Print this page Share

Sustainable Wealth: Achieve Financial Security in a Volatile World of Debt and Consumption

Axel Merk, William Poole (Foreword by)
ISBN: 978-0-470-49658-9
257 pages
October 2009
Sustainable Wealth: Achieve Financial Security in a Volatile World of Debt and Consumption (0470496584) cover image


A personal finance guide for today's turbulent world

Sustainable Wealth empowers you to achieve your financial goals by unleashing the shackles of debt, no matter how uncertain the future may be. Filled with in-depth insights and practical advice, this reliable resource illustrates how you can predict economic booms and busts before they happen, adapt to changing markets and plan for lasting financial stability.

Over the course of his career, Axel Merk has been at the forefront of identifying major trends, a leader in the public policy debate on how to fix the economy, and guide for investors looking to navigate the global credit crisis. With this new book, Merk puts your financial decisions in a global context and shows how factors ranging from the Federal Reserve and Congress to trends in Asia and Europe influence your financial well-being.

  • Coaches you how to recognize major economic trends before they happen
  • Puts forth a plan to help you cope with expenses and save for retirement, while building a legacy of wealth, not a mountain of debt
  • Reveals why "staying the course" when governments or markets change the rules may be hazardous to your wealth

As investors struggle to adapt to the new financial landscape, Sustainable Wealth provides straightforward answers to the tough financial questions we face-and the tools to achieve a financially sustainable lifestyle.

See More

Table of Contents




Achieving Excellence as a Financial Pilot.

What Is Sustainable Wealth?

A Volatile World of Debt, Consumption, and Temptation.

Unintended Consequences.

The Flight You’re About to Embark On . . .

Part I A World of Temptations.

Chapter 1 The Temptation of Credit.

The Relationship Between Credit and Debt.

Credit as Money.

The Power (and Un-Power) of Central Banks.

Sizing the Debt Problem.

A Crisis in Confidence.

Credit Crisis Consequences.

A Bond Market Bubble?

Credit as a Threat to Sustainable Wealth.

Credit as Fuel for Other Temptations.

Using Credit Wisely.

Chapter 2 The Temptation of Consumption.

The Consumption Paradigm.

The Cost of a Consumption Economy.

Long-Term Consequences.

Unwinding the Consumption Bubble.

What This All Means for You.

Chapter 3 The Temptation of Policy Change.

The Boom/Bust Cycle: Can You Fool Mother Nature?

Goldilocks Intended.

Above and Beyond: The Fed Ventures Into Fiscal Policy.

More Bad Medicine for Boom/Bust Cycles.

Regulation and Taxes: Consistency is the Best Policy.

Long-Term Policy Consequences.

Policy, Complacency, and Sustainable Wealth.

Chapter 4 The Temptation of Complacency.

Big Hat, No Cattle.

Complacency’s Counterparty—Risk.

The Complacency of Business Legacy.

Trust Must Be Earned Every Day.

Live Free or Die.

Part II Achieving Sustainable Wealth.

Chapter 5 Challenging Conventional Wisdom.

Recognize Your Responsibility.

Should You Use an Adviser?

The Proactivity of Sustainable Wealth.

Low-Probability, High-Risk Events.

Adaptive Investing, Rather Than Staying the Course.

The Sustainable Wealth Lifestyle.

Chapter 6 Saving and Spending in a Volatile World.

The Sustainable Wealth Grid.

Become a Scenario Planner.

Sustainable Wealth: A Store of Value.

The Individual Wealth Cycle Model.

The Importance of Pay As You Go.

Getting a Handle on Expenses.

How to Spend Less Than You Earn.

Make the Important Standard-of-Living Decisions.

Sustainable Wealth in a Volatile World.

Chapter 7 Crisis Investing.

Signs of Crisis.

Hope Is Not a Strategy.

About Insurance.

There’s No Such Thing as a Safe Asset.

Finding a Place to Hide: Depression Investing.

How to Invest in a Bust.

Toward Sustainable Wealth.

Chapter 8 Profiting in a Volatile World.


Scenario-Based Investing.

Investing in the Future.

Stock Investing: Investing for Value.

Diversification with Real Estate and Land.

Diversification into Alternative Investments.

Profit Opportunities in an Uncertain World.

When to Sell.

How to Invest in a Boom.

Toward a Sustainable Wealth Investing Model.

Chapter 9 Sustainable Investing.

The Power of Compounding.

Doing Investing Right.

A Golden College Savings Plan.

