We all know life is unpredictable. For many people this makes it exciting however it can also make it stressful. We all hope for unexpected surprises but when things don’t go so well how can we ensure there is support for the ones we care about.
There are many advantages to life insurance UK. The most obvious one is that it gives to us the comfort knowing that even when we are no longer with our loved ones we can still support them and not leave them with the financial strains at an already difficult time. The money given from the policy to the beneficiaries can be paid out to as one single payment or many payments over the course of their life.
Most people worry about how their families will cope with their death and although it is a very difficult matter it is important that we use the opportunity which life insurance gives us to plan ahead for their future without us. Life insurance is more than just covering funeral costs. It is also a financial aid to our loved ones at a time when they will be particularly vulnerable. It can be a gift that lets them know that we continue to care for them after death. This can be a very comforting parting gift.
Loved ones may also be dependant on us during life. In these cases life insurance is even more important as it can help go towards their living costs and school fees. It could also help a partner pay debts such as a mortgage.
Life insurance in the UK is also versatile for the policy holder as they can choose payments which they can afford knowing that the money is secure. Insurance policies are usually very affordable and gives us peace of mind that we are looking after loved ones as we get older.
Many people in the UK have a bad credit or poor credit due to one or the other reason. Failure to make timely payment of bills and delayed debt repayment are the primary reasons that lead to poor credit. Low credit score often results in denial of personal loans or other loans. Most of the folks with tarnished credit have been denied loans from regular financing institutions such as banks and private lenders. Since having access to credit is necessary, it becomes essential to explore bad credit loans so that you can use them in times of need.
The good news is there are various options when it comes to bad credit loans. You can tap these opportunities and use available credit for your particular needs. Payday loans and personal loans are a special mention in this respect.
Payday loans – Most of the people are aware of this short term loan facility. Borrowers get quick money between 100 pounds to 2,500 pounds for meeting their short term finance. The loan requirements are minimal; any employed UK resident can get this loan, if he has a live checking account. You can get a loan within few hours after filling an application form online, and have to repay the loan along with interest on your coming payday. If used with care, payday loans can be a great option to resolve most of your urgent financial obligations.
Personal loans – Many lenders have come up with personal loans for people who have a damaged credit. Usually, personal loans are approved within minutes online. Once approved, money is instantly transferred in your account via wire transfer. The time of repayment is longer (up to 60 months), and you can use the loan without any problem.
In addition to this, there are many other bad credit loans (such as logbook loans issued against your car) that cater to the different needs of people. Depending upon your requirements and budget, choose the option of your choice. Make sure to repay the loan money on time after using the same for desired purpose. If used in a smart manner, these poor credit loans can help you to bring your financial status back to normalcy.
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The recent financial crisis might have affected your view of stocks and shares as investment options which is understandable. You should, however, not give up because this alternative is still good if only you employ the right approach. Some tips may help.
Risks you must contend with
The first thing you should know is that prices of stocks and shares do fluctuate at times. Possible reasons for share price fluctuations include negative news about the company. You must, therefore, be open to the possibility of losing some value on your investments.
You face varying degrees of risk depending on the company you hold its stocks and shares. Thus, share holdings in a start-up will present a higher risk than holding stocks and shares in an established concern. You can only avoid these risks by diversifying your portfolio.
Diversification is not synonymous to buying shares from different companies
Some people think that they diversify their portfolio simply by owning shares and stocks of different companies. This can only be true if those companies are unrelated in their lines of business. Buying shares in two soft-drink companies, for instance, does not amount to diversification. Diversification as an investment strategy helps you to offset losses on one or more assets in your portfolio with gains in others.
You must know tax implications of your investment activities
You want to discharge your patriotic duties by paying taxes but nobody loves giving money out. Shares and stocks would normally attract two forms of taxes. The law considers the dividends you receive as income liable for taxation. The current tax rate is 10% for basic taxpayers (those with incomes of up to £ 35000). You are also likely to pay capital gains tax. It is the tax on the gain in value when someone sells an asset. For example, a house bought and sold at £ 2 and £3 million respectively brings a capital gain of £ 1 million.
