If you need to buy a gift for a college senior or recent graduate, purchasing some of the best personal finance books can offer benefits that help them from understanding the basics of money management to planning for a comfortable retirement. With the current $1.5 trillion student loan debt crisis and a changing job market, young adults need advice on how to reduce their financial stress, negotiate their salary, pay back debt and avoid living paycheck to paycheck. Consider gifting some of these six finance books to prepare your friend or family member for post-college life.
1. "The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke" by Suze Orman
This popular guide from financial expert Suze Orman is geared toward those in their twenties and thirties. It offers recent grads advice on how to repay student debt, use credit cards wisely, plan for retirement and deal with a challenging job market. Readers can expect to learn how to survive on the lower income that is common with entry-level post-college jobs as well as plan for major purchases like a home or car. The guide also sheds light on the pros and cons of saving money versus paying off debts so that young adults can make better decisions for their situation. You can buy Orman's book on Amazon.
2. "A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing" by Burton Malkiel
This book from Burton Malkiel is one of the best finance books for educating a recent graduate or college senior on the basic concepts and practices of investment. Malkier aims to use clear, simple language to explain common investment terms, and he uses practical examples of how to craft a portfolio that will offer a desirable return for retirement. Rather than just focusing on stocks and bonds, he offers advice on investing in real estate, insurance, money market accounts and other assets. He also covers the implications of tax law on investment decisions. You can find his book on Amazon.
Read More: How to Begin Investing When Young
3. "Saving for Retirement (Without Living Like a Pauper or Winning the Lottery)" by Gail MarksJarvis
Award-winning author Gail MarksJarvis has developed this guide for everybody from young adults to soon-to-be retirees. It helps take the stress out of retirement planning by offering guidelines on determining how much you'll really need to save considering your desired lifestyle and age-related expenses such as long-term care costs. Along with sharing some personal stories from people who've successfully saved for retirement, the book includes an array of simple savings strategies that anyone who's in their senior year of college or has just graduated can use. You can gift this book from Amazon.
4. "You Need a Budget: The Proven System for Breaking the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle, Getting Out of Debt and Living the Life You Want" by Jesse Mecham
From helping recent grads deal with credit card debt and student loans to creating their first budget, this budgeting guide from Jesse Mecham offers some simple rules to control spending and get rid of debt. The author focuses on making large expenses more manageable through regular savings plans and using flexible budgets to reduce financial stress and account for unexpected expenses. He also offers young adults advice on how to avoid unnecessary spending and stop living from paycheck to paycheck. You can buy this book on Amazon.
Read More: The Best Budget Ideas
5. "I Will Teach You to Be Rich" by Ramit Sethi
Known as a bestselling author by the New York Times, Ramit Sethi has created this book to offer adults of all ages a six-month program to improve their financial situation. It walks a recent graduate through tips for getting rid of student loan debt as soon as possible and plan for big purchases without the stress. The book also advises on boosting income through salary negotiation and successful investments. Readers will also learn several ways to save money that range from avoiding common fees to getting discounts on regular purchases. You can find this book from Amazon.
6. "Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties" by Beth Kobliner
Beth Kobliner has written this all-inclusive guide for young adults who want the basics of financial planning and management and has included a cheat sheet with helpful tips to implement right away. She focuses on the importance of having insurance, creating an emergency fund, handling debt efficiently and saving for the future. This book can help recent graduates with whether to rent or buy, how to choose a bank, where to invest money, how to track money and which insurance plans they should purchase. You can get this book on Amazon.
- Amazon: The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke
- Amazon: A Random Walk Down Wall Street: The Time-Tested Strategy for Successful Investing (Twelfth Edition)
- Amazon: Saving for Retirement (Without Living Like a Pauper or Winning the Lottery) Updated and Revised
- Amazon: You Need a Budget: The Proven System for Breaking the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle, Getting Out of Debt, and Living the Life You Want
- Amazon: I Will Teach You to Be Rich, Second Edition: No Guilt. No Excuses. No BS. Just a 6-Week Program That Works
- Amazon: Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties
- Forbes: Student Loan Debt Statistics In 2019: A $1.5 Trillion Crisis
Ashley Donohoe has written about business and technology topics since 2010. Having a Master of Business Administration degree, bookkeeping certification and experience running a small business and doing tax returns, she is knowledgeable about the tax issues individuals and businesses face. Other places featuring her business writing include Zacks, JobHero, LoveToKnow, Bizfluent, Chron and Study.com.