Shed weight for cash • More high-paying focus groups • 10 lessons from starting a vending machine business • The Kakeibo budgeting method • Inflation hits highest levels in 40 years • More companies enter the metaverse • How interest rate increases will affect the stock market • and more!
Swift Saturday Financial Newsletter

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Hey, Dylan here. Welcome to another edition of the Swift Saturday Financial Newsletter filled with money-making ideas, money tips, and market updates. Hope you enjoy it!

The big money is not in the buying and selling, but in the waiting. - Charlie Munger


  • Shed weight for cash
  • More high-paying focus groups
  • 10 lessons from starting a vending machine business
  • The Kakeibo budgeting method
  • Inflation hits highest levels in 40 years
  • More companies enter the metaverse
  • How interest rate increases will affect the stock market
  • and more! here? Start here.

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Extra Income 💵

Bet on yourself to lose weight and win up to $10k

HealthyWage is the company offering that opportunity, and they've been doing it for years now. Every once in a while, they offer a prize boost, and right now you can get a $100 boost on your earnings if you hit your weight loss goal.

To figure out how much your total prize would be, you can use this calculator.

In essence, the higher your weight loss goal and the more money you wager, the higher your potential reward.

If high stakes weight loss isn't really your game though, check out these other ways to make money exercising.

More focus groups

A lot of you seemed to be interested in the Respondent focus groups I talked about in last weeks newsletter

If you're looking for more focus group sources, check out User Interviews. They claim to post over 2,000 studies monthly with the average pay for each study sitting at over $50.

Business Ideas and Stories 💼

10 lessons from starting a vending machine business

I came across this vending machine business case study this week and I pretty much always read these things when I come across them.

Vending machine business have always intrigued me for a couple of reasons:

  1. They're a classic business. Vending machines have been around for ages and probably aren't going anywhere anytime soon. Having convenient snacks and drinks in certain locations just works. And this is sort of an upgraded version of the "buying and selling snacks at school" side hustle, which I love.
  2. They're semi passive. Who doesn't love passive income? Although vending machines aren't completely passive (you have to service them), they technically work for you 24/7 once they're set up.

Of course, it's not all butterflies. Some of the difficult parts of owning a vending machine business include:

  1. Repairing machines. Stuff breaks. Fixing things can require technical knowhow and expensive and hard to find parts. 
  2. Getting locations for your machines. Before you make any money, you need to actually put your machine at a location. John says he's going to start offering business owners 10% commission on his machines to make this part easier.
  3. Refilling your machines. To keep the money rolling in, you need to keep your machines stocked. You also need to empty the cash out of your machines every once in a while. This takes time, especially if your locations are spaced out.

I'd highly recommend reading John's 10 takeaways of vending machine ownership if you're still interested in starting this kind of business on your own.

My takeaway? Get a kid as a co-founder! Not only does John mention having a machine at his kid's school (connections!), but kids can probably convince business owners to host their machines a lot easier than an adult could. I mean, who doesn't want to support a young kid starting out in the world of entrepreneurship?

There's another lesson here too: Selling within your inner circle is always a good tactic. John mentions having a machine at the place his wife volunteers. Similarly, if you go to a gym regularly, that could be a potential location to pitch. If you know a business owner, that's another. Look in your network before looking outside of it -- it's always easier to sell to those you already know. 

🤔 Question for you: Would you start a vending machine business?

Jobs 👔


Budgeting 🗒️

Kakeibo: A Japanese Mindful Budgeting System

I love coming across new budgeting methods, and this one caught my eye this week. After seeing how Marie Kondo can whip messy homes into shape with her organizational methods, I figured any budgeting method that originated in Japan had to be good.

Here's a quick breakdown of how it works:

  1. Track your income and expenses on paper
  2. Identify fixed expenses
  3. Set monthly savings goals
  4. Categorize weekly spending into four pillars: needs (e.g. housing, groceries, etc.), wants (e.g. hobbies, restaurant visits, etc.), cultural (entertainment, movie visits, Netflix, etc.), unexpected (e.g. home repairs, doctor visit, etc.). 
  5. Conduct monthly reviews
  6. Rinse and repeat

You can get the more detailed guide on Wallet Hacks.

As you can see from the quick breakdown though, this system is completely paper based. Writing down your financial activities forces you to really think about whether they fit your needs, goals, and desires.

