InvestWithPassion.com: Blog InvestWithPassion.com: Blog https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/ Copyright by InvestWithPassion.com en InvestWithPassion.com Mon, 18 Feb 2019 00:05:18 -0500 An Introduction to Shareholder Advocacy

Many shareholders don’t realize how crucial their role is. Most investors purchase shares of companies because they feel this is a profitable way to invest their money, but do not realize that the money they spend on shares will be used to finance the different activities of this company.

As a shareholder, you get to have a say in how the money you invest is spent. Shareholder advocacy is about drawing attention to the practices you perceive as problematic so the companies you invested in consider changing their behaviors.

What is shareholder advocacy?

Purchasing shares of a company makes you an owner. This doesn’t mean you get to run the company or that your opinion will be sought before making important decisions. However, you have the right to express your opinion and the board of directors or CEO is required to listen to you.

How can you make a difference?

Drawing attention to negative practices such as outsourcing production to sweatshops, implementing practices with disastrous consequences on the environment, or explaining why employees or customers are not treated fairly is a good start.

Shareholder advocacy can also lead to ousting the current management of a company, especially if there is evidence that the company isn’t run in an ethical manner or if the management is making decisions that expose your investment to unnecessary risks.

How can you draw attention to an issue?

The most efficient way to draw attention to an issue is to work towards getting a resolution passed. A resolution, sometimes referred to as a proposal, is a document that presents an issue and a solution to change the company’s behaviors or reduce its exposure to risks.

You can create a resolution by yourself, but it is quite common for groups of shareholder activists to get together to create proposals. Working with other activists is a great way to share ideas and learn from their experiences.

Can anyone file a resolution?

You can present a company’s board of directors with a resolution as long as you own $2,000 worth of stock in this company. You also need to own the shares for at least a year before you can present your resolution.

What happens after you file a resolution?

Filing a resolution is about opening up a dialogue between a company’s board and the shareholders. If you or a group of shareholders filed a resolution to draw attention to an issue, chances are many other individuals share your concerns.

After a resolution is introduced to a board, a vote must take place during the next annual meeting. Shareholders get to vote on whether or not the resolution should be adopted.

Companies typically pay attention to a resolution as long as it receives at least a 10% support when shareholders vote.

A company might decide to take action before the annual meeting to present shareholders with their progress instead of holding a vote. If there is a real problem with unethical practices, it is usually best for the company to work on resolving the issue instead of taking the risk to project a negative image.

Are companies legally required to change after a resolution is voted on?

In most cases, resolutions are not legally binding. The purpose is to draw attention to the issue and make the board realize how an unethical practice is casting a shadow over the image of the company.

A good resolution should present the board with strategies they can implement to solve the issue instead of merely criticizing the company’s behaviors.

Getting a resolution passed requires hard work and dedication on your part. However, if you own enough stock in a company, you have the right to express your opinion. You can encourage the company to adopt ethical practices, make an effort to be more environmentally conscious, or offer better working conditions to their employees.

Shareholder advocacy is up to you. You can make a difference!

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/an-introduction-to-shareholder-advocacy/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/an-introduction-to-shareholder-advocacy/ Editor Sun, 16 Dec 2018 11:59:44 -0500
How to Invest Like Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett is perpetually one of the richest people in the world and almost universally considered to be the greatest stock picker the world has ever known.

While you might not ever be worth $50 billion, you can certainly learn a thing or two from “The Oracle” and greatly increase your wealth over the long-term.

Though Mr. Buffet has never officially written down his process for evaluating and choosing stocks, there is a lot that can be learned from his letters to his shareholders.

These rules are in line with those shareholder letters:

1. Rule #1: Don't lose money. Warren's basic philosophy is to purchase a stock for less than it's worth and then let the rest of the world finally figure it out, too. This is commonly referred to as value investing and has been the corner stone of his philosophy from the very beginning.

  • In fact, the rest of the rules are really rules to find these companies.

2. The company must have strong profitability. Buffet prefers companies that are already profitable as opposed to companies that are likely to someday become profitable. There are several measures he utilizes to determine this. Some of these include Return on Equity (ROE), Return on Invested Capital (ROIC), and the profit margins.

  • ROE – While no one knows for sure, the general consensus is that he wants to see an ROE of 15% or more.
  • Profit Margins – In this case, we're talking about dividing net income by net sales. Obviously, the higher the better.

3. The company must have low debt. Too much debt is bad for everyone, including companies. In case you thought we skipped ROIC above, we're getting back to it now. Sometimes a company will appear to have a high ROE, but the number is actually artificially inflated. This can happen when the company is using debt to pay its bills. This is where ROIC comes into play.

  • ROIC removes debt from the calculation by adding it back to the shareholder equity prior to completing the ROE calculation. You can simply divide the company's total liabilities by the shareholder equity. The higher the ratio is, the more a company is using debt to grow the company. Be careful.
  • Companies with a lot of debt can be harmed when either interest rates rise or credit becomes harder to acquire.

4. The company must have competent management. Buffett has always placed a lot of emphasis on a company's management team. He favors intelligent, humble management that doesn't simply follow the crowd. He has stated that his company simply allocates capital; it does not provide management.

  • He has traditionally stayed out of influencing a company's management, but he insists that good management be present. Ensure the companies you invest in are being run by a competent management team.

5. Buffet refuses to invest in a business that he doesn't understand. You will find that the businesses in which he invests are relatively simple. He largely avoids the technology companies, because as he has stated, he doesn't really understand that type of business. Only invest in what you are capable of understanding.

6. Be patient. It seems like Buffett has held some stocks since before the dawn of time. He has held many stocks for 5 years or more before the stock ever rose even 1%. Value investing takes time; you're going to have to be patient to see the returns. Don't be in a rush.

While we can't all be Warren Buffett, we can certainly follow his basic principles and improve our own investing results. Focus on under priced companies with a history of profitability, little debt, and a competent management team. And remember to be patient!

If you can do these things consistently, you'll be surprised at the amount of wealth you can gain!

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/how-to-invest-like-warren-buffett/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/how-to-invest-like-warren-buffett/ Editor Sun, 09 Dec 2018 11:50:42 -0500
Mid-Cap Stocks for Beginners

Mid-cap stocks are categorized as those companies with a market capitalization between $2 billion and $10 billion. Usually, they're well-established companies somewhere between the slower growing large-caps and the rapidly growing small-caps. Recently, mid-cap stocks have done better than both the large-cap and small-cap competition with very little added risk.

We're going to examine the principal characteristics of mid-cap stocks as well as how to analyze them and why you should strongly consider these often ignored investments for your portfolio.

Why They Should be Part of Your Portfolio

The better historical performance isn’t the only reason you might want to consider mid-caps as part of your portfolio. Several additional characteristics are valuable as well:

  • The majority of mid-caps are simply small-caps that grew bigger over time. Additional growth will give them the opportunity to eventually become large-cap businesses.
  • Part of expanding is the ability to obtain additional financing to support that growth. This is much more difficult for small-cap companies to do.
  • The principal advantage over large-caps relates to earnings growth. Mid-cap companies haven't yet reached the stage where earnings diminish and dividends have become a significant part of a stock's total return.
  • Maybe the most overlooked reason for investing money in mid-caps is that they get less analyst coverage than the large-caps. Many of the greatest performing stocks have been ignored businesses that suddenly became popular, generating the institutional purchasers that are essential to push their price higher.

In the end, investing in mid-caps makes sense because they provide investors the best of both worlds: small-cap growth along with large-cap stability.

Profitability

One of the great things about mid-cap stocks is that the businesses are generally profitable and have been for quite awhile.

Consider these advantages:

  • Mid-cap companies usually have experienced management teams.
  • On the average, a mid-cap's earnings tend to grow at a quicker rate than the average small-cap and accomplish this with less volatility and risk.
  • Along with earnings growth, the mid-cap company is in a good position to maintain their earnings for the foreseeable future. That's what ultimately turns a mid-cap into a large-cap.
  • Clues that suggest a corporation's earnings are headed in the right direction include growing gross and operating margins in combination with lower inventories and accounts receivable. Turning inventory and receivables faster usually leads to greater cash flow and increased profits.

