Home Authors Posts by Clyde K. Valle

Clyde K. Valle

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Clyde is a business graduate interested in writing about latest news in politics and business. He enjoys writing and is about to publish his first book. He’s a pet lover and likes to spend time with family. When the time allows he likes to go fishing waiting for the muse to come.

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online-business-money

They say that a company is only as good as its employees. And that’s true. After all, employees are the ones who implement strategies, deal with customers, and deliver results on a daily basis. However, in 2019, not all employees work for a company in a full-time capacity. Indeed, many companies hire freelancers on a semi-regular basis, and some reports predict that freelance professionals will outnumber “traditional” employees by the end of the next decade. The good news for business owners is that hiring the right freelancers can give them a massive edge and set their company up for success. Here, we’ll list four kinds of freelancers who can help your business significantly. Check them out below:

Copywriters

In an era when “content is king” a good copywriter can provide a company with many tangible advantages. Copywriters are able to process new information quickly, compose engaging content efficiently, and can often offer support to social media channels through posts as well. Even if your business doesn’t create content regularly, it’s a good idea to have a trusted copywriter on your side.

Financial Advisor

Hiring a freelance financial advisor or analyzer to take a look at your books from time to time can help you avoid major financial mistakes and form a cogent investment plan for the future. A little advice is in this matter can go a long way toward ensuring the viability of your business.

SEO Expert

Many startups could benefit from the experience of a professional marketer like an SEO expert or a PPC consult. Freelance marketers can help small businesses maximize their visibility on search engines and garner more meaningful leads in the process. Investing in marketing support early on could set your company up for sustained success down the line.

Web Designer

A company’s website is one of –– if not its most –– important commodities. Websites allow businesses to promote themselves, engage with customers, and, crucially, make sales. As such, it’s imperative that new businesses hire a professional web designer to guarantee that their site is not only operational and functional, but that it’s appealing and modern as well. A poorly designed website can undermine even the most solid business models. 

The Bottom Line

As your company grows, it may make sense to hire one or more of these freelancers to a full-time position. But until that day comes, you should look for help from professionals in the freelance market. Just because you can’t afford to bring on an employee in a full-time capacity, doesn’t mean you should ignore marketing or web development issues. Instead, find capable freelancers and build relationships with them. Doing so is essential to your business’s future.

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When you have bad credit, it might seem like getting a loan is simply impossible. You could really use that extra money in an unexpected financial pinch, but you don’t know if anyone is going to help you out with a loan because of your credit. All is lost, and there is no hope for bringing it back around, right? Wrong.

Even if you have bad credit, there are workarounds to find a good deal on a loan. By playing your cards right, you can leverage offers from other lenders to get your loan exactly how you want it. To help you find a good loan with bad credit, we put together four tips that will make your hunt easier.

Image source Max Pixel

1 – Shop Around to Compare Rates

No one said you could only ask one lender, so why would you? You can talk to as many different lenders as you want, and you should. As you start to shop around, you can get a better understanding of what different lenders are willing to offer you on your loan. 

Say you need to cover an emergency home expense. You can find lenders that specialize in helping people secure a line of credit loans for bad credit. These lenders will be able to give you different offers on what you want, so put them head to head. You can compare them on interest rates, payment periods, and the overall amount the lenders are willing to give you. That gives you a good idea of what you can get with your credit.

2 – Understand You Will Pay More with Bad Credit

Your credit score will affect how much you pay on your monthly loan premium. If you enter your loan agreement with a bad credit score, you should be prepared for two things. 

The first is that you might not get the amount of money you were looking for when you enter an agreement with bad credit. Since you don’t have a good standing with credit, you may need to work your way towards larger loans. If you opt for something like a line of credit, you can raise the lending bar by paying back what you take, especially when you pay more than the monthly minimum. If you pay it all off month over month, you can watch your credit score change over time.

The second thing you need to keep in mind is that bad credit means you will usually have higher interest rates and payments. Since the lenders see a low credit score, they may assume they might not see all of the money come back, at least not at the pace they like. To counteract this, lenders may charge you higher premiums on a loan, so they can make sure they are getting what they can each month. Just like your limit, a good payment history can help reduce these monthly payments on something like a line of credit. 

3 – Work With Lenders That Trust You

If you can’t really find a lender that meets your needs, you might want to go back to the places you are in good standing with. Say you have had a bank account for a long time with the same institution. It wasn’t this account that started your credit issues, and as a matter of fact, you only have a shiny record with that bank or lender. You might want to take your other offers and see if they can do anything better. Even the bigger banks and lenders can bend their rules based on their discretion, so you might get a better offer from that lender than you could get from anyone else. 

4 – Don’t Extend Your Loan Beyond Your Needs

Even if you get an offer back that accepts you for far more than you were hoping for, you should still just get what you need. If you are starting a line of credit, you will start to see the maximum allowance go up as you pay back what you borrowed. That doesn’t mean you should just start tapping into that bigger budget because it’s there. If you can’t fit those additional expenses into your current budget, you will dig yourself into a hole. That hole will start to hurt your credit, and that’s the exact opposite of what we are trying to do here.

The same rule applies for fixed installment loans. Just because you are approved for a certain amount doesn’t mean you have to use it all. Instead, try to have 20% of it for a budget for paying back your loan and getting the account in good standing. This will really help you out if you fall on hard months where you might not make the payments. When you get down to just that amount being owed, you can pay it all back at once.

Think About Your Budgeting

If you really go into this with a plan to pay it back on time, you will be able to make a loan work. If you take that plan and shop around, you can find the best deal on a loan, even if your credit is bad. Remember, you can talk to them about offers you already have to try and pull some leverage. Competition among lenders could turn into a better deal for you.

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car-insurance

You might believe you got a good deal when you pay a meager price for a salvaged car. However, such cars have probably been rebuilt after being utterly destroyed in an accident. Car insurance companies usually quote higher premium rates to insure these rebuilt vehicles. Some automobile insurance agencies will not insure a salvaged car while others offer liability coverage. Very few insurance companies provide full coverage for such cars as it is difficult to assess all damages to the vehicle.

What Does It Mean When A Car Has A Salvage Title?

A salvage title, also popularly known as a branded title, is issued to a vehicle after it has been labeled as a total loss.  This is the opposite of a clean title which is what cars that have never suffered severe damage are issued. If a vehicle suffers extreme damage and the cost of repair is more than a certain percentage of the cars cash value, a total loss has happened. Different automobile car insurers in different states use varying levels as a benchmark for the total loss, but the value ranges between 90% and 60%.

Once a car insurance company makes a total loss declaration and issues a salvage certificate, the car can no longer be registered and can no longer be driven on public roads. Insurance companies typically go on to auction salvaged cars off to salvage yards or rebuilders. If a salvaged car is rebuilt correctly and passes the necessary tests, a rebuilt certificate can be issued for it. If the vehicle was restored but still declared unfit to drive, it is given a non-repairable title instead. Such a vehicle can never be driven again and is only used for parts or dumped altogether.

Does A Salvage Title Affect The Price Of Car Insurance Premiums?

There are varied reasons why the premium rate for car insurance will increase. Typically, the elements that cause premium rates to increase depending on how high risk the policyholder is. According to car insurance companies, driving a salvaged car makes you a very high-risk client. For this reason, premium rates for salvaged vehicles tend to be much higher than average.

