Would you help my coworker out?

I got an email the other day from a coworker. One that I am yet to respond to. Mainly, because I don’t know how to respond. Here’s the email…

I was finally going to change around my TSP funds, because it has always been 100% in the G fund, and I remembered talking to you about it once.  I know that you know a lot about finances/investing/etc. and was hoping that you could give me advice as to a better way to have the funds allocated.  Any other TSP advice would be great!

For those that are unfamiliar, the TSP is the federal governments version of a 401K plan. Furthermore, the G Fund referenced is comprised of non-marketable U.S. Treasury securities. Basically, you can expect your money to grow slightly more than inflation. It’s a pretty safe investment, but it  doesn’t allow some of the awesome returns the other funds do.

I’m torn. Part of me wants to tell my coworker how I would invest her money, but the other part of me says “You have no credentials to provide investing advice to acquaintances.” I need to respond to the email so I don’t look like I’m ignoring her. I’m hoping you all can help me with an appropriate reply.

I’ve worked up two possible drafts to respond to my coworker with, please vote on which one you think I should send…

Dear Coworker girl,

Seeing that I am pretty much a baller when it comes to anything financial, it was wise of you to come to me for advice. I seem to know exactly what is best for you and I hope that you will follow my detailed instructions. Seeing that the G Fund is for wussies, yes wussies, I recommend you completely reallocate your contributions. I am a believer that as shoddy as America’s future may seem, we will continue to grow. You should put 50% of your contributions in to a broadly diversified portfolio of stocks of large and medium-sized U.S. companies, 25% in to stocks of small to medium-sized U.S. companies, and the remaining 25% in to international stocks of 21 developed countries. Yes, this is exactly what you should do. And when you are done doing it, you can bake me a bundt cake as a “Thank you” because you will surely become filthy stinkin’ rich.

Peace Up A-Town Down,


Or should I send this email….

Dear Coworker girl,

While I am totally flattered you have come to me for help on how to plan for your future, I can’t really give you any investing advice. Simply because I am not qualified. Oh, and because I don’t want you to come sue my a$$ later if things don’t work out as planned. I know our agency has people that could probably put you in touch with some financial advisers. I’d holler at them and talk over any goals and concerns you may have. Best of luck. Oh, and you can bake me a bundt cake if you’d like since I took time to respond to your email 🙂

Hugs not drugs,


Alright, those drafts may not be verbatim, but you get the point. I definitely have my opinion on how I think my coworkers should be investing their money, but that doesn’t mean I am qualified to voice that opinion. Would I be overstepping my boundaries to tell her what I’d do? Should I lecture her on rates of return and historical averages? Do I put her in touch with someone “qualified” to make those recommendations? I’m gonna assume if you are reading my blog, you have at least some finance smarts… How do you respond when people ask you for financial advice?