On the first part of this week’s Goldstein on Gelt show, meet Eric Siegel, author of Predictive Analytics: The Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die. Eric tells Doug about data mining and predictive analysis. What do these terms mean, and how accurate are they in determining peoples behavior? Find out how data mining affects marketing and customer profiling, as well as daily life, by listening to this weeks show.
Posts Tagged ‘investments’
Putting your money into individual stocks may be the fastest way to get rich – but it’s also the fastest way to lose the shirt off your back if you guess wrong. Buying a single stock exposes you to high levels of risk, even if the stock is strong. And even if you’re an expert on the company and its industry, there’s no certainty that the market won’t take an unexpected turn at any time and your stock won’t perform as well as you’d hoped. For this reason, it’s important to diversify your portfolio. If you have a diversified portfolio, any possible losses will hopefully be offset by a gain in a different stock.
Another disadvantage of buying individual stocks is that trading them can be very expensive. If you’re a high-volume trader, the multiple transaction costs involved in beating the market and selling your less profitable stocks take their toll.
Additionally, if you are thinking of purchasing individual stocks, ask yourself whether you have sufficient knowledge to choose these investments yourself. Do you have time every day to follow the market and stay in tune with the latest economic forecasts? The economic world is in constant flux and you need to be ready to adjust your portfolio to keep up. Do you really have the time and energy to devote to this, when you are also busy with your work and family?
So what’s the most effective way to invest?
For many people, the answer is mutual funds.
A mutual fund is a collection of securities, most often stocks and/or bonds. Every person who invests in a mutual fund is essentially a shareholder of this basket or collection of investments. The losses and gains of the fund reflect the movements of the individual assets inside the fund. A mutual fund solves the problem of diversification and the fund managers are the ones who have the responsibility of researching and making investment decisions. Though they may not get it right all the time, at least they have the time to investigate their ideas.
It’s important to note that with mutual funds, there’s no such thing as “one size fits all.” Different types and styles of mutual funds are appropriate for different kinds of investors. Indeed, a mutual fund’s value may be the time when the whole is really greater than the sum of its parts.
Call your financial advisor today to find out which fund may be best suited to meet your goals.
For many people, money is a stressful subject. How can you lower your stress levels over handling money, and how can this make you more productive? Can you use this stress positively, or does it paralyze you? On this weeks Goldstein on Gelt show, David Allen, an author, consultant, lecturer, founder and CEO of the David Allen Company tells us more.
The American economy isn’t what it once was, and while some Americans are looking to move abroad to better their financial situation, Americans living abroad face specific financial challenges due to the fact that they are American citizens (which I discuss in depth in my new book, The Expatriate’s Guide to Handling Money and Taxes). While holding an American passport once was considered a great advantage, today it has broad ramifications for your finances. Any well-intentioned American parents or grandparents who are thinking of getting American citizenship for their Israeli-born children or grandchildren might want to think again when it comes to taking up this inherited privilege.
Below are six good reasons why financially, life has become more difficult for American citizens living overseas, regardless of how long they’ve been abroad, whether they’ve ever worked or lived in the States, or even whether they speak English:
(1) FBAR and FATCA. These terms refer to tax reporting requirements that U.S. citizens abroad must file if their assets reach certain minimum levels. Non-compliance can result in steep fines. These requirements have had a very serious effect on how foreign banks and investments view U.S. account holders, since FATCA requires foreign banks to report American accounts and assets to the American government.
The problems that follow are a direct consequence of FBAR and FATCA:
(2) Limits on buying mutual funds through an American brokerage account. You may think it’s O.K. if FATCA makes it difficult to open a foreign investment account, since after all, you can use your American brokerage account and continue with your familiar investments. But, beware: many American mutual funds are rejecting orders to buy if the address on the account is not a U.S. address. And I’ve been approached by clients of other brokerage houses whose mutual fund trades have retroactively been cancelled because of the foreign address issue. Not every brokerage firm in America is comfortable dealing with accounts of Americans living overseas.