A car can only be issued a salvage title if it passes inspection after rebuilding. But there could be many defects hiding in covered areas, waiting to manifest at the slightest encouragement. Such errors could even lead to unfortunate accidents, and that is the biggest concern of auto insurance companies.

Another reason most insurance companies will not touch a salvaged car with a 6-foot pole is they are difficult to value. Comprehensive collision insurance might be a good deal for your salvaged car, but since your insurance provider finds it hard to value the vehicle, you should expect costly rates. Other insurance covers, including uninsured motorist and liability insurance, might not cost more than usual because the value of the car is not considered for determining premium rates.

Is It Worth It To Buy Full Coverage On A Salvage Car?

The search for an auto insurance company that will cover a salvaged car is only the beginning; getting a reasonably priced quote is another ball game. While some people prefer to have full coverage, even for salvage title cars, some wonder if it is worth it. Car insurance companies generally estimate standard cars value lower than expected. You can assume that this will be lower for salvaged vehicles. Only about 80% of the cars salvage value will get to you.

Another consideration when contemplating full coverage for salvaged cars is that your vehicle starts worthless. Insurance is usually paid out based on the value of the car involved, so get ready to be paid much less if your salvaged car is badly damaged in the future.

Conclusion

Cars with a salvage title are typically much cheaper than conventional vehicles. A lot of professionals advice car buyers to avoid buying salvaged cars or rebuilding total loss cars but these cars can still be driven and insured. Some car insurance companies will not provide coverage for salvaged cars, some only offer limited liability, but a few can offer full salvage title insurance coverage for vehicles with salvage titles. 

If you have done proper research and decided to buy and use a salvaged car long term, you can be covered by individual car insurance firms. You should ask your car insurance provider about their stance on insuring salvage cars. Also, inquire about additional coverage you may be able to get with their regular packages. If you can find a provider with a good deal, go ahead and make an offer. Make sure you have confirmed that there will be no severe limitations for filing a claim with a salvage title car before you go ahead. Your insurance provider might even negotiate the value of the vehicle with you to provide you with the best premium rates possible.

Nobody wants to be known for designing cars that people crash. But cars used to be designed to look beautiful, rather than promote the safety of their occupants. These days, manufacturers put their resources towards making a safe car, right at the start of the design process.

There is a huge difference in safety between the best and the worst cars. In fact, a driver in the least safe car is 10 times more likely to be seriously injured or killed than in the safest car. So what makes a car safe? There are three elements: good structure, passive safety and safety assist technologies.

Image by Saiful Anwar from Pixabay

Good Structure

The structure of a car is its shell, and this is the main protector. It has to withstand the force of a crash and channel those forces away from all occupants. A good structure will protect the driver and passengers and have effective crumple zones to absorb the energy of the crash.

During a crash, a safe car cabin can maintain its shape. The steering column, dashboard, roof pillars, pedals and floor panels do not push too much inwards. Doors remain closed, but can be opened afterwards for quick rescue. Side door strength, padding and seating all protect from common, side impact crashes.

Passive Safety Features

Well-designed cars now have built-in safety features, such as airbags, ABS brakes, electronic stability control, seat belts and seat belt pre-tensioners to manage the forces of impact. While airbags have been around a long time, they have become a lot more sophisticated.

Always look for front, side, curtain and knee pedestrian airbags for maximum safety. For example, head-protecting side airbags such as curtain airbags, work well in side impact crashes and rollovers.

Safety Assist Technologies

Advanced driver assist (ADAS) technologies actively help to prevent or reduce the severity of a crash. They may be semi-autonomous or fully autonomous. For example, intelligent speed adaptation (ISA), blind spot monitoring (BSM) autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and active lane keep assist (LKA). Note manufacturers currently use different terms for the same kinds of systems, which can be confusing.

Crash Testing

How do we know some cars are safer than others? From the results of crash testing. US Insurance Institute for Highway (IIHS) and Australasian New Car Assessment Program (ANCAP) are two bodies that routinely conduct crash tests and award star ratings.

IIHS front-end crashed a 1997 Pontiac Trans Sport/Chevrolet Venture. The door frame buckled, the steering wheel pushed into the driver’s face and the cabin completely collapsed. After a redesign in 2005 using high-tensile strength materials and a more rigid structure, crash forces dissipated through the floor. The engine slid under the vehicle rather than into the driver.

ANCAP compared two models of Toyota Corolla 5-door hatchback, one built in 1998 and one in 2015. The latest model has six airbags, ABS, electronic brake force distribution and brake assist as standard. 1998 has none of these. The 1998 model crumpled heavily with extreme risk of serious head, chest and leg injury to driver and scored 0 stars. The 2015 model had minimal damage and scored 5 stars.

Design Saves Lives

Nobody wants to see a member of their family or a friend get hurt in a crash. We know the design of a car is crucial to keeping the driver and occupants safe. Moreover, most insurers reward people who drive safer cars with lower premiums. Safer cars help protect the vulnerable people around you, who are innocently going about their business.

It is worth buying a car that is not only designed to be beautiful, but keeps everyone safe.

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NFL star Antonio Brown has been accused of rape by his former personal trainer, Britney Taylor.

Britney Taylor, who decided to forgo her right to anonymity, said Antonio Brown assaulted her on three occasions, according to a civil lawsuit she filed.

Antonio Brown has denied the allegations.

His new team, the New England Patriots, said that the NFL was also launching an investigation.

The complaint says that the two met at a bible study class in 2010.

Antonio Brown later hired Britney Taylor, who is a gymnast, in 2017, to improve his flexibility.

However, according to the lawsuit, the NFL player assaulted her twice in training sessions in June 2017, and she stopped working with him.

The lawsuit reads that Antonio Brown “reached out to Ms Taylor, expressing contrition, begging forgiveness and pleading with her to train him again”.

It says she reluctantly agreed but in May 2018 he raped her.

Image source: Wikimedia Commons

Colin Kaepernick Anthem Protest: Barack Obama Defends NFL Player’s Right to Make A Point

Donald Trump Under Fire After His Criticism of NFL Players

Antonio Brown’s lawyer, Darren Heitner, said in a statement: “Mr. Brown denies each and every allegation in the lawsuit.

“He will pursue all legal remedies to not only clear his name but to also protect other professional athletes against false accusations.”

He added that “any interaction… was entirely consensual”.

Antonio Brown has been in the press this week after publicly demanding on Twitter that the Oakland Raiders release him and later receiving a reported $9 million signing bonus for the New England Patriots.

The Patriots are playing the Miami Dolphins on September 15 and it is not clear if he will be on the team.

Antonio Brown’s team said in a statement, in response to the lawsuit: “We take these allegations very seriously.

“Under no circumstances does this organization condone… violence or assault… We will have no further comment while that investigation takes place.”

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Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/usdagov/23441549029

While Canada has traditionally ranked quite well in sustainable development areas like quality of urban life and education compared with other wealthy nations, some areas, like greenhouse gas emissions, have presented more of a challenge.

But from gold mining that actually helps to restore the environment, to private companies providing electric vehicle charging stations for their employees, and government funding to provide cleaner energy to remote communities, some truly inspirational work is taking place.  We take a look at just a few recent Canadian sustainable initiatives that are looking to move the needle further in the right direction! 

