a career within wealth management, then read this article to find out more. 


Modern Wealth Management

Traditionally, the wealth management industry has been specifically targeted towards wealthy individuals with diverse wants and needs. But the industry is changing and here at Bifrost we aim at making the wealth management service more affordable and accessible to the general public. This is possible through providing specific financial products and services by focusing on an aspect of the wealth management industry.



Traveling is often associated with high costs. Is it possible to travel on barely any money? Yes! People have done it before. You do not need to be rich to travel. In fact, there are a number of ways to explore the world with little or no money spent. Throw away your preconceptions about travelling and find out how to do it with this guide below.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Sep 22 2018

In a previous blog post we discussed the relationship between money and happiness. What various research found was that experience is a large part of one’s well being. Travelling provides a great gateway to experience, through culture, language, food, history, views, and more. People often associate travelling with a lot of money, but there are ways to explore the world with little or no money at all. The largest expenses, which are highly recommended, are travel insurance and visas. The rest of your travelling can be done extremely cheaply or for free. Continue reading our guide to find out more.




Basic Needs

You only need a few things for survival:

  • Air – this is free and available anywhere.
  • Water – bring water bottles (multiple) with you and if you’re afraid of drinking tap water or there is none available, then invest in a water filter. If you have the resources, you could also boil the water. A lot of countries also have water fountains containing filtered water, or you could ask for some tap water at any restaurant.
  • Food – our bodies can survive for some time without food, but that is quite unpleasant. There are a couple of options if you want to acquire this for free; in rural areas it is often easy to find fruit and vegetables, you can try “skipping” also known as dumpster diving, or you can volunteer somewhere in exchange for food. There are some other options  for acquiring food for free, or if you’re willing to pay a very small price, cooking the food yourself is then the best option.
  • Sleep – research on the amount of sleep you need to get a day varies greatly. Some feel great after just as little as 2 hours of sleep, and there are different ways of spreading out the sleep. This is up to you as an individual to decide what your needs are. Now, onto where to sleep. There are a variety of options  for free sleeping, including couchsurfing, free-camping, volunteering and house-sitting. More on this will be described further down.
  • Health – as mentioned before, investing in a travel insurance during your travels is highly recommended. If you lose your health, you have nothing.


Travel Needs 

When you travel the world, your necessity list will most likely contain the following:

  • Experience
  • See things
  • Meet inspiring people
  • Get from one place to another
  • Avoid breaking the law

These can all be done for free. Keep a positive attitude, say “yes” and try everything. You don’t have to pay for tourist attractions in order to enjoy and experience the city or country you’re in. Many cities offer free walking tours, for example in Europe through the New Europe Walking Tours. There’s much more to explore and you will most likely have a more memorable experience if you go outside of your comfort zone by talking to locals and finding out what their recommendations are to see and experience. More on the travelling from one place to another will be discussed below.





Work Overseas

Interested in learning about another country in depth? Then living in it for a couple of weeks or even months may be the solution for you. By doing so, you can pick up a small job in the overseas country. There are multiple job opportunities which require little or no experience, while helping you receive a small income during your trip abroad. Here’s a list of a couple examples:

  • Au Pair
  • Bartending
  • Waitress/ Waiter
  • Farm Worker
  • Tour Guide
  • Cruise Ship or Yacht Worker  
  • Ski Resort Seasonal Work

For more in depth information, read this article.


Teach a Language

English is the most popular language to teach in a variety of countries overseas. It’s a great way to make money, and if you speak English fluently, it is quite easy to pick up an extra job teaching the language. This is also true for some other languages, but you will have to do some research for which countries need a teacher in the language you are proficient in. Teachers are in high demand all over the world, and some companies may even pay for your flight to the country you will teach in. Learn more here .



World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms . Through this platform you can work on a farm and learn about organic farming in exchange for free room and board. The organization has farms all over the world. Volunteering provides you with more than just a free room, you get to learn and experience the place you are volunteering at, and you give back for the greater good. Read about Shannon’s travels around the world to become more inspired on this topic.


Couch Surf

The couchsurfing service connects travellers with locals who offer a place to stay for free. You also get to learn about the country through the locals, and there are couchsurfing group meet-ups where you can meet other travellers. If couchsurfing isn’t for you, then staying at a hostel can be very cheap and a great way to meet other travellers.


