How Business Loans & Payday Loans Make an Impact?

 

Payday Loans:

Payday loans are relatively different as compared to conventional loans due to their ease of obtaining. In the same way, the need to assess the prospect whether if such loans are appropriate for your needs or not is crucial. Here are some of the benefits that you could achieve from payday loans.

  • Super rapid:

It is one of the significant benefits of the payday loans that they are swift to get in such cases when one is going through struggling economic conditions. Most of the times, minimum information is required from borrower and it gets processed within 1 or 2 days and even in a matter of hours by some lenders.

  • Ease of qualification:

There are no hard and fast restrictions to meet when you want to apply for payday loans. Mostly, you require a legal age, bank account and monthly paycheck and that’s it, you are eligible to have a payday loan.

  • Independence of consumption:

As your eligibility is determined before paying you out a payday loan, so it’s entirely up to you where do you want to spend it. It could be investment, daily expenses or whatsoever you may want.

  • No reliance on credit score:

Normally, the award of payday loan is not associated with credit score and you can only reduce your interest rate with better credit rating. Besides, you could enhance your credit rating with the help of payday loans.

Business Loans:

Regardless of the fact that you own a small, medium or even a higher scale business, the need to have finances on point is the key. Business loans are one of most popular ways to seek funding in this regard. However, the business can make ideal loans the smarter business loans by adopting following tips.

·        Keep your documents in order:

Different types of loans and numerous lenders will require you to furnish a plethora of documents before your application could be processed for a loan. As a business, make sure that entire of essential documents are intact before you apply to make your ordinary loans, the smarter business loans.

·        Maintain good credit:

Unlike payday loans, business loans will require decent credit ratings. In the same way, be certain to have sufficient credit rating to convert conventional loan into smart business loans.

·        Type of loan:

It is just another step towards achieving smart business loans where you can pre meditate about the type of loan your business needs and nature of your business requirements too.

 

Improving Financial Skills Through Literacy

Financial management has been defined as understanding the financial consequences of your actions and ensuring you only do those things that enhance profitability. However, I would add financial failure to that definition, as it’s an important part of the industry and my work as a merchant banker.

In short, you can’t expect all of your investment to result in significant returns. So you need to condition yourself to deal with the failures and continue your work with the same passion you had prior to the disappointing outcome. That’s what makes a successful merchant banker.

But let’s take a step back. It’s been said that 90% of business failures around the world are due to financial mismanagement. Not poor marketing, not labour problems but plain old bad management. So how do we resolve this problem? We need to focus on financial literacy, one of the world’s biggest challenges.

Although there are many worthwhile financial literacy initiatives happening today all over the world, too many of us don’t have a basic understanding of things like budgets, inflation and rates of return. Although it’s unrealistic to expect everyone to possess sophisticated financial knowledge, it is broadly agreed that some financial knowledge is necessary to make important life decisions related to money.

Building personal financial capabilities early in life can give people the foundation for financial well-being in the future. Schools are an important channel to provide the education that can improve financial literacy. Studies in the U.S. have shown that financial education, when done properly, leads to an improvement in financial behaviour.

But there’s a long way to go. According to a survey of 13 million U.S. high school students, only one in six received mandatory financial education. And only 17 states require personal financial content to be included in educational standards.

Of course, people want to make good financial decisions that set them up for success but most haven’t had the opportunity to learn. For instance, a significant number of American adults can’t pass a basic financial literacy test with three questions on stocks, interest rates and inflation. Here’s an example:

Suppose you had $100 in a savings account and the interest rate was 2% per year. After five years, how much do you think you would have in the account if you left the money to grow?

  • More than $102
  • Exactly $102
  • Less than $102

Although 43% earned scores of three, meaning they correctly answered all the questions and another 36% received scores of two, 21% got only one or zero questions right. Across all households, the average score was 2.2. Considering that the questions are relatively simple, those scores aren’t good enough and show why financial literacy needs to improve, and not only in the United States. The correct answer in the sample question, by the way, is more than $102.