All of these features also help reduce risk. Mid-caps tend to have these attributes more frequently than small or large-caps.

Growth

Revenue and earnings growth are two of the most important factors to long-term returns.

Recently, mid-cap stocks have done better than both large-cap and small-cap stocks due to their higher growth in both revenue and earnings. It's likely that the ability of mid-caps to respond faster than large-caps, and their greater financial stability compared to small-caps, are their greatest advantages.

When researching a mid-cap firm, look into the quality of their revenue growth:

  • When gross margins, operating margins, and revenues are all increasing, it's an excellent indicator that the company is developing greater economies of scale, resulting in higher shareholder profits.
  • Another great indicator of healthy revenue growth is when lowered total debt improves cash flow.

Consider adding mid-cap stocks to your portfolio. There's a lot to like about them. The great opportunities for both profitability and growth, along with the relatively low risk, can make them an excellent addition. Do some research and find a couple of good mid-caps; you'll be glad you did.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/mid-cap-stocks-for-beginners/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/mid-cap-stocks-for-beginners/ Editor Mon, 19 Nov 2018 11:46:00 -0500
The New Investor’s Essential Guide to Leverage

Most brokers give you the possibility to use leverage to increase potential returns. Using leverage is a risky way to invest, but it can be a good strategy if you have a solid position.

There are a few things to be aware of before using leverage, and it’s best to wait until you have experience with investing before you consider using this option.

What is Leverage?

Leverage is using your broker’s capital to make a larger investment than you would be able to with your own money. So you’re leveraging your money.

For example, maybe you have $10,000 to invest. Using leverage would enable you to make a larger investment, perhaps $30,000. So you would control 3 times the shares, commodities, real estate, or other product with your $10,000 than you could before.

If the investment makes a profit, a larger investment in that item will bring you greater profits than what you would have made with your own money. On the other side of the coin, though, is the possibility of losing more than you would have if you had only used your own money.

Typically, brokers require you to keep a percentage of the amount you borrowed in your account. Your broker gets the rest of his money back, plus interest, from the investment’s profits.

Why Should You Use Leverage?

The main advantage of using leverage is to boost your potential profit. You can only earn so much with an investment with a 5% yield if you invest your own money, but using leverage means you can invest a lot more and the 5% yield turns into a more profit.

Leverage also allows you to gain exposure to investments that would require you to tie up an unsafe portion of your capital. This is especially useful with products such as futures contracts where a large initial investment is usually needed and the potential profits make using leverage worth it.

Are There Any Downsides?

The downside of using leverage is that your broker requires you to always keep a certain percentage of what you borrowed in your trading account. This is not an issue as long as your investment performs well.

However, market fluctuations make using leverage risky, since more money could be needed to purchase the futures contract you were interested in.

If this happens, your broker will place a margin call and require you to deposit more money in your account to cover the minimum percentage you are required to keep in your account. This means a dramatic shift in the market you invested in could become very costly.

How Can You Avoid Taking Risks When Using Leverage?

There are a few things you can do to avoid losing money when using leverage:

  1. Wait until you have more experience with investing and trading before relying on leverage. There is little room for mistakes since margin calls can be very costly.
  1. Use leverage on relatively safe investments. If too many factors are unknown, or if you don’t have good reason to believe an investment is safe, you’ll probably fail to generate the kind of profits you were expecting, even with leverage.
  1. Establish a detailed strategy. Ideally, you should have an exit strategy that allows you to limit losses in case you get close to a margin call. Meeting a margin call is usually a sign that you have made a mistake.
  1. Go over the terms and conditions your broker requires you to follow when using leverage. You’ll learn more about margin calls and the minimum amount you’re required to keep in your trading account.

In the end, using leverage can lead to higher yields as long as you invest carefully and select the right investment products.

However, using leverage can have disastrous consequences if things do not go as planned. This is why it’s crucial to have a detailed strategy going in and to properly assess the risks you are taking. These precautions can help you make the most from leverage.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/the-new-investorrsquo-s-essential-guide-to-leverage/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/the-new-investorrsquo-s-essential-guide-to-leverage/ Editor Thu, 08 Nov 2018 11:39:06 -0500
Buying a Home: The Escrow Process Explained

If you’ve recently had your offer on a house accepted by the seller, you must be ready and waiting to move in! If you're on the other end of the transaction, you want your money! You’re also likely to be wondering, “What is escrow and why does it take so long?”

Escrow may be the last hurdle in buying or selling real estate, but it's a hurdle that can take a while. Let's discuss what escrow really is and what needs to happen for everything to go smoothly.

The Purpose of Escrow

The escrow company simply acts as an impartial third party. They ensure that everything that must be done has been done before the property and the funds are swapped. So, they hold the money and the property and then transfer them to the proper parties when all the requirements have been met.

For example, they would hold any earnest monies. How could you be sure the seller wasn’t going to cash your check and then refuse to sell you the house?

The escrow company handles the money and the required documentation.

Steps in the Escrow Process

  1. Your lender will have the home appraised, as it is part of their process to approve your home loan. It also serves as a second opinion regarding the fairness of the selling price. They’re making sure that the amount of the loan isn’t greater than the value of the home. The bank is always concerned about the collateral on the mortgage.

  2. Hopefully, you already have your financing secured, but it’s not uncommon for the lender to have additional requirements that must be met before they’ll provide the funds. Usually the underwriter working for the lender makes these requests.
  • The escrow company helps to ensure that these additional requirements are met before the closing takes place.

  1. Various Inspections. A home inspection, termite / pest inspection, hazard inspection, and more are normally required before the bank will approve the loan. The bank doesn't want to make a loan until it’s fully aware of the condition of the property.
  • The home inspection will look at the electrical system, plumbing, structure, roof, and general condition of the property. It will also assess any necessary repairs. Pest inspections look for termite damage and any other type of infestation that would reduce the value of the property or require extermination.
  • The bank’s primary concern with these inspections is that they’ll be able to get their money back out of the property should the buyer fail to make the mortgage payments.
  1. Title Search. Do the sellers even own the house? Are the property taxes paid up? Are there any other liens against the property? A title search will make sure there are no clouds on the title.
  • Basically, the title search ensures that there are no creditors with any claims against the home and that the seller actually has the right to sell the house. It also looks for any other people that might have an ownership claim on the property.
  • For example, can the husband sell the house without the wife’s agreement? Are there any uncles, cousins, business partners, or anyone else that has a claim to the home?
  • Title insurance is also part of the closing process. This means the insurance issuer will deal with any title problems that may have been missed during the title search.
  1. Your lender will require home insurance. Obviously, they want to know that they will be paid if the house is destroyed.

While this list is not inclusive, it covers the basics of the escrow process. It varies from state to state. Your escrow company, lender, real estate attorney, and real estate agent are all very familiar with the process. Don't be afraid to ask any questions you may have so you can help expedite the process where necessary and move into your new home as soon as possible.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/buying-a-home-the-escrow-process-explained/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/buying-a-home-the-escrow-process-explained/ Editor Thu, 11 Oct 2018 11:35:01 -0400
Investing In Bank Guarantee (BG) or SBLC - Choose The Best One There are many businessmen who invest in various bank instruments like bank guarantees or Standby Letter of Credit and they get a lot of benefits with these types of bank instruments. However, there are so many people or businessmen who still have no idea about investing in a bank instruments like BG OR SBLC.

Lets us first understand what does SBLC and Bank Guarantee Used For?

What is SBLC?

Standby Letter of Credit or SBLC is a guarantee of payment which is also called as a documentary letter of credit issued by a bank on behalf of a client if he/she fail to fulfill a contractual commitment with a third party in accordance with the terms and conditions of the letter of credit. The SBLC is known to be the savior for people who fall into great disaster. Unless the situation is highly critical, no one normally uses an SBLC. This is the reason why it is called the payment of last resort.

