7 Financial Tips Every Business Owner Should Know

46% of entrepreneurs don’t have any form of business education. These entrepreneurs struggle to formulate sound business financial plans. They unintentionally do things that sabotage their businesses’ growth. As one of these entrepreneurs, you should look for ways to fill this knowledge gap. To help you out, here are seven financial tips every business owner should know.

1. Separate Personal and Business Finances

As a small business owner, you don’t see the need to have two different bank accounts. You claim you can separate the personal and business finances on paper. Unfortunately, having a single bank account will lead to business financial woes.

You’re going to use business funds for personal stuff and struggle to make finances balance.

To simplify money management:

  • Open a separate bank account for your business
  • Instruct your customers to pay for products/services your business sells via this account
  • Avoid withdrawing money from this bank account for personal expenses

You want your business to stand as an independent entity.

2. Learn to Create a Periodic Business Budget and Stick to It

Most new business owners adopt a “wing it” approach when dealing with expenses and revenues. They have no idea how much money they’ll spend on a given expense. And that’s why their businesses constantly face money problems.

To counter this challenge, learn how to create a business budget. The idea is to allocate money to things that smoothen business operations. Also, a budget will help you track business expenses, thereby enhancing accountability.

3. Know When to Seek Professional Business Financial Advice

As a new entrepreneur, you assume that you’ve to figure out everything yourself. You experiment with different business management practices hoping one will work. Sadly, you make errors that hinder business growth and threaten its survival.

Instead of this trial and error approach, know when to seek professional financial advice. You want to find experts who educate you on things such as managing business credit. Also, seek advice on common financial problems small businesses face and how to overcome them.

The great thing is that you’ll find many affordable business financial experts using the internet. Besides, leverage online entrepreneurs’ forums to get financial tips from other business owners.

4. Always Track Your Working Capital

A business can report profits yet go under due to working capital problems. Working capital is the money used for the day to day business operations. It’s current assets (cash, account receivables/unpaid invoices, and stock) minus current liabilities (account payable and debts).

Your business should strive to have positive working capital as this means you’ve enough money to cater to recurring expenses. To achieve this goal, learn how to effectively manage your business’s cash flow. You want to avoid cash flow problems that disrupt operations.

Here are some of the things you can do to improve your business’s working capital:

• Cut all unnecessary spending
• Give debtors incentives to pay you sooner
• Request your creditors for longer repayment periods
• Examine your company’s cash flow patterns
• Explore cash flow loans

You want to adopt a proactive working capital management approach to streamline operations.

5. Choose the Right Business Investors

When facing business financial woes, it’s tempting to take money from anyone. The problem is that some investors are the wrong fit for your business. Some will use their investment to strong-arm you into doing things you don’t like.

Others will insist on a high return which your business can’t afford.

To avoid all these problems, take time to screen investors to find the right ones. You want to partner with people who share your passion for the business. On top of funding the business, you may also want to find investors who are experienced within your business area and can advise you on how to run it.

6. Plow Back Profits

Once your business starts generating profits, it’s tempting to withdraw all of them. You argue you’ve waited for so long, and you deserve to be rewarded. And you’re right, yet to grow your business, you need to plow back the profits.

Here are some of the ways you can reinvest the profits:

• Hire more employees and expand your workforce
• Invest in new technology that gives you an edge over the competitors
• Increase your sales and marketing budget
• Open another business branch
• Start a business emergency fund

Your goal is to invest in things that give your business stability and stimulate growth. You want to forgo current profits with hopes of reaping huge ones in the future.

7. Protect Your Enterprise Against Fraud

Cyberattacks cost companies $200,000 on average, putting many of them out of business. That’s why you should look for ways to curb these risks.

Here are some of the measures you can take to prevent cyberattacks:

• Train your staff on modern cybersecurity practices
• Invest in data encryption
• Only use secure devices and networks
• Undertake systems audit regularly to test for weakness
• Develop policies on how to handle data breaches to cut losses
• Buy cybersecurity insurance
• Consider hiring a cybersecurity consultant

Implementing these measures will help you keep up with the latest technologies without compromising cybersecurity. You want to accept electronic payments from your customers. Also, you should take advantage of different e-commerce platforms to expand your business’s reach.

Boost Business Growth by Adopting Practical Financial Tips

To stimulate business growth, you need to learn how to handle its finances effectively. Rely on the above financial tips to give your enterprise an edge. The idea is to improve your business’s working capital to give it stability.

Also, know when to seek professional business financial advice. Finally, be careful when choosing investors, as they’ll impact the business’s direction.

Please check out our Business and Finance sections for more incredible financial tips.

What Are the Key Recession Indicators to Watch?

The Great Recession which occurred in 2009 was so significant that it affected the whole world.

It came about after the US housing market bubble (which had been growing) suddenly burst. A recession is a bad economical state that can lead to significant losses for organizations and individuals. It’s much easier to remain secure in a recession if you know it’s coming ahead of time.

There are some recession indicators you can observe that often precede a recession. For some of these key indicators, keep reading.