Financial literacy can be a hard sell for educators, many of whom don’t see the importance of adding it to the curriculum. But it’s a skill all of us need to succeed in life. If you teach a child about financial literacy, odds are he won’t come back to live in your basement after college.

4 Ways To Spend Time and Energy Making More Money

Most people feel like they don’t have quite as much money as they want. But unfortunately, you can only make so much cash doing what you already do at the job you already have. That presents itself as a bit of a puzzle. What can you do to increase your income on the side? That’s where you have to figure out the equation of time and energy as it relates to your finances.

There are lots of places for you to start thinking about your options. One of the easiest ones is to start exploring passive income online opportunities. Or, maybe you want to do something like work with ATMs. Another perspective would involve you figuring out how to turn something you’re passionate about into cash. And lastly, there is an intrinsic value in being the first person to do something specific well and then leveraging that for economic gain.

Jump Into Passive Income Opportunities

Looking for passive income opportunities can be a gratifying activity. Doing a quick search online will give you dozens if not hundreds of options, especially as it relates to setting yourself up with something online that you can either make money from advertising or sell things digitally. It all depends on how creative you are if these are going to pan out for you.

Work With ATMs

If you want a more physical way to make money on the side, consider getting into the ATM industry. You can buy, rent, sell or otherwise work with ATMs, and it can be quite a fruitful experience. As long as you plan appropriately for time, energy, and need, working with ATMs might be precisely what you need to do on the side to create some economic opportunity for yourself.

Make Your Passion Create Cash Flow

Another perspective is that you can potentially use your passion to create some cash flow. For example, if you’re particularly good at an instrument, why not teach lessons? Or, if you’re a good writer or are good with academics, promote yourself as a tutor in your area. If you know you’re good at something you’re passionate about, then the next step that you need to do is figure out how to market that to the public at large.

Be the First To Do Something Well

One of the ways to start earning money on the side quickly is if you can figure out how to do something new that people want to buy into. Even if you’re not particularly amazing at it, if you can figure out how to be the first to offer a product, service, or idea, there is going to be an intrinsic value in it. Even if you sell that idea to the next person who wants to use it in a specific way, it can work your advantage.

Bad Financial Habits for Doctors

There is a stereotype that doctors are bad with finances and, while this may be true for some, there are some bad financial habits for doctors to avoid.

Lifestyle Creep: For doctors, the training doesn’t end and their careers don’t begin until they are 30. After years of studying, exams, and living on a student budget, many are ready to splurge. Many have seen their friends graduate at 22 and start working and, along with advertising that prevails, many want to start increasing the lifestyle. When doctors finally start making money, instead of spending that money to become debt free or increase an emergency fund, many will start spending it to make up for the years when they were a student.

Not Paying Attention to Money: Not paying attention to money is common for doctors and this habit can be the result of two reasons. The first reason is not wanting to see expenses exceed income and fear. Many may know they are overspending but don’t want to see how bad it is. The second is a good income. Many doctors feel like they make enough money and that they don’t need to keep track of expenses because things will just work out. When you aren’t looking at what you are spending, then it’s easy to overspend.

Relying on Debt for Emergencies: Of course there are things that pop up from time to time that are actual emergencies, but not everything is. A blown transmission isn’t an emergency and it’s considered a regular part of car maintenance. Many doctors aren’t planning for future expenses when they know they are coming. A lot of doctors have financial advisors who tell them they don’t need to have cash around for an emergency, and instead decide to keep the money invested. This is bad advice and a bad habit because debt is not something you want to get into for a cost you should have seen coming. Not being able to save money means you are living beyond your means.

Neglecting Student Loan Debt: Doctors can have a lot of student loan debt and turning a blind eye to different repayment options can only make things worse. There are different student loan refinancing options to lower monthly payments and reduce interest that gets paid. Doctors should look at their options before settling.

Not Choosing the Right Insurance: Doctors need insurance, just like they need scrub sets, but it’s a fine line between the right coverage and the costs. Many doctors don’t take the time to research their options and end up paying more than they need.