An SBLC can help you stay away from bankruptcy and can be a great mean of trust. Holding an SBLC helps you in terms of business in both national and international platform as it means that you have a good financial history with the bank and bank trusts you. This trust helps you strengthen your business to a great level.

What is a Bank Guarantee or BG?

Bank guarantee (BG) are products of credit to ensure the successful completion of the commitments they have made their customers to future international exchanges (as a debtor or a buyer) that if anything happens due to which you are unable to pay them the money, the bank will affect payment in default of obligation against submittal of written demand in the guarantee. With bank guarantee, you can improve your business ventures by opting for financial services from reliable banking institutions.

You can also increase your profits and make businesses more successful.

However in both the cases you must make sure that you know all the terms and conditions and understand each and every needs of the investment. Investing the wrong way will only put you in trouble.

Now the question is that whether investing in SBLC or Bank Guarantee actually serves any purpose?

Investing in SBLC or BG really depends on the SBLC and BG providers who give you various opportunities to invest in these instruments. That means the most important thing you need to do is find a legitimate provider who would help you with the same.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investing-in-bank-guarantee-bg-or-sblc-choose-the-best-one/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investing-in-bank-guarantee-bg-or-sblc-choose-the-best-one/ Editor Tue, 04 Sep 2018 11:29:43 -0400
Investment Lessons Learned From Warren Buffet

Most people try to invest and make money but they often end up suffering losses as they make the same mistakes over and over again. Wannabe investors should try to learn and emulate the mind sets of rich people such as Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Michael Dell and Warren Buffet. Let us focus on Warren Buffet, who has been described as the best investor on the planet. These are some of the investment tips he sticks to:

1. Developer your investment mindset

Not all people are business oriented but we can improve our business minds by reading business related books. Warren Buffet invests a lot of his time studying business-related books.

2. Practicing patience in your investments

Whenever Buffett buys a stock, he buys into the company. This means he doesn't sell the stock at every market boom or bust. He believes in the companies that he invests in for the long term and holds on to stocks until he longer believes or sees value in these companies. One of Buffett's celebrated quotes, which illustrates his inclination for long-haul investments is, "Regardless of how awesome the ability or endeavors, a few things simply require significant investment. You can't create a child in one month by getting nine ladies pregnant."

3. Prioritize value

Sometimes, the amount we spend on something and the value we get from our purchase don't relate. Buffett believes that investors need to understand that markets are driven by supply and demand and that buying into a company with solid growth during market down-turns are great opportunities to gain value. Buy a good stock at a great price.

4. Check your emotions when investing

Human emotions influence the market considerably more than any monetary model. Emotions can make people hopeful for something that has never happened or rarely occur. Buffett has recommended that controlling your emotions is considerably more imperative than your IQ. According to him, "Accomplishment in investing doesn't associate with IQ. What you require is the demeanor to control the urges that cause other individuals harm in investing".

5. Invest in what you are knowledgeable and passionate about

Buffett exhorts that you "never put resources into a business you don't get." Don't put money into companies whose business you don't understand.

If you don't have adequate information about a company, it is much more difficult to understand how a company will perform in the long run and foresee what the company will become a couple of years down the line.

6. Live below your means

Despite a net worth of $87 billion dollars, Buffett lives in a shockingly unassuming home. He purchased his current home in Omaha, Nebraska for $31,500 in 1958 and, today, he calls it the 3rd best investment he's ever made. Rather than wasting money to live lavishly, Buffett lives frugally and has reaped the benefits.

7. Save first then spend the rest

People tend to pay bills first, spend the rest, and save for last. According to Buffett, this is the wrong approach. Buffet prescribes that you should put aside a set amount of money each month as savings first, then pay your bills, then spend whatever is left over after paying bills.

8. Remember your roots

When he was in middle school, Buffett found a job as a paperboy delivering The Washington Post. He expanded that early activity into a deep-rooted association with the daily paper. Years later, his company, Berkshire Hathaway, became The Washington Posts' biggest investor. Remember where you came from, your values, and you may discover unique opportunities for great investments.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investment-lessons-learned-from-warren-buffet/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investment-lessons-learned-from-warren-buffet/ Editor Sat, 11 Aug 2018 11:26:21 -0400
More Advice for New Real Estate Investors

What advice would you give to a new investor?

1. Find a coach/mentor in your area to whom you can turn for guidance. Most importantly with anyone you turn to, make sure they are successfully doing what you want to do and talk with others they've helped before you make a commitment of your time and/or money.

Real estate investing is not a solo business. You need attorneys, CPAs (knowledgeable in real estate investing), contractors, sub-contractors, real estate agents, title companies, closing attorneys, inspectors, appraisers, on and on. Find someone who's walked through the mine field before you and can give you a hand to save you both time and money.

Should you pay them for their time? Absolutely. If they're willing to share with you what they've learned over years of their own time and efforts, they've paid for their skills one way or another and what you will gain from them is worth paying for. If they're not worth paying, they're not worth following.

And don't reach out to only your peers; reach out to those in a better position than you. Jim Rohn said, "you are the average of the top 5 people you hang around with." If you want to get better in any area, find someone to follow who is doing way better than you are.

2. Get involved with a peer group that knows more than you. Go to all the meetings you can. For real estate investors, that typically means local REIA meetings (real estate investor association meetings which you can find on NationalREIA.com). Also check out MeetUp.com and any local landlord association meetings. Landlords are already doing the business and can be a great source of information as well as potential buyers and sellers to work with.

3. Set goals. Make a plan. How many houses do you want to buy in the next 12 months? How much do you want to be worth in 5 years? As you write out your goals, include strategies for accomplishing them. Want to buy 10 houses in the next 12 months? Break that into pieces to figure out what you need to do every month to make those goals a reality.

4. Buy real estate. If you haven't started yet, start! If you're buying, buy more. If you don't, 10 years will have passed and you'll be kicking yourself for not buying all you could today. The way to truly learn is by doing. Books and seminars are great, but you won't know what you know and what you don't know until you jump in and start buying for yourself.

It's a worn out cliché that "there's never been a better time to buy real estate", but it's true. I believe it's always true. Sure, you have to adjust your methods and your strategies depending upon the economy and where you invest, but everyone works, shops, and lives somewhere. If you don't own it, someone else will.

Get an education, hook up with a mentor, make a plan and buy real estate.

What can you add?

My name is Karen Rittenhouse and I've been investing in real estate full time since 2004. We currently buy about 60 houses per year, 80 percent of which we wholesale. Our current goal is to use that income to pay off all of our hold properties.

Please check out my blog - https://www.karensperspective.com/

I also coach and train anyone interested learning about investing in real estate.

 

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/more-advice-for-new-real-estate-investors/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/more-advice-for-new-real-estate-investors/ Editor Mon, 23 Jul 2018 11:17:22 -0400
Know the Different Times of the Day to Make Profits

Did you know that the tendencies that occur in U.S. stocks can be broken down into sequential order for a "usual" trading day? While reviewing this information, remember that the times listed are approximations, which means you can't expect to see a pullback/reversal each day at the exact same time. What you will see is that the pullbacks are common near the times listed.

Each of the times listed here are present in Eastern Standard time, with opening taking place at 9:30 AM and the close being at 4 PM.

The tendencies are also based on the index movement, which is actually an average of several stocks and there may be slight differences in some cases.

9:30 AM 
Opening time/bell is also when there is a push in a certain direction. The price may also begin to whipsaw to and from a few times, but in most cases, one direction is going to prevail.

If you don't see too much movement in the initial 15 minutes, it may be a slow day overall. The initial hour is the most volatile time.

9:45 AM 
The dominate direction that the price moved in is usually the initial test. There's either going to be a noticeable pullback or a complete reversal of the trend.

10 AM to 10:30 AM 
This is another time when the "gut check" for the trend is going to come into play. This is when another major correction against the existing trend is going to occur. It can be a full reversal or a pullback. You can look at the context of the actual price moves to determine what to do.

11:15 AM to 11:30 AM 
The London stock market will close at 11:30 AM ET. Between this time the European traders are getting out of their positions, which is when a new low or high is created or tested. These are usually the last significant moves prior to the price settling down over lunch.