1. Yield Curve

When looking at the global economy, one of the most noted trends indicating a coming recession is the “yield curve”. The yield is the interest rate on treasuries or government bonds, and these bonds have varying duration lengths (known as maturity). Some last for just a month, while others last decades, and the yield curve compares how the interest rate of these bonds changes with time.

Bonds with a longer maturity typically have higher interest rates. For investors, this presents a ‘higher risk, higher reward’ situation. When investing in a bond, a lot more can go wrong in 10 years than in 10 months, so by accepting the risk of a longer investment, they also want to receive more in return.

An inverted yield curve will slope downwards and shows that investors are asking for higher yields for short-term investments. This means that they believe there is more risk in holding a bond for a short period.

Historically, the yield curve has been known to precede downturns. A lot of economic indicators seem to lag as they come after the event. A yield curve inversion, however, comes beforehand, making it a suitable indicator to see where the global economy is going.

2. Confidence Indexes

While economics is mostly about facts and figures, people’s feelings still play a large part. A typical example is the trade war that’s going on between the US and China. It has given firms a feeling of uncertainty about the future, which has caused delays in investments and hiring.

Predicting economic trends isn’t easy, and getting things wrong can result in huge losses for businesses. Situations that make people uncertain result in a lot of caution as people don’t want to make any wrong decisions.

This even affects the choices of consumers. When people are worried about the state of the economy and are unsure how things will go, they become more reluctant to spend money. The result of this is reduced profits made by businesses.

Many organizations publish regular reports regarding confidence amongst businesses and consumers. Recent years have seen some notable dips in confidence, causing some economical issues.

With that in mind, month-to-month fluctuations are not something to be too worried about. Like many economical factors, the long-term is more important, and confidence is generally more stable in the long run.

3. Employment Data

Each month the Department of Labor publishes a report on the job market. It contains several employment measures that can be important indicators of a potential recession.

Among the various data points included is the number of hours worked, which is sometimes claimed to be a leading indicator. This is down to the number of hours a business gives to its workers. When they’re worried about sales dropping, the first thing most companies do is cut hours.

Another data point listed is “temporary help”. This is a measure of temporary workers that businesses take on. When a company is less confident they’re likely to take on more temporary workers rather than permanent employees.

“Jobless claims” is another indicator, giving an in-depth look at the labour market. The time frame is also tighter as it’s posted weekly, rather than monthly. It’s simply a count of people applying for unemployment benefits, which is naturally higher when fewer people are working.

4. Leading Economic Index

Like the yield curve, this is one of the few indicators that predicts where the global economy will head. It’s generated by the Conference Board and is comprised of 10 datasets including:

  • Average weekly initial claims for unemployment insurance
  • S&P 500 stock index
  • New orders index
  • Average weekly hours worked by manufacturing workers

A negative year-over-year index has historically been closely associated with recessions. Businesses often use this index to plan future activities, helping to protect them in the event of any downturns.

5. Gross Domestic Product

Gross domestic product (GDP) is a measure of economic growth, and any time the economy isn’t growing, we’re in a recession. Whenever the economy is faltering it will be clear when looking at the GDP. It’s worth noting, however, that the GDP normally fluctuates, so it’s not always a cause for concern.

Comparing the GDP to longer-run expectations from economists can help give an insight into whether or not fluctuations in the GDP are something to worry about. This information can also help determine the “output gap”.

The output gap is the difference between the maximum possible output of the economy (as viewed by economists) and the actual output and can be positive or negative. When the GDP is adjusted for inflation it’s known as the “real GDP”. Sometimes the real GDP will go above its potential, and will then fall back down below it.

6. Recession Probability Model

This is a compilation of data based on the three-month and ten-year treasury yields. It’s specifically designed to determine how likely there is to be a recession in the coming year and is typically updated at the start of each month.

The likelihood is measured as a percentage, and anything over 30% is considered a warning sign. When it reaches the 30% point, it means a recession is predicted for 12 months from that time.

Watching for Recession Indicators

Ultimately it’s not entirely possible to say exactly what will happen in the future with the economy, but the recession indicators above have historically proven to be good signs to follow. Paying attention to these is the best way to know when we’re on our way into a recession.

CFI.co has all the latest information on financial news and economical developments. If you have any questions for us click here to contact us today, and you can sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.

Investment Portfolio Management: How to Hedge Against Inflation

2021 saw an inflation rate of 7%, making it the highest rate in decades.

Inflation is a constant factor and affects all investors. It can result in losses for individuals and businesses, and the best way to avoid these losses is to hedge against inflation.

So what does it mean to hedge against inflation? Keep reading to find out.

What Does Inflation Hedge Mean?

Inflation is one of the most important economic forces for investors to understand. It’s the reduction in the value of financial assets along with the returns that those assets produce. While some assets naturally lose value with time, this refers to a loss in terms of purchasing power and relates to all assets.

Investors work to increase their wealth with time, and to do this they need to hedge against inflation. An inflation hedge is an asset that produces returns that match or exceed the inflation rate. This means that with time, the value will either stay the same or increase.

Investors aim to incorporate these kinds of assets into their portfolios while removing any that don’t protect against inflation.

Best Investments to Hedge Against Inflation

Inflation rates change each year, meaning past solutions don’t always work. No assets are guaranteed to hedge against inflation, but some are far more reliable than others.

