Sunday, December 21, 2014

The Top Investment Books of All Time

Some people claim that you can only learns the basics of investing from making investments yourself. Jumping into the deep end of the investing pool right away can cause you to lose thousands of dollars and more. The more money that you lose, the less you'll want to continue in the investing field. One way that you can learn more as a beginner is with the right books. The best books, even those written in previous years, can teach you the fundamentals and help you avoid making some potentially risky decisions.


"Think and Grow Rich"

Napoleon Hill wrote "Think Rich and Grow Rich" during the Great Depression. At a time when most people worried about where their next meals would come from, Hill showed them that they had other options beyond working for the government or growing poorer with each passing day. Hill was good friends with Andrew Carnegie and managed to continue growing his wealth during the hardships of that time period. His book introduces basic concepts that every investor can use and gives them an overview of the steps that he took to remain successful.


"The Essays of Warren Buffet"

Even if you have little to no experience in the investment world, you still know the name Warren Buffet. The billionaire invested in nearly every venture in the world, and while he did see some failures along the way, he is still one of the richest men in the world. "The Essays of Warren Buffet" is a book that consists of multiple essays that talk about the lessons he learned throughout his career, how he makes investments and what others can do to follow in his footsteps. It ranks as one of the top business and investing books in the history of publishing.


"The Wolf of Wall Street"

Some know "The Wolf of Wall Street" for the nominated film based on the book of the same name, but others read the book long before it became a movie. Jordan Belfort worked as an investment broker during the 1980s and scammed thousands of people out of millions of dollars before finding himself under arrest. His book serves as a cautionary tale on what you shouldn't do and how to keep yourself under control. You can learn more about investing and the books you should read when you look at Online Trading Academy reviews and enroll in an online investing course




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Saturday, December 20, 2014

FRM or PRM ? Which is Better ?

FRM vs PRM

Among Finance and Risk management students and professionals, there is a lot of confusion on two of the most sought after course on Risk management, whether they should pursue FRM (Financial Risk Manager) or PRM (Professional Risk Manager).  In this post, we will try to sort out the confusion and try to bring out the comparisons and differences, the easiest and hardest one to crack and the passing rates between FRM and PRM.

FRM designation is more popular than PRM. FRM is more established and well-recognized than PRM certification. It is administered and certifications are provided by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Currently there are more than 26,000 certified professionals.

To be certified with FRM designation, you must
  • Complete two parts of the exam, Part I and Part II, which is offered twice in a year in May and November.
  • Have atleast two years of experience in the area of financial risk management or any other related field such as portfolio management, trading, risk consulting, risk technology, auditing, economics, industry research and faculty academic.

FRM Exam Format:
There are two parts of the exam, Part I and Part II. Each part of the exam is four hours long. Part I Consists of 100 multiple choice format questions and Part II consists of 80 multiple choice format questions. Part I is offered in the morning session while part II in the evening. This means you can give both parts on the same day. You must pass part I exam in order to have graded Part II.

Part I Exam Topic Areas:

FRM Part 1 Curriulum










Part II Exam Topic Areas:

FRM Part 2 Curriulum











The Exam results are pass or fail which will be notified via email approximately six weeks after the exam. The passing rate for the Part I exam is 46.7% while for Part II its 56%. The cost of registering for the exam is $350 for each part.




PRM is harder than FRM. It is also the most difficult and most technical risk management course in the world. It is administered and certifications are provided by the Professional Risk Manager’s International Association (PRMIA).

To be certified with PRM Designation, you must pass four exams. The Exams can be completed in one day or in four separate modules, which can be taken in any order over a period of up to two years. You must achieve a minimum of 60% correct answers to pass for each exam.

PRM Exam Format:

Exam I: Finance Theory, Financial Instruments and Markets – 36 Questions in 2 hours.
Exam II: Mathematical foundations of Risk measurement – 24 Questions in 2 hours.
Exam III: Risk Management Practices – 36 Questions in 1.5 hours.
Exam IV: Case studies, PRMIA standards of nest practice, conduct and ethics and Bylaws –                              24 questions in 1 hour.

You can take all the four exams in a single day with 120 questions in 6 hours with a one hour break.