1:30 PM to 2 PM 
This is when the trends are most likely to be reasserted. Watch out for a breakout during this time.

2 PM to 2:45 PM 
There isn't too much to watch but you should be wary. It is getting closer to the end of the day, with many people shuffling for their positions.

3 PM to 3:30 PM 
The trend may swiftly change during this time. In many cases, the period is a "shakeout" when individuals may begin to try and reassert themselves. In some cases, you can make money, but don't count on it.

3:55 PM to 4 PM 
Unless you have a certain strategy in place for trading in the last few minutes of the day, then you should finish up three to five minutes prior to closing. The US markets are going to have a closing auction and everything is done in a single transaction, which occurs at 4 PM.

As you can see, by knowing how stock prices usually behave at different times of the day, you will have a competitive advantage over those traders that don't. This knowledge can lead to more profitable trades and to success in you trading.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/know-the-different-times-of-the-day-to-make-profits/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/know-the-different-times-of-the-day-to-make-profits/ Editor Thu, 14 Jun 2018 11:14:57 -0400
Practical Tips on How to Trade Cryptocurrencies

For some time now, I have been closely observing the performance of cryptocurrencies to get a feel of where the market is headed. The routine my elementary school teacher taught me-where you wake up, pray, brush your teeth and take your breakfast has shifted a little to waking up, praying and then hitting the web (starting with coinmarketcap) just to know which crypto assets are in the red.

The beginning of 2018 wasn't a lovely one for altcoins and relatable assets. Their performance was crippled by the frequent opinions from bankers that the crypto bubble was about to burst. Nevertheless, ardent cryptocurrency followers are still "HODLing" on and truth be told, they are reaping big.

Recently, Bitcoin retraced to almost $5000; Bitcoin Cash came close to $500 while Ethereum found peace at $300. Virtually every coin got hit-apart from newcomers that were still in excitement stage. As of this writing, Bitcoin is back on track and its selling at $8900. Many other cryptos have doubled since the upward trend started and the market cap is resting at $400 billion from the recent crest of $250 billion.

If you are slowly warming up to cryptocurrencies and wish to become a successful trader, the tips below will help you out.

Practical tips on how to trade cryptocurrencies

• Start modestly

You've already heard that cryptocurrency prices are skyrocketing. You've also probably received the news that this upward trend may not last long. Some naysayers, mostly esteemed bankers and economists usually go ahead to term them as get-rich-quick schemes with no stable foundation.

Such news can make you invest in a hurry and fail to apply moderation. A little analysis of the market trends and cause-worthy currencies to invest in can guarantee you good returns. Whatever you do, do not invest all your hard-earned money into these assets.

• Understand how exchanges work

Recently, I saw a friend of mine post a Facebook feed about one of his friends who went on to trade on an exchange he had zero ideas on how it runs. This is a dangerous move. Always review the site you intend to use before signing up, or at least before you start trading. If they provide a dummy account to play around with, then take that opportunity to learn how the dashboard looks.

• Don't insist on trading everything

There are over 1400 cryptocurrencies to trade, but it's impossible to deal with all of them. Spreading your portfolio to a huge number of cryptos than you can effectively manage will minimize your profits. Just select a few of them, read more about them, and how to get their trade signals.

• Stay sober

Cryptocurrencies are volatile. This is both their bane and boon. As a trader, you have to understand that wild price swings are unavoidable. Uncertainty over when to make a move makes one an ineffective trader. Leverage hard data and other research methods to be sure when to execute a trade.

Successful traders belong to various online forums where cryptocurrency discussions regarding market trends and signals are discussed. Sure, your knowledge may be sufficient, but you need to rely on other traders for more relevant data.

• Diversify meaningfully

Virtually everyone will tell you to expand your portfolio, but no one will remind you to deal with currencies with real-world uses. There are a few crappy coins that you can deal with for quick bucks, but the best cryptos to deal with are those that solve existing problems. Coins with real-world uses tend to be less volatile.

Don't diversify too early or too late. And before you make a move to buy any crypto-asset, ensure you know its market cap, price changes, and daily trading volumes. Keeping a healthy portfolio is the way to reaping big from these digital assets.

Do you have a website that needs investing or technology content? Struggling to get a writer that understands your needs? Get in touch with me via Twitter or LinkedIn and I'll help you out!

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mus_mart

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rodgers-aluvisia-78639a159/

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/practical-tips-on-how-to-trade-cryptocurrencies/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/practical-tips-on-how-to-trade-cryptocurrencies/ Editor Sat, 05 May 2018 11:07:05 -0400
An Unbiased Opinion on Technical Analysis and Fundamental Analysis

I took an interest in the stock market awhile back and have always seen much controversy over TA and FA. I personally have used FA in the past and have found decent success with it, I haven't been returning 30% every year like Peter Lynch but I have made decent money over the years. I use FA, but because there has been so much controversy over TA I have looked into it, and even used it in market simulators in the past. I'm going to share with you guys what I have found using both of these methods trying to avoid biases towards either one.

Explaining Both Methods

Technical analysis uses chart patterns and indicators that try to predict the direction a stock might be heading in the future. TA is usually a swing trading 2-8 days) or short-term trade (2-6 weeks). TA also assumes supply and demand, liquidity or volatility, and a somewhat valued price. Fundamental Analysis tries to predict the direction of a stock based on financial statistics of the company. These are usually long-term trades or investments.

Do They Both Work

Yes I believe both methods work. Financial statistics of a company are very closely related to the price of a stock. When a company produces good earnings and revenues the price of the stock will go up. Momentum does exist in the stock market making patterns and indicators that read momentum an accurate way to predict short-term price movement.

Which is Better

FA is better for bigger accounts and risk avoiders. TA is better for smaller accounts and risk takers. The reason for this is because TA is a quicker more riskier way to make money while FA is a slower less riskier way to make money. This is due to the volatility of stocks in TA. Big accounts under high risk will probably make the owner shit his pants even if they are making good money at the moment. Small accounts under high risk isn't too bad cause it won't be the death of you if you lose everything, especially if you're pumping brass. Under thriving markets like the one we are in right now TA is probably a better choice because it is less likely you will have losing trades and volatility of stocks in TA makes for big wining trades. Under average or poor markets FA is a better choice because volatility in TA makes for big losses in losing trades while losses in FA will likely follow the market.

Arguments Against

Many people argue that there are not many if any successful technical analysts that the average joe has ever heard of while there are billionaires that use FA like Warren Buffet. I do not believe that this is automatic proof that it does not work or have significant value. Like I said earlier TA trades in liquid and volatile stocks, these stocks are usually very small meaning you can't put that much money into them without changing the price dramatically. This makes it very hard for wealthy people to use TA and produce and exponential return. Even if someone used TA and was very successful, once they get up into 10-20 million range they will likely move over to fundamental analysis where there are many more stocks to choose from due to the redundant need for volatility. Another reason a successful technical analysts probably won't be known to everyone is because they use systems. A TA system is system the someone can make that will use TA indicators and tell you exactly when to enter and exit a trade based on those indicators. Once these systems are made they are so straight forward many people have programs and robots that trade for them using the system. Now, if somebody created a system that straight up printed money they probably wouldn't want anyone getting their hands on it because it would be so easy to use anyone could do it. Too many people using the same system will bring down the effectiveness of it, so good technical analysts are probably very secretive about their work.

Why do People Say One or The Other Does Not Work

People who say one or the other does not work either have not tried the other or have but did not do it correctly. I have seen many articles saying TA does not work or FA does not work but they don't even know what it is or how people trade using it.

Conclusion

FA and TA both work and as long as you understand the concept you be successful with either one.

  • FA is better for wealthier people with bigger accounts.
  • TA is better for smaller accounts.
  • TA will work very poorly under bad markets.
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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/an-unbiased-opinion-on-technical-analysis-and-fundamental-analysis/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/an-unbiased-opinion-on-technical-analysis-and-fundamental-analysis/ Editor Fri, 06 Apr 2018 11:03:58 -0400
How to Use Automated Stock Trading to Win in the Market

The traditional method of trading and investing in the stock market is quickly being replaced. Technology offers advanced approaches to helping you win in the market. If you want to reduce risk from a highly volatile market, then you can use automated stock trading to change the outcome. There are several available technology tools, all which allow you to find more opportunities with the trades and investments you are interested in making.