Gold

People often settle on buying gold to protect against inflation. Despite its popularity, there have been some periods where inflation has been very high and it has not quite stood up.

Gold has a correlation of 0.16 to inflation, which isn’t particularly high. It’s worth noting that gold also generates no dividends or interest, which some other assets do. This means that to hedge against inflation its value has to increase at the same rate.

Real Estate

Real estate has long been one of the best assets for hedging against inflation. The value of property tends to increase at a higher rate than inflation does. On top of that, property can generate a lot of income through renting/leasing.

REITs (real estate investment trusts) are companies that own or finance real estate that generates income and covers a range of sectors. Of the different REITs available, equity REITs have the best correlation with inflation. Mortgage REITs are another option, but can sometimes underperform when inflation is high.

Commodities

Commodities generally perform well against inflation and include a range of assets such as:

  • Oil and gas
  • Precious metals
  • Grains and foods
  • Timber
  • Building materials

You can invest in these through stocks, which will increase in value as the commodities do.

ETFs (exchange-traded funds) track price movements of different commodities, generally holding derivatives or futures instead of the actual commodities themselves. These are ideal for investors who don’t want to invest in a commodity directly.

TIPS and Floating Rate Bonds

TIPS (Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities) are government bonds. They are pegged to inflation, meaning they will increase at the same rate. The coupon payment is reset every year to match the CPI (Consumer Price Index).

Other floating rate bonds work similarly but are pegged to interest rates rather than the CPI.

Stocks

Stocks are another very well-known investment choice. The thing that’s noteworthy with stocks is that they do best when inflation is modest – ideally between 1% and 4%.

When inflation is below 1% most stocks will have negative returns. Above 1% will give positive returns, but when inflation is over 4% it generally exceeds the returns from stocks.

The return rates can vary a lot depending on the type of company a stock is. Companies that deal with sustainable resources tend to have a better correlation with inflation.

Some companies can change their prices without much change in costs, meaning they can adjust to meet inflation. Companies that use many raw materials can’t generally do this as they have much less flexibility.

Value stocks can be a good choice as they don’t tend to be too sensitive to price increases. Dividend stocks are also good as they raise dividends with time.

Worst Investments to Hedge Against Inflation

The above assets are generally good options for hedging against inflation. There are, however, some places you can put your money that aren’t nearly as good.

Most people keep their funds in cash, but it tends to always experience value erosion. Short-term fixed-yield instruments are similar, so not the best choice.

Long-dated US Treasuries and corporate bonds have fixed yields and almost always underperform. Inflation is often higher than the coupon, which will result in a negative inflation-adjusted return.

High-end luxury goods stocks and discretionary goods may seem like a good idea, but when prices rise people tend to opt for cheaper alternatives, which makes these stocks underperform.

What About Crypto?

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are very recent assets, and there is still a lot of debate regarding them. Many people claim they’re an effective hedge against inflation, but due to how new the technology is, there currently isn’t enough data to say for a certainty.

Hedging Limitations

Even with this knowledge about the different options for hedging against inflation, some limitations make it difficult.

Inflation projections aren’t set in stone, so they won’t always be accurate. Even someone with years of experience in investing won’t always make the right purchases.

While it’s fairly clear that some investments are better than others, no assets are perfect for hedging against inflation. You should do as much research as you can into the options you have, and make a choice based on what you think is best.

Be aware that there’s always a risk with any investment. Determine the risk before investing so you know what the losses will be if things don’t go how you want them to.

Making the Right Choices

Making decisions when it comes to investing is never easy. No one ever knows for certain how their investments will pan out, and there’s always a chance of losing money. The best thing you can do to hedge against inflation is to diversify your investment portfolio – that way, if one of your assets doesn’t do well, you have less chance of making significant losses.

Staying informed with the latest financial news will help you make the best decisions. Click here to head over to CFI.co and sign up for our newsletter so we can keep you up to date.

What to Expect from the Real Property Market in Dayton in 2022

2021 truly turned out to be a great catch for Dayton realtors. The real estate market saw a record-shattering year, quadrupling the 2011 sales. Single-family houses are trending here, the market itself proves to be client-friendly, offering relatively low prices.

Real Estate

This very inexpensiveness draws buyers like bees to a honey pot. But what surprises the most is how, despite all this, Dayton still succeeds to stay in the focus of many hunters on real estate and attract investors. Indeed, everyone in the field (both investors and buyers) has increasingly been aiming at small markets with lower prices over the past few years.

There are not so many smaller markets that have experienced high increases in rent, but Dayton is definitely one of those which enjoy the rise in numbers. Even though we are said to observe the continuation of this trend, and sales prices may face some sort of a decrease, this year still has a great possibility of becoming another bunch of records.

Dayton is a city in Ohio, actually located in the southwest of the state, in the Miami Valley (or Greater Dayton metro area). The city, despite its sizes, which are relevantly small, has a complex economy fueled by such industries as manufacturing, aeromechanics, agriculture, logistics, government, military, automotive, etc.  Many projects in economic development are constantly being implemented here, and a vast number of big companies have their headquarters located in the city.

