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Investing

Jul 22, 2019 When you're looking for a safe way to invest your money, it doesn't get any more solid than government-backed securities. The U.S. Department of Treasury offers several different low-risk options, including notes, bonds and bills. Treasury bills can be appealing because you're not required to tie up your money for a long period of time. But they're not right for every kind of investor. Read on to find out whether adding them to your portfolio is a good idea. And if you're looking for expert guidance, use  Read More...

Mar 13, 2019 If your portfolio is too large for you to handle on your own, it may be time to call in a professional. Wealth managers work with their clients to identify financial goals and map out a plan for achieving them that's built around choosing solid investments that'll grow over time. If you're ready to build serious wealth, here are some tips to help you choose the right wealth management firm. Read More...

Aug 15, 2019 Investing intimidates a lot of people. There are a lot of options, and it can be hard to figure out which investments are right for your portfolio. This guide walks you through 10 of the most common types of investment and explains why you may want to consider including them in your portfolio. If you’re serious about investing, it might make sense to find a financial advisor to guide you. SmartAsset can help you find the right advisor for you with our free financial advisor matching service. Read More...

Aug 13, 2019 So you've got $100,000, and you're ready to invest it. Maybe a relative has passed away and left you money in a will. Maybe you've been building up savings in a retirement account and you're finally ready to get serious about investing it. Regardless of where you got the money, $100,000 is enough that you have a lot of investing options. Read More...

Feb 11, 2019 Passive investing is a go-to strategy for long-term investors, because it capitalizes on the typical upward trend of the overall market over many years. Of course, there are many ways to do well in investing, and  financial advisors employ numerous strategies to generate robust returns. But if you're looking to grow your money over the long haul, take a look below to learn more about passive investing. Read More...

Sep 05, 2018 Whether you're new to investing or have been doing it for years, mutual funds offer a great way to invest your money. It allows you to invest in multiple stocks and bonds without the hassle of choosing and buying each individually. Plus, mutual fund companies can do all this work for you. While convenient, mutual funds aren't always accessible to all investors due to their potentially high minimums. Read More...

Jul 09, 2019 Warren Buffett said it best: “Read 500 pages like this every day. That's how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest. All of you can do it, but I guarantee not many of you will do it.” Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned investor in need of a refresher, reading some of the best investing books is a great way to sharpen your knowledge. With these books, you can pick Peter Lynch's brain, learn the history of Wall Street or simply figure out if you're ready to use that spare money tucked away in your savings account to start investing. And if you want some extra guidance as you apply your newly acquired knowledge to your portfolio, consider enlisting the help of… Read More...

Aug 06, 2019 A wealth manager is a subset of financial advisor that primarily serves high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals - in other words, people with wealth that needs managing. A wealth manager's role is far more comprehensive than just offering a client investment advice. These financial professionals provide a holistic suite of services that encompasses all parts of a person's financial life, including both investment management and financial planning, as well as accounting and tax services, retirement planning, estate planning and more. Read More...

Sep 24, 2018 When it comes to investing, millennials aren't known for being a reckless bunch. According to a study published by UBS earlier this year, Americans aged 21 to 36 are the most fiscally conservative generation since the Great Depression. Their better-safe-than-sorry attitude can be chalked up in part to the economic turmoil of the last few years and the unique financial challenges they face. Read More...

Feb 08, 2018 Everyone makes mistakes and when it comes to your investment strategy, some wrong moves can be worse than others. Whether you're dipping your toes into the investment game for the first time or you've been playing the market for years, there's always the possibility that your strategy may backfire. Maxing out your returns means knowing what you should and shouldn't do with your money. Here are some of the most common pitfalls investors should try to avoid. Read More...

Oct 21, 2019 An endowment is comprised of money donated to a non-profit organization. This sum of money is typically placed in an endowment fund, which is then invested. The return from those investments are used to fund the organization's operations or grow the endowment principal. Read More...

Oct 17, 2019 Some companies regularly pay their shareholders part of their profits in the form of  dividends. These bonus earnings function as both a reward for investors and a way of generating confidence in a company's stock. Investing in dividend-yielding equities for a little extra income and an upfront return on your investment might seem like a no-brainer. However, you should examine what types of stocks pay dividends and how these payments are taxed. Read More...