Free Flights

Sign up for travel credit cards and begin earning points. Some companies allow you to combine the points from multiple cards. Also ensure to look out for travel deals by signing up to airline mailing lists. Two books by Scott Keyes offer guidance on how to find cheap flights and how to fly for free.  



In some places around the world, hitchhiking is a quite common form of travel and can be a fun experience as you get to know the people you are travelling with. Most importantly, it is for free and it is relatively safe.


House Sit

While someone else goes on their vacation, you could watch their homes for free. This allows you to stay at a destination for some time while living for free. Some websites which connects housesitters with house owners are: House Carers, Mind My House, and The Caretaker Gazette.



Real People Stories


Save Up

If you really want to be able to afford travelling, and the other solutions aren’t for you, then make travelling a priority. Stop spending money on unnecessities and begin saving for your journey. Read our blog post on Smart Spending and Savings to get some ideas on how to save up for your trip. 




Today, we take for granted the broad range and accessibility of investing. The numerous investment tools satisfy the needs of curious investors looking to dig deeper into the markets, as they do for new entrants wanting their wealth to be taken care of by a professional. However, it is only in the past few centuries that investment has become accessible by the general population.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Sep 15 2018

Investing, the commitment of resources to achieve a return, has been a part of human activities for centuries. Investment in banks, markets, and trading continue to affect individuals, companies, and nations worldwide. Many of the lessons from the early day investment practices remain applicable in our time.


Before the 1600s, only the very wealthy were allowed to involve themselves in investment activities. Thus, most history books will focus on Europe from this time on. However, the history of investing can be traced back to 1700 BC with the Code of Hammurabi. The collection of 282 provided a for a lot of civilization’s laws.



The 17th Century

In this century, the first public markets were developed, where potential investors were connected with various investment opportunities. The Amsterdam Stock Exchange, considered the very first stock market by many historians, simplified and standardized the industry and set an example for many other stock markets throughout Europe.

The Industrial Revolution

Not only did the industrial revolution modernize our industries, it also had a profound impact on investing. As a result of the numerous technological innovations, the general population began to share in economic surplus. Saving became a trend which encouraged the development of the banking industry and enabled investments. During the first and second industrial revolution, many of the famous investment banking firms, still in operation today, began to form. Including JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Lehman Brothers.

Charles H. Dow

The finance journalist who invented the Dow Jones Industrial Average and NASDAQ indexes, the world’s first stock index aimed at helping investors and the general public to measure market performance. Today, these stock indexes are taken for granted.

The 20th Century

This century introduced a whole lot of new concepts, including asset pricing, risk and portfolio management. Louis Bachelier, the “father of mathematical finance” used advanced mathematics to calculate the value of derivatives.


This century also experienced the crash of the New York Stock Exchange in 1929, causing thousands of people to lose almost their entire investment value, known as Black Thursday. This led to a decade of economic contraction around the world and restrictive fiscal policies were introduced by governments in the hope of aiding the economic collapse. The Great Depression has taught us that this kind of action has detrimental effects.

Modern Investing

Stock markets have been introduced by all countries around the world, making it easier for the general public to invest. The numerous investment tools also help people of all corners of the world to engage in the stock market, enabled through the internet and technological advancements. Modern investors can invest beyond the stock market by engaging in commodities and foreign currencies.



We all work to earn money, not only so we can survive, but also so we can buy the things of our dreams. But do we actually gain real happiness from the items and services we purchase? Follow our discussion on this topic below.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Sep 06 2018

Around the world, people rate personal happiness as highly important. The pursuit of happiness, a term originated out of the US independence, has become a global obsession

Benefits of Happiness

To be happy has a number of positive by-products, affecting not only the individual, but also the families, friends, and communities around us. The benefits which happy people gain are spread over a variety of areas, resulting in a higher quality of work, higher income, increased productivity, and richer social interactions. 

No wonder people want to achieve happiness. But how do we pursue a happy state of mind? Many people seek the answer through material and experiential purchases, and thus money becomes a part of the discussion. Money in itself does contribute to happiness, but only to a certain point.

How Much Money Makes Us Happy? 