It is 14% cheaper to live in Dayton as compared to the national average; due to the interstate major roads permeating the fabric of the city, more than half of all the Americans may reach it in only one day; there are a lot of places to visit, views to see and things to do. So if choosing where to establish a realty company in Ohio, the city of Dayton wouldn’t be a mistake.

The city is one of the largest in the state, housing approximately 137,000 people at the moment. Even though the amounts of population haven`t increased a lot, and the pace in Dayton itself has slowed down compared to previous results from 2021, its suburban areas do have experienced the largest rates of growth over the decade, setting a new record mark.

Joblessness is becoming less and less of a problem in Dayton, while the number of people with higher education is growing steadily. Now almost 32% of those living in the area hold at least bachelor’s degrees, many of which are in the fields of exact sciences. This further enhances the region’s reputation as one of the centres of the exact sciences. After all, there are many universities, colleges and other educational institutions to guard this image (at least five universities appear in mind immediately). The GDP here is over 41 billion dollars. This means that over the last decade it has grown by more than 16%.

The Dayton real property market has many advantages and interesting features, but 2021 became a success first of all for the investors in rental property. Now more households belong to tenants than to anyone else in the city.

Over the last few years, house prices in Dayton have been steadily rising. In general, the average values are now: $129,900 for a home (1 family) and $97 per square foot. But in the end, houses are usually sold at a slightly higher price – $140 000. If you want to settle in the region, the best option would be to buy a house in the Westwood area. The average listing price there is more than twice as cheap ($52,000).

In fact, one of the secrets of the market attractiveness for tenants is that housing prices are relatively low, while the proportion of price to rent keeps rising. And, to put it mildly, there are not that many cities where a social security check can easily cover your rent. But Dayton can rightly boast of offering such an opportunity, even though there was a slight leap in rents over the last few years. That makes it special. On average, for living a month in a home with three bedrooms you would pay $983 here. That’s the median rent in the city. The cheapest offers in the neighborhood are even less than $750 per month, while the highest reach $1,650 per month.

The affordability of housing and the dynamics of changes in prices are the main components that investors should take into account when they decide whether to enter the market or not. This analysis over the long run can suggest what to expect in the possible future, as well as present a broader picture of prospects. The housing affordability index (median family income compared to the median price of a house) may also give you a useful hint. But keep in mind that affordability does not always entail the purchase of real estate. We have already said about some special features of the market in Dayton, and one of them is that more people here would rather rent than own, so most households now belong to renters. Therefore, all factors must always be carefully considered. According to the latest data, the average family in Dayton can easily afford to pay for housing without any significant difficulties.

Dayton, the historic land and the birthplace of Orville Wright (world-famous inventor) is increasingly becoming not only an interesting place for tourists to visit but also one of the most comfortable cities in the United States to live in. Prices here are relatively low, the life is inexpensive, and the city is one of the most favorable for business and career growth. There are more than 300 miles of different biking trails in the area, dozens of cozy parks, and thanks to Dayton Art Institute the city became an outstanding art destination.

That’s all about the real property market in the city of Dayton, which certainly still has much to offer in 2022.

What is the connection between tokenization and your PCI compliance?

The payment system has been one of those that has been developing steadily and progressively for decades. Each era has brought some changes in its development from cash registers to online shopping, from coupons to credit cards. Currently, the priority issues are the security of data and confidential information of buyers and customers. The following article is chiefly related to this issue.

What is the connection between tokenization and your PCI compliance

PCI DSS is the international attempt to solve this problem and to create a standardised and appropriate system. There are many different ways to make your organization meet PCI DSS requirements such as tokenization, encryption, network segmentation and many others. Each has its advantages and disadvantages, but while some remain a well-known method, others are a mystery.

Tokenization is usually the way that raises the most questions and doubts, including what token compliance meaning is, how it affects PCI compliance and one of the most common questions about how it works.  In fact, this method is one of the most effective, as it minimizes risks, allows you to be flexible and, moreover, in some way may even be called a PCI assessment solution.

The best idea is to start with the definition. So, what is tokenization? To cut a long story short, it is a process in which confidential data is replaced with a non-sensitive element called a token. In case when someone wants to get to the confidential data token is preventing him from doing so. In other words, the token is a barrier between your private data and cyber-scammers.

The token is the replacement of data with random symbols and signs, as it is forbidden to store such data as identification numbers or bank accounts in their original form in the network. It is the token that guarantees the inviolability and security of data. This is especially noticeable during online transactions in which the card is not physically used. Due to tokenization, information about the cardholder and other personal data does not appear and is not used in transactions as well. With the use of a token, information is not stored in online databases, because it does not even have contact with it. The token guarantees security both inside the system and during the transition from one system to another.

The token does not store any confidential information that has been replaced by other random characters. Imagine a situation where cyber-scammers managed to seize the token. Even if it happens, he will not be able to seize any confidential data about either card or its holder.

It is very convenient, easy, fast and flexible to use the token. It can be simply created with a credit card. The transaction process is as well quite easy and very fast. In fact, the original information is stored in special repositories, which are under a strong system of protection. Such repositories are called vaults.

