Wednesday, April 23, 2008
So you want to get wealthy. Try the stock market. Unfortunately, you don’t know how and where to start. So what you need to know and do?
Well, the first relevant thing to do is ask the basic question of what is a stock and its significance.
A stock symbolizes ownership of a company. Some view stock as certificates. So the more stocks a person owns of a particular company, the more of the company they own. And the more the company they own, the bigger the influence they have in running the company. This is called equity investment.
The next thing to do is familiarize yourself with financial terms such as ‘price-earnings ratio’, ‘margin’, ‘option’, ‘earnings per share’ and ‘leverage’.
Then, it’s on to knowing where and how to actually buy stocks.
There are two ways to buy stocks:
1. brokerage service
2. online exchanges (e.g. banks)
Exchanges are services that allow investors to access stocks all over the world. Here, they can buy and sell stocks without the need for a broker. Certain banks allow you to set up your own stock portfolio and buy and sell stocks online using the money you have in these banks.
Brokerage services are rendered by brokers. These middlemen do all the work for you. They research the stock market, give advice, and buy and sell stocks according to the wishes of their clients. These brokers earn a commission from the stocks bought or sold.
Once you have chosen how to buy and sell stocks, the next thing to do is to open an account.
As stated earlier, exchanges allow you to monitor and control your stock portfolio personally. If you choose to enter the stock trade with a bank, then ask your bank the specifics of setting up your own account.
If you choose to trade stocks via a broker, find a reputable broker and ask them to open and manage an account for you.
After you have successfully set up an account, it’s time to study the stock market and plan your strategy: will you be conservative in investing your money? Or will you be aggressive? Are you in it for the long term? Or are you a day trader?
After you have identified your plan, it’s time to do some research on the stocks offered in the market. Having a broker will significantly make it easier for you as they will do the research and give you advice. But, it is still best to study the market yourself.
Be warned though, the stock market is volatile. Be prepared for ups and downs.
Friday, April 11, 2008
Generally, we can say that financial planning is a process of money management that includes budgeting, tax planning, retirement and estate planning, investment strategies and insurance. The services help individuals and companies change their financial future at the different stages of their lives. Financial planning firms suggest you various tools like bonds, equities, funds etc. They can provide better advices regarding banking solutions for savings and better financial management.
The financial planning services firm coordinates different elements of finances with the aim of building, protecting, and maximizing net worth of an individuals and companies. They provide proposals regarding financial issues like investment, retirement planning, estate planning and financial protection.
A question may arise as what process these financial planning services firm applies. First of all they clarify your present financial situation by collecting relevant information like net worth and cash flow statements, investment portfolios, tax returns, pension plans etc. Then they identify your both financial and personal goals and objectives like providing education to children or supporting elderly parents etc.
After that, financial planning services firm try to identify different financial obstacles then they design the plan. They provide written recommendations and alternative solutions. They implement the plan and lastly do the periodic review. So, these firms try to remove financial bottlenecks, if any, like too little or too much insurance coverage or a high tax burden.
Financial planning services ensure that you achieve your financial goals and your hard earned money is invested in better options. Thus, for providing right way to your finance you may utilize these services.
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Retirement may be a long way off for you – or it might be right around the corner. No matter how near or far it is, you’ve absolutely got to start saving for it now. However, saving for retirement isn’t what it used to be with the increase in cost of living and the instability of social security. You have to invest for your retirement, as opposed to saving for it!
Let’s start by taking a look at the retirement plan offered by your company. Once upon a time, these plans were quite sound. However, after the Enron upset and all that followed, people aren’t as secure in their company retirement plans anymore. If you choose not to invest in your company’s retirement plan, you do have other options.
First, you can invest in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, certificates of deposit, and money market accounts. You do not have to state to anybody that the returns on these investments are to be used for retirement. Just simply let your money grow overtime, and when certain investments reach their maturity, reinvest them and continue to let your money grow.
You can also open an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). IRA’s are quite popular because the money is not taxed until you withdraw the funds. You may also be able to deduct your IRA contributions from the taxes that you owe. An IRA can be opened at most banks. A ROTH IRA is a newer type of retirement account. With a Roth, you pay taxes on the money that you are investing in your account, but when you cash out, no federal taxes are owed. Roth IRA’s can also be opened at a financial institution.
Another popular type of retirement account is the 401(k). 401(k’s) are typically offered through employers, but you may be able to open a 401(k) on your own. You should speak with a financial planner or accountant to help you with this. The Keogh plan is another type of IRA that is suitable for self employed people. Self-employed small business owners may also be interested in Simplified Employee Pension Plans (SEP). This is another type of Keogh plan that people typically find easier to administer than a regular Keogh plan.
Whichever retirement investment you choose, just make sure you choose one! Again, do not depend on social security, company retirement plans, or even an inheritance that may or may not come through! Take care of your financial future by investing in it today.
Have you ever noticed that the things you buy every week at the grocery and hardware stores go up a few cents between shopping trips? Not by much…just by a little each week but they continue to creep up and up.
All it takes for the price to jump up by a lot is a little hiccup in the world wide market, note the price of gasoline as it relates to world affairs.
There is a way that we can keep these price increases from impacting our personal finances so much and that is by buying in quantity and finding the best possible prices for the things we use and will continue to use everyday… things that will keep just as well on the shelves in our homes as it does on the shelves at the grocery store or hardware store.
For instance, dog food and cat food costs about 10% less when bought by the case than it does when bought at the single can price and if you wait for close out prices you save a lot more than that.
Set aside some space in your home and make a list of things that you use regularly which will not spoil. Any grain or grain products will need to be stored in airtight containers that rats can’t get into so keep that in mind.
Then set out to find the best prices you can get on quantity purchases of such things as bathroom items and dry and canned food.
You will be surprised at how much you can save by buying a twenty pound bag of rice as opposed to a one pound bag but don’t forget that it must be kept in a rat proof container.
You can buy some clothing items such as men’s socks and underwear because those styles don’t change, avoid buying children’s and women’s clothing, those styles change and sizes change too drastically.
Try to acquire and keep a two year supply of these items and you can save hundreds of dollars.