The above were just some tips to help you as an investor in shares and stocks.
The Stock Market is where shares are bought and sold, it is often seen as being an exciting and bustling place and you may have seen pictures on the television of people in bright coloured jackets at the New York, Tokyo or London Stock Exchange. The Stock Market is worth trillions of pounds and brings buyers and sellers together.
This is all well and good but if you are a novice how do you go about buying Stocks and Shares? One of the best things you can do is read up and get as much information as you can as well as looking at different share prices. Reading up about shares and keeping an eye on how they move up and down in price gives you an idea of how quickly things can change. Buying low and selling high is obviously the key, however, you may never know when the best time to make a move is. Of course probably one of the things you need to do if you have not bought into the Stock Market previously is to get some professional advice. There is free advice available through the internet or get in touch with somebody who is an expert in the field.
They can advise you how to get started, opening up an account and starting to buy shares. Buying and then going on to sell shares for a profit is a long game and you may have to wait years to get a decent return, however it can work towards your favour and you could make good profits. With the current state of global finance, it may well be a good time to buy low value shares and sell when the markets pick up. So if you are looking for a long term investment and realise that a good return may not be a guarantee but a possibility, get involved in the Stock Market and see where it takes you.
Many investors jump to the conclusion that investment research is useless and that “beating the market” in the long run is not possible. But the long run is precisely when research may achieve its greatest usefulness. It is in the short run that logical evaluation is subject to the foibles of the human mind. For example, analysis can lead one to see patterns where none exist. Our primitive brains are apparently wired to act on impulse by the evaluation of past information – even random data. Investors who rely too much on past information become overly optimistic about stock market winners and overly pessimistic about stock market losers. Stock price patters do not persist – over the long term.
This simply means that analysis of past information requires us to examine the long term to make sure that short-term results are validated. Decisions need to be the result of calm analysis of fundamental value.
Investing involves some rigorous work – just like maintaining your home. But investing should not be a constant struggle to follow a lot of rules. Rather, it should be like shopping for bargains at any store…or online. Buying a stock means that you are going to own part of a company. It’s that simple. Don’t become confused about asset allocation, rebalancing, industry trends, and market sentiment. Just focus on buying companies with promising opportunities for rising profit. What you will actually own is your part of those future profits.
Focus on a company’s prospect for future profits, not periodic fluctuations in the stock price. You are investing, not speculating. Spotting a bargain price for the company you are buying is often more art than science. But you can learn this process. You likely already know the most common measure of value. That is, the measurement of how much you are paying for future profits. You pay a price in dollars for each share of stock in the company. Profits are also stated in dollars per share. Hence, the ratio of price per share to earnings per share (the P/E) is a simple measure of value. It’s not the only way to measure value, but it’s always a good start.
The higher the P/E ratio, the more you are paying for your part of the profit. So, a stock with a big P/E is more “expensive”. That doesn’t mean the stock in a company with a low P/E is necessarily a bargain relative to a stock with a higher P/E. After all, you will own a share of future profits, which are unknown guesses. Maybe future profits for a company with a high P/E will rise more than the future profits for a company with a low P/E. In that case, the stock with a high current P/E may be worth owning because the “E” – the earnings – will increase significantly. Similarly, a low P/E stock may have a low “P” – the price – as a reflection of the fact that “E” (earnings) are expected to decrease in the future. But as a general rule, stock in a company with a really high P/E should be avoided; stock in a company with a fairly low P/E is worth considering.
Ready to be a little more sophisticated? Take the current P/E ratio – using the present price and the present earnings. Now compare this to the company’s average P/E over the last 10 years or even 20 years. That’s a reasonably long term. If a company’s current P/E is lower than the average, it may be a bargain. That is, the price for the particular company is currently lower relative to earnings than has historically been the case. It’s like the company is on sale because the cost to own a piece of the company’s earnings is lower.