There are several types of tokenization in payment systems. Most common are Acquiring Token, Issuer Token, and Payment Token. According to the PCI DSS, only card numbers can be tokenized, passwords and CVV2 are not subject to tokenization. In addition, PCI DSS requires that tokens should be generated at least one in a million. Rainbow Table is one of the most popular and well-known methods of token data capturing.

But safety is not just an unpredictability. At least this whole protection system is much more complicated than it might seem. to be considered safe enough, token-based PAN must be nearly impossible to predict (with the probability of success being incredibly low, more than one in a million actually). And there is no instrument to capture such data (and to hack the cryptographic hash functions) that enjoys more popularity than Rainbow Table.

There is also an official set of recommendations on how to determine the value of the tokenization product. The first thing that is mentioned is, again, the extremely high importance of confidentiality. If an outsider had access to the PANs, it could be considered a disaster because it would seriously threaten the whole affair. There is a clearly defined data environment of the cardholder, and its “borders” must always be adhered to. The entire structure of the system must be in the internal network, protected from suspicious elements and the traffic which has not been verified. Anything unwanted should be discarded to keep the system isolated. This raises the question of trust: only complete confidence in the message can be considered a condition for his omission. Anything that raises doubts should be strictly prohibited from reaching the system. If you have a need or desire to store the information in one place (or if you would need to transmit it), care must be taken to ensure that it is encrypted. The most reliable way to do this is through the AES-256 algorithm. It has already stood the test of time, so to speak. Care must be also taken with means of access and identification. Monitoring safety and compliance with all conditions (clearly defined in PCI DSS Requirements 7 and 8) are extremely important. Everyone who needs to have access should have a unique identifier. This will weed out those who shouldn’t have access and strengthen protection. It is necessary to protect the system from cyber-attacks and harmful influences. Data should be deleted periodically, but this process should be determined by the special preservation of the necessary data policy. It is important to take into account everything that passes through the network. It would be good to have a defined procedure for emergency notification of experts on suspicious actions (traffic) to prevent unpleasant consequences, or just to check what is in doubt.

3 Best Crypto Exchanges for 2022

The cryptocurrency space has grown significantly over the past year, and new traders enter this space every week. As a new trader, it is easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer size of the over $1 trillion market. However, with a proper guide, you are assured of having an easy time cruising the market and investing in different cryptocurrencies. 

stock-exchange-profits-boom-businessman

The first step toward crypto investing is identifying where you will buy and sell cryptocurrencies. The best place to do this is on a cryptocurrency exchange. There are many cryptocurrency exchanges globally, below I have sourced a list of the 3 best crypto exchanges for 2022 from the Best Bitcoin Exchange website. 

1. Coinbase – Best for beginners

If you have been researching where to trade cryptocurrencies, you have come across Coinbase. Coinbase is one of the largest exchanges, and it is ranked as the most suitable for beginner traders.

Coinbase boasts of the best user-friendly crypto apps on the market, and it gives traders access to a wide range of learning materials. As a new crypto trader, it is advisable to use the resources provided on the platform because they will teach you about best practices in the market. The best thing about this is that Coinbase gives you free crypto for every successful course taken. 

Coinbase also makes it easy for new users to enter the space. The interface will give new users a seamless experience navigating the platform and managing their cryptocurrencies. Expert traders also have an easy time on the platform because they can access advanced trading features on Coinbase Pro. 

Most importantly, Coinbase provides a high level of security. The exchange uses two-factor authentication to prevent unauthorized access to user accounts. The exchange also claims to store 98% of users’ crypto offline. Further safety is guaranteed by an insurance policy that covers deposits of up to $250,000. 

2. Binance – Best for low fees

When trading cryptocurrencies, you might want assurances that you will not be spending most of your money paying trading fees. Looking for a good exchange platform best for trading with the lowest fees is especially important for day traders.  

Binance is the world’s largest exchange by trading volumes. The exchange has one of the friendliest fee structures in the crypto space. Moreover, the exchange is available in most countries. 

Binance charges a maximum of 0.1% in maker or taker fees. The fee drops even lower as a user increases their trading volume. Binance US is highly recommended to US residents because they can buy cryptocurrencies directly via USD. 

The exchange also offers a wide range of features that are very convenient to traders. These features include a comprehensive market dashboard, margin trading and a wide range of order types, making it easy for traders to buy and sell on the platform. 

3. Gemini – Best for security

The Gemini exchange was created in 2014, during the early years of Bitcoin. The founders of this exchange have been keen on security and regulatory compliance. When signing up on Gemini, a new user must complete a verification process that reduces the possibility of fraud. 

Users on this exchange also fulfil a two-factor authentication process to secure their trading accounts. Another outstanding security feature is the insurance policy imposed on hot wallets holding user funds on the exchange. 

The other unique security feature of this exchange is SOC 2 certification. This certification shows that the exchange’s regulatory and security frameworks have been verified by third-party auditors. 

Gemini is the ideal platform for users keen on security or those trading a large amount of funds that pose an increased risk. However, Gemini charges relatively high fees as a trade-off for these security features. 

Conclusion 

Choosing the best cryptocurrency exchange is just as good as choosing the best trading strategies. With many exchanges in the market, it is important to select one that will best suit your needs as an expert or beginner trader.