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tylerkellen/38893947234/sizes/l

Clean power infrastructure for remote communities

Many remote indigenous communities in Canada rely on diesel fuel as their main source of electricity.  Now, thanks to an $11 million grant from the government, Hydro-Quebec will be working with 13 communities in northern Quebec to change that. The funds will go towards a smart-grid project, the implementation of more sources of renewable energy, and new battery storage systems. By 2030, the project hopes to reduce the communities’ use of diesel by 800,000 liters per year, and lower carbon emissions by 7,500 tons.  

Apple and Tiffany & Co partner with RESOLVE to source sustainable Salmon Gold from Canada’s Yukon

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bcvacation/16574179222

While gold mining and environmental conservation have never quite gone hand in hand, a fascinating initiative by non-profit RESOLVE is giving companies the chance to obtain this precious metal while helping to restore the environment.

By combining sustainable re-mining with the restoration of salmon spawning runs in Alaska, British Columbia and the Yukon, the idea is to allow nature to reintroduce itself and for indigenous fish species like salmon and grayling to return.

Jewelry giant Tiffany & Co, and Apple (which uses small amounts of gold in some of their electrical components) have already jumped onboard, and RESOLVE expects to source over 1,000 ounces of Salmon Gold this year. Apple will also be making use of blockchain technology to track the gold through their supply chain, all the way back to the source mine and refiner. 

More durable roads through cellular confinement systems (geocells)


Image source: https://www.prs-med.com/en-ca/geocells/cellular-confinement-system/

Many regions in Canada have vast areas of soft peat soil, which makes the construction of roads -especially durable and long-lasting roads- difficult. In addition, traditional construction techniques call for large volumes of high-quality aggregate to be hauled in for use as infill when local soil is unsuitable. This increases both the cost and carbon footprint of the project.

Now, geocell road design in Canada is allowing the process of building new roads to become more sustainable both during and after construction. Through the use of these honeycomb-like geocell layers, lower quantities and qualities of infill (such as locally available sand, soil, or even recycled asphalt paving) can be used in the soil stabilization process – lowering cost, fuel use, pollution and the carbon footprint of the project while extending the road’s lifespan and reducing the need for future maintenance and repairs.     

Bell Canada adds over 40 electric vehicle charging stations for employees

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/sanmateocountyphotos/26986071027

Sustainable initiatives aren’t just a way for large companies to play their part in the fight against climate change, they’re a good way to attract and retain top talent too. In an effort to support electric vehicle adoption and improve employee satisfaction, Bell Canada has installed 24 EV charging stations at their Nun’s Island, Montreal headquarters, as well as several others across their network of branches. And it’s worked – since installing the charging stations, the number of Bell employees driving electric vehicles has more than quadrupled.

The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup 

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/juliusreque/6179926709

In 1994, employees and volunteers at the Vancouver Aquarium embarked on a beach cleanup in Stanley Park. The word has spread in a big way – and since then, some 800,000 volunteers have collected a whopping 1.3 million kilograms of trash in 21,300 cleanups from coastal and freshwater shorelines across the country.

Now running in partnership with WWF Canada, tens of thousands of Canadians now participate, demonstrating the public’s eagerness to get on board with sustainability initiatives, get their hands dirty, and play their part in promoting awareness of the global plastic crisis. The Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup is now recognized as one of the largest direct action conservation programs in Canada. 

Farm Fresh Food Hub (FFFH) aims to create a more sustainable food system in Manitoba

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/105354034@N07/10270768056/

The South Osborne Farmers’ Market, led by Farm Fresh Food Hub, returned for its fourth run earlier this year, providing a space for the community to engage with ecologically sustainable food producers and each other. Since 2016, the SOFM has grown from 8 vendors to over 40, offers several eco-friendly initiatives, and also hosts a bi-weekly speaker series, “Chew on this!” which explores important issues around food production, from better utilization of indigenous foods to food justice.

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Whether you’re going into your freshman year of college and trying to decide on a major, or are mid-career and looking to make more money or qualify for a promotion, if you enjoy business, management, accounting, marketing or finance there are several degree options available that can put you in a position to embark on a business career that is both personally satisfying and rewarding financially.

While many people might think that all business degrees are basically the same, the truth is that there are several different types of business degrees that each have their own specialization. Whether you’re looking to gain skills before starting a small business, or are interested in a career change within the financial industry, read below to find out about the basic types of business degrees and which business degree’s career path might be right for you.

Once you know which type of business career you are interested in, make an appointment to talk to an advisor at your college or university, either online or in person, to find out what their specific program entails, how long the program will take, what its cost is, and whether you might have transferrable credits from a past degree program.

Business Administration Degrees

A business administration degree is perhaps the most popular and most diversified of all business degrees. These degrees are available at the associates, bachelors and masters degree levels from just about any college or university. Many schools offer concentrations in specific areas of business administration, including health care administration, human resources, accounting, finance and information systems. Through classes that concentrate in certain areas, these degree programs can help students build the skills and business background knowledge they need to qualify for a variety of careers.

Accounting Degrees

To begin a career as a certified public accountant, as an accountant for a large firm or even to be able to successfully keep track of your own accounting systems as a small business owner, a bachelors degree in accounting is what you will need at a minimum. Once they are established in their careers, many people who work as accountants choose to earn a masters in accounting degree. A masters degree in accounting will allow you to advance further in your career as an accountant and earn a higher salary.

Finance Degrees

A bachelors degree in finance will allow you to begin a career in banking, tax preparation, financial analysis, or even in a more specialized role. Interesting careers, like those of a commercial truck trader or college loan officer, are also possible with a finance degree. A masters of business administration (MBA) with a concentration in finance will help give you an edge over other job candidates, will make it possible for you to earn more money, and will help you qualify for high level management positions within the financial industry.

Like a business administration degree, a degree in finance will help you qualify for a wide variety of jobs in both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. People with finance degrees are also in demand at colleges and universities, in the health care sector, in government, and in the field of professional sports.

Marketing Degrees

If you are a creative person who is interested in a career in the business world, a degree in marketing might be right for you. A bachelors degree in marketing will allow you to begin a career developing, promoting and selling products and services, either for a corporation or a nonprofit, or for yourself as a business owner.

With a marketing degree, a career in just about any type of industry will be open to you, as marketing is a vital aspect of any successful business or nonprofit. A marketing degree can also help you get into the fields of sales, merchandising and product placement, advertising or public relations, all of which are good career options for creative people.

Some marketing degree programs at the masters level concentrate on the psychological aspects of marketing, such as understanding the reasons for specific consumer behavior patterns, how and why people make buying decisions, and how people from different ethnic and cultural groups might make purchasing decisions differently from one another.

Specialized degrees are now available in the fields of social media marketing and international marketing. The rise of the global economy has made having international marketing skills essential. And in recent years, social media platforms have become one of the most important marketing and advertising tools available.

Seventeen former and current Goldman Sachs bankers have been charged in Malaysia over the corruption investigation at its state development fund 1MDB.

Attorney General Tommy Thomas said custodial sentences and criminal fines would be sought against those charged.

Goldman Sachs helped raise $6.5 billion through bond offerings for 1MDB.

The bank said it would “vigorously” defend the charges.

Tommy Thomas said in a statement: “Custodial sentences and criminal fines will be sought against the accused.”