There are numerous real and fictional examples of how considerable wealth does indeed not correlate with happiness. Take The Great Gatsby for example, where both Jay Gatsby and Tom Buchanan are immensely rich, but yet dissatisfied in many aspects of their lives. Or a real world example of Markus Persson, the creator of Minecraft who sold his business for £2.5bn back in 2014. He tweeted “hanging out in Ibiza with a bunch of friends and partying with famous people, able to do whatever I want, and I’ve never felt more isolated”.

According to research the level of well-being increases in relation to the rise of salary, up until one begins earning roughly £50,000 a year. After that, it has been shown that more money had no further effect on happiness.

It is also relevant to consider the way in which money is spent. There’s some truth to what Bo Derek says: “whoever said money can’t buy happiness simply didn’t know where to go shopping”. Money spent on life experiences will make you more happy rather than spending it on material possessions. The reason for this is that memories associated with experiences last much longer than the initial excitement of acquiring possessions. The tendency to compare ourselves to others also diminishes with experiences, compared to when we purchase physical goods.

Spending Money To Impress Others

However, the motives play a huge part. Spending money on events and activities, such as a ticket to a musical or a beach vacation, won’t make you happier if the reason behind it is trying to impress others. As Dave Ramsey says: “We spend money we don’t have, to buy things we don’t need, to impress people we don’t like”.

Some of the reasons for why we spend money to impress others  include herd behavior, lifestyle inflation and social media amplification. The first one relates to our human instinct to keep up with others by maintaining or improving our spot in the pecking order. The second reason is due to the relation between spending and our identity. We identify with the brands we purchase, the places we go to, and thus are drawn to people who make the same choices. These people will then continue to support the spending of these items and services. And finally, social media has a significant impact on us, through promoting unrealistic ideals. Which impacts our spending behavior.

What Actually Determines Our Happiness?

Money only plays a small part in impacting our individual happiness. Its direct effect is minimal in comparison to the other criteria. The largest contributor to our state of mind is the happiness baseline level, about 50%, which is what we are born with. Some people are simply naturally happier than others. The second criteria, only contributing 10% to our happiness, has to do with our life circumstances, which includes income and purchases. The rest of the 40% is related to intentional exercises, such as being generous, which indirectly relates to money. Spending on others while also spending time with them has proven to be the greatest contributor to happiness, compared to just spending money on others or spending it on yourself.

So does money make us happier? The answer is both yes and no. You need enough to cover for basic needs, and a rising salary can impact your wellbeing, but it ultimately comes down to how you spend your money. Focus less on impressing others and keep in mind that experiences and the positive effects of generosity are what has the greatest contribution to our happiness.




Think smart when purchasing products, focus on savings, and… begin investing! In the third and final part of the money management series, we will touch upon the world of investment.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Sep 01 2018

Once you have decided on your savings goal and begin setting aside a specific amount each month, you will slowly see your savings account grow. Why not speed this process up or see a heftier number on the account at the end of the designated time? Discover the world of investment!

Effortless Investing

The main reasons why people don’t invest is because they believe it to be too difficult, taking too much effort, or that it is daunting. In fact, anyone can invest successfully at any age. All you need is some money to get started, and only a small amount is necessary to begin with. The currently low interest rates mean that a savings account won’t give you the returns you are looking for, even after a decade of saving. Therefore, with as little as £50 per month, you can begin your investment journey. 

“How many millionaires do you know have become wealthy by investing in savings account? I rest my case.” – Robert G. Allen 

How risky do you want to be?

With your financial goals in mind, you can begin thinking about your tolerance to risk. Find out more about determining your level of risk here. The next step is to select one or more investment alternatives. There are loads of options out there, and picking the right one for your financial goal may be difficult. Your risk assessment says a lot about what you should aim for, and the time span of your financial goal is of relevance in making this decision. For example, investment in funds are generally more appropriate for long term goals as they provide a lower risk and a quite stable return in the long run. Other investment types include stocks, bonds, and ETFs. Beyond these, there are also alternative investments, including real estate, hedge funds, and private equity, which in recent years have been introduced in mutual funds and ETF formats. We at Bifrost invest in ETFs, which you can read more about in one of our previous blog posts here

As with any investment type, there are charges associated with the profits made on investments as well as with the company which assists you with your investment. Do your research beforehand to find out what you are willing to pay and what service you will expect to get in return. 