Investment Banking for Beginners: What You Need to Know

Did you know that the average investment banker makes more than eighty thousand dollars a year? And that’s before any bonuses that they receive.

Not only is it possible to make a big difference in the world as an investment banker, but you can also make a lot of money. Unfortunately, many people choose not to pursue these types of careers because they don’t understand what is investment banking. 

To help you make sense of what it’s all about, we’ve created this guide. If you want to learn more, read on and we’ll tell you what’s important to know. 

What Investment Banks Do

Most people have no idea what investment bankers do. They know that it’s an important career, but they aren’t certain why this is. 

It’s incorrect to think that investment banking is all about greedy people in business suits who think about nothing else except their next investment opportunity. This is because more and more people are choosing to take ownership of their own financial futures by making investments in assets that will increase in value. 

In most situations, this involves developing relationships with investment bankers. While traditional banks mainly take deposits and lend money to people and companies, investment banks sell securities. 

It’s common for investment banks to invest the profits from these securities into big projects that traditional banks might consider to be too much of a risk. Here are some of the most common kinds of projects that investment banks tend to get involved in. 

Offering Finances for Big Projects

Many investment banks invest their money in large infrastructure projects such as building roads and bridges. These kinds of projects need huge amounts of money to complete. Investment banks invest money into these projects with the belief that they will generate revenue once they’re completed. 

Investing in Companies

It’s common for young companies to seek help from investors. Even though many company owners invest their own money to start their companies, this isn’t usually enough. This is why they often choose to create an initial public offering (IPO).

The basic idea behind an IPO is for a business to sell itself to the public. It’s the job of investment bankers to find investors who want to buy securities from these companies. 

Mergers or Aquisitions

When it’s in a certain company’s interest to acquire or merge with another company, they seek help from investment bankers to seal the deal. Investment bankers often provide companies with the financing they need to acquire or merge with other companies. 

Managing Assets and Offering Brokerage Services

One of the fundamental goals of investment bankers is to make investments in areas where it’s likely to bring returns. They often do this by acquiring clients who trust their investment bankers to manage their money. Investment bankers do this by choosing individual stocks or by finding mutual funds. 

The Demographics of Investment Banking

Just like other forms of banking, the investment banking industry is dominated by white men. Less than twenty per cent of members of boards of directors are minorities. Less than thirty per cent are women. 

Most people who work as investment bankers know that this is an issue. This is why it’s becoming more common for banks to create diversity programs. The aim of these programs is to seek-out qualified women and minorities to work for their companies. 

How to Get Your Start as an Investment Banker

Since it’s important for investment bankers to know how to make deals, they need to know how to sell themselves. This means that you need to know how to convince people to hire you if you want to become an investment banker. 

At the very least, it’s essential that you have a bachelor’s degree in business or economics from a respected school. Most investment bankers also have advanced degrees in business and mathematics. 

It’s also important to be a good networker if you want to become an investment banker. Most people get started by becoming interns at reputable firms. 

What Are the Best Investment Banks?

The biggest investment banks are JPMorgan, Barclays Bank plc, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank, and UBS. There are also hundreds of smaller investment banks that do business in countries around the world. 

Most of the largest investment banks generate revenues of more than a billion dollars. Clients of the largest investment banks include retail companies, hedge fund managers, and governments. People with pension funds or who have investments also indirectly do business with investment banks. 

The Difference Between Investment Banks and Retail Banks

Retail banks usually work with individuals by taking in their deposits. In exchange for putting your money into a bank, these people accrue interest on their savings. Retail banks also lend money to people who need to do things such as buy a new house. 

Investment banks work mainly with large companies that need lots of capital. If you run a start-up or a small business, chances are that you’ll do business with commercial banks rather than with investment banks. 

In most situations, investment banks do not do business with individual clients. They are more likely to invest in large companies and projects. 

What Is Investment Banking: A Multi-Billion Dollar Industry

If you’ve been wondering “what is investment banking?” it’s important to understand how different investment banks are from retail banks. While most retail banks do business with individual clients, the majority of investment banks invest in large projects and corporations.

If you found this article helpful, don’t forget to check out the other informative articles that we’ve included in our Banking dropdown. Regardless of whether you own a business or are an individual investor, we have many helpful resources. 

Getting A Loan Simplified With A Private Money Lender

Private money lending is a great way to get funding for your investment projects without going through a bank. Private lenders are individuals or companies willing to lend money to people for a specific purpose, usually investment-related.

Loan by Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Pix4free.org
Loan by Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Pix4free.org

The benefits of private money lending are that it is usually a faster and easier process than going through a bank, and the requirements are often less strict. Private lenders like Bugis Credit are also typically more flexible regarding repayment terms.

If you’re considering applying for a loan through private money lending, you should consider a few things.

1.   A Simplified Loan Process

A simplified loan process is a transaction with fewer requirements for both the borrower and the lender. It can mean a faster, more effortless transaction for all parties involved.

In the simplified loan process, borrowers need to furnish fewer requirements. The entire process is faster and more accessible for all parties involved. It is because there’s consent between two parties – the lender and the borrower. As long as the property is available to be used as collateral, nothing delays the issuance of the loan money. So borrowers can enjoy better facilities and conventional loan benefits with this type of transaction.