According to the statement, this was because of the “severity of the scheme to defraud and fraudulent misappropriation of billions in bond proceeds, the lengthy period over which the offences were planned and executed, the number of Goldman Sachs subsidiaries, officers and employers involved and the relative value of the fees and commissions paid to Goldman Sachs for their multiple roles played in arranging, structuring, underwriting and selling the three bonds”.

If convicted, those charged could face prison sentences of up to 10 years and fines of at least one million ringgit ($238,000).

In December 2018, Malaysia filed criminal charges against Goldman Sachs and two former employees in connection with the corruption and money-laundering investigation at the fund, which is being investigated in at least six countries.

Among the other individuals named by Malaysia’s attorney general are Michael Sherwood, a former co-head of Goldman’s European operations, and Michael Evans, a former partner who is now president of Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba.

The charges related to what is being seen as one of the world’s biggest financial scandals.

1MDB Scandal: $4 Billion Stolen from Malaysian State-Owned Fund

Malaysia: Former PM Najib Razak Barred from Leaving the Country

US and Malaysian prosecutors have previously said that the money raised by the state fund went to line the pockets of a few powerful individuals and to buy luxury properties, a private jet, Van Gogh and Monet artworks – and to finance a Hollywood blockbuster, The Wolf of Wall Street, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, who has not been accused of any wrongdoing.

These charges have been brought under the under a section of the Malaysian Capital Markets and Services Act that holds certain senior executives responsible for any offences that may have been committed.

In December 2018, Malaysia filed charges against Goldman Sachs and its former bankers, Tim Leissner and Roger Ng.

Tim Leissner was Goldman’s South East Asia chairman, and left the bank in 2016.

Roger Ng was a managing director at Goldman until his departure in May 2014.

At the time, charges were also filed against local financier Low Taek Jho, also known as Jho Low who maintains his innocence, and former 1MDB employee Jasmine Loo Ai Swan.

Tim Leissner has pleaded guilty in the US to conspiring to launder money and violating anti-bribery laws.

The 1MDB state fund was set up by former PM Najib Razak in 2009. He has been accusing of pocketing $681 million from the sovereign wealth fund and pleaded not guilty in April.

The US is officially accusing China of currency manipulation after the US Treasury announced a sharp fall in the value of the Chinese yuan against the dollar.

The Chinese yuan drop caught markets off-guard as Beijing usually supports the currency.

Last week, China pledged to retaliate after President Donald Trump vowed to impose 10% tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese imports.

On August 5, the yuan passed the seven-per-dollar level for the first time since 2008, prompting President Trump to accuse China on Twitter of manipulating its currency.

He tweeted: Based on the historic currency manipulation by China, it is now even more obvious to everyone that Americans are not paying for the Tariffs – they are being paid for compliments of China, and the U.S. is taking in tens of Billions of Dollars! China has always….

“China dropped the price of their currency to an almost a historic low. It’s called “currency manipulation.” Are you listening Federal Reserve? This is a major violation which will greatly weaken China over time!”

The US Treasury department defines currency manipulation as when countries deliberately influence the exchange rate between their currency and the US dollar to gain “unfair competitive advantage in international trade”.

A weaker yuan makes Chinese exports more competitive, or cheaper to buy with foreign currencies.

Image source: WSJ

Chinese Yuan to Be Included in IMF’s Currency Basket

Chinese Yuan Devaluation 2015: Winners and Losers

Chinese Yuan in Record Devaluation

On August 5, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) said the slump in the yuan was driven by “unilateralism and trade protectionism measures and the imposition of tariff increases on China”.

The US government said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will now engage with the IMF “to eliminate the unfair competitive advantage created by China’s latest actions”.

The move is largely symbolic because the US is already engaged in trade discussions with China and has implemented tariffs on the country’s imports.

However, it fulfills a presidential campaign promise by President Trump who pledged to name China a currency manipulator on his first day in office.

The decision rattled investors, with Wall Street’s main stock market indexes recording their worst trading day for 2019. Asia markets extended losses on August 6, with the Shanghai Composite down 1.3% in afternoon trading.

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Car insurances give you the confidence and the much-needed protection when you are on the road. Depending on the age of the vehicle your needs might change, but no way does it negate the importance of auto insurance that you must have. For your own protection, as well as others around you, investing in a high-quality car insurance is imperative: insurance that would have your back when you would need it the most.

However, before you go looking for an auto insurance, there are a few things you need to know first.

Car Insurance Rates Get Affected by Many Factors

You might not have known this, but there are plenty of factors that will come to play a huge role in the car insurance deal you will finally get to sign on. Some of them have been listed below for guidance:

Driving record: Your driving history, any previous violations or accidents will be considered since they put you at a higher risk

Age and gender: Men tend to have more accidents than women

Use of vehicle: People who have a higher annual mileage automatically put their vehicles to more risks

Model of the car: This is what would determine the number of claims you will make in future

Each Auto Insurance Company is Different

Auto insurance is an extremely competitive business where you would hardly ever find two companies offering the same insurance price. Each one in the business adopts its own policy for risks calculations and can come up with a value that might vary by hundreds of dollars from the others in the market. This is why you need to be very careful about what you really want and research before you dive in.

Not All Coverages Are Expensive

The liability coverage that you are bound to buy by law is the most expensive one of all followed by collision coverage. The others that offer great coverage without damaging your accounts include roadside assistance, gap coverage and comprehensive coverage which covers the car you have for acts involving fire, theft, and vandalism.

Ask for Discounts

There are a lot of things that you can do to earn some discount on the insurance package you are buying. Installing anti-theft devices, keeping a low mileage along with a good driving record, taking up education courses to improve your driving are just some of them. Make sure you discuss the prospects with your company and work to prove yourself as a better risk candidate to avail such offers.

Read Before You Sign

Since an auto insurance is a legal contract, you should always review and thoroughly read it to make sure that all that was discussed verbally has made it to the final document. In case of any doubts, do discuss it with your dealer without any delay.

If you are looking for a reliable company that would provide you with the best insurance deal, then, click “here” and find the answer you are looking for. Not only do they provide exemplary customer support but they also offer the lowest prices in town. Head over to the website today for more information. 

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How happy are you with your annual holiday allowance? We’d all enjoy a couple of extra days-off a year of course, but what if there were no restrictions on the amount of holiday you could take?

Although originally a US creation, it’s an initiative that has proved popular in the UK too. In fact, research by jobsite Total Jobs showed a 10% increase year-on-year of companies adopting unlimited holiday policies, and unsurprisingly it’s tech focused startups who are championing this new way of flexible working.

From an employee perspective, not putting a number on holiday allowance sounds like a sweet deal. But why are organisations so keen to adopt this new approach to leave?

Better work/life balance

The industries which have adopted this new approach to annual leave – digital, tech, design and media – often require staff to work long hours to meet tight deadlines. Unlimited holiday is designed to combat employee burnout by giving them more chance to recover, so that they’ll be operating at full capacity when they return, benefiting both the employee and the business.

To attract the best talent

Unlimited holiday is also an attractive perk for potential candidates, particularly the younger ones. A recent survey by luxury travel providers eShores showed respondents considered holiday allowance as the second most important factor when job searching (after salary). Clearly then, having an unlimited holiday policy is worth shouting about if you want to attract the pick of the talent.   

So, you’re allowed as many days off as you like and the business benefits from it? What’s not to love?