Be Prepared For A Loss  

What is important to keep in mind is that there is no guarantee that you will gain money. While investing generally provides benefits, you must be prepared for a statement showing that your investment has gone down. Once you invest for a longer time, you will most likely see your investments grow. 

“It’s not how much money you make, but how much money you keep, how hard it works for you, and how many generations you keep it for.” – Robert Kiyosaki

Why “effortless” investing? Because unless you have an incredibly high interest in learning about the ins and outs of the financial world, you will most likely rely on a person or a company to handle your investments. Doing this will help you save time and make your investment journey more effortless. It shouldn’t be difficult to invest, and that’s why a lot of companies set forward products and services to help assist people with little or no knowledge of investment. You may even want to consider a financial advisor, who will not only invest your money, but also guide you on larger money-related decisions such as purchasing a house.  





Following the first part of our money management series, this part focuses on how to make use of the money saved from your smart spending mindset.

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost – Aug 27 2018

Spending money wisely goes beyond avoiding the temptation to make unnecessary purchases. It also relates to making long-term purchasing goals, and allocating some of your wealth specifically for that purpose. This part focuses on savings, from how to select a savings account to taking well care of it in order to reach your financial goals.

Continuous Saving

For some people, saving money comes naturally and they can draw enjoyment from seeing their wealth grow. For others, money is spent the moment it’s acquired and the thought of savings is daunting. If you find yourself in the second camp, then continue reading as we will provide some advice on how to acquire a savings mindset. Covering the following parts:

  • Create a savings account.
  • Understand your spending habits and budget them.
  • Begin saving a specific amount.
  • Choose a goal to save for.
  • Take well care of your savings. 


Begin by setting up a savings account

To begin saving, you must first have a dedicated savings account so that you can easily separate your money. There are different types of savings accounts; the regular one is easily accessible at any time, but for a higher interest yield, you could get an account which requires you to lock the money in for a certain period. 

Identify your current expenses and create a budget

Secondly, start with identifying your current expenses by looking at your bank statements and saved receipts from cash purchases. Then create categories, such as groceries and transportation, so that you can get a better overview of what you’re spending money on and get an idea what this value is on a month-to-month basis. Make sure to factor in expenses which occur regularly but not each month, such as dentist appointments and house maintenance. These types of expenses should be averaged out over the months.

The information should then be utilized to create a budget where your expenses matches up to your income. We recommend creating this on excel or using a piece of software. You can read more here  on how to create a budget. 

Set aside a realistic amount to save

If you followed the first step in this guide regarding spending, you may see a drop in your expenses for upcoming months. Try to identify this and whether it will be sustainable in the long-run, and from there you can create a savings category with an appropriate amount to be put away each month. Following the 50/30/20 rule is recommended, where 50% of your income should go to necessities, 30% towards discretionary items, and 20% towards your savings. If your expenses are too high to save even 10% of your income, then it might be time to cut back on some of your spending. Also, don’t be too unrealistic with your savings as you should be able to set aside the same amount, or higher, each month in the long term. 

Pick a savings goal

The next step is to set a goal, as this will make you more motivated to save and you will be able to identify your ideal savings rate. This could be a specific goal, such as a car or holiday, or it could go towards an emergency fund with the purpose of covering or offsetting expenses of an unforeseen situation, which is highly recommended in case of urgent repairs or unemployment. Make sure to write your goals down and keep track of them along the way. Then, consider the timeline for your savings; less than one year, less than one decade, or a lifetime, are generally good guidelines. It is important to consider the long-term goals of retirement and down payments. For these goals, you might want to consider putting the money into an investment account, which brings us on to our third and final step: 

Manage your savings

Finally, ensure to keep track of your savings to see how your account is growing and update it when necessary. For example, if you have a new goal or if your income increases, you may want to consider re-allocating the amount you put away each month and/ or increase this value. It goes the same the other way around, say if your rent increases and you must cut back on your savings. However, make sure to update your savings calculation whenever an adjustment has been made as the time to reaching your goal will change.


Stay tuned for the final part of the money managing series, where we will discuss investing. 