The first step to automated stock trading is to know the qualities of the best software. You will find that several of the trading tools are based on basic equations that automate real time statistics. Others will automatically respond to stop - losses or your decisions to buy or sell. While these may work for some instances, it doesn't offer the freedom of choice. It also limits your capacity to find complete solutions with how to move in the market.

Another approach you can consider with automated stock trading is by looking at tools which assist with analysis. For instance, many traders and investors are now able to use automated tools for complex analytics, such as oscillators, to Bollinger Bands. If you have used these in the past and want a simple way to trade and invest in the market, then this will help with the tools you are interested in. Identifying the approaches with automated tools allows you to see exactly how the market is moving.

There are also advanced tools that identify your next moves in the market. Automated stock trading is now extending to systems which apply algorithms and formulas for your trades and investments. For instance, fractals look at the patterns and statistical data by using technology. It is then able to alert you and predict moves in the market before they happen. These tools create new solutions that sense how the market is moving, creating an extra analytical tool for your trades and investments.

By using automated stock trading, you can extend the possibilities of moving in the market. Despite many popular beliefs, using this approach does not allow a robot or technology to take over. Instead, the technology analyzes information and alerts you when there are changes in the market. With these opportunities, you will easily be able to find the best solutions for trading and investing in the market. With automated stock trading, you can change how you move in the market. The different tools are designed to provide you with basic insights as well as leading indications in the market.

Stephen has several years of experience in the stock market. He has used automated stock trading to create profitability of thousands of dollars. He now teaches others how to move in the market by using the best trading systems https://www.blusignalsystems.com/

 

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/how-to-use-automated-stock-trading-to-win-in-the-market/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/how-to-use-automated-stock-trading-to-win-in-the-market/ Editor Sun, 11 Mar 2018 11:01:59 -0400
The British Tradition of Maundy Money

Maundy Money are coins traditionally given out by the Monarch as a gift to the poor at Royal Maundy. The ceremony, which is associated with Christianity, is held on Maundy Thursday which is the day before Good Friday. The Maundy set consists of four coins, denominated one penny, two pence, three pence and four pence. The number of sets given out to each man and woman is equivalent to the age of the Monarch in years.

History

Royal Maundy probably dates back to the 13th Century. Maundy derives from mandatum which Jesus said meaning 'that ye love one another'. It was the act of washing the feet of the poor and giving food and clothing to the poor. The Royal Families of the middle ages copied the ceremony as a way of showing humility.

By 1699 the Monarch opted to send a representative rather than attend themselves, and not long after the act of washing feet was abandoned. By the 19th century the Royals thought that giving money was more convenient than food and clothes and originally gave coins of the day but later gave specially made silver coins.

It was not until 1931 that King George V restarted the tradition that the Monarch attended in person. Queen Elizabeth almost always attends and has only missed a few ceremonies. The ceremony was traditionally in or near London (mainly Westminster Abbey) but in recent years has moved around the country at various Cathedrals such as Leicester, Sheffield, Manchester, York Minster and Armagh.

The coins used to be given to the poor but these days are given to people nominated for their work done in the local Church. So on (say) the Queen's 90th birthday, she would give 90 sets to selected men and 90 sets to selected women. The coins would be issued in a leather purse; a white one contains the Maundy coins, and a red purse containing current coinage as an additional gift.

The Maundy Coins

The four coins are specially made: one penny, two pence, three pence and four pence. They are not the same coins as in circulation and are quite small (between 11.1 mm and 17.6 mm).

Since decimalisation these have been upgraded by law from penny to new penny. They are made from Stirling silver (92.5% silver) and although specifically made for this ceremony they are still legal tender. The design is virtually unchanged from 1822.

The reverse, which is a crowned numeral within an oak wreath, was created by Jean Baptiste Merlen back in 1822 and has only been altered slightly since then.

The obverse shows the head of the monarch as you would expect. However, if you look at the Queen Elizabeth obverse you can see that the portrait is the original portrait used from when she first issued coins; although the Queen has had about five portraits the original (by Mary Gillick) is still used.

Even back in Victorian days the recipients of Maundy money soon sold their sets for a premium, especially around the time of the Jubilee when Americans prized the souvenir. The purses could also fetch a handsome amount.

Besides the sets given out by the Monarch, many other sets are minted for official gifts and for collectors. These are issued in a case rather than a purse. Many were given to Mint workers or other officials. Maundy sets could be ordered from the bank until 1908, when 9,929 were minted in that year. Dealers scrambled for sets and sold them at high profit. This eventually got a little out of hand and the Mint cut back production heavily. In recent years the mintage numbers have been around 1600-1900 sets.

Les Kendall is a professional software developer but writes about coin collecting at coinparade.co.uk.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/the-british-tradition-of-maundy-money/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/the-british-tradition-of-maundy-money/ Editor Mon, 05 Feb 2018 05:29:29 -0500
Gasoline Has a Dirty Secret, and It's Making Investors Rich

I just filled my truck up with gasoline. I paid nearly $2.60 per gallon, which feels expensive to me.

It's hard to believe that prices this summer were the highest since 2014. We've had nearly four years of low gasoline prices... or what feels low.

However, based on the oil price, we're paying more for gasoline now, on a relative basis, than we did back in 2008.

Quite a bit more. That makes me think there is an opportunity for investment.

Let me show you...

Something Odd Is Going on With Gasoline

The price of oil makes up just 45% of the price of gasoline. The rest is taxes (21%), refining costs (18%) and distribution (16%).

However, something odd is going on with the gasoline price. We can see it from a simple comparison: by how many gallons of gasoline can we buy with one barrel of oil.

In theory, that ratio shouldn't change much. However, something isn't right with the gasoline price. As oil prices fell from 2008 to the present, the price of gasoline got more expensive relative to the price of oil.

Gasoline has got more expensive relative to the oil price.

Oil Refiners Are a Good Choice Today

Prior to 2017, the price of oil made up 62% of the costs of gasoline. But back in 2009, it took 50 gallons of gasoline to pay for a single barrel of oil. Considering that there are only 42 gallons in a barrel of oil, something was off.

When oil prices soar, refiners have a hard time making gasoline at a profit. That's because as gasoline prices rise, consumers conserve.

In 2009, the U.S. saw the fewest miles driven since 2003. That forces refiners to keep the cost of gasoline low, even while paying high prices for oil.

However, as oil prices fell into 2016, refiners made up ground by gouging consumers. They charged more for gasoline... sending the ratio down and profits up.

Giant oil refiner Valero Energy Corp. saw its revenue fall from $113 billion in 2008 to $63 billion in 2009. From 2013 to 2015, as prices fell, Valero's earnings grew from $5.7 billion to $8.2 billion. That was a 44% increase in profit, even as oil prices collapsed from $100 to $30 per barrel.

Today, we're seeing something similar happening. As oil prices contract down from a recent high of $66 to $60 and lower, we can expect to see gasoline prices move downward more slowly. That means refiners will probably do well this year.

And the sector should continue to do well. And the recent pullback makes the refining complex look attractive today.

If you want to put money to work in oil without direct exposure to the oil price, that's a good choice today.

Matt Badiali has a hands-on, go-anywhere, talk-to-everyone approach to his investment prospects and research. His work has taken him to Papua New Guinea, Iraq, Hong Kong, Singapore, Haiti, Turkey, Switzerland and many other locations around the world. He's visited countless mines and oil wells the world over, interrogated CEOs about their latest resource prospects and analyzed all manner of geologic data. You can read more read more here.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/gasoline-has-a-dirty-secret-and-its-making-investors-rich/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/gasoline-has-a-dirty-secret-and-its-making-investors-rich/ Editor Thu, 11 Jan 2018 05:28:39 -0500
Investors Diversify Their Investments With Commodity Trading

Like Forex and shares, commodity derivatives' trading is growing popular among the Indian investors, as the market has opened up nation-wide platforms for retail investors and traders to participate in commodities.