Now you’re on you way to learning some simple techniques for examining individual stocks. Try learning a new analytical method every few months.
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Everyone living and working in today’s economy knows there is something wrong. Unemployment is rising, foreclosures are skyrocketing, and a staggering percentage of people are not making their credit card payments. Perhaps more frightening, states like California and Michigan appear to be on the verge of bankruptcy because tax revenues are falling even faster than they can cut services. Impossible as it is to believe, Hoovervilles are being built in parking lots across this country because the number of homeless men, women and children is skyrocketing.
Most of us have the distinct impression we’re on the Titanic and the water is rising. We aren’t sure what iceberg we hit, or exactly how our national ship has been damaged, but most of us know we are in serious trouble.
Trillions in bank bailouts haven’t saved us. Trillion dollar stimulus packages designed to deliver relief directly to small businesses and families seem to be going nowhere fast. No matter how much whistling in the dark we and our leaders want to do, every state and national statistic indicates that this economy is sinking fast. It is not unpatriotic or unwise to admit the United State is in the grip of a serious, and worsening, economic crisis. Even the recent dramatic rises and falls of the stock market indicate serious trouble lies dead ahead.
Ask what crashed the economy, and financial analysts will tell you about Credit Default Swaps. Politicians will talk about the Mortgage Crisis. Political pundits will blame multiple wars and government over spending. Those are symptoms. Not the problem.
Money is the problem.
Right about now you are starting to expect a pitch for gold, aren’t you? Well, you won’t be getting one, because gold won’t fix the problem. This isn’t the 17th century.
People have silly notions about money. Some think money is a “thing” with value of its own. They believe this because that is how human minds work. Everything else is a real thing, why isn’t money?
Money is not a thing, it is an agreement. Our currency is trillions of tiny agreements made every single day. Your life depends on those little slips of paper.
Your boss pays you dollars for making widgets, you take those dollars to the grocer to pay him for the service of buying and storing food. He gives those dollars to a farmer for the service of growing food. Dollar bills allow us to exchange things based on their relative value. A house costs more than a candy bar because more people are willing to give more dollars for it.
Our complex economy, which supports 400B people, exists because a working currency exists. Without a working currency, food doesn’t make it into the cities because farmers in the country don’t grow enough of it. Hospital’s don’t treat patients because they can’t get anyone to manufacture medicine or medical supplies. We use money to coordinate trillions of exchanges every day. Without a working currency, our society breaks down.
After 9/11, in order to prevent a very deep and very dangerous nationwide recession, the federal government dramatically reduced interest rates. It also executed multiple stimulus packages that dropped billions into the economy over night. It also dramatically loosened up banking and investment regulations and oversight.
The result is that the amount of circulating money has dramatically increased over the last decade. Since 2000, the amount of money, in all forms, has increase by more than 1/3 and it is on its way to 1/2.
This money was not evenly distributed across the economy. Poor and middle class workers did not see their wages jump. The amount of credit they had access to did, however, increase. So most people used credit to handle price increases. They augmented their income with credit to buy houses, food, health care and everything else they could not afford to pay based on their cash income. They treated credit like cash.
All this new money inflated home prices, stocks and bonds just like everything else. New investments were designed. Investment Banks took credit agreements, which is to say agreements by people to pay mortgages, home loans and credit cards, and they let investors buy share of the anticipated profits. These investment vehicles were “insured” by to the tune of more than 69 trillion dollars, which is about six times the US gross domestic product.
When it people started to default on those agreements, the investments went bad, the credit dried up, and all of a sudden people had way less to spend. Banks started failing. Surviving banks contracted credit even more. They pulled it from businesses as well as from home owners and consumers.
Now there is far less money circulating and the result is that the entire economy is shrinking. We as a nation are producing less because the currency we use to handle trillions of exchanges every day is broken.
Most efforts to save the economy are directed at trying to replace the credit and the currency that’s gone so the prices don’t continue to fall driving everyone out of business, out of jobs, out of homes, out of medical care and out of food.
So What Should You Do?