Well, a quick Google search of ‘unlimited holiday’ shows it’s not without its problems. Many organisations have tried, and failed, to implement an unlimited holiday policy, and reverted back to a more traditional approach. Here’s why:

Imagine de nile de la Pixabay

Employees take advantage

As you might expect, some people will take liberties. Having an unlimited holiday policy requires employees not to take ‘unlimited’ too literally. A few days off here and there isn’t a problem, but jetting off to Hawaii for a month and leaving your colleagues to pick up the slack, won’t do much good for business productivity, or workplace moral.

Employees don’t take advantage

However, it’s far more likely employees won’t take enough holiday. With no definitive number of days to take, employees end up not valuing holiday in the same way. While in the UK, employers are legally obliged to ensure that employees take their minimum entitlement, the emphasis lies on the employee, rather than the employer to define how much holiday they should have. This can lead to a culture of anxiety and an environment where colleagues look to each other to determine the amount of holiday they should book.

What’s more, the organisations who have adopted unlimited holiday already tend to be those with the most demanding and pressured workplaces. In these environments, employees can be made to feel guilty or judged for taking time off, and so will be less likely to do so.

Adopting an unlimited holiday policy isn’t for everyone, and its success can largely hinge on a company’s culture and size. Bigger companies seem to have greater success – with more resources to put into making it work and employees feeling less exposed when taking time off. If you are thinking of giving unlimited holiday a go at your organisation, it’s important to make a clear annual leave policy to tell employees what you expect from them and to make sure that everyone can access this information easily, using an online HR system for example. And, if it doesn’t work out, there’s no harm in going back to more tried and tested methods of managing holiday.

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The famous motivational speaker, author and sales pundit with the absolute best name in quotable history — Zig Ziglar — once said: “It’s not where you start or even what happens to you along the way that’s important. What is important is that you persevere and never give up on yourself”. And one of the most profound applications of Mr. Ziglar’s advice has to do with building wealth.

Here’s the thing: the vast majority of wealthy people didn’t win the lottery. They cultivated shrewd wealth-building habits over time — and you can, too. Here are seven life hacks that you can adopt right now to increase the chances that you’ll become part of the 1% (or maybe even the 1% of the 1%, like Chinese mogul Li Jinyuan who took 6,400 of his employees on a vacation to France).

  1. Build relationships with successful people. The law of proximity is powerful. Hang around four successful people, and you’ll be the fifth. Hang around four unsuccessful people who never learn from their mistakes and constantly blame others, and you’ll join their ranks sooner or later.
  2. Spend your time wisely. This doesn’t mean that everything you do should be in the pursuit of wealth, because life is about balance. But it does mean that if you’re currently doing things that aren’t worthwhile on any level — emotionally, physically, psychologically, financially or spiritually — then stop doing them at your earliest possible opportunity, and start doing something more valuable and vital.
  3. Always over-deliver and give more than you get. This may sound like spacey new-age rhetoric, but it’s something that all wealthy people understand and adopt.  
  4. Starting today — not tomorrow, not next week, not the start of next year, but today and ideally the moment you finish reading this article — figure out how you can start saving more money. If that’s not an option at the moment because you’re in debt, then figure out how you can speed up repayment.
  5. Speaking of debt: it’s not a four-letter word that should fill you with dread. There is good debt and bad debt. Good debt is when you use someone else’s money to do something that you need (not just want) to do, like pay for your education to boost your long-term earning potential, or borrow against your home equity to pay for required foundation repair, etc. Bad debt is basically borrowing money to waste on something that might bring short-term pleasure, but causes long-term financial pain. Simply put, it’s a bad deal.
  6. Continuously invest (both time and money) in your earning ability by, for example, learning a new skill or language. Look at this this way: you might save $500 a year by shrewdly shopping around for car and home insurance, which is great. But if you upgrade your skills and leverage your knowledge capital to get a promotion, you could make $10,000 more a year — which is amazing.
  7. Make smart bets. Contrary to popular belief, wealthy people typically risk adverse and say “no” to far more deals and opportunities than they say “yes” to. However, when they do say yes, it is based on reliable information and not anecdotal assumptions.

 The Bottom Line

The road to wealth has many paths — and plenty of twists and turns. There is no magic wand or crystal ball. And yes, timing and luck are a big part of the story. However, one thing is universally true: wealthy people don’t happen by accident (if they do, then it’s not long before they are back to where they started — if not often worse off). They’re disciplined, focused, driven, and have very strong impulse control that keeps them from making reckless and regrettable decisions. Use the life hacks above to journey forward on your road to wealth. And when you get there, remember to pay it forward.

Be honest here. Is your company guilty of using outdated technology? If so, it could be hurting your business more than you care to realize – or admit.

According to a recent survey from Microsoft, approximately 91% of consumers said they would stop doing business with a company due to outdated technology.

How do we classify outdated anyway? Computers and its operating systems are technologies are some important factors that can impact customer experience. The survey said that “61% of consumers think a small business is outdated if it has a five-to ten-year-old operating system, while about 60% said the same for a five-to ten-year-old desktop computer.”

It’s important to understand the life expectancies of different technologies to help gauge when it is on its last legs. There are, of course, some general guidelines you can use to know the lifespans of tech. Intel, for instance, says that four years is typically the max before PCs start wearing out.

Here are a couple of ways you can determine if your business technology is in fact outdated and will start negatively impacting your business.

ecommerce-mistakes

Slowing speed

Computers taking forever to boot up or applications start so slowly? Do websites take annoyingly long to load? Does using Internet-based software feel like it’s got all the time in the world? If so, it’s the best time for an upgrade. Slow speeds indicate a need new for hardware, software (or applications), a better antivirus, a faster internet connection, or all of these.

Overspending

Another obvious sign of outdated technology is the wasted money you use to keep your tech running smoothly. You might not be paying a ton in repair or maintenance bills, but your older technology might still be holding you back from speed advantage and cost savings of newer technology. Modern technology is often more efficient (especially cloud-based technologies like cloud phone systems, therefore if you’re noticing that other businesses around you pay less, it might be time to upgrade.

Security concerns

Security vulnerabilities are exposed when technology ages, which can mean that the older technology you’re using is already exposing you to security vulnerabilities. Newer versions of software, for instance, usually include security patches that fix previous and current issues. Over time, security gaps occur, and in time can make your outdated technology vulnerable the longer you hold onto it.

Downtime

Has it become normal for your point of sale (POS), phone system, computers, or other systems crash regularly? Are you forced to reboot because things “lock-up” or “freeze?” A potential culprit for downtime and crashes could relate to outdated software, OS, or security issues, which point to outdated technology. Regardless of the cause, downtime due to freezes or crashes may be premonitions of worse problems so consider a technology update.

Falling behind competitors

Finally, if you’re beginning to lose business to your competitors because of your outdated technology, it’s definitely the time for some upgrade. More than 90% of people, according to Microsoft’s research, would consider going elsewhere if they see that the small business is using outdated tech.

Shop visitors don’t visit as often

If you sell exclusively from your physical shop, then you’re losing a lot of leads and customers might prefer competitors with an online equivalent. This is especially true for merchants and service providers. It’s an e-commerce world and you need to be where your customers are – online. Get your business online by going to Crazy Domains and doing a domain name search to secure your very own unique domain name (identity).