Oct 16, 2019 Investing can be a powerful way to grow your savings over time, but the downside is that you generally have to pay taxes on your investment gains. The more you pay in taxes, the less of your returns you get to keep. With the right strategy, however, it's possible to minimize the amount of taxes you pay on your investments. Certain investments are not subject to taxation, and investments placed in certain tax advantaged retirement accounts will likewise be shielded from some taxes. As you build your portfolio, consider including these seven options for minimizing taxes.  Read More...

Oct 11, 2019 If you have a diverse investment portfolio you've probably bought publicly traded stocks on the open market . But some investors operate in an alternate, well-funded investment universe. In the world of private equity, well-funded investment firms make big investments in private companies, often with the goal of taking over those companies and making them more profitable.  Read More...

Oct 08, 2019 The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is an economic term you've probably heard before but may not know much about. Broadly speaking, the CPI measures the price of consumer goods and how they're trending. It's a tool for measuring how the economy as a whole is faring when it comes to inflation or deflation. When planning how you spend or save your money, the CPI can influence your decisions. Here's how. Read More...

Oct 07, 2019 Net worth is often used as a measurement of individual, or household, wealth. This value can give you a holistic perspective of your financial situation. In fact, the average American net worth is $68,828, according to the U.S. Census Bureau's 2011 study on wealth and asset ownership. But how is this figure calculated? And how do you calculate your own net worth? Below, we take a closer look at the factors that distinguish your net worth from your fellow Americans. Read More...

Oct 02, 2019 Investing in stocks, mutual funds and other securities inevitably comes with risk. One of the ways investors can better understand these risks is by reading the prospectus of a security. A prospectus is a legal document that describes a security to potential investors. Required by the SEC, a prospectus contains facts about the company or fund issuing the security, including details on its finances, management, history and other information that could help investors make an informed decision. The prospectus is a key tool in an investor's toolbox, making it easier to understand whether or not you're investing in a way that aligns with your goals and risk tolerance. Read More...

Sep 30, 2019 A subadvisor is an investment management firm that typically partners with a mutual fund investment advisor to help with the day-to-day management of the fund. They often provide specialized expertise in a specific type of investment strategy. This could include building an appropriate asset allocation, choosing securities or rebalancing the fund's portfolio. If you want some help managing your investment portfolio, check out financial advisors in your area. Read More...

Sep 30, 2019 Buying on margin is a technique often reserved for intermediate and advanced investors through which someone borrows money from their broker in order to  invest it. In the best-case scenario, buying stock on margin can increase your earnings significantly. On the other hand, you can be left in a world of hurt if the price of your investment drops. The world of margin investing is one of higher stakes, so it's crucial to understand the concepts and associated risks before diving in. Read More...

Sep 30, 2019 Bonds are a type of debt security used by government entities and corporations to raise money. Every bond come with a face value, which is sometimes called a par value. This number indicates what the bond will be worth at maturity, and it's also used to calculate the bond's interest payments. It's one of the key numbers you need to know about a bond in order to understand its value as an investment. If you have specific questions about investing in bonds, consider consulting with a financial advisor. Read More...

Sep 27, 2019 Market capitalization, often abbreviated as market cap, is a measure of a public company’s overall value as set by the market. Market cap can be used to compare companies. It is also a tool to help diversify a portfolio of investments and manage risk and return. The market cap of a given company is generally easy to find, though you can also calculate it yourself. Read More...

Sep 27, 2019 When you own a business, it's important to ensure your assets are protected. Being sued or carrying large amounts of debt could pose a threat to both your business and to your own personal finances. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to safeguard your assets against these kinds of dangers. Creating an asset protection plan that covers both your business and your personal assets can be an essential part of your overall financial planning strategy. Read More...

Sep 27, 2019 Whether you’re a new or veteran investor, you probably want a lot of different things from an investment. But, deciding which investments will help you achieve your financial goals may be a bit of a challenge. So, rather than putting together a portfolio of investments from scratch, many financial advisors will assign you to a pre-built model portfolio. Here's what to expect from a model portfolio and what to consider when selecting one. Read More...

Sep 26, 2019 A company's board of directors represents shareholders and supervises a company. As a result, directors are of particular importance to investors in individual stocks. It's why all publicly traded companies have boards of directors. Meanwhile, many non-profits and non-public companies have a board of directors as well. Here's how a typical board of directors works, what it does, and how board members earn their seats. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 A forward contract is an agreement between two parties to buy or sell an asset at a specified price at a fixed date in the future. This  investing strategy is a bit more complex and may not be used by the everyday investor. Forward contracts are not the same as futures contracts. Here's a breakdown of what they are and some pros and cons to consider. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Credit default swaps are a portfolio management tool that gained notoriety during the peak of the 2008 financial crisis. These derivative investments are bit more complex than stocks, mutual funds or bonds, but they can be an effective way to manage market risk. Here are the most important things to know about how a credit default swap works, the players involved and what it's used for. Read More...