2018, what a great year!

2018, what a great year it has been!


Wow, what a year it has been! We started with almost nothing in January and now we’re looking at onboarding more developers. Let us go through what 2018 have meant for us and the milestones we have reached on the way.

By Viktor, co-founder of Bifrost - Dec 24 2018


Even though the idea behind Bifrost came to Dino, our CEO, a long time ago, it wasn’t until November of 2017 that we gathered a team to develop the idea to something tangible. We took our first steps back in 2017 and compared to what we achieve on a daily basis today it might seem trivial, but none of us would be here today if we would’ve stopped working back then.

In May of 2018 Bifrost got incorporated as Bifrost Wealth Limited. To some, it’s an insignificant step since its just paperwork, but the truth is that many companies don’t even make it past the first year. Thus, this is a milestone that we celebrate and are proud of.

Then the summer came along and Andreas, our CTO, finished the first prototype. This was the first time we got to see it working, and even though we only had a minimum viable product it was quite satisfying. This showed us that we can affect wealth management and provide an investment service that offers great value.

After the first prototype we continued development and during early fall launched the second prototype, in which we expanded the platform to create a more wholesome investment experience. This meant a better workflow on top of the improved UI and UX.

Then Martina represented Bifrost in San Diego, California, at the Basement Accelerator competition. Talk about gratification! Bifrost’s win in the Basement Accelerator competition gave us concrete proof that what we are doing is not only right but that there’s a demand for it.

In mid-November, the University of Glasgow Fintech Society hosted their Applied FinTech Project Final and we got the chance to interact with FinTech Scotland. Firstly, we love University of Glasgow’s FinTech Society, not only are they the first FinTech society in Scotland and partially founded by our very own CTO, but they also helped us reach out in the beginning. Secondly, FinTech Scotland's work is truly great and we are happy that they are a part of the FinTech Scene here in Scotland! If you have the chance, I encourage you to take a look at their website, and the community where you’ll even find us.

And suddenly it is already Christmas, 2018 flew by, and we are so happy about everything we have achieved! However, it is far from over and we have just begun our journey to create tomorrows advisory service for the clients of today.


From All of Us to All of You

A Very Merry Christmas

Bifrost Wealth


£5 a day will make you rich.

£5 a day will make you rich.


How do you get rich? Can you get a fortune without earning money, marrying money, winning a lottery or some other game? Yes, you can become the best in the world of sports or start a successful business. But you may not have the special talents required to become a superstar. Do not give up! Because the opportunity to make a substantial amount of money on your own is also available to you and the way it is to pay 10% to yourself every month.

By Viktor, co-founder of Bifrost - Dec 17 2018


There are not many who can get rich in the ways I mentioned above. Many even have difficulty getting money to last between payroll payments. Perhaps you belong to that crowd. However, by starting to cut off 10% to yourself in long-term savings, you have the opportunity to build a fortune. This also assumes that you choose the right savings form and that you are persistent.


Instead of buying lottery tickets, you can make an active decision that you want to make a change in your life. That's the start. For example, the decision may be to save £150 a month with 6-10% return (which is reasonable if you look at the historical development of the stock market). Per day it will be about £5. And for the most part, it should be a possible saving to do, for example, not eating lunch out, stop smoking and skip that unnecessary pizza, which both only makes your health worse. Alternatively, you may find a way to earn £5 extra per day in addition to your salary, your student contribution or other regular income.


But can £5 a day really be the way to a fortune? Yes, it can. For example, say that you are 23 years old and you start saving £150 a month as soon as you receive your salary. You then invest this money in a low-fee or even zero-fee index fund, that succeeds in getting about 10% of annual return, and that you reinvest in the fund. There are other great funds as well, but for someone who doesn’t know where to begin, this is a sensible option. When you are 65 years old and have saved this way for 42 years, you are not “time millionaire” because of your retirement, but you are also a millionaire in your bank. After all, your saved capital has grown to about £1,000,000.00.


Thus - your £5 a day, your active decisions, the compounding effect, and a wise investment is now worth £1,000,000.00.


When you think about this scenario, it's certainly not hard for you to motivate you to save £5 a day. Or is it? Surely its worth £5 a day to have financial security in the future?