Taking Risks Without Jeopardizing Sustainable Wealth.

Purpose-Driven Investing.

Sustainable Investing and the Sustainable Wealth Lifestyle.

Chapter 10 The Pursuit of Sustainable Wealth and Happiness.

The Rewards of Living Within Your Means.

Sustainable Work-Life Balance.

Leaving a Legacy: Sustainable Giving.

Sustaining Wealth Spans Generations.

Surgeon General’s Warning: Sustainable Wealth May Be Addictive.

Final Thoughts.


About the Author.


See More

Author Information

Axel Merk is the President and Chief Investment Officer of Merk Investments LLC, an SEC registered investment advisory firm that manages mutual funds specializing in currencies. He has published articles describing complex economic phenomena in understandable terms and is a frequent expert presenter and moderator at conferences. Merk is a sought-after voice in financial news, known for his understandable advice and uncanny ability to predict market movements. He is a regular guest on CNBC and Fox News, and is frequently quoted in Barron's, the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg News, USA Today, and the Financial Times.
See More

Press Release

October 26, 2009
Sustainable Wealth

“Had Congress gotten this book before this financial crisis, we wouldn’t be in this crisis. But alas, we are, and alas, there’s hope. Axel Merk not only shows Washington the way out, but more importantly, the rest of us too. Not with a lecture, but a plan, and a damn good plan, without the bull and without the jargon. It’s why I love this guy. He really means it when he says he’s looking out for the rest of us guys. In Sustainable Wealth, he proves it.”

Neil Cavuto, Sr. Vice President and Anchor, Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network


You’re a wealth builder. You work hard, and someday you want to have something to show for it. You want to send your kids to college, to plan an enjoyable retirement, to sleep comfortably at night, and to achieve financial peace of mind. You want to use debt prudently, if at all, and have the ability to do what you want—financially—in the best of times and the worst.


In Sustainable Wealth: Achieve Financial Security in a Volatile World of Debt and Consumption (Wiley; November 2009; 978-0-470-49658-9; $29.95), author and experienced fund manager Axel Merk helps you steer clear of the next financial crisis. Over the course of his successful financial career, Merk has led the way in identifying major economic trends before they occur. Most importantly, he has been a guiding light for investors and individual wealth builders to navigate economic crises like the recent global recession.  Now, with Sustainable Wealth, Merk puts your financial decisions in a global context, showing you how “big picture” factors can influence your financial well-being.


Divided into two parts, Sustainable Wealth contains both contextual information and practical hands-on advice. In part I, Merk discusses the external dynamics that affect your finances. Here, he skillfully covers the temptations and vices of the modern economic system: credit, consumption, policy change, and complacency. Instead of being left scratching your head over the latest Fed decision, you’ll learn how it affects your wealth and assets.


In Part II, you’ll discover how to apply these lessons to your personal finances. Believing that we should each challenge conventional wisdom, he illustrates how to save, spend, and invest in a volatile world, providing clear, straightforward advice should you or the economy be faced with a crisis.

Filled with in-depth insights and practical advice, Sustainable Wealth:

• Reveals why “staying the course” when governments or markets change the rules may be hazardous to your wealth

• Coaches you on how to recognize major economic trends before they happen

• Offers a plan to spend, save and invest wisely in the face of an uncertain world, build a financial legacy and achieve peace of mind


As you read Sustainable Wealth, you’ll quickly be able to both understand and adapt to today’s erratic and rapidly changing markets. Financial peace of mind—that’s what this book is all about.

Sustainable Wealth

By Axel Merk

Wiley; November 2009; $29.95



About Wiley

Founded in 1807, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. has been a valued source of information and understanding for 200 years, helping people around the world meet their needs and fulfill their aspirations. Wiley’s core business include scientific, technical, and medical journals; encyclopedias, books, and online products and services; professional and consumer books and subscription services; and educational materials for undergraduate and graduate students and lifelong learners. Wiley’s global headquarters are located in Hoboken, New Jersey with operations in the U.S., Europe, Asia, Canada, and Australia. www.wiley.com 

See More

Buy Both and Save 25%!


Sustainable Wealth: Achieve Financial Security in a Volatile World of Debt and Consumption (US $29.95)

-and- Purple Chips: Winning in the Stock Market with the Very Best of the Blue Chip Stocks (US $26.00)

Total List Price: US $55.95
Discounted Price: US $41.96 (Save: US $13.99)

Buy Both
Cannot be combined with any other offers. Learn more.

Related Titles

Back to Top