Sep 18, 2019 Earnings per share (EPS) is a financial measurement that tells investors if a company is profitable. Savvy investors consider a company’s earnings per share when determining investment decisions. Understanding the calculation of earnings per share and how it plays a role in selecting a stock can help investors make smart money moves. Read More...

Sep 18, 2019 You might assume that once the closing bell rings, stock market trading is done for the day. In reality, after-market trading can continue on into the late afternoon and evening. Not every brokerage allows for after-market or after-hours trades, though. But if yours does, it's important to understand the rules, pros and cons before venturing in. A financial advisor can help you get into the after-market trading game if you aren't sure where to start. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 You may be well-versed in the differences between stocks and bonds or how exchange-traded funds (ETFs) work, but a rights offering is one investing term you may not be as familiar with. A rights offering allows a company's shareholders the right to buy additional shares or sell those rights to another investor on the open market. Also referred to as a rights issue, this scenario isn't one you may encounter often. But if you do, it's important to understand how it works. Read More...

Sep 16, 2019 A pooled investment vehicle is one way to put your money into the stock market alongside other investors. There are several ways to pool money to invest if you're looking for an alternative to trading individual stocks. Some are better known than others and they each have their advantages and disadvantages. As you shape your portfolio and pursue your investment goals, consider what pooled investments could do for you. Read More...

Sep 16, 2019 Small cap stocks are one type of stock investment you can hold in your portfolio. These stocks differ from large cap and mid cap stocks in several key ways. There are several advantages associated with investing in smaller companies, along with a few drawbacks to keep in mind. If you're contemplating adding small cap stocks to your investment strategy, here's a breakdown of what they are and how they work. Read More...

Sep 16, 2019 When it comes to investing, the higher the risk the better the reward. But what if you don’t know what your risk level is? Your risk tolerance is the level of risk you’re willing to take with your investments. You can determine your risk tolerance by evaluating your comfort level in certain investments. Before you get started with investing, learn how to choose securities that suit your risk tolerance. Read More...

Sep 14, 2019 Your net worth may be a good way to determine how much value you hold, but investable assets might be a better measure. And if you're considering working with a financial advisor, it's smart to know what your investable assets are and how much you should have. Read on to learn more so you can find the right investment strategy for you. Read More...

Sep 12, 2019 Most investors are familiar with mutual funds and retirement savings vehicles like 401(k)s. But a collective investment trust (CIT) combines some of the characteristics of both. While CITs are similar to mutual funds, they're generally only available to participants in employer-sponsored retirement plans. Learn more about CITs, from their benefits and drawbacks to how they differ from mutual funds, and who they make the most sense for financially. Read More...

Sep 11, 2019 When you begin building your investment portfolio, you may start with a mix of exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mutual funds and other investments. But once your nest egg grows, you may be looking for a more personalized approach. A separately managed account (SMA) not only allows your portfolio to be more personalized, but it also gives you more control over your investments. If you work with a financial advisor who manages your investments, you might have a SMA. Here's what that means and how it works. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Large cap stocks are just one type of stock to add to your portfolio. They are the stocks of vary large companies and are often considered safer investments. Like other investments, though, they have both advantages and drawbacks. If you're not familiar with the ins and outs of large cap stocks, keep reading to learn what they are, how they work and how they compare to other types of securities. Read More...

Sep 10, 2019 Government securities refer to a variety of investment vehicles issued by a government. You may be familiar with treasury bills, bonds or notes, but you may not be aware that other countries issue debt to investors as well. Read on to learn more about what government securities are and the different types that exist. Read More...

Sep 09, 2019 Choosing a financial advisor isn’t easy. You’ll need to determine if you need an in-person financial advisor or a robo-advisor. Then you’ll choose a firm. It may be one close to home or with a certain area of expertise. Once you pick, check their credentials. If an advisory firm says it's CEFEX-certified, it's certified by the Centre for Fiduciary Excellence and is subject to audits. Here's what that means for you and your investments. CEFEX Certification Explained The Centre for Fiduciary Excellence is an independent organization that assesses, audits, and certified financial companies, advisors, and managers. The organization is based in Pittsburgh, Pa., but they adhere to global… Read More...