An insight that is important and as we can see with the help of this example is that you do not have to have a high salary to get rich. You get rich by saving. Thus, it is largely about a lifestyle, an attitude, and a clear goal. And, as I said, a simple method of paying 10% to yourself first. 

How To Protect Yourself From Financial Abstraction!

How To Protect Yourself From Financial Abstraction And What It Is?

In a not so recent Ted Talk, Adam Carroll explains what a $10,000 monopoly experiment taught him about finance management in a cashless society. Today I will talk about Financial Abstraction and give you some tips on how you can protect yourself.

By Viktor, co-founder of Bifrost - Dec 10 2018

When we digitalise money we lose touch with it. Our financial behavior changes and money becomes more of an idea and less of a physical object. The fact that our relationship with money changes depending on how real money is is known as financial abstraction.

The psychological distance is greater with electronic payments than with cash, which is why we tend to spend more. I believe we can agree that electronic payments such as debit card, credit card, PayPal etc. are great. It is both efficient and convenient. However, we must understand how electronic payments and for example, contactless payment affects our behavior.

All of us have probably been in a situation, in which we are carrying $10 and we refuse to spend it because it’s all we have in the wallet. Well, if you instead have the $10 on your phone and all you have to do is swipe, then it’s more inviting.

Now, how do you protect yourself from this? It might be hard to change a habit, but it is doable and I want you to succeed!


1.       Carry more cash

The first tip is probably self-explanatory. Using hard earned cash in its physical form, instead of paying by card of mobile will make you more aware. Even though the amount of the payment is equal regardless of the payment method you choose, you will feel a physical loss when you pay with cash. This will hopefully make you spend less

It hurts more to lose than to win. It is called Loss aversion and it refers to people’s tendency to prefer avoiding losses to acquiring equivalent gains: it is better to not lose $10 than to find $10.


2.       Utilize electronic payments for large purchases

Let’s say you are making a larger purchase. Maybe your buying a new tv, a rug or something that’s a bit more expensive. Anyway, when a larger purchase is made you probably feel the physical loss even though it was payed electronically.

However, if you spend anything under $10 you probably won’t. That’s why you decide to always use cash for smaller transactions. This way you will be able to skip the Starbucks coffee, because you are running low on cash.


3.       Have a budget for purchases with Debit/Credit Card.

If you usually pay with card, then you can try to set up a budget for purchases by card. Let’s say that you only let yourself spend a certain amount with your card and when you reach that you’ll have to use cash for the rest of the month. This has at least two benefits.

1.       If you don’t want to use cash, then you’ll stay within your budget.

2.       You’ll learn to carry cash.

Also, budgets are good, and we should all learn to co-exist with them. :)



I urge you to take a look at Adam Carrolls Ted Talk called, “When money isn’t real: the $10,000 experiment 

Martina, The Basement Incubator

The Basement Incubator

The Basement Incubator


We at Bifrost want to share with you some exciting news about our recent acceptance into a startup incubator. The Basement at UCSD provides a community for startups to further develop their businesses with the help of resources and valuable connections. 

By Martina, co-founder of Bifrost - Dec 3 2018

Martina, The Basement Incubator

One of our co-founders, Martina Lofqvist (seen in the far right in the picture above), recently got Bifrost into an accelerator program at the University of California, San Diego. The Basement is a center for innovation and entrepreneurship. They offer a range of different programs, including the Seeker, the Incubator, and the Accelerator tracks for student startups. These programs provide access to various resources, mentorship, events, and more.


The Basement was developed in alignment with UC San Diego’s focus on entrepreneurship, innovation and change making. It is a program primarily aimed at undergraduate students, but also has opportunities and support graduate students, alumni, postdocs, faculty, staff and community members. The Basement was founded by UCSD alumni, Jeff and Kim Belk, Forecast Ventures, Aryeh Bourkoff, LionTree LLC, and Mark Suster, Upfront Ventures. Since the launch in 2015, it has seen a rapid growth in both program offerings and members.


After an application and judging process, Bifrost got accepted into the advanced program, the Accelerator Track! This means that Bifrost will be able to take full advantage of the resources provided by The Basement. This includes access to the facility, funding in cash, Amazon Web Server credits, legal advice, access to unique startup opportunities in San Diego, Mock Advisory Board meetings, event access, Hubspot marketing software, Mattermark data discovery and tracking, and mentoring.