If you’re considering a private loan, be sure to:

  • Research different lenders
  • Compare interest rates
  • Consider the repayment terms
  • Read the fine print

When you’re ready to start the loan procedures, the simplified process offered by private lenders may be the best option for you.

2.   Determine If You Qualify

It is essential to determine if you qualify. To qualify for a private loan, you’ll need to have:

  • A good credit score
  • A steady income
  • Equity in your property

If you have a history of bad credit, there is no need to be concerned – there are still options available to you. Some private lenders work with borrowers with less-than-perfect credit as long as they have equity in their property.

Keep in mind that lenders can have different requirements, so it’s essential to do your research and find one that’s a good fit for you.

Once you’ve found a trustworthy and reliable lender like Bugis Credit, the next step is to fill out an application. The application process is generally straightforward, and you can usually do it all online.

Once you’ve submitted the paperwork, the lender will review it and decide. If you’re approved for a loan, the money will be deposited into your account, and you can start using it right away.

3. Time Required To Have The Money Credited

Private lenders typically deposit the money into your account within a few days, so you can start using it right away.

The great thing about private money lending is that it’s a fast and easy process. There are fewer requirements, and the entire process is easier for all parties involved.

4.   How You Use The Money

Now that you have the money, it’s time to put it to good use. Remember, private lenders are typically more flexible regarding repayment terms. So, if you need, you can usually negotiate a longer repayment period.

Things to consider:

  • What is your exit strategy?
  • How will you make payments?
  • What are the risks involved?

To repay your loan, you need to have a solid plan. It will help you avoid any complications down the road. Having a plan can also make financial planning in the long-term easier for you, as you don’t constantly have to be wondering how much money should be used for your loan and other requirements.

5.   The Process Of Repaying Your Loan

Once you’ve used the cash from your loan, it’s time to repay it. Private lenders typically have more flexible repayment terms, so you can usually negotiate a more extended repayment period.

Remember to have a solid financial plan before you start making payments. It will help you avoid any complications down the road. Private lenders are typically more flexible when you’re ready to repay your loan. It means you can usually negotiate a longer repayment period. If you are facing issues paying back your loan, it is crucial to contact your private lender to let them know when you can pay.

If you’re thinking of borrowing money from a private money lender, research different options, compare interest rates, and consider the repayment terms. Once you’re ready, the simplified process offered by private lenders may be the best option for you.

You can get the capital you require in no time and easily, with fewer requirements and a shorter timeline. So, if you’re looking around for the ideal loan, be sure to consider a private lender like Bugis Credit. You may be shocked at how fast and straightforward the process can be.

Steps To Launching A Business or Product

Every good company seeks to expand their business by either improving their product line or, better yet, introducing a completely new product line to stay in this competitive world. 

Steps To Launching A Business or Product.

It is quite easy to get carried away with your vision of all the sales, notoriety, and success your product or service will bring. But a product launch is not a piece of cake. Just like other initiatives, particularly regarding business, you must invest a lot of time and meticulous planning. Remember, rushing to the market without having proper guidelines would only lead you to catastrophe. Hence, consider the following steps to ensure that your product launch is done right.

 Conduct a Market research:

First-ever step to product development is to conduct market research. Examine your client’s most common queries and complaints to see where your current services fall short. Next, examine the evaluations for past products to determine what people liked and didn’t like about them. Remember that your best sources of information are your current consumers.

The data you collect with research is quite beneficial whether you’re targeting new or your existing customers. For instance, you may use this data to create buyer personas, which would assist your marketing, sales, and customer care teams steer a product’s launching in the appropriate direction.

2. Verify your Product:

Once you have done your market research, see if you can verify the concept of your product. See if your product solves the problem that it is established for; also, why would anyone choose your product over a competitor’s. Make sure you have an answer to every relevant question raised to verify your product.

Remember, your existing consumers are likely to be comparable to prospective customers, studying what they need in a product to solve their problems. Doing so will offer you an overall idea about the market. Hence, it necessitates inquiring deeply regarding your business, your company’s objectives and, of course, your audience. 

There is really little originality in the ecommerce business. Therefore, your product will probably not be the only one that addresses the same customer needs. However, a good product will not only benefit your consumers, but it will also stand out in the crowd.

Your goal must be to address a specific problem better than everyone else for a specific target. Look up to your competitors. It’s critical to inquire what and how they are doing things differently and effectively, yet addressing the same problem as you are to your customers. Adapting a competitor’s idea of marketing is standard practice. However, you can alter it according to your preference, improve it, and make something new and unique out of it, which demonstrates why yours is superior to everyone else’s.

3. Come up with a Go-To-Market Strategy:

Next, you would need a Go to Market strategy, to begin with manufacturing your product. It is said to be the selling plan of your product at launch. To execute the plan successfully, look into the following: 

  • Ensure that both the strategy and the product are supported by everyone from high management to the business interns. Because launching a new product requires a lot of time and work from multiple teams.
  • Ensure everyone understands their responsibilities and your expected product’s ROI. Also, determine the success measures and values.
  • Managers should develop key performance indicators (KPIs) for their own teams.
  • Consider the resources you have available before launching a new product. 
  • Create a detailed budget that includes everything from personnel requirements to paid marketing expenses, and outsource or hire tasks as required. 
  • Create a personality and some phrases and buzzwords to convey your message effectively. 
  • Begin with crafting ads, social media messaging, and sample blog entries to see what sounds good and what does not. 