Sep 09, 2019 There is always risk associated with investing. Sure, you can diversify your portfolio or hedge against risk by purchasing low-risk securities such as bonds, money market funds, or certificates of deposit. You can also predict your portfolio’s growth based on the market’s average rate of return. However, the future value (FV) of an investment can indicate what an investment will be worth based on its rate of return. Here's how it works. Read More...

Sep 09, 2019 Closed-end funds may not be something you've heard mentioned often. Your investment portfolio is more likely to include open-end funds, mutual funds or exchange-traded funds (ETFs) instead. However, closed-end funds can offer some advantages for investors. This guide explains what they are, how they work and how to invest in them. Read More...

Sep 09, 2019 Securities that trade "over-the-counter," or OTC, are not traded on a formal exchange. While the biggest publicly traded companies trade on stock exchanges like the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) or NASDAQ, over-the-counter securities trade outside of them, through a network of broker-dealers. These stocks can come in non-standardized variations, and they often have higher trading fees than their formal exchange counterparts. Read More...

Sep 10, 2019 Mutual funds can be a good way to invest if you want to diversify your portfolio without buying individual stocks or bonds. Aside from knowing which share class you're investing in, you also need to know whether you're buying an open-end or closed-end fund. This primer can help you understand the difference when deciding which mutual funds to buy. Read More...

Sep 06, 2019 Bonds can help the federal government or other agencies raise money for specific projects. They're like loans that investors make to government agencies or corporations. A bond's face value will give an investor some idea of what it's worth. However, the bond's current yield shows the interest rate that the bond delivers. Here's why that's an important number for investors.   Bond Basics  An investor purchases a bond from the federal government, federal agency, or even a corporation. Bonds typically have a face value, coupon rate, and maturity date. The predetermined date on which the bond’s principal balance and interest will… Read More...

Sep 06, 2019 Asset-backed securities, or ABS, are securities backed by a pool of fundamental assets. Typically, the pool of assets is a small group of loans or debt obligations that cannot be sold to individual investors. Packaging these assets as a single financial instrument allows them to be sold to investors. Since the underlying assets are diversified, there is less risk exposure for those who invest. Read on to learn more about ABS and if they are a suitable investment for your asset mix. Read More...

Sep 06, 2019 Technical analysis is one way to evaluate a stock to decide if it's a good investment for you. If you're a DIY stock trader, then understanding how this approach works can be helpful in shaping your portfolio. Here's an overview of what technical analysis is and how you can use it to assess a stock's potential. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Stocks are a great option for diversifying your investment portfolio. However, choosing the right ones isn't always a simple process. Different investment tools and strategies, such as fundamental analysis, can help you decide which securities are worth your time and money. If you're not sure what fundamental analysis is or how to use it to your advantage when investing in stocks, this guide may be able to help. Read More...

Oct 18, 2019 When it comes to investing, there are generally two different approaches you can take if you're looking to grow your wealth. You can practice either active investing or passive investing. Both styles allow for financial return, but just in different ways. Whether you're new to the stock market, or you're an experienced shareholder, it's important to note the differences between the two. Below, we take a closer look at the pros and cons of each investing style. And if you want more hands-on guidance in devising the right investing strategy for you, consider finding a trusted financial advisor in your area. Read More...

Sep 03, 2019 Advisory shares are a type of stock option given to company advisors rather than employees. They may be issued to startup company advisors in lieu of cash compensation. Advisors are usually granted options to buy shares rather than given the actual shares.  Advisory shares can help ensure confidentiality while preventing conflicts of interest. However, they can also prove costly for a young company. Read More...

Aug 30, 2019 The internal rate of return (IRR) measures the return of a potential investment while excluding external factors. IRR helps investors estimate how profitable an investment is likely to be. All else equal, an investment with a higher IRR is preferable to an investment with a lower IRR. The following answers what is IRR, how it could influence your investments and what IRR limitations investors should consider. Read More...

Aug 30, 2019 Trading stocks after hours is both legal and useful for savvy investors. The stock market’s regular operating hours for buying and selling stocks and other securities are 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern time. But you can trade many stocks after hours set by the exchanges. Extended hours trading can offer convenience and other potential advantages. but it has special rules, restrictions and risks. It’s not for everybody. Read More...