Multi-commodity exchanges like the National Commodity and Derivative Exchange, the Multi Commodity Exchange of India Ltd and the National Multi Commodity Exchange of India Ltd are established in the country to support retail investors, who want to diversify their portfolios beyond shares, bonds, real estate, and begin commodity trading.

The trading and settlement system in these exchanges is electronic, which makes it convenient to deal in commodity futures like gold, silver, base metals, crude oil, natural gas, agricultural commodities among others, without the actual need of possessing them as physical stocks. Also, live share prices, allows the trader to follow the market movements quickly and make smarter decisions.

Knows the basics

In commodity trading, the investors can fund their account based on their comfort level and risk tolerance level. However, it is essential to start familiarizing the norms of placing orders and trading strategies to deal wisely and prevent from overtrading.

When trading in commodities, the investors need do their homework well, understand the fundamentals of demand and supply, and make decisions based on storage and consumption of products. It offers an excellent portfolio diversification option to the investors because the commodities futures are less volatile compared to equity and bonds.

Retail investors can get involved in commodity trading seeking the support of a broker and trading happens online via the internet similar to the equities. Forward Markets Commission regulates the exchanges, but here brokers do not have to register themselves with the regulator.

Similar to the stocks trading, here too, the investor will require a bank account, a commodity demat account and account with the depository to start. An agreement with the broker is needed. The investor also has to supply the essentials required under Know Your Client format and by the exchanges and broker.

With a minimum amount of Rs 5,000, a retail investor can start their journey into the commodity trading since only a marginal amount (5-10 percent) of the actual value of the commodity contract is paid upfront to exchanges via the brokers.

Every broker and commodity may have a different amount and quantity requirements. For instance, in case of gold, one trading unit (10gms) is between Rs 30,040 and at 10 percent Rs 3,004 is payable upfront. The trading lots and rates of agricultural commodities also differ from exchange to exchange (in kg, quintals or tonnes). However, the base fund starts at approximately Rs 5,000.

Cash vs delivery mechanisms

While every exchange allows cash and delivery mechanisms in trading, when your choice is cash settled, indicate this early on when placing the order that you will not deliver the item. And when taking or making a delivery is your chosen option, keep all warehouse receipts handy for review. Moreover, you have the liberty to change your selection several times between cash settlement and delivery mode, until the expiry of the contract.

Know the fees

A broker may charge from 0.10-0.25 percent of the contract value but cannot exceed the maximum limit laid by the exchange. Transaction charges are also applicable from Rs 6 and Rs 10 per lakh/per contract. While research and collecting information from various channels like financial newspapers and magazine is helpful and following the commodity rates online and at live share prices portals is the way key to being informed and successful commodity trading.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investors-diversify-their-investments-with-commodity-trading/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investors-diversify-their-investments-with-commodity-trading/ Editor Sun, 03 Dec 2017 05:27:12 -0500
7 Reasons for Investing in Mutual Funds

Why must we ever give a thought about making an investment? Is it even a necessity or it is just a matter of one's choice? Even when it comes to investing, why are mutual funds a preferred option than any other instrument?

Yes, mutual funds are any way the best investment solution where one could get better returns in lieu of lesser risks. Moreover, your capital is managed by a fund manager who is an expert of every financial subject and has an experience of more than 10 years, which qualifies him to attend and resolve every matter of concern related to your investment. A mutual fund offers you a choice of investment and flexible withdrawals, where your money is planned inline with your needs.

Smartly Managed

They are managed by fund manager who is profound at tracking the markets and managing the investments. They guide you at every point from when to buy and which one to buy to when to sell the stocks. They manage your funds far better than you. The fund managers have a vast experience of all financial matters and they are an assurance that your investment is safe and will flourish with time. They take the entire responsibility from the very stage where you invest your money to the phase where you wish to withdraw your investment with high returns. This is the reason it assures you better security and management of your funds.

Better Returns

Mutual funds offer higher and better returns than any other traditional investment plan. They offer the best choices to the investors who wish to take lesser risks in lieu of the investments. One must begin with a savings plan by investing in the right mutual funds today. A few investors are often worried about the volatile phase of the market but the data of over the years clearly indicates that investors can make more money if they continue to bet on the market during the volatile phase. Further, mutual funds are one of the safest modes in the sense that the investors are protected against any kind of fraud.

Easy Investment

It is one of the easiest and safest ways to invest your money in stocks. The whole plan is also offered online and is just becomes a matter of a few clicks. Even tracking down the performance could be done easily. The lumpsum is a one-time investment in mutual funds, whereas there is SIP, in which small amount is vested periodically. SIP amount is automatically debited from the investor's account every month. Thus, it is an easy process which offers higher returns.

Choice of Investment

While most of the other plans are more about dictating you their already laid down plans, mutual funds give you multiple choices. From the very choice of what type of fund do you want and for how long to how much do you want to invest, these all choices reside with you and you have all the right to pick or choose the plan that suits you. All in all, they offer a customized investment plan which is designed as per your requirement.

Diversified Investment

In mutual funds, your funds are diversified and invested across a wide variety of stocks. If one stock faces any change, it will be balanced by the performance of the other stock. It is further advisable, not to invest your money in a single mutual fund category, rather diversify it across different ones to lessen the risk.

Secured Future

While you invest in mutual funds, you actually commit to investing a certain amount of your earnings or savings into a Systematic Investment Plan, where you consistently deposit your money for certain years. This helps in securing your future, where you are disciplined to add a certain value into your plan every month. This becomes your fixed monthly spend, while your other expenses are made from the remaining amount that you are left with. It ensures that save an amount of your earnings that will contribute in offering you a secured future, irrespective of all the miscellaneous expenses that you make. Your amount remains intact and it keeps on growing for a better tomorrow.

Flexible Withdrawal

While almost all the investment instruments hold your money for a specific number of years, this makes it really difficult for you to withdraw the amount in case of emergencies. Mutual funds provide the benefit of liquidity on your invested money. However, you can withhold your money in the plan for as long as you wish to. But it is still advisable not to withdraw the funds before it gets matured complying with the terms of the investment plan.

We hope now you are well aware of the benefits of mutual funds. To know more about this investment option, connect with a financial expert asap.

The author has specialized in writing articles related to business and investments. He analyzes different types of mutual fund products and writes on the same. Further, he also provides his recommendations to investors considering mutual fund investments, particularly in equities.

 

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/7-reasons-for-investing-in-mutual-funds/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/7-reasons-for-investing-in-mutual-funds/ Editor Sat, 11 Nov 2017 05:24:36 -0500
Investments in Precious Metals: The Form and Methods That Allow You to Receive Passive Income

Gold, platinum, palladium and silver are considered elite and are the most popular and liquid for investing funds. Precious metals are the object of investment - the most well-known way of investing. Their "noble" name they received due to the sophistication of the appearance of products and high chemical resistance.

It is generally believed that investing in these metals is the purchase of jewelry. In fact, a developed market economy assumes other, more profitable methods to invest money profitably.

Investing in valuable metals - how to make a profit

The traditional way to invest money experts believe the acquisition of gold bars, and the birth of "gold" investors in the expensive metals market is directly related to the historical facts of the appearance of valuable metals in the system of commodity-money relations.

To date, gold bullion is being invested not only by large banks but also by brokerage firms and individual investors. However, this approach requires fairly large primary capital, which makes it inaccessible to small and medium-sized income people.

Due to the quite acceptable cost, coin coins are considered a worthy alternative to this way of increasing investment returns. Pay attention, such coins have the opportunity to buy and sell at any time, which is an extra reason, saying the advantage and success of such investments. In addition, in many countries, investors who decide to invest in coins do not have to pay tax, which will significantly increase the return on investment.

Although collections of coins are the most resistant to changes in the market price of an asset, experts recommend considering investments as futures and options. Such financial instruments of commodity and options exchanges with a professional approach allow you to invest money in precious metals at the most optimal price of the market and thereby get a guaranteed profitability.