 

 

5 Things That Can Reduce Monthly Social Security Disability Payments

Social security benefits are immensely helpful for numerous individuals throughout America who need a little extra support in reaching a livable pay and meeting acceptable living standards. Still, some surprising life events can lower the total amount of benefits that some people might qualify for.

Income increases, changes in living situations, and receipt of government pensions can impact an individual’s eligibility for Social Security Income and/or Social Security benefits.

Read on to find out which things could reduce social security benefits.

Getting a Job or an Increase of Another Source of Income

Usually, people receive fewer social security benefits when they get a job or go back to work. This is most common after retirement. If individuals receive a major income increase they sometimes no longer need social security benefits.

Going back to work can make someone ineligible for social security disability benefits and it can also impact social security income (it can be ended or reduced). Substantial gainful activity refers to when individuals are making more than $1,090 per month and can cause benefits to stop or be reduced.

Medically Ineligible

The SSA requires that periodic reviews take place to assess any change in the recipient’s disability condition. If the person is still deemed unable to work, they will still be considered disabled and will receive benefits. If a doctor verifies that a person’s condition has improved to the point where they can work again, they are no longer eligible for benefits.

Housing Arrangements

Supplemental security income rates also depend on living arrangements. If a person has help with their living situation from family, friends, or other organizations, they will qualify for a lower supplemental security monthly payment.

The Social Security Administration views this help as unearned income. They reduce the benefit amounts for shelter and food since the recipient is not paying for these. This typically only applies to shelter and food. It won’t impact other gifts such as furniture, appliances, or other types of necessities that the person might receive.

Insurance Offsets

Social security offset exists when a social security disability claim is filed on long-term care, health, life, and disability policies, the total benefits paid out can be lowered. It’s also possible to have double offsets taken if people have more than one LTD policy. Double offsets result in lower disability income.

Pensions From Government Work

The Social Security Administration can even lower payments by including income that someone earned through local, state, or federal government work, as long as they paid social security taxes on it. In the case of pension lump sums that are paid annually, these are divided by twelve months and deducted from monthly benefits.

Certain exceptions exist, though. Federal employees who are a part of the retirement system will not experience a reduction in benefits. Current federal employees with a monthly pension for a position that they contribute to social security taxes with won’t have their monthly payments reduced as long as they filed for or were eligible for spouse benefits prior to April 1, 2004. Government workers who have paid social security taxes over the course of the last 60 months of service will not have their monthly payments reduced.

It’s important to know how various life events can affect payments because they affect many people. Breaking down the knowledge barrier can help people understand which benefits they have access to, and which things might be a hindrance to receiving social security disability payments. The Social Security Administration will always notify those who have a change in their monthly benefit eligibility.

Entering Venture Capitalism? What to Know

One of the questions I often receive as a venture capitalist is, “How do I become a venture capitalist?” New graduates and startup veterans alike want to get into the industry, and, I admit, it can be enticing.

There are many ways to break into the venture capital world, but they can generally be broken down into two categories: serial entrepreneurship and investment banking. I define a venture capitalist as someone who distributes third-party funds into new, early-stage ventures. An angel investor is someone who invests in companies with their own capital.

If you want to be a venture capitalist or enter in the industry, my advice is to start by building your experience in the greater financial industry as soon as possible. Ask an established VC if you can shadow them and ask as many questions as you can.

You’ll also need strong analytical skills with the ability to research markets and have a mix of foresight and business savvy to pick winning investments. From my experience, success in this area also directly correlates with an ability to keep up with changing industry trends.

Finding entrepreneurs or young businesses at the earliest stages in the process is another critical skill. One way to find these potential investment opportunities is to attend meetups for emerging technologies and identify attendees offering the most potential.

Once you’ve discovered and pinpointed a potential business to invest in and have completed the necessary analysis to suggest it will succeed, the next step is figuring out finances. How much money does this business require? This isn’t the final stage of the process, but shaping out a basic set of terms is fairly easy — and highly important.

Working as a venture capital can be highly stressful, yet at the same time lucrative. Be prepared to clock in a lot of very long hours with most of that time spent listening to pitches by potential companies. It’s also, in my opinion, extremely rewarding to watch a start-up you invested in succeed.