Aug 30, 2019 Before jumping headfirst into the world of investing, it may be smart to educate yourself on where your money will be invested. This is where asset classes come in. Simply put, asset classes are groups of similar investments, like commodities or stocks. And a well-diversified portfolio may have a variety of asset classes that offers you different levels of risk and return. But what does that mean? Here's a breakdown of the variety of asset classes you can invest in. Read More...

Aug 30, 2019 Opportunity Zone Funds are investment vehicles that provide tax incentives for investors. Partnerships or corporations can establish Opportunity Zone Funds and then invest in a property located within a Qualified Opportunity Zone. These investment vehicles are designed to increase economic development and job creation in distressed communities, as well as offer tax benefits to investors. Read on to discover what investors should know about Opportunity Zone Funds and if this investment selection is right for you. Read More...

Aug 30, 2019 Looking for a low-risk means of diversifying your investment portfolio? Then you may want to consider investing in commercial paper. No, we’re not talking about buying stock in a paper company (though Dunder Mifflin would be our first choice). This type of investment is used by corporations to finance short-term debt obligations. Here's how to invest in it, and the pros and cons. Read More...

Aug 27, 2019 Day trading involves a degree of risk. Day traders are buying then selling or selling then buying the same security on the same day. The high-risk, high-frequency traders known as pattern day traders warrant regulatory scrutiny all their own. A pattern day trader makes four or more day trades during five business days. Here's what a pattern day trader is, how they operate, and what kind cash they need to keep trading. Read More...

Aug 23, 2019 If you can't afford to buy a share of a pricey stock, fractional share investing is worth considering. Investors can purchase a fraction of a security (such as a mutual fund, stock or exchange-traded fund) with the hope to increase their holdings over time. Purchasing fractional shares makes investing accessible, especially to those beginning their investment journey. Read on to discover if fractional investing is right for you and how to do it. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 If you're betting on the rise and fall of securities, you may be a speculator, not an investor. Investors and speculators both put money into assets, enterprises and instruments in the hope of generating a profit. Beyond that, however, they are quite different. Here are the main characteristics distinguishing investors and speculators, and why it’s important to recognize them. Read More...

Aug 22, 2019 Both annual percentage rate (APR) and annual percentage yield (APY) describe the interest associated with either an investment or loan. Essentially, the difference boils down to this -- APR is the rate charged for borrowing or earned through an investment while APY is the effective rate of return, considering compounding interest. The two values vary for different financial products. Whether you're socking away money in a savings account or a money market account, buying bonds or paying off a credit card balance, it's important to understand the distinction between the two. Below, we take a closer look at how APR and APY work, and how they differ. Read More...

Aug 22, 2019 Getting your finances under control isn’t easy. Young Americans have a lot of expenses. It isn’t as simple as learning to balance your checkbook, no matter what your parents might tell you. Personal Capital and Mint are two of the most popular online services for managing your personal finances. Both offer a variety of services and tools you can use to get a hold of what your money is doing and to make improvements to your personal habits so that you are getting the most out of your situation. SmartAsset decided to take a look at both services. We let you know what each offers so you can make an informed choice about which is going to be the best choice for you. And if you find you want some more hands-on assistance in navigating your financial life, consider Read More...

Aug 22, 2019 It's great to save money, but investing to really makes it grow. You may simply want to save money to avoid the risk of losing even minor gains. But it can be hard to make your money work for you if your are completely adverse to investing. Saving will give you cash to fall back on, but it may not help it grow with a changing market and economy. Learn the difference between saving and investing and why it's so important.  Read More...

Aug 23, 2019 A fixed annuity may be something you're considering as part of your bigger retirement planning picture. An annuity can offer guaranteed income in your later years, which is helpful if you're worried about Social Security benefits or other retirement savings falling short. Learning the ins and outs of fixed annuities can help you decide if they belong in your financial plan. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Trading stocks in a brokerage account can be a great way to grow wealth alongside the money you may be investing in a 401(k) or individual retirement account. The only catch is the fees you may pay to make trades. Fortunately, there are several online services offering free stock trading. Here's a breakdown of where to trade stocks for free so you can enjoy more of your investment profits. Read More...

Oct 02, 2019 Certified investment management analysts sit atop and entire industry of financial planners. Only about a third of Americans under 35 have money in the stock market, the legacy of the Great Recession. In part, this is because many people find the stock market intimidating. A certified investment management analyst can make it less scary. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Modern portfolio theory (MPT) focuses on how to maximize returns for a given amount of risk. However, it also attempts to strike the balance between risk and reward to keep those returns steady. By encouraging investors to diversify their portfolio and rebalance it when necessary, MPT attempts to help investors find the right risk-reward ration. Here's how it works. Read More...