In a CNBC article on the Kakeibo method, it's recommended to ask yourself the following questions before purchasing any non-essential item:

  • Can I live without this item?
  • Based on my financial situation, can I afford it?
  • Will I actually use it?
  • Do I have the space for it?
  • How did I come across it in the first place? (Did I see it in a magazine? Did I come across it after wandering into a gift shop out of boredom?)
  • What is my emotional state in general today? (Calm? Stressed? Celebratory? Feeling bad about myself?)
  • How do I feel about buying it? (Happy? Excited? Indifferent? And how long will this feeling last?)

If you can actually remember to do this, and you answer the questions realistically and accurately, it can make a big difference in terms of helping you get the most out of your money (while wasting less of it).

Bottom line? This budgeting method can help you gain new insights into your spending and help you save more money for your important financial goals.

Saving 💰

Get 100% cashback on game day favorites

Ibotta is running a "Big Game" campaign where you can get 100% cashback on things like "pizza, wings, chips and dip and more." Worth checking out if you're planning a Super Bowl party or if you just enjoy free food! Learn more here.


Market Recaps 

📈 Stocks 

Source: Google Finance

Stocks had a good start to the week until Thursday's U.S. inflation report rolled around. Even with experts predicting an uptick, numbers still ended up being higher than expected, with the consumer price index rising 7.5% year over year (6% if you exclude food and gas prices), the largest annual increase in 40 years. 


  • Gas prices climb to highest level in more than 7 years as oil surges above $90 (CNBC)
  • On inflation: Some price hikes that have already happened in 2022 (Morning Brew)
  • US household debt jumped by $1 trillion in 2021, the most since 2007 (CNN) - Interestingly, student loans actually decreased for the first time in two decades. 

🔮 Crypto

Sources: Google Finance and CoinMarketCap. Price data as of 6PM PST

Crypto overall had a similar week to stocks. Prices were on the rise throughout the week but declined on Thursday after the U.S. inflation report. In the end, things ended up staying relatively flat. 

In other more interesting news, the Bitfinex hackers from 2016 were caught and over $3 billion of Bitcoin was recovered by the U.S. Justice Department. The two main suspects have been getting roasted online for storing their private keys in a cloud storage account (and also making really bad YouTube rap videos). 

What's most interesting about this story though is how, even though the couple used multiple techniques to launder the money and cover their tracks, they were still caught. Goes to show that crypto might not be as beneficial to criminals as previously thought.

Other Headlines:

  • KPMG in Canada adds BTC and ETH to its treasury (Cointelegraph)
  • Betterment acquires Makara, a crypto focused robo-advisor (The Block Crypto)
  • More companies enter the metaverse:
    • Ubisoft is putting Rabbids into the Sandbox metaverse (Decrypt)
    • Shiba Inu Enters Metaverse With 'Shiba Lands' (Coindesk)
    • McDonald's Files Trademark For Metaverse-Based 'Virtual Restaurant' (Forbes)
    • Zynga Plans First NFT Games, Web 3 Acquisitions in 2022 (Coindesk)
    • Alfa Romeo unveils new electric-hybrid SUV with NFT (CNBC)
    • YouTube talk NFTs and Web3 (The Block Crypto)
  • Binance makes a $200 million stake in Forbes (CNBC)
  • Manchester United confirms Tezos sponsorship (Coindesk)
  • announced as official title partner of the Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix (Formula 1)
  • A Florida homeowner is selling her house and minting the deed as an NFT (Business Insider)

Reading List 📖

Interest rate increases are will they affect the market?

After seeing the January inflation report, there's a really good chance that the U.S. Fed is going to start raising rates starting in March. No one knows how aggressively they'll go about this, but most are quite positive it's going to happen.

We've already seen how the anticipation of this affects the stock market (especially high growth areas like tech), but what will happen when the rate hikes actually come?

Market Sentiment has a good breakdown, with data on how past rate changes have affected the markets.

In short, interest rate increases typically result in:

  1. Less consumer spending (since money becomes more expensive to borrow). This lowers business revenue and profits, which can affect stocks.
  2. Businesses need to spend more to borrow money, resulting in slower growth, and again, less revenue, meaning worse earnings reports.
  3. Bonds become more attractive investments because they're safer and will offer better returns in a higher interest rate environment. That means investors might move out of stocks and into bonds, lowering stock prices.

Tips and Tricks 💡

Get free stocks and crypto

Hope you enjoyed this week's letter!

Which part was your favorite? What do you want to see more or less of? Hit reply and let me know!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

- Dylan

PS: Past letters if you missed 'em: #79, #78#77#76#75.

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