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Tips and Tricks: Personal Finance

Tips and Tricks: Personal Finance

Keeping on top of your personal finances can be a tough job if you don’t make a point to be organized right from the start. Once you stop paying attention to the numbers flying around, things can get messy – fast. If you’re looking for some advice on how to manage your personal finances day to day, here are a few tips and tricks to help you out: 1. Weekly check-in When money is coming and going it’s important to track it frequently to make sure you know exactly where you stand. Healthy financial habits will get you on the right track early and less likely to lose sight of your funds and/or over spend. a weekly money date to update your budget. Tracking your income and expenses weekly instead of monthly creates a healthy habit of knowing where you stand with your money. This bite-sized process makes it easier to stick with long-term. 2. Face Your Debt Debt is big and scary, we all know that. But the sooner we see the exact numbers in front of us the sooner it becomes much less daunting. Having a checklist of all debt amounts, interest rates, minimum payments, etc will allow you to begin the process of managing your reduction strategy. 3. Check Your Credit Score When was the last time you checked your credit score? If you plan on making large purchases such as a car or new house at any point, you’re going to want to make sure your credit history is up to par so that you appeal to companies as a reliable borrower, deserving of low...
With Interest Rates So Low are Alternative Investments Even More Attractive?

With Interest Rates So Low are Alternative Investments Even More Attractive?

Alternative investments have garnered greater attention as interest rates continue to remain at historic lows. But with investors looking to earn greater returns, alternative investments like private equity are viewed as an encouraging option to invest their money. Alternative investments are defined against the three traditional asset type-cash, stocks and bonds-and include an array of investment opportunities: Venture capital, hedge funds, derivatives, real estate, commodities, etc. High net worth individuals and institutions usually hold these investments, as they tend to be more illiquid than stock and bonds. With that said, returns on alternative investments have a low correlation with the performance of traditional asset classes, making them a potentially desirable investment for those who want to seek financial diversification. The shifting attitude and perception of alternative investments-especially given the precarious state of the economy-is driven by a few factors. On the one hand, alternative investments are being used for portfolio diversification to the traditional asset classes. This sort of diversification is necessary to hedge against not only market volatility but decreasing consumer confidence, high personal debt, and of course, low interest rates. The other issue affecting investments is high inflation. Individuals and institutions have traditionally invested in bonds-especially government bonds-to keep pace with inflation. Bonds were a safe way to grow your wealth while adopting a low risk financial profile. With higher interest rates, and backing from the government, bonds were an efficient way for entities like pension funds and insurance companies to grow the money they held. However, with low interest rates and high inflation-emerging globally-most bonds aren’t delivering the returns like they once had. And with consumer...