Social Security is Heading for Insolvency

The Social Security Administration has been reporting for years that it’s running out of money for paying out Social Security checks as well as Medicare benefits. The latest report from the trustees of these programs says that, if things don’t change, the Social Security trust fund will be depleted by 2034, while the insolvency date for the Medicare Hospital Insurance fund is now set for 2026. How severe is this threat, and what can be done to stop it?

The consequences of an insolvency condition in Social Security or Medicare would result in cuts to benefits amounting to a reduction of almost one quarter starting in 2034 and 2026, respectively, and then things would just get worse after that. This is terrible news for those older folks who will be depending on the benefits to survive, especially after paying into the programs for years.

The way to prevent this problem is a matter of simple economics: spend less money, bring in more money, or both. These options, however, pose a political dilemma for lawmakers. Republicans don’t want to raise taxes and Democrats don’t want to reduce benefits. To avoid facing the problem head-on, lawmakers have been passing the buck for years without fundamentally changing anything. As each year passes, the problem only becomes more acute and difficult to treat.

Besides the two basic options of raising taxes and reducing benefits, some ground could be gained in other ways, but really, they’re all variations on these two basic options. For example, any tax or benefits changes could be temporary, aimed at addressing the trust fund shortfalls and then reverting back to current levels.

The current eligibility age for Social Security benefits at an unreduced rate is 65 to 67, a range that depends on the year of birth. If someone retires as early as 62, they’re still eligible, but their benefits would be reduced. The age for unreduced benefits could be increased to 68 or as high as 70. Such a change would cover less than one third of the budget shortfall, however.

Another approach is to increase worker and employer contributions. Statutes set by Social Security currently have workers and employers contributing 6.2%. If this amount were increased by 1.1 percent, to 7.3%, then the Social Security deficit would be covered.

The tragedy is that Social Security and Medicare shortfalls will affect the elderly and most vulnerable in our society. “The possibility of losing benefits needed to pay medical bills can be a truly terrifying experience,” says Laurence B. Green, a Pittsburgh social security lawyer.

As more and more of the boomer generation retires, and relatively fewer people join the workforce, Social Security as it is currently implemented simply cannot sustain itself. A mix of solutions is needed to address the Social Security deficit, and they need to come sooner than later. The longer politicians stall, the more painful it will be for future generations.

Digital Currency At Year’s End: Crashing On The Cusp

As is often the case in massive cultural and societal shifts, the story of cryptocurrency’s 2018 ups and downs is incredibly complex, requiring several smaller stories to explain its current place in the world, and why people are so stirred up over it. This post is particularly aimed at folks with a reasonable understanding of the world of crypto, so if you’re a little out of your element, we recommend reading up on the basics first.

In this post we’re going to look at two seemingly contradictory trends in the world of digital currencies and why they are likely to become a tipping point for this revolutionary technology. We’ll cover these trends in two sections and then explore what it means when you bring them together.

 

Fringe Adoption Vs. Mass Adoption

 

While crypto’s detractors (and there are many) will argue that spending Bitcoin, Litecoin, etc., is complicated and unsecured, reputable companies such as Microsoft, Subway, Overstock and Expedia have all begun accepting popular cryptocurrencies. Additionally, many small, independent businesses, retailers, cafés and so forth, have begun accepting cryptocurrency as an alternative to government-controlled centralized, fiat currency. In this sense, crypto is inarguably growing closer to mass adoption.

 

On the other hand, while we may be approaching this tipping point, we are not quite there yet. Adoption by a tech giant like Apple, Amazon or Google would certainly constitute the required push – a sort of Deus Ex Machina effect – to bring crypto fully in the mainstream, for it is currently perched just on the cusp.

 

In the past year, a plethora of easy ways to sell Bitcoin have popped up, with an increasing number of reliable, secure digital platforms serving as fiat gateways for those who are interested in using crypto as currency, or purchasing it as an investment. Know your customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering policies provide a solid level of security to guard against untoward uses of crypto, but as it is still largely an unregulated frontier, more conservative, pro-fiat individuals argue that it facilitates shady dealings and undermines government.