Aug 15, 2019 Chase You Invest Trade is a primarily app-based tool that allows you to create your own investment portfolio. When you open an account, you get 100 commission-free online stock and exchange-traded fund (ETF) trades in your first year. You can also access automated investments through Chase You Invest Portfolios, the bank's answer to the robo-advisor. Both allow users to enter the world of investing. But if you don't want to go it alone, we can help you find a financial advisor. Read More...

Aug 15, 2019 It's never too early to start investing. In fact, the earlier you begin, the bigger your potential for long-term financial growth. If you're a college student and are wondering whether you can afford to invest, don't worry. You don't need a full-time salary to do so. Below we explore your options for investing while in college. And if you want hands-on guidance, consider enlisting the help of a trusted financial advisor. Read More...

Aug 15, 2019 Convertible bonds are just one way to expand your investment portfolio beyond the traditional stocks you may already be investing. This type of bond can offer the potential for higher returns to investors, but they also carry certain risks. Getting to know the ins and outs of how they work, as well as the pros and cons, can help you decide whether convertible bonds belong in your investment strategy. Read More...

Aug 14, 2019 Bond funds can diversify your portfolio, but it's important to understand how they compare to other investments. Like stocks or exchange-traded funds, Like any other investment, bond funds have both pros and cons. They can be a low-cost option with consistent returns, but they also come with some risk. Here are some key things to keep in mind before investing in these funds. Read More...

Aug 14, 2019 Investing in precious metals can help an investor diversify their portfolio. A healthy mix of stocks, bonds, mutual funds, or even an exchange-traded fund (ETF) or two can keep your portfolio balanced. However, t here's a lot of potential for investors who want to bet on the price fluctuations of gold and other precious metals. Here's how to start trading those commodities.   Read More...

Aug 12, 2019 If you find yourself vacationing in the same area year after year, then purchasing a timeshare may have come across your radar. Timeshare properties allow you to partially own what some might consider to be a second home in one of your favorite foreign or domestic locales. Because you share the ownership of a timeshare with other people, the costs associated with ownership are considerably less than, say, a vacation home. Still, buying a timeshare still represents a major financial commitment, so it's a good idea to consult a  financial advisor before you take the… Read More...

Aug 09, 2019 Deciding whether to pay off debt or invest can be tough. They are two competing financial goals, and you may wonder which one takes precedence. Eliminating your debt as quickly as possible has its advantages. Yet there's a strong case for getting an early start with investing. Considering the benefits and potential drawbacks of each can help you decide which strategy is best for your financial situation. Read More...

Aug 09, 2019 If you know how to invest in S&P 500 stocks, they could provide a solid foundation for your portfolio. The S&P 500 is a market index tracking the 500 largest publicly-traded companies on the market. You can learn how to invest in S&P 500 shares with help from index funds. First, however, you should learn how to invest in these funds. Discover what their pros and cons are, and which index fund is right for you.  Read More...

Aug 06, 2019 Treasury bonds and bills can be an important part of your investment strategy. However, treasury yields will determine their value to your portfolio.  Treasury yields represent how much profit you earn by buying U.S. Treasury bonds, bills, or notes. They can reflect the state of the economy or affect the quality of your mortgage. Before investing, it helps to know how treasury yields are calculated and how they affect the economy. Read More...

Sep 09, 2019 Cheap stocks that trade outside a traditional exchange are sometimes known as OTC stocks. They often trade at less than $5 per share and are offered by small companies. By not paying to be on a large exchange, companies keep share prices down to woo investors. There is a degree of risk involved for potential investors, but OTC stocks can be a bargain for those who know what they're looking for. Read More...

Aug 06, 2019 While some investors choose to work with a financial advisor who invests on their behalf, others choose to take a DIY approach, buying and selling their own stocks. As you know if you've ever tried to buy stock, though, there are different varieties of stock orders. Some orders execute immediately; some execute only at a specific time, or price; and others have additional conditions attached. What kind of order you use can make a big difference in the price you pay and the returns you earn, so it's important to be familiar with the different types of stock orders. Read More...

Aug 06, 2019 If you have an investment portfolio or a 401(k), you’ve probably invested in a mutual fund. You may have also invested your savings in an ETF. Another similar option for investors who don't want to buy individual securities is a unit investment trust (UIT). They’re similar to mutual funds, but they're a more static investment, offering a fixed basket of securities for a fixed amount of time. Learn how UITs work and how to invest in them. Read More...