Other steps will follow – hosting your domain, developing your website, migrating everything to your virtual address – these things, while can be long, will ensure that your business has a fighting chance in an increasingly online world.

Most of these are common sense because outdated technology signals customers that a business either isn’t serious enough to invest in improvements or it doesn’t have the capability to do so. Whether you like it or not, outdated technology can send the wrong message to potential customers, which is why investing in up-to-date technology will benefit your business in the long run.

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Planning to invest but unsure where to start?

Before rushing into an investment, you should first set out a plan to give you an idea of your next steps. To help you find success as an investor, you should take a look at this guide, which offers you step by step advice for creating an investment plan that works. 

Summarise your situation

Before you even think about investing, you need to decide what you want to achieve in the future. When making this decision, you need to be realistic and consider what you can and can’t afford, while also considering any roadblocks you have experienced in the past and what may happen in the future.

Intelligent Investments: Tips for Buying Jewelry and Precious Stones

Investment Investigations: Which Ones Have High Returns?

You should start by creating a money fact find, which will help you determine how much you can spend on an investment. To do this, you need to answer several financial-related questions, starting with stock analysis, which will help you establish your monthly budget, asset income, and any debts you owe. You can then move on to your goals and aspirations, where you will determine the stability of your income, your money objectives, and future plans. Lastly, you need to analyse yourself and your past experiences in relation to how good you are with money, your time management skills, as well as how much you’re willing to spend on an investment. All of this with offer you a mini guide which will allow you to make smart and savvy investments.

Determine your risk level

With any investment, you will face risk. Therefore, it is important to consider how you would cope with money loss and risk-related ventures. You also need to decide how much risk you’re willing to take. This usually depends on the age of the investor, as the younger you are the more risk you can afford to take.

If you have plenty of years left to invest, you should look into property investment, which comes with some risk, although should offer you massive returns. This includes both quick returns from rental income as well as long-term capital appreciation, and can be put towards your general income or used as savings to buy your dream house for retirement.

Make the right investment

Real estate is one of the most lucrative investments you can make, especially if it is done right. When choosing a property, you need to make sure you’re looking in areas where there are high rental demand and good yields. You should also look for properties with sought-after facilities, such as parking spaces, white goods, large kitchens and more.

To help you make the right investment, you need to work with experts, who know everything there is to know about property investment. They also have several properties and off-plan developments available in locations hotspots like Manchester and Liverpool, which have some of the highest rental yields in the UK. With their help, you can rest assured knowing you’ve invested in a property that will provide you with generous returns.

Monitor your investment 

While you may think your plan ends after you’ve invested, this is not the case. Instead, you need to monitor your purchase, which is a lot easier if you invest in property, as you can take a hands-on approach and perform all landlord-related tasks. This will allow you to have full control of the property and how well it’s doing, and you could even update the property to ensure it reaches its full potential to increase returns.

If you do not have the time to monitor your property constantly, you should hire a property manager or a company who will make sure that everything is running smoothly and your property is tenanted. By outsourcing these tasks, you will have more time to spend on enhancing your investment, and you could even plan to invest in another property to expand your portfolio and increase your profits.

According to official figures, the Chinese economy grew at its slowest pace since the early 1990s in Q2 of 2019.

In this year’s second quarter, China’s economy grew 6.2% from a year earlier. The result was in line with forecasts.

The country has moved to stimulate its economy this year by boosting spending and delivering tax cuts.

China is also fighting a trade war with the US which has hurt businesses and weighed on growth.

The data released on July 15 showed China’s economic growth rate slowed from 6.4% in Q1 of 2019 to 6.2% in Q2 of the same year.

China Economy Grows 6.7% in Q2 amid Trade War with US

China Economy Marks Slowest Growth in 25 Years

China becomes world’s largest economy

According to the national statistics bureau, the figures pointed to a “complex environment” both at home and abroad.

It said the country’s economy had “performed within the reasonable range” in the first half of 2019 but that it faced “new downward pressure”.

While China watchers advise caution with Beijing’s official gross domestic product numbers, the data is seen as a useful indicator of the country’s growth trajectory.

Other data showed some signs of improvement in the world’s second largest economy.

Industrial production rose 6.3% in June from a year earlier, while retail sales rose 9.8% year-on-year – both above forecasts in Reuters polls.

Slowing growth in China has raised concerns about the potential knock-on effect on the global economy.

Earlier this year China announced plans to boost spending and cut billions of dollars in taxes in an effort to support the economy.

It has also moved to provide a liquidity boost by reducing the amount of cash banks must hold in reserve.

The US-led trade war is another factor weighing on growth.

While the US and China agreed to resume trade talks at a recent G20 summit in Japan, they have already placed tariffs on billions of dollars worth of one another’s goods, hurting businesses and casting a shadow over the world economy.

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World No 1 Novak Djokovic saved two championship points in Wimbledon’s longest singles final to retain his title in a thrilling win over world No 2 Roger Federer.

Roger Federer led Novak Djokovic 8-7 40-15 on his serve in the final set but the Serb fought back to win 7-6 (7-5) 1-6 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 13-12 (7-3) in four hours and 57 minutes.

Novak Djokovic, 32, has won 16 Grand Slams – and four of the last five.

The Swiss said letting slip two championship points in his Wimbledon final loss to Novak Djokovic was “such an incredible opportunity missed”.

Image source Reuters

Wimbledon 2019: Simona Halep Wins Her Second Grand Slam Title after Beating Serena Williams

Wimbledon 2018: Novak Djokovic Wins Fourth Title after Beating Kevin Anderson

US Open 2015: Novak Djokovic Beats Roger Federer to Win His 10th Grand Slam Title

It is the second time Roger Federer, 37, has been involved in the longest singles final at Wimbledon – and ended up losing too – after he was beaten by Rafael Nadal in 2008.

Roger Federer has lost his past five meetings with Novak Djokovic in Grand Slams, last beating the Serb at Wimbledon in 2012.

He still holds the all-time men’s Grand Slam record of 20 singles titles but Novak Djokovic now has 16 with Rafael Nadal on 18.

Roger Federer, who during Wimbledon set two new landmarks in winning his 100th match at the championships and his 350th match at a Grand Slam, said holding the record was not what motivated him as a player.

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Former world  No 1tennis player Simona Halep won her first Wimbledon title after beating another former No 1, Serena Williams.

The Romanian crushed Serena Williams’ latest bid for a record-equaling 24th Grand Slam success with a devastating 56-minute display of athleticism.

Simona Halep, 27, won 6-2,6-2, in front of an incredulous Centre Court, running after everything the American threw at her.

“It was my best match,” she said after her second Grand Slam title following her 2018 French Open success.

For Serena Williams, 37, it was a third major final defeat in 12 months.

“She played out of her mind, it was a little bit deer in the headlights for me,” she said.

Image source WTA Tennis

French Open 2018: Simona Halep Wins Her First Grand Slam Title After Beating Sloane Stephens

Indian Wells 2015: Simona Halep wins BNP Paribas Open final after beating Jelena Jankovic

WTA Finals 2014: Simona Halep beats Serena Williams with 6-0, 6-2

Serena Williams, like in last year’s final defeat by Angelique Kerber, seemed weighed down by public and personal expectations as she quickly fell 4-0 behind in the opening set.