We look forward to working with The Basement at UCSD! 


The Marshmallow Test


The psychologist Walter Mishel investigated impulse control in children and adults in a featured series of experiments, called the Marshmallow test. Is impulse control inherited or taught? Does the control of impulses lead to success? And which methods can strengthen one's impulse control?

By Viktor, co-founder of Bifrost - Nov 21 2018


The test itself is simple.

·       A marshmallow is placed in front of a preschool child.

·       The researcher explains that the child is allowed to eat candy now, if he wants to, but then he will not get anymore since.

·       If the child refuses to eat candy now, he will get two pieces later.

·       Then the scientist leaves the room - "Coming soon!".

·       The child is filmed when dealing with the battle between a small short-term and a longer long-term reward.

·       The researcher measures the time the child can wait.

Hundreds of children have been tested since the 1960s and were followed up to the age of 40.


Predicting success

The Marshmallow test first drew attention when the preschool children were followed up as teenagers. Then it turned out that the children's Delay Ability (the ability to wait for a reward, or self-discipline) gave a good prediction of how well it went for them later.

Children who could withstand the impulse to eat their marshmallow for a while had, as teenagers, better self-esteem, better grades, better stress, used fewer drugs and alcohol, and had more friends.

Some test subjects were followed up to the age of 40, and the pattern remained. The children who had the Delay Ability became healthier and slimmer adults with higher income and better relationships.

Mischel became unhappy when this was discovered. Is it possible that a child's future is outlined at 5 years of age? Is there nothing you can do? So, he devoted the rest of his research life (He died on the 12th of September 2018) to find ways to strengthen children's and adults' Delay Ability.



Hot and cold systems

Mischel's research team was dedicated not only to plaguing young children with temptations, they also tested methods to help the children resist the temptations.

Our brains have two systems that Mischel defines as “Hot System” and ”Cool System”. Hot is emotionally driven, impulsive, unconscious and Cool is logical, resonant, conscious.

The feelings in our Hot System are linked directly to action - hungry-eat, angry-fight, restless-check the email. We can’t turn off our Hot System because then we will not do anything! But most of us need to strengthen our ability to sometimes let our long-term interests control more than the short-term.

What we need are techniques to "cool down" the short-term interest so the impulse to fall for a temptation becomes weaker. In addition, we should learn to "warm up" the long-term interest so that it becomes more appealing.


The strategy is Cool the Now, Heat the Later.


Cool the Now

Mischel and his colleagues collected countless films on children who - more or less successful - struggle against the temptation to immediately eat their marshmallow. Children who managed to wait did not just sit there, they used strategies:


·       Invisible: They hid the marshmallow, turned their backs or shut their eyes.

·       Distraction: they played, sang and thought of something else

·       Abstraction: they pretended that the marshmallow was a picture, or something else inedible - "a fluffy cloud".

·     They disarmed their Hot System by creating psychological distance.


Heat the Later

In the United States, you can tell your employer how much money you want to be put into retirement each month, and many people do not put aside enough.

A marshmallow test for adults - a little money immediately or more money later.

A large company let their employees enter pension amounts in a form illustrated by a picture of themselves. Half the group saw a normal picture of themselves, while the other half saw a picture of themselves that had been manipulated to make them look as if they were 70 years old.

Those who saw the older picture put off 30% more each month than those who saw the normal picture.

The psychologist’s explanation is that it is hard to imagine yourself as an older individual and therefore won’t feel empathy for that person. Once again, creating psychological distance.


What we can learn from this

·       The ability to resist temptations - our Delay Ability - is already evident in pre-school age and is strongly connected with how we manage socially, economically and health-wise.

·       We can strengthen our self-discipline by properly manage our Hot System and Cool System. We can also help others to strengthen their self-discipline.

·       Two marshmallows in the future are judged by our Cool System while one marshmallow now, is judged by our Hot System. Therefore, one seems better than two, even though we know it's wrong.

·       Our Hot System can be cooled down through psychological distance. Get rid of the emotions!

·       Our Cool System can be heated with stories, pictures that create feelings.  