 

Bears & Bulls

 

Even the most fanatic crypto proponent would admit that Bitcoin’s 2017 high of $20,000 constituted a bubble, and that $7,000 (the level that it fell to) was a correction, alarming though it was. The November dip below $5,000 is being heralded by glib detractors as a death knell, but this completely discounts the fact that the global market (at time of writing) is a bear, dropping rapidly and indicating a recession.

 

 

 

Thus, to declare the death of crypto is to ignore the greater context: yes, digital coins are losing value, but only at a rate proportionate to the overall drop in the markets at large. Of course, this drop comes at an extremely inconvenient time for crypto, which seemed poised to establish a consistent store of value around that $7,000 mark. As we get into the first quarter of 2019, it will be fascinating to observe the relationship between the fluctuations of global economies in relation to the fluctuations of Bitcoin prices.

 

For the time being, crypto geeks and rain-makers are holding their breath, waiting to see what happens next. The rise of crypto is utterly unique, and thus the current situation is unprecedented – we can only wait and see.

Norma Walton, 8 Reasons That Receivership Sales are Always at a Discount

Unfortunately I am something of an expert on receivership sales.  Back in 2013, my ex-partner petitioned our real estate portfolio into receivership without notice to our lenders. As a result, almost every property was sold via receivership or power of sale for a significant discount off the fair market value, all in a rising real estate market.  During that process, I became painfully aware of the eight reasons that Receivership sales are always at a discount.

Reason # 1:  Negative Publicity

Placing a property under receivership requires a court order.  Court proceedings are public.  As a result, there is publicity surrounding receivership sales.  When someone hears that a property went into receivership, the perception is usually that there must be something wrong with the property.  Generally receivership sales are ordered when there is controversy and contention between warring factions, be they partners, a lender and borrower, or family members.  This perceived stigma detrimentally impacts the property.  Negative publicity will reduce a property’s value.

Reason # 2:  The Process

In a private sale transaction, typically one buyer negotiates with one seller to purchase a property.  Receivers don’t have that option; they must run a sales process.  This usually means offering the property to market for a specified period of time with specific advertisements in specific publications, a real estate listing, and an offering to customers of the Receiver’s firm.  Receivers generally want to review all offers at the same time.  This tender process is a disincentive to a lot of potential purchasers.  Potential purchasers prefer to deal one on one with the seller of the property.  Most purchasers don’t want to be put in a competing arena with other purchasers.  Hence the process that Receivers need to run turns away many potential purchasers.

Reason # 3:  Uncertainty

Obtaining approval for a Receivership sale requires a Judge’s approval.  The Judge has a number of competing interests to address and if one of the parties objects to the sale, that objection often delays or stops the sale from being approved.  As a result, there is very little certainty in putting in an offer for a property being sold via receivership.  Until the sale has closed, the sale may be cancelled at any time.  This lack of ability to plan causes many purchasers to not bother offering in the first place.  The end result is so dependent on forces beyond the purchaser’s control that it discourages some purchasers from buying.

Reason # 4:  Higher Deposit Requirements

Receivers want certainty even though they cannot offer the purchasers certainty.  As a result, they usually require at least 10% of the proposed purchase price to be tendered with the offer to purchase during the tender process.  Generally the deposit cheque must be certified.  Hence a purchaser, before knowing if his or her offer is even going to be accepted, has to go to the bank and obtain certified funds for 10% of the proposed purchase price just to offer.  This is a major disincentive for many buyers and thus reduces the pool of potential buyers.

Reason # 5:  Complex Purchase Agreements

The standard TREB or OREA form is fairly straight forward.  Once you have dealt with it a few times, it is user friendly.  Not so with receivership forms.  Offers to purchase through receivership are typically at least four times as long as the OREA form.  They are full of legal language explaining all of the ways the Receiver can exit the deal and everything that must occur before closing.  A prospective purchaser usually requires legal advice just to understand the agreement before he or she can sign.  The need to seek legal advice before offering is a disincentive and reduces the pool of potential purchasers.