Simona Halep had said beforehand that she had no pressure on her and that is exactly how she played.

Defeat means Serena Williams’ wait for a first Grand Slam title since becoming a mum continues, as does her pursuit of an eighth Wimbledon singles title.

Simona Halep had lost nine of her previous 10 meetings with Serena Williams.

She has now won the past two Grand Slam finals she has appeared in, having been defeated in the three before that. Serena Williams has lost her past three.

Although 56 minutes is a quick victory, it is some way off the fastest Grand Slam final win – Steffi Graf’s 34-minute French Open win of 1988.

Simona Halep, who began the championships as world No 7, will rise to No 4 when the next rankings are published on Monday, July 15.

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Financial emergencies can hit anybody at any time. Even if you know how to save money effectively and have built up an emergency fund to assist you during a financial crisis, there will be times in your life where you need a lot of money quickly to maintain your quality of life.

There are many different types of financial emergencies that can drain your emergency fund and force you to look outward for additional money. With that said, some financial emergencies are more common than others.

Common Financial Emergencies:

  • Medical bills
  • Funeral expenses
  • Car trouble
  • Cost of living increases
  • Household repairs
  • Job loss

Various Ways to Cover an Unexpected Financial Emergency

When a financial emergency hits, like the ones listed above, it can create a heavy mark on your life. You will need quick financial relief to handle this unforeseen situation, and luckily, there may be several options you could take advantage of.

Using Your Existing Emergency Fund

If you have an emergency fund, you may be tempted to deplete it when you need money to resolve a current predicament. But this may not be the best option for your finances.

Emergency funds are set in place to cushion you from financial instability, but depending on your current situation, you may be better off looking for funds elsewhere. It’s recommended that you only use your emergency funds for those once-in-a-lifetime catastrophes.

But if you must, make sure you use no more than 50% of whatever funds you have managed to save so far. This way you still have an emergency fund for any other financial dilemmas in the future.

Acquiring Money from Friends or Family

There are many great perks to borrowing funds from family and friends, however, just as many pitfalls.

This funding method may not be an option for many, as the amount needed to cover the full cost of a financial emergency may be too great. But if you’re able to acquire the money you need from a family member or friend, then you could save on interest rates and pesky fees. Not to mention, the repayment terms could be incredibly flexible. But there could be many repercussions if the exchange is not handled with care.

If your financial situation doesn’t improve, then you could risk the relationship you have with the individual you borrowed money from. If the terms of the loan were not gone over in detail, the miscommunication could cause a rift in the relationship between you and the family member or friend. 

Using a Quick Payday Loan

If you need a lot of monetary funds to cover the total cost of the financial crisis you are facing, then you may have thought about applying for a payday loan.

Payday loans are unsecure loans, meaning that no collateral is needed to acquire the loan. This is great news, as you do not have to risk a valuable asset like a sentimental piece of jewelry. But while payday loans offer quick financial relief to those facing an emergency with a deadline, they may not be the best option.

These quick relief loans come with many setbacks, such as:

  • High interest rates
  • Short repayment terms (2 weeks)
  • Hidden fees

The name is reflective of the repayment terms, as repayment is typically expected by the borrowers upcoming payday. If you don’t have the full loan amount plus fees by then, you risk incurring even more fees and falling further into debt.

Applying for a Convenient Title Loan

Title loans are another borrowing option that many people turn to. Just as popular as payday loans, with significantly better terms.

Title loans, unlike payday loans, are secure loans. Unfortunately, this means that collateral will be required—in the form of a car. To obtain a title loan, the borrower uses the car as collateral by giving the title to the lender for the duration of the loan.

This downside may not be so grim though, as many lenders allow the borrower to keep driving their car while making payments. And since the loan is secure, the lender may offer better terms.

Title loans could offer borrowers the following benefits:

  • Longer loan terms (up to a few years!)
  • Flexible eligibility requirements
  • Quick approval and funding
  • Competitive interest rates

Title loans are a great funding option for those facing a financial emergency due to their ease and convenience. Credit is typically not the main qualifying factor with title loans, making them easier to acquire than most other types of loans.  

Consider the many funding options available to you, including using your emergency fund, payday loans, and title loans. Consider how much you need and how long you would need to repay any money you borrow. Financial emergencies can pop up out of the blue, but you don’t have to be left adrift.    

President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, have agreed to resume trade talks, easing a long row that has contributed to a global economic slowdown.

The US and China reached agreement at the G20 summit in Osaka, Japan.

President Trump also said he would allow US companies to continue to sell to the Chinese tech giant Huawei, in a move seen as a significant concession.

He had threatened additional trade sanctions on China.

However, after the meeting on the sidelines of the main G20 summit in Japan, President Trump confirmed that the US would not be adding tariffs on $300 billion worth of Chinese imports.

He also said he would continue to negotiate with China “for the time being”.

At a subsequent press conference, President Trump declared that US technology companies could again sell to China’s Huawei – effectively reversing a ban imposed last month by the US commerce department.

The US and China have been fighting a damaging trade war over the past year.

Donald Trump accused China of stealing intellectual property and forcing US companies to share trade secrets in order to do business in China, which in turn said US demands for business reform were unreasonable.

The feud escalated in the months leading up to the G20 summit, after talks between the two countries collapsed in May.

The truce signals a pause in hostilities rather than a resolution of the dispute, which has caused market turbulence and hit global growth.

President Trump said his meeting with President Xi was “excellent, as good as it was going to be,” adding: “We discussed a lot of things and we’re right back on track and we’ll see what happens.”

US and China Agree to Halt New Trade Tariffs for 90 Days

US to Impose New Tariffs on Chinese Handbags, Rice and Textiles

President Trump Threatens $100 Billion More in China Tariffs

China Imposes New Tariffs of Up to 25% on 128 US Imports

China’s state news agency Xinhua quoted President Xi as saying: “China and the US have highly integrated interests and extensive co-operation areas and they should not fall into so-called traps of conflict and confrontation.”

Washington has publicly said Huawei’s technology poses a national security risk, although President Trump has also linked the issue to the trade dispute.

Last month, the US banned Huawei from buying US goods without a license – including from Google, which is crucial to many of its products. The ban could cost the firm $30 billion in revenue this year.

President Trump’s decision to allow US companies to continue to sell to Huawei “where there’s no great national security problem” could be a substantial concession, although exactly how this will play out remains unclear.

He said the Huawei situation would be dealt with “at the very end” of trade talks.

The next summit is due to be held in Saudi Arabia in November 2020.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has continued to face questions in Japan over the murder in Istanbul last year of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the matter is likely to rumble on.

The UK and Turkey are among the countries still pressing the issue, although President Trump says “no-one blames” the Saudi crown prince.

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Auto liability insurance is neither the most expensive nor the shortest lived thing on a used car. Still, it is sold, rather expensive. No matter if in the car dealership or in the free car market. The car trade lives from it, and that is probably no secret about it.

Check the car market using VIN codes

Vehicle Identification Number helps find information about the car’s place of manufacture. And that’s where we start.

Moreover, in the car trade, there are many online services that provide data on the internals of the car. It is also advisable to look under the hood. Check how the windscreen wipers work. Check if the power windows are not replaced. Check if the front passenger door does not have the stickers you should find on the driver’s door. The next thing worth checking is the insurance.

Which type of insurance should you take?