First, recognize this is very serious business. This kind of thing can damage economies for decades. It has destroyed economies. It can cause great civil and political unrest because people honestly do not understand what has gone wrong or how to fix it. They become fearful and they become angry. Fortunately we live in an information age, so over the next year or two people should begin to understand what happened and they will be able to adjust their behavior, and their government’s behavior, accordingly. People figured out how to survive the Great Depression, though it harmed them a lot. We will figure out how to survive this economic crisis as well, just not without some scars.
Second, realize that prices are falling. Find a way to cut your expenses dramatically. Call your cable company and get a lower rate. Switch to a new VOIP phone service. Learn the value of second hand stores. If you have to move to a less expensive place in order to live within your means, do it. You may be paying a premium to live where you lived last year. Homes and rental units cost less this year. Barter for services when you can. Take up part time jobs around town that pay in cash. Start living in the new economy which is much more cash dependent than the one we used to live in.
Third, take a hard look at your credit cards and other consumer debt. If you are a small business owner, examine your corporate credit. Decide whether or not you will be forced to declare bankruptcy if things don’t get better. If you can only hold on for another three or four months without getting some miraculously great job or business contract, you should probably start working on credit counseling and bankruptcy now. You can keep working to make miracles happen, but you do not want to lose your home or end up on the street because you chose to pay credit cards instead of your mortgage or rent. This isn’t a good time to be homeless.
This is also not a time to panic. It is a time to pay attention. Previous generations survived World War II, the Great Depression, Korea, Vietnam and the vicious Stagflation of the 70s. Most of us have gone through relatively little in the way of economic and political turbulence, but we will be actively participating in this massive financial shock.
Stock Markets are where companies purchase and sell their commodities, it can be a risky place but the rewards can give you are real buzz if you sell well. The process of the Stock Markets is as follows-
Firstly you will need to set up a broker’s account, this is something which needs to be done before you start trading. There are two main different types of broker’s accounts,a serviced account where you are guided through the Stock Markets by a qualified broker and the second type, an online account where basic information is given and you are not given advice.
When you buy stocks you are effectively purchasing part of a company, you do not need to become emotionally involved with the company and therefore can purchase stocks which may or may not interest you.
The main points to be looking for is how much you are buying shares for, understand how profits are made by the companies you invest in and most importantly understand that you are effectively gambling with your money. If you understand that you may make money as well as lose money that way you will not disappointed if you make a loss and any gains to make will be a bonus. Share prices can be affected by yields. Yields are incomes returned on an investment and you will have to be aware of what these are on your chosen investments.
Ask your broker to explain these further to you before you invest so you understand the process further. Stock Markets never stop and keep the hands of finance turning. You may never have invested in Stocks and Shares before however, they have an effect on all of us everyday without many of us even being aware of it. If you are interested in the markets, research and found out more about them, you will learn a lot about the world of finance.
Stocks and shares
You have probably heard the term stocks and shares but what does it mean and what is the difference between the two?
A stock is a share within a company, a company can separate their ‘stock’ into lots of ‘shares’. If you purchase stock you will have a very small percentage in ownership of the corresponding company. When these stocks are put onto the business market, the price they are worth will either rise or fall. If the price rises and goes up from what you paid for it, you can sell the stocks and make money. If the price of the stocks fall from the price you paid for it, you will lose money. You can either sell them there and then or hope that they will go up again. The key to being good at stocks and shares and making lots of money is knowing when to buy stocks at the right time, and knowing when to sell them at the right time. Do not get greedy because stocks can go down just as quickly as they go up. Shares are basically the same thing as stocks. An easy way to know the difference between the two is that the word ‘stock’ is what you are buying, and ‘shares’ is how much of it you are buying.
If you are interested in investing money into stocks and shares, make sure to do some extensive research into the subject first. There are many good books on the matter and websites too. Also make sure you can afford to lose, whatever the amount of money is that you are putting in. It is possible to make a big amount of money from stocks and shares but it is also easy to lose a lot of money.