The passing rate for the PRM exam is 50%. The cost of writing single exam is $195 and for full program it is $500. The number of PRM holders is unknown since PRMIA doesn’t publish it, but it is certainly lesser than FRM holders.

Conclusion:
Now you know the details of both the programs, so it is time for you to decide between these two. Which one of this is better? Well that depends on you. Both have most in common than differences.  FRM curriculum is more dynamic while PRM is more static. FRM is more general while PRM is more technical.

FRM is more popular and have a longer history, while PRM is backed by elite universities like NUS and HK University. But as far as international reputation is considered, FRM is ahead of PRM. If you are starting your career in risk, then FRM is right for you and if you are an experienced professional, consider the PRM. Both the designations are well recognized and respected in the risk management field and hence you can’t go wrong with either of them.





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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Best Roth IRA Providers 2014

Best Roth Ira Providers
To help in retirement Roth IRA helps individuals to contribute funds that are not tax deductible. Selecting Best Roth IRA providers is a very important decision. Roth IRA's are seen as important saving vehicle for your retirement. It is an effective way of saving for your retirement. You can contribute to a Roth IRA from the money earned from a Job.

Compare the best roth ira providers or companies for your Roth IRA. When selecting a Roth IRA providers, one has to consider a lot of factors such as trading fees, transaction costs and commissions per equity trade. Here we have highlighted the best Roth Ira providers for you to choose by considering all the factors.

1)    TDAmeriTrade: An IRA at TD AmeriTrade is easy to establish and makes retirement planning easier to establish.  At TD AmeriTrade, you don’t have to pay any maintenance fees and also comes with best tools and resources in the industry to help you build a right portfolio for your retirement. It is perfect for involved investor and requires $2500 to start and charges $9.95 per stock trade. It is also ranked as Best Roth IRA account provider by Kiplinger.com


2)    Fidelity:  The Roth IRA at Fidelity is easy to setup and has a full array of Investment products such as Mutual funds, stocks, ETFs etc. to contribute to.  Fidelity has excellent customer service which prevents you from straying to other firms. It has no account fees and charges $7.95 per stock trade.  The maximum contribution is $5,500. 

3)    Vanguard:  Vanguard has been the most trusted Roth IRA provider for many years. The Minimum contribution is $3,000 for any of the funds you choose.  You can get a lower fees and top notch customer service from Vanguard.

4)    ShareBuilder:  ShareBuilder is considered as one of the best Roth Ira providers for lot of reasons; automatic investing feature with cheap or zero cost trades, no account opening fees. . It has a low minimum to get started. Minimum contribution is $250 and charges $6.95 per stock trade.

5)    Charles Schwab: It is one of the very best Roth IRA providers and is trusted in investment circles. It has advanced trading platforms, retirement planning tools and resources to understand IRA’s.  It has zero service fees, the minimum contribution to start an account is $1000 and it charges $8.95 per equity trade.

6)    E*Trade:  E*Trade is a well-known name and it features one of the best Roth IRA providers options available.  The trading screen of E*Trade is very friendly and has a very clear portfolio view with plenty of tools to facilitate portfolio management. It has zero setup fees, zero annual fees and charges none for IRA termination fees.  The minimum contribution to start an account is $500 and it charges $9.99 per equity trade.

7)    Trade King:  Trade King is one of the Best Roth Ira providers that have taken the market by storm. It is preferred by many Investors over the other Roth Ira Account providers. It doesn’t charges any account opening fees or annual fees but it charges for account inactivity. It also charges $50 for termination or for transferring the IRA. The minimum contribution to start an account is $600 and charges a very low commission fee of $4.95 per stock trade.

8)    Scottrade: Scottrade is a serious contender to be one of the best Roth Ira providers. It doesn’t charge any account maintenance fees or any fees for account termination. The minimum contribution to start an account is $500 and charges $7 per equity trade.

The Best Roth IRA Providers or brokerage companies were chosen depending on the various factors and this list will help you to choose the best brokerage to open your ROTH IRA.





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Saturday, December 6, 2014

5 Budgeting Tips For Your First Job

So – you've graduated and landed your first “real” job. And now, you probably feel like you're swimming in cash. But as difficult as it may be to believe right now, your financial situation can change at any moment. That’s why it’s so important to budget wisely from the get-go.
You never know what could happen down the road – and in any case, it’s always a good idea to start building up savings. Though you may only be earning an entry-level salary, there are lots of ways to stretch those dollars to save money, avoid incurring debt and set the stage for a lifetime of financial freedom.