Sep 03, 2019 Just because the market isn't open yet, doesn't mean you can't trade stocks. Premarket trading allows investors to make moves before official market hours. This allows investors to protect their holdings and react to off-hours news and events. However, few buyers and volatile prices make premarket trading a bit risky for novice investors. Read More...

Aug 01, 2019 Want to bet against the future of a company or index? A put option is one way to do so. It gives the owner of an option contract the ability to sell at a specified price any time before a certain date. It can be a good way to hedge against declines, but it comes with a bit of risk. You can lose not only what you invested, but even more than you realized. Read More...

Jul 30, 2019 A company can be more elective about who buys its shares if it sells them in a private placement. Shares sold in an initial public offering , or IPO, are offered to the general public and tend to attract more attention. However, private placement allows a company to raise money without going public and having to disclose financial information. A company can remain private while still gathering shareholder investments. Read More...

Jul 28, 2019 When developing your investing strategy, you may find yourself seeking some help. Yet between financial planners, financial advisors and money managers, it can be tough to pick the right resource for you. Each specialization varies ever so slightly, but tapping the right expert could make a big difference to your bottom line. Here, we breakdown what a money manager is, how they differ from other financial professionals and how to determine whether you need one. Read More...

Jul 26, 2019 The Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board (MSRB) exists because cities can't always be trusted with their municipal bonds. Investing in bonds already involves a degree of risk. The MSRB exists to prevent municipal bonds, notes, and other securities from becoming overly risky for investors. If a city wants to float bonds to fund a public project, the MSRB will be there to oversee the sale, trade and underwriting of those bonds. Read More...

Jul 30, 2019 Working capital measures a business's operating liquidity, but it does so much more. It also can be a good indicator of a company’s efficiency and financial health, as well as how well it manages debt, payroll, and inventory. These are all factors you want to keep in mind, especially if you’re considering investing in said company.  Here's how working capital work and why it's important to investors and business owners.   Read More...

Jul 26, 2019 A zero coupon bond doesn't pay interest, but it could pay off for your portfolio. Choosing between the many different types of bonds may require a plan for your broader investments. A zero coupon bond often requires less money up front than other bonds. Yet zero coupon bonds still carry some of risk and can still be influenced by interest rates. Read More...

Jul 26, 2019 Spotted a hot stock and can't afford to invest as much as you'd like? A margin account allows you to borrow money from your brokerage firm to make the buy. But if trading money you don't have sounds risky, that's because it is. Investing with a margin account can amplify both gains and losses.  Discover the pros and cons of a margin account and whether you should add a margin account to your investment portfolio below.  Margin Account Basics Brokerage firms offer margin accounts to customers who want to boost their buying power or meet their short-term financial needs. Essentially, they're loans that allow you to purchase more securities than you could on your own. As with any loan, you will owe interest. Different firms may charge different amounts based on the… Read More...

Jul 25, 2019 You don't have to watch movies like "The Wolf of Wall Street" or "Boiler Room" to know what pump and dump scheme is about.  Brokers pitch penny stocks to customers in high volume despite its questionable returns.  Once the buyers dry up, the firm ditches its shares for a big profit and drives stock prices down. That results in huge losses for customers and is, unsurprisingly, illegal. Read More...

Jul 26, 2019 Buying on margin lets investors increase potential return with borrowed money, but it's a big risk. The Federal Reserve Board's Regulation T, or Reg T, limits that risk. The collection of rules limits how customers can trade using cash accounts. It is also used whenever an investor buys on margin, using money borrowed from a broker and shares as collateral. Read More...

Aug 19, 2019 When people talk about a market correction, it sounds like a euphemism for falling stock prices. But it’s actually a technical term for a 10% or bigger drop in the price of an index (or individual security) from the last peak. If index prices continue to sink to 20% off the peak, that’s considered a bear market -- beyond a mere correction. To protect your investments during down times and amid all market conditions, consider working with a financial advisor. Read More...

Jul 25, 2019 An initial coin offering, or ICO, is a cryptocurrency-based method of funding for companies. While ICOs are often compared to IPOs (initial public offerings), the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) says ICOs pose significantly greater risk of fraud and manipulation. Compared to traditional capital markets, ICOs are lightly regulated. Be mindful, as ICOs could turn out to be scams that give investors little or nothing for their money. Read More...