Reason # 6:  No Warranties or Representations

A Receiver cannot give warranties or representations.  As a result, a purchaser of a property under receivership takes the property “as is, where is”.  That means the purchaser must be comfortable with more risk than in a normal private real estate transaction.  A Receiver cannot represent the rents being collected on a commercial property, for example, nor can he or she warrant the status of the building systems in any capacity.  They guarantee nothing!  That reduces prices because purchasers must shoulder more risk than in a private sale transaction where there are almost always representations and warranties.

Reason # 7:  Lack of Specific Property Knowledge

The Receiver did not purchase the property.  They generally have not run it very long if at all.  They are not real estate experts.  They generally don’t understand the strategic buyers of a property or its highest and best use.  Their expertise is in accounting.  As a result, the property is generally not marketed as effectively as it would have been if a private owner sold it.  The person who bought it can usually market it better than a Receiver.  This lack of expertise reduces property value.

Reason # 8:  Firm Offers are Preferred

Receivers have to go to Court to recommend that a Judge accept a purchase agreement.  This takes a lot of coordination, effort and paperwork.  As a result, they ideally want to present firm offers.  Otherwise the purchaser could exit the deal after all that time and money is spent to secure approval.  Receivers generally won’t accept anything other than firm offers from purchasers.  This puts purchasers in a position to have to waive all conditions even though they may not have a good sense of the property and its perils.  Having to provide a firm offer instead of a conditional one always discounts prices.

 

Our real estate portfolio was sold at 70 cents on the dollar in a rising real estate market.  Watching that process made me acutely aware that it is a legal fiction that fair market value is ever achieved through a Receivership sale.  The eight reasons listed above guarantee that Receivership sales will always trade at a discount.

Understanding Risk: Investing in Junior Mining Companies

There are many lessons to be learned from investing in the mining sector. First, it’s inherently risky and many companies will disappear before mining a single ounce of base or precious metals. But it’s also an attractive sector for those willing to take chances and put in the work. Here are a few things I have learned over the years.

 

Do Your Research

 

Don’t go on a blind faith tip or even a rising stock price. Research the exploration project or mine you are interested in thoroughly and find out what others aren’t seeing before you put in a penny. There’s always something new to discover in a deep dive.

 

Find The Right Price

 

One of my last acts before leaving the position of president and CEO of Cornerstone Capital Resources in 2011 was to acquire the Cascabel project in Ecuador at a very early stage. At the time, it was believed to be a future source of gold and copper, but there was no proof. So the price was right. I got a bit lucky with Cascabel, as exploration has since revealed it as one of the largest gold-copper undeveloped mineral deposits in the world. But that was because I had done my research before making an offer.

 

Know When to Exit

 

Cornerstone was a small company and we needed help to get the Cascabel project up and running. I knew it would take years and hundreds of millions of dollars. So, making sure I left the company in solid financial shape, I turned it over to Brooke Macdonald, who remains CEO to this day.

 

The Truth About Cascabel

 

The Cascabel mine has gained the attention of BHP Billiton and Newcrest Mining, two of the largest mining companies in the world. They both have bought shares of SolGold, Cornerstone’s partner in the project. SolGold has the right to earn 85% of Cascabel by funding all exploration costs through to the completion of a bankable feasibility study. Cornerstone has the other 15% interest plus it owns about 10% of SolGold, effectively owning 23% of Cascabel. That’s one of the reasons I was happy to increase my already significant stake as a Cornerstone shareholder when the opportunity presented itself in 2016.

 

Although it was a risk to invest in a gold and copper early stage projects in Ecuador, the potential rewards were, and still are, tremendous. Even today, with all signs pointing to a positive outcome, Cascabel is still at the exploration stage. There’s a long way to go before the mine will see a profit. If you’re looking for quick and easy returns, the junior mining sector isn’t for you. But if you like doing research and have lots of patience, the risks can pay off in the long term.

 

Along the way, as a general rule, I sell enough shares to recover my original investment plus pay taxes on capital gains and then leave the balance of the investment until it hits my target price at which time I sell. Cornerstone has not yet hit my target price. However, I’m optimistic that it will within the next 12-24 months.