The best time to start budgeting and saving money? Right now. Start putting these five budgeting tips to work today:

1. Keep it simple

With steady money flowing in, you may feel ready to buy a house or car, or make other “grown-up” purchases. But doing so will put a serious dent in your cash flow, and there's no need to rush. For a little while at least, stick to renting with roommates (or even living with your parents, if money is a big concern). If you need to, buy a used car or keep the one you already own. You have the rest of your life to worry about a huge car payment or down payment on a house – start saving for it now.

2. Use technology to help you budget

Most people don’t have an innate understanding of budgeting and managing money. Why not put technology to work for you? With an app like Mint, you can stay on top of your financial situation without lifting a finger (or doing any real number-crunching). Just enter in your income, your monthly expenses, and your debit and credit card information, and the app will notify you when you’re exceeding your budget and when important bills are due.

3. Set up your 401(k) ASAP

Many first-time workers don’tthink much about retirement planning – after all, retirement seems like a long way a way. But as tempting as it may be to hold off on saving for retirement, the sooner you start, the better your nest egg will ultimately be. Sure, your paychecks will be a little smaller now. But down the road, when you have a sizable amount set aside for retirement, you'll thank your younger self. So review your benefits package, talk to your HR department, and start contributing to your 401(k) – now.

4. Automatically transfer money to savings

Even if you promise yourself you'll take some of each paycheck and put it into a savings account, that can be hard to do. Maybe you’re tempted to make impulse purchases with the money instead – or maybe, despite your best intentions, you just forget. A great way to sidestep this potential problem? Have a small portion of each paycheck automaticallydeposited into savings. By doing this, you won’t have a chance to miss the money – and you’ll see your savings account grow.

5. Get a head start on student loans

The sooner you're able to pay off your student loans, the better off you'll be. If you can, avoid deferring your loans and start paying them off as soon as you’re financially able. Use a tool like Tuition.io to help you analyze your total debt, your monthly payments and your interest rates to help you figure out the fastest way to pay them off. You'll be amazed by what a difference a few extra payments can make, especially when it comes to interest.

By budgeting and saving from the get-go, you’ll be able to set the stage for financial freedom much earlier in life. What are your tips for budgeting and managing money? Did you budget well with your first job?

Abby Perkins is Editor in Chief at Talent Tribune, a Software Providers blog dedicated to jobs, workplace culture and HR technology. 


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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Three Reasons to Use a Broker When Buying a Car Dealership

There are several ways to approach the issue of buying a car dealership, but you should consider going through a car dealership broker. There are advantages to using this type of service, and the following are three ways you will benefit.

They have a database of sellers
They not only work with buyers, but they also work with sellers. They have in their possession a large number of dealerships available for sale throughout the country and can match your requirements with one or more of the car dealerships available for purchase. This benefit of a brokerage service will save an enormous amount of time in your search to find the right dealership. You most likely will find dealerships available that you were unaware of. This expands the number of options available to you. 

Confidentiality and coordination
When you are working with a broker, your information is kept in confidence as your broker searches for the car dealership that meets your requirements. A broker will also coordinate the work of other professionals that you are working with to make the deal. This includes both lawyers and accountants who are integral and critical to your acquisition team. They can help work with you to create the best strategy to acquire a car dealership using the best options available. They will even work with you to create an initial offer to the seller.

A broker will alert you to new opportunities
Whether you are looking to only purchase a single car dealership or continually expand your dealership operation by making two or more acquisitions, a broker can alert you to any new dealerships that have become available on the market. This gives you the advantage of acquiring the best businesses available. A broker will always be conducting an ongoing search for the types of dealerships that are of interest to you.

The benefits of utilizing a broker to buy a car dealership listed above only scratch the surface of what they can do for you. If you are in the market to acquire a dealership, but still have many questions, a broker can work with you to help you determine what type of dealership is best for your circumstances. There are many car broker dealerships you can use to achieve your goals of owning a car dealership. One example is Performance Brokerage Services. They can be found at http://performancebrokerageservices.com/buy-a-car-dealership/

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