There are also challenges in buying mutual funds through an overseas brokerage account. If your foreign investment house sells you a foreign mutual fund, not only will it report your assets to America (or else it risks facing steep taxes), but you may need to report the foreign mutual fund as a PFIC (Passive Foreign Investment Company).
(3) The current situation has made it very hard to transfer assets, as countries don’t automatically recognize notaries from other countries. This means if you live overseas and inherit an American brokerage account, you may need to fly into America to physically have your signature witnessed by an American company that can offer a “medallion guarantee.”
(4) It’s very difficult to get life insurance from a U.S. insurance company because they won’t recognize an address outside the United States.
(5) Say goodbye to your U.S. credit and debit cards. Some of them don’t work away from the United States, while many companies will refuse to mail your statements overseas. And if you have an existing account, now that your address has moved abroad, you won’t receive a new card when it becomes necessary.
(6) Don’t think you can solve your problems by opening a bank account in the United States. Without a U.S. address, forget about it. And if you receive a dollar check, it’s not a simple matter of depositing it in your bank account abroad, as the banks charge a fortune for conversions into local currency, and it’s not unusual to take up to three weeks for foreign checks (yes, outside the U.S. dollar checks are considered ‘foreign’) to clear.
So what are the solutions to these thorny problems?
You’ll find them in my new e-book, The Expatriate’s Guide to Handling Money and Taxes, which I wrote in order to help the many bewildered expats that I meet in my capacity as a financial adviser. As a reader of The Jewish Press, use the coupon code JPRESS to get the book at half price.
What will the worlds economy be like in 10 years time? On this weeks Goldstein on Gelt podcast, Doug interviews Nobel Prize winner Professor Christopher A. Sims. Professor Sims explains his award-winning theories, for which he received the Nobel Prize for economics in 2011 with Thomas Sargent, and shares his predictions for the worlds economic future. Find out more about Professor Sims’ fascinating economic theories by listening to his interview in Part 1 of the Goldstein on Geltshow.
Meet Rony Hadid, who has been an insurance agent for the past 12 years. Rony has lived in Israel for the past two decades after making aliyah from his native Brazil. Rony explains the various retirement funds that exist in Israel, what they mean, their tax benefits, and more. So if you’re either living in Israel, or contemplating making aliyah, listen to this informative interview on the Goldstein on Gelt show.
Is there anything dramatic or exciting about being an expat? On the first part of this week’s Goldstein on Gelt show, Doug meets Chris Pavone, author of The Expats, a novel that he wrote while living in Luxembourg. Chris had worked as a book editor in New York City for 20 years until his wife was offered a job in Luxembourg, and he became a stay-at-home dad to their young children while living in Europe. This experience became the backdrop to his book The Expats, a best-selling thriller. Find out more on this weeks show.
Now that we’re well into 2013, last year has become a fuzzy memory. But for me it stands out as the year I started writing my blog here on The Jewish Press. In addition to reading my posts, for the past few months, you’ve been downloading the podcasts of my personal finance radio show. We’ve had a chance to meet outstanding personalities, including Nobel Prize winners Robert Aumann, Andre Geim, and Alvin Roth, best-selling authors Michael Starbird, Nicholas Wapshott, and Ken Rogoff, outstanding entrepreneur Gail Reynolds, chief scientist Harold Vinegar, and many others.
Hopefully, Goldstein on Gelt has not only entertained you, but has given you a new angle on personal finance and financial security. Guest Kevin Mitnick (professional computer hacker) and personal safety expert Bob Arno taught us innovative ways to safeguard our identity and possessions. Other guests Verne Harnish and Ken Fisher made us question how we make decisions, and challenged us to make better decisions to further our human potential, in all aspects of our lives, not just money.
I’d like to share these interviews and insights with you, so I compiled my favorite interviews of 2012 (it was so hard to pick!) into an e-book, The Best of Goldstein on Gelt 2012. Download it for free when you subscribe to receive updates as to who my weekly guests are, and broaden your definition of personal finance.