One of the most popular forms of investing in high-priced metals today is the purchase of securities secured by gold. This way of investment has undoubted advantages, among which there is a lack of any commissions accompanying the acquisition of real gold. This form of investment in valuable metals is a modern method of multiplying our funds by using the Internet system.

To another popular modern type of investment is the discovery of the so-called metal account. In this case, it is envisaged to open an account of responsible storage, in which ingots of costly metals are in banks. In this case, the investment is a part of the metal from a unified and impersonal account, which the bank sells at a market price.

To date, the domestic investment market distinguishes the following most popular investment methods:

• Gold ingots 
• Gold coins 
• Acquisition of Gold securities 
• Metallic account

Investing in high-priced metals refers to long-term ways of increasing capital. However, it should not be forgotten that there are periods of long stagnation and a short-term upsurge in the market, which for the literate investor is the starting point of investing funds or making a profit.

If you want to know more about investing in these precious metals kindly visit: http://excellentgoldirarollover.blogspot.com/

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investments-in-precious-metals-the-form-and-methods-that-allow-you-to-receive-passive-income/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/investments-in-precious-metals-the-form-and-methods-that-allow-you-to-receive-passive-income/ Editor Fri, 06 Oct 2017 05:23:21 -0400
7 Steps to Retirement Planning to a Safe and Secure Future

Retirement is a tricky thing, one day you feel good about it as you will be relaxing, finally, and the other day you feel worried about your finances. But people who plan for their retirement beforehand may have little or nothing to worry.

Retirement planning is a continuous process, and you would have to try to foresee things. Although, no one can predict everything and it will be better to try to be close enough can do some benefit.

Many people are too scared to retire because they are worried about how things will go when they cut that income off. However, retirement planning is not a hard science and following these 7 steps may let you secure future.

1. Retirement Planning - Assess your financial situation

First of all, make an inventory of all your current assets, liabilities, incomes and expenses. You can sit with your retirement planner and make an estimate of what your responsibilities and expenses would be. When you've retired, some expenses may stay the same, like groceries and insurance, and others.

However, some expenses may increase like travel cost, vacation costs, and spending less on growing-up kids. Some expenses would also be taken care of by pension and social security. Highlight your worries and questions that haunt you at night and discuss them with your planner.

2. Calculate the value of your assets and Liabilities

Here are a few tips on how to calculate the value of your current assets.

  • Write down the current amount in each of your account where you keep cash and liquid savings. These include checking, savings and money market accounts and certificates of deposits.
  • If you have saving bonds, then calculate and determine the current value or call the bank to find out the current value.
  • Call your agent and find out the cost of your whole life policy also.
  • Invested in stocks, bonds or mutual funds, then check the value on financial websites or from your last statement.
  • Use the current value of your house and other real states.
  • List the current value of your pension, IRAs, or other retirement plans you have in mind. Try to know the value if you decide to get them cashed today.
  • Keep other assets such as business and rental property in mind too.
  • The balance of the mortgage on your house is a monthly liability.
  • Keep all other mortgages or home equity loans in mind as well.
  • Record the balance due on credit cards, installments, loan, and investment accounts.
  • List all the current and over-due bills you owe. These include utility bills, doctors, dentists, telephone, water, gas, property tax, etc.

3. Know what you want

We all want so much that we confuse ourselves with so many things. Make up the list of the things you think must be in your lifestyle after your retirement. Consider everything that may even seem small to you so that you would be prepared for it.

Are you aware of how much money would you need to retire and live comfortably?

Well, research says that you need to replace 70-90 percent of your pre-retirement income. It helps you to estimate your target based on your current income. Although it is a rough estimate, and keeping this in mind allows you to be on track. Maintaining factors such as vacation habits, medical expenses, house rent will have a substantial impact on how much you need to save.

If you can save a right amount of money for retirement, then you will also have options for living the kind of life you want. Proper retirement planning lets you overcome any barriers and constraints, and add to the leisure of golden retirement period. You might even also have enough to leave something for your next generation. Don't be scared to aim high!

4. Cash Flow Planning

Present value is significant for your retirement planning. It is the amount of money you need in your account today to plan and save for your future. Many people work with their financial advisors or their retirement planners and make individual retirement accounts to prepare for their retirement. You can do so while planning before and after retirement.

Planning Before Retirement

  • Budgeting

It is almost impossible to start any retirement planning without budgeting. Your budget is an essential part of your cash flow planning for both before and during retirement. It is an essential analysis that one should necessarily do to determine how much cash is needed to maintain the lifestyle you and your family is used to living.

Once your budget is in place, it should be reviewed annually to determine if the addition and subtractions are changing the planned budget or if any other adjustments are needed. A budget will also help to protect your long-term and retirement savings.

  • Emergency Fund

Let's face it, unexpected financial problems can arise anytime, and it's not easy to avoid them too. So, it's always a good idea if we have some savings to help you in your inevitable needs.

Your emergency fund should be set aside in a liquid manner because you never know what time or situation you might need those. The total amount needs to be decided by you and your family, and it should be at your comfort level. Some people might agree on having $10,000 or $20,000, whereas some people would want to put a higher amount for their emergency funds.

  • Risk Management

One area that is often overlooked in retirement planning is risk management. People usually focus on saving money for retirement. However, they forget to keep risk management in their minds. Risk management includes car insurance, house insurance, short-term and long-term disability, and health insurance. You need to make policies regarding these and should be monitored, reviewed and updated as needed.

Planning During Retirement

  • Budgeting

During retirement, your plan should again start with budgeting. Your income will be changing after retirement, so it is essential to monitor your cash flow through-out retirement.

Budgeting after retirement does not only mean to keep a check on the flow of cash. In fact, it also involves analyzing all your expenses throughout the year. It lets you identify places where you can use other or less expensive substitutes or how to plan a significant expenditure.

  • Taxes

Tax planning is a massive ordeal for some retired people. It takes up a lot of planning regarding analyzing the sources of funds. It allows you to maintain your lifestyle and hence you need to keep your tax consequences in mind.

Different types of accounts have different types of tax consequences when funded or get withdrawn. Retirement savings or qualified accounts are taxed as ordinary income level. Non-qualified accounts are taxed with capital gains levels.

When specific funds are needed to maintain a lifestyle during retirement, it is essential to keep the tax consequences of the accounts funding your retirement.

Taxes should not be the only consideration when making your retirement planning. Instead, it should be combined with other aspects of your overall financial planning.

  • Estate Planning

While necessary estate planning is a critical component before retirement, but post-retirement planning has a more important role in managing real estate. It is essential for you to determine what you and your family would like to settle for.

What is crucial is that the approach to estate planning should be similar to your attitude towards risk management. Your estate plan should be reviewed and updated regularly.

5. Invest or Save

It's entirely okay if you start late as well. The key to expecting success has a positive outlook and understanding that being late is better than never starting!

If you are over 55 years of age, the government offers savings on the catch -up contributions so you can get help to save a little bit more. Sometimes, the chances are that savings account and employee pensions are not enough to reach your goals. That's when you explore investment products.

It is always good to have an investment on your side if you are planning to upgrade your living standard and staying financially sound for long. There are many different ways to save your money, but IRA accounts have proven to be the best. If you do not know about it yet, then search the mighty internet for guidance.

Create a diversified portfolio of savings accounts, investments, stocks, bonds, property, and insurance that can all contribute to benefit you.

6. Make Strategies to Maximize Your Social Security Income

Social security is likely to remain an essential part of your retirement planning, and it is essential to maximize this benefit.

To maximize the benefits of social security, you need to sit with your retirement planner and make effective strategies for collecting social security. The age at which you decide to withdraw funds will also have an impact on your lifetime savings. You can start receiving from the age of 62. Moreover, the more you wait, the more you will be paid. If you wait till 70 years of age, your payment will increase up to 77%.

Another important thing that you should be aware of is if you're eligible for more than just your own retirement benefits! You might also be eligible to claim "spousal" or even "survivor" benefits, if you are married, divorced, or widowed. Although, these are based on your records with your spouse, whether they are dead or alive.