Here is what you should know when selecting the type of insurance, such as:

  • Liability (damage you inflict on others)
  • The partial coverage in case of, well, partial damage. It may be a broken glass, theft and the likes. A deductible up to 2,500 USD is possible.

Insurance broker or online check?

There are classic insurance brokers who come home when you buy your new old car and help you fill out the application forms. Almost all major insurance companies, by the way, operate a network of full-time and part-time brokers. These guys are familiar with the topic of CheapAutoInsurance. They are also experts in all things “insurance” their bosses have to offer.

Direct insurers can offer cheaper car rates than established companies because of a lean administrative system. You can use the financial advantage for yourself. Auto insurance comparison can help you find a cheap insurance policy with the right range of benefits.

Key Facts

Here is the information you should have at hand:

  1. Type of your vehicle
  2. Regional class
  3. Damage-free discounts in liability and comprehensive insurance. Those who remain accident-free get higher discounts every year
  4. Type of insurance, liability, partial or full insurance

If you buy a used car, you have the option to take over the car insurance from the previous owner. The contract would be written anew, in your name, and the contribution is recalculated according to your personal conditions (for example, your current non-breach class). Still, the majority used car buyers do not make use of this option, but immediately conclude new car insurance with a provider of their choice.

Full insurance and partial coverage in comparison

These two are different. Direct insurers can offer cheaper car rates than established companies because of a lean administrative system. You can use the financial advantage for yourself. Auto insurance comparison can help you find a cheap insurance policy with the right range of benefits.

Summary

The insurance benefits vary at the motor insurers. In liability insurance, the companies are unanimous. It is different in the case of comprehensive insurance. Inform yourself in time about the current additional options, which are currently included in your car insurance. Do you really need all the additional modules? Calculate your contribution to the motor insurance premium best with and without additional options. If you choose workshop binding instead, you will not be able to have your vehicle repaired at any garage without any problem, but the annual fee for your car premium will be considerably lower.

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There will come the point in almost everyone’s life in which they’ll ask the question, “Do I need a loan?”

No matter the reason behind the loan, there are other questions you want to ask yourself before you get one. These questions help you decide if the loan is the best option, or if there are other avenues to explore first.

Before taking out a loan, ask yourself the following five questions.

What is the Purpose of the Loan?

First, you should have a reason as to why you’re taking out a loan. If it’s simply to have more money in your bank account, that likely isn’t the best reason.

If you have a goal in mind and that loan will help you achieve it, then borrowing some money may be what you need.

The goal you have in mind will also help you decide on what type of loan to get. Maybe you’re working on starting a business, in which a business loan would be something to look at. Alternatively, you could require a small cash boost for an unforeseen expense such as car repairs in which payday loans could be an option providing you’ll be able to meet the repayments.

How Much Do I Really Need?

It’s important to know exactly how much you need.

Take some time to get as close of an estimate as possible before going for your loan. You want to find a balance between taking out the minimum amount, and also having enough to pay what you need.

What Will My Monthly Payments Look Like?

One of the biggest questions to ask yourself is what your monthly payments will look like, and if you can afford them. Your answer to this one will ultimately determine if you should go forward with the loan or not.

You can use online loan calculators to give you a general idea of your payments. Add that into your monthly budget to see if you’ll have enough money to pay it off.

What Are the Interest Rates?

Interest rates play a critical role in getting a loan. Each month, a percentage of interest rates gets added to your monthly payments. It’s easy to forget about those rates which make a loan more expensive than initially planned.

Remember, the longer you take to pay back the loan, the more you pay in interest fees. Factor in the interest rates to see if you can afford to pay more than the minimum payments.

Do I Qualify for the Loan?

Do you meet all the requirements for the loan? Depending on the type of loan you’re applying for, there may be strict qualifications you have to keep in mind.

Your credit score factors into almost any loan you get. Too low of a credit score and you’ll likely be denied the loan. Other factors include if you have other debt and what your monthly income looks like.

These five questions will help you decide if a loan is the best option for you, and which type of loan you should get. Speak with your potential lender about these questions. You wouldn’t want to take out a loan to only fall into debt.

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The way you deal with the sourcing and management of inventory within your company can have a direct impact on your profitability. When you aren’t doing this correctly – it can stop your business operating as it should and in effect lose you money. We discuss further in this article.

Look at Inventory Cost

The cost of purchasing and producing inventory plays a large part in what your gross profit will be. Gross profit is the net sales minus your cost of goods. When there are less costs involved when it comes to purchasing inventory – this means the cost of goods sold will decrease. When there is a bigger gross profit, this can in turn translate to higher profit in general. Regularly check in and negotiate with suppliers to see if there are any savings that can be made anywhere.

Inventory Method

There are lots of different methods that can be used for inventory accounting. The most commonly used are First In, First Out, and Last In, First Out. If there are lots of different pricing fluctuations when it comes to inventory costs – this can then directly affect the costs of goods sold.

Level of Inventory

If you overstock – then you are creating storage expense, and potentially labour costs that aren’t necessary. You are also taking up valuable space. On the other hand – if you don’t have enough inventory, then you could suffer from a decrease in revenue and profitability. That’s why it’s important to make sure you get the balance right when it comes to your stock levels. Make sure if you have limited cash flow – that you don’t tie up your money in inventory that isn’t required at that stage.

Inventory Turnover

The turnover of inventory will have a significant effect on how profitable your company is. If you continue to stock items that are no longer selling, will slow down your revenue stream. If you have an accurate idea of which items are the most popular and selling the most – then this will ensure that you continue to get a high number of sales. You need to take the demand levels into careful consideration before you purchase any more stock.

How to Manage Effectively

There are great software’s out there that will help you to manage this effectively. For example, SysAid’s IT inventory management software will allow you to track what stock you have, give you a good idea of how fast products are going. This will allow you to take appropriate action so you can have the correct stock levels and increase your profit overall. It will also allow you to allocate the correct resource levels – so you can manage their time more effectively.

The key takeaway from this article is to understand that asset inventory and management can have a direct effect on the profitability of your business, and to take necessary measures to ensure this is regularly monitored and there are processes in place.

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The Hong Kong dollar is a unique currency for lots of reasons. That’s why traders need to be doubly careful when they decide to take part in the popular USD/HKD Forex market. Hong Kong’s dollar is heavily traded but also completely regulated, unlike most other major world currencies. Many new traders avoid the USD/HKD pair and prefer to stick to more familiar currencies that behave in more traditional ways.

After several months of Forex experience, traders often gravitate to the USD/HKD pair and investigate it further. Like so many other currency pairs, it helps to be diligent and leave emotions out of the equation. For those who finally make the decision to trade this intriguing pair, it’s necessary to follow some of the tried-and-true Forex guidelines even more carefully.

Use Simple Strategies

New traders often feel the need to jump in and employ dozens of complex strategies with the hope that complexity leads to profit. On the contrary, many of the most successful traders use simple strategies when trading Forex, stocks, ETFs or bonds. Especially for traders who have less than one year of experience, it’s smartest to work with just one or two strategies that you know rather than six you barely understand. As you can see here, a professional platform makes a big difference because its automated features can free traders from having to worry about detailed strategies. For USD/HKD enthusiasts, a simple trading method is all that’s needed.

Study the Market and Specialize

Perhaps more than any other frequently-traded currency, the HKD calls for