If you would like to read more about The Marshmallow test, then I suggest you buy a copy of Walter Mischel's book, "The Marshmallow Test: Understanding Self-control and How To Master It".




How to Create Young Financial Geniuses – pt 2


In the first part of “How To Create Young Financial Geniuses”, we talked about the importance of financial literacy, the responsibility of parents and guardians, and how providing children with an allowance can have many benefits. This week we’ll continue on this topic with more illustrations on what to do to prepare the young and bright.

By Viktor, co-founder of Bifrost - Nov 21 2018


Rich Parents vs Poor Parents

No matter their background, children will need the same amount of education to understand the importance of personal finance. There is often a misunderstanding that rich kids are better at finance, and this is somewhat true, but the notion that it is the poor families that need to be financially educated is wrong. It all depends on how much families include discussion about money in their homes.

Research shows that parents’ influence is 1.5 times greater than that of financial education and more than twice that of friends. Children are primarily formed by their parents, so if there is minimal financial influence from home, they will perform worse when faced with a financial decision.

As with everything, the earlier it is introduced the bigger the impact. Here I will stop and repeat what we said in the last blog post. Financial experts recommend two things; to start early and to talk often. This will lay a behavioral foundation and provide children with an advantage, regardless of their financial status.

Just because your rich does not mean you are good with money. There are many examples of this, but a fine one is the Vanderbilts, whom in just a few generations blew through great amounts of wealth.


Saving money is important, but investing money is crucial. Saving and investing are often used interchangeably, but there is a difference between them. Saving is setting aside money for future purchases. It is money that you want to be easy and quick to access. Investing, however, is buying stocks, mutual funds, bonds, real estate etc. with the expectation that your money will grow. As your child becomes more aware of personal finance it is important that you teach them about investing, since it will give them an advantage in life.

If you deposit £1,000 in a savings account at 3 percent annual interest, it will grow to £1,806 in 20 years (before taxes). If you instead invest £1,000 in a stock mutual fund earning an average 8 percent a year, it will grow to £4,660. That is almost 2.6 times more than if it was saved in a savings account.


It can be hard to teach children financial literacy alone, especially if you do not know where to start. Luckily, we have tools within an arm’s reach to help us with this task. There are both great books and applications, which is why we will pick a few that we at Bifrost believe are good resources. There is an overwhelming number of different apps for your kids, but here are some that we like.


There is an overwhelming number of different apps for your kids, but here are some that we like.


Renegade Buggies

·       Available for iOS and Android

·       For kids 6+


”Renegade Buggies is a dynamic endless runner game with a financial literacy curriculum at its core. Learn to be financially responsible by using smart consumer strategies. Compare unit sizes, buy in bulk, and use coupons and promos along the way. Become a checkout hero by increasing your Overall Money Saved, all while racing down a high-speed track as groceries, coins, and even moving tires come your way!”



RoosterMoney: Allowance Manager & Piggy Bank App

·       Available for iOS and Android

·       For kids 3+

·       Family fun


“RoosterMoney is a mobile pocket money manager & piggy bank designed to help families teach their kids about money and savings goals. We’re also a chore tracker & reward chart. Available in any currency.”



Money Doesn’t Grow on Trees: A Parent’s Guide to Raising Financially Responsible Children

This New York Times Bestseller provides parents with suggestions on how to teach their children money management from a young age. The book offers exercises and concrete examples on everything from responsible budgeting to understanding the difference between “want” and “need” for children of every age.


How to Turn $100 into $1,000,000: Earn! Save! Invest!


“Written in a humorous but informative voice that engages young readers, it’s the book that every parent who wants to raise financially savvy and unspoiled children should buy for their kids. It is packed with lively illustrations to make difficult concepts easy to understand—all as a way of building financial literacy, good decision-making, and the appreciation of a hard-earned dollar.

About Bifröst

Bifröst connects investors with wealth managers. We offer personalized advice from licensed experts in the industry to provide a simple and tailored investment experience.

Risk Warning: As with all investing, your capital is at risk. The value of your portfolio can go down as well as up and you may get back less than you invest. It’s important you understand the risk before making investment decisions. Historical returns are no guarantee of future returns.


Bifrost Wealth Limited
272 Bath Street
G2 4JR

+44 780 247 3577