Remember not to file for two or more types of benefits at once. Chances are you will lose one of them if you file for both simultaneously. Make strategies to claim the smaller one first, and later on the larger one.

Social security uses the best 35 years of your working life to calculate your monthly earnings. If you have worked less than 35 years, you should keep working. As this will also help you to bump some of your lower earning years.

7. Check and Repeat

The most important thing to keep in mind while doing retirement planning is to focus on your savings. It needs to be updated and changed as needed. Review your retirement plan annually. Nothing is set in stone and with a strong and stable planning leads you to live a happy retirement life. All you need is to put yourself in a position to be successful and organized.

Retirement is a life transition process. Just like other major life transitions, retirement requires you to adapt and grow. It might involve some sad moments for you like leaving your workplace, workmates, moving houses, having ups and downs, being short on money, etc.

However, these grieve moments don't last forever! The efforts that you make before and during retirement to have a balanced life will help to ensure that your retirement is a smooth and pain-free process.

Although the act of retirement happens in a day, or a week. In fact, the retirement process is taking place over the years before your actual departure. Retirement cannot be successful overnight and it requires in-depth planning and preparation. Your retirement plan might even change at some points in life, depending on your interests, activities, and health fluctuations.

Trust yourself that you will adjust to retirement, relax and enjoy!

Ratan Kumar has just started retirement planning to secure his future. So, do you have started planning your retirement? If not, then start from today onwards. To know more, kindly keep visiting https://akme.co.in/

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/7-steps-to-retirement-planning-to-a-safe-and-secure-future/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/7-steps-to-retirement-planning-to-a-safe-and-secure-future/ Editor Sun, 03 Sep 2017 05:21:59 -0400
10 Ways the USD Affects World Markets

The United States is the world's strongest and largest economy. US currency remains dominant over other global currencies in the international markets. The behavior of the US Dollar impacts global markets significantly, culminating to both positive and adverse consequences in these markets.

Here are 10 ways that the USD affects world markets:

  1. A stronger USD slows down trade in the international markets. A stronger USD weakens the other currencies in global markets, making it more expensive to purchase dollar-denominated commodities.
  2. However, these markets also get excited if they are exporting to the United States. The stronger dollar causes depreciation of the local currencies in these markets, creating inflation of the domestic currencies.
  3. When the USD rallies against other currencies, demand shifts from the United States market to the global markets, hence increasing economic and financial activity in the global markets.
  4. A stronger USD also attracts capital inflows in foreign direct investment (FDI) and other investment from USD investors to these markets. This is mostly experienced in developing countries where the markets are emerging markets with high economic growth rates.
  5. Capital inflows in USD in these foreign markets spur economic activities such as lending, employment, and consumption, hence stimulating growth in these markets.
  6. Commodities such as precious metals and oil in the international market are quoted in USD. Therefore, the performance of the USD determines the cost of living in world markets. The consequences of a weaker USD to these markets include lower gas prices while a stronger USD makes the gas more expensive to purchase for the consumer.
  7. Global financial markets monitor the USD closely to ascertain the spot price for fast moving commodities. Any fluctuations in the USD trigger a series of sales and purchases of these commodities in speculation of either outcome based on the behavior of the dollar.
  8. A hike in the Federal Reserve rate causes the dollar to become more expensive for investors. This can trigger capital flight from these markets; slowing growth and reducing demand for USD-denominated products.
  9. Also, high-interest rates can reduce USD liquidity and subsequently reduce investment, resulting in job losses and a global recession as recently experienced in the 2007 global recession.
  10. As a reserve currency and standard international currency in most countries, the interest rate of the USD determines the cost of financing foreign debts for the global markets. The foreign exchange rate of the USD determines interest paid and the accessibility of credit in the world financial market while still having an impact on the balance of payment based on the USD reserves held by an entity.

Chris Bouchard is a strategic consultant who works with non-profit leaders and social entrepreneurs to apply concepts and techniques to identify complex strategic issues, find practical solutions, and devise strategies to create and win a unique strategic position. He also offers project development, proposal writing, and project evaluation services.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/10-ways-the-usd-affects-world-markets/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/10-ways-the-usd-affects-world-markets/ Editor Tue, 22 Aug 2017 05:21:05 -0400
Significance of Hedging Energy Commodities

Although some consider Hedging to be an advanced and difficult to discern concept, the execution of hedges is in fact extremely basic. Risk managers can use futures contracts, over-the-counter swaps, call and put options, and combinations thereof to lock-in prices for a given period. This allows a company to know exactly what they will pay for their energy during that time and plan for that price accordingly. The real challenge of hedging is setting up a strategy that matches a company's risk appetite and hedging goals.

Hedging to Mitigate Risk

Hedging is especially significant for companies that produce or consumer large quantities of energy such as natural gas, crude oil, etc. However, many companies look at hedging as a profit strategy, which it is not. The point of hedging is not to make money (nor lose money) but rather mitigate risk. That, in and of itself, is another term that needs to be defined. In some cases, a company's risk will be based upon the price that they will purchase or sell their energy. For others, risk could be defined as the cost of opportunity to transact at a lower or higher price so that they may use saved funds to move forward with other projects or technologies.

The bottom-line is that no two companies share the same risks. Therefore, it is crucial that anyone looking to implement a hedge program seek out a well-qualified hedging strategy that meets their unique goals and risk appetite. The first step in this is to define their risk and the goals of the hedge program, then create a strategy that uses the right hedging instruments at the right time to fit their needs.

Here are a couple of tools to help manage hedging programs:

Futures/Forward Contracts

Futures are the basic contract to buy a predefined asset of standardized quantity, on a certain date at a certain price. Future contracts are ensured by a clearinghouse, which limits the risk of opposite party default. Forward contracts are a standard contract between two parties and doesn't have as inflexible terms and conditions, as a futures contract. Moreover, there are chances of opposite party defaulting on its commitment.

Options

Options are a very flexible hedging tool. An organization or investor can buy a 'call' option, which is the entitlement to purchase an asset at a specific price, or a 'put' option, to sell at a specific price at a future date. Unlike futures the option owner isn't required to consummate the transaction if the market price is more profitable than the option price.

Natural Gas Example

For the first eight month's of 2015 natural gas prices traded in a sideways range between nominally $2.50 and $3.00 per MMBtu. Then, in September 2015 prices broke lower out of the rang and ultimately fell to $1.611 in March 2016, an eighteen-year low. Let's say that during this time there was a utility that wanted to build a new gas-fired power plant, but to finance such a project they needed gas prices to remain below $2.50 for the next year.

In this extreme example the company does not want to miss out on the opportunity to build the new facility, but also does not want to risk higher prices. Therefore, their goal is to lock in prices using futures or calls once prices fall below $2.50. Using futures would limit the cost of the hedge, but also have more downside risk than using options. Options would limit the risk to the cost of the option's premium, but prices would have to fall well below $2.50 so that the "all-in" cost of the strategy, that is the option strike price plus premium, does not exceed $2.50.

Either way, in this case the utility knows what their goal is and can create a strategy to time the hedges once prices fall below $2.50. Once they can lock in natural gas prices they will know that it is safe to move forward with the new power plant. If prices did not fall that low they would know that they can't move forward with the project.

Conclusion

Organizations hoping to protect themselves from uncontrolled market fluctuations, would be better served by at least researching what an explicit hedging program delivers to the business. Market participants should be able to smooth the ups and downs of prices and build a strategy that fits their unique goals and risk appetite. A well defined hedging program is an essential part of mitigating energy price risk, and the right strategy and tools can help achieve a company's risk management and hedging goals.

In this write-up, we take a look at the natural gas hedging program and mitigating energy price risk and the right strategy and tools that assist you in achieving the risk management and hedging goals.

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Uncategorized https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/significance-of-hedging-energy-commodities/ https://www.investwithpassion.com/blog/significance-of-hedging-energy-commodities/ Editor Tue, 11 Jul 2017 05:20:00 -0400