Jul 24, 2019 One downside of many low-risk investment products is that the rate of the return often does not keep pace with inflation. That downside is eliminated with Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS). With TIPS, your investment principal increases alongside the Consumer Price Index (CPI). TIPS make it possible to invest with low risk without worrying about inflation erasing most or all of your return. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Day trading apps make buying and selling stocks, mutual funds or other securities easier than ever. These apps offer convenience and portability since you can manage your investment portfolio from your mobile device or laptop on the go. But which ones are the best right now? SmartAsset has rounded up the best day trading apps of 2019 for tech-savvy investors. Read More...

Jul 29, 2019 Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Rule 15c3-3 requires brokerage firms to maintain secure accounts. Also known as the Customer Protection Rule, SEC Rule 15c3-3 is part of the Code of Federal Regulations. It ensures that brokerage clients can withdraw assets at any time, and a brokerage has to work to uphold it. Read More...

Jul 22, 2019 A call provision allows an issuer to pay a bond early. Most bonds have a fixed maturation and value. If you buy a 10-year bond, you get back your capital plus a fixed interest rate in a decade. Call provisions are an exception to this rule. Before buying bonds, you may want to look into call provisions and their quirks. Read More...

Jul 30, 2019 A viatical settlement is some grim business. It allows the holder of a life insurance policy to sell it for more than its purchase price, but less than its face value. If you are in the market to sell one, you have our sympathies. However, if you find yourself in that situation, there are a few things you should know before making a sale. Read More...

Sep 03, 2019 Liquid assets are things you own that can be quickly converted into cash without losing value. They’re different from fixed assets, which are good investments but take longer to convert to cash. Think of things like real estate properties (your home, for example) or your car. Liquid assets come in many different forms. Make sure you consider which ones you have and how much you should have at the ready. Read More...

Aug 15, 2019 When is debt not ordinary debt? When it's packaged as exchange-traded notes. An exchange-traded note (ETN) is pegged to a market index, but functions like a bond. At maturity, ETNs pay out the return of the index it tracks. However, it won't make regular interest payments like a bond. If you're considering using ETNs to diversify your portfolio, you may want to consider some of their more eccentric features before diving in. Read More...

Aug 15, 2019 When you starting to invest, you take steps towards using money to earn money. You’ll take cash and buy different types of investments, or securities. There are many different securities you can invest in, and the ones you choose can depend on what type of investor you are. Once you take your personal circumstances and risk tolerance into account, you may able to select the securities that best fit your portfolio. Read More...

Jul 19, 2019 As one of the largest multinational electronic manufacturers in the world, Foxconn (also known as Hon Hai Industry Co.) offers a variety of consumer electronics, component and computer electronic products. Led by founder, chairman and CEO Terry Gou, the Taiwanese manufacturer also operates in both domestic and overseas markets. With the company having established a global footprint, many investors are looking to claim a share. Below, we go over your options for purchasing Foxconn equity in the U.S. And if you want further hands-on guidance as you strategize your investments in Foxconn and beyond, consider enlisting the help of a trusted Read More...

Aug 23, 2019 The marijuana industry is rapidly growing as more states legalize the drug on both a medicinal and recreational level. However, for investors interested in buying stock, it's important to consider the risk that comes with investing in the industry. Here's everything you need to know about buying marijuana stocks. And if you want more guidance investing in the cannabis sector and beyond, considering enlisting the help of a trusted financial advisor. Read More...

Jul 29, 2019 Bonds are often the investment of choice for people seeking stability. They don’t yield much, unless you have sought out the junk market, but they come with highly stable returns. Bonds can be seen as the dad jokes of investing: boring, predictable and there when you need them. However, sometimes you can spice up your bonds just a little. That’s where floating rates come in. Here's a breakdown of floating rate notes and what you need to know before you invest. Read More...

Jul 19, 2019 Monetary policy is vital to the health of any nation's economy. It is typically decided by an independent body or central bank, and is used to manage a nation's money supply and interest rates. Money policy should encourage economic growth and discourage inflation. The Federal Reserve implements monetary policy in the U.S., and it affects interest rates, the stock market, and more. Read More...

Sep 19, 2019 Investing in foreign currency can be a great way to diversify your portfolio. Foreign currency trading, or forex for short, is a little more complex than trading stocks or mutual funds, or shoring up your investment strategy with bonds. Learning the basics, however, can give you a solid foundation to build on if this is an asset class you're interested in exploring. This guide walks you through everything you need to know to get started with investing in currency. Read More...

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