4. Establish a Pre-Launch Stage:

Planning your go-to-market strategy is how you create buzz. However, to scale a new product, you will need new clients as well. Hence, start posting the content you prepared amid the planning stage of the product launch. Producing videos, landing pages, blogs, and social media ads takes effort, but releasing and promoting them takes less. Hence, doing it beforehand would save a lot of your time while hitting the market hard, even before the product launch. 

To establish a pre-launch stage, consider the following:

  • Invest money in well known publisher affiliate connections. 
  • Explore and experiment with new channels; you might find a channel that performs better than you anticipated.
  • Make a daily/weekly/monthly posting schedule and present it to your marketing team. Utilize infographic Free PowerPoint Templates to ensure you produce an effective presentation to keep everyone on board.
  • Throughout your pre-launch campaigns, you can reward buyers with discounted pre-orders, free trials, prizes, and other advantages. 
  • Invite the social media influencers to try your product and provide feedback. 

For ecommerce firms, social proof is crucial, and obtaining it prior to launch can be extremely beneficial. Therefore, ensure you attempt to get as much attention as possible.

5. Create the Following Product:

It’s critical in ecommerce to build incremental value over time. New goods are an excellent approach to combat customer churn by re-capturing the lost consumers and engaging with the existing ones.

Once you have launched your product, continue to collect feedback, especially during the first few months after the market launch. Learn about what works and what doesn’t. Seek if the product addresses the issues it was created to address? Did it bring up any new possibilities?

Getting feedback from the customers will help you pivot or alter components of the current launch, as well as inform the creation of the following product.

Conclusion:

The above discussion, if considered, may lead you to have a successful product launch. Keep in mind that people would engage and want more with new items that continue to discover inventive answers to their challenges. Therefore, if the product launch goes well, your loyal consumers may become passionate followers, and new customers may become repeat customers. 

Stiff Neck – Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

A stiff neck or neck pain is a common health issue, affecting about 1 in every 3 people once a year. While the symptoms of a stiff neck are not life-threatening, they can be extremely painful and adversely affect the quality of life. Hence, it’s important that you learn how to fix stiff neck and manage its painful symptoms.

stiff neck

If left untreated, a stiff neck can possibly lead to secondary conditions such as migraines, shoulder pain, and severe headaches.

Symptoms of Stiff Neck

The symptoms associated with a stiff neck can be easily self-diagnosed at home. While the symptoms can vary in intensity from person to person, they’re commonly identified as:

  • Sharp pain in the neck area
  • Tight muscles
  • Muscle spasms
  • Pain that aggravates when you hold your head in one position
  • Reduced neck motion/ inability to move your head around

Causes of Stiff Neck

Medically, a stiff neck occurs when the neck muscles are overstretched, overused, or strained. One of the most common causes of a stiff neck is a soft tissue sprain or a muscle strain.

Besides, day-to-day activities are also a major cause. As the sedentary lifestyle becomes more common throughout the world, health problems like a stiff neck become increasingly prevalent in today’s generation. Whether it’s simply for the lack of physical activities or hours of gazing into your smartphones or computers, a stiff neck or neck pain is often among the first issues to arise.

Here are some more everyday activities that may cause a stiff neck:

  • Excessive anxiety or stress may lead to tension in the neck
  • Poor sleeping posture
  • Holding the neck in an abnormal position for long hours
  • Poor standing/sitting posture
  • Turning the head side-to-side repeatedly
  • Injury

In rare cases, stiffness in the neck may be the result of an underlying condition such as an infection, meningitis, tumor, or cervical dystonia (neurological disorder).

Treatment for Stiff Neck

Luckily, people experiencing stiffness in the neck can easily manage its symptoms and treat it at home. Here’s how:

  • Apply ice or heat to the affected area

Pain associated with a stiff neck can be easily reduced with this temporary solution. Apply ice for the first 38-72 hours to the painful area. Then, apply heat in the form of a heating pad, warm bath, etc.

  • Stretching

Stiff neck treatment with stretching is one of the most common ways of fixing a stiff neck. Simple stretching activities like squeezing your shoulder blades together about ten times or flexing your neck muscles can go a long way in relieving a stiff neck. Certain yoga poses like warrior II, cat-cow pose, or cow face pose might also be helpful.

  • Over-the-counter pain killers

Many people find temporary relief from pain caused by a stiff neck by taking over-the-counter medicines. However, it is advisable to consult with a doctor first. Some of the commonly prescribed OTC pain killers are acetaminophen, aspirin, and ibuprofen.

Stiff Neck – When to See A Doctor?

Symptoms of a stiff neck usually go away on their own within a week or so. With proper treatment, it may heal faster. However, if your stiff neck shows no improvement after a week, it’s best if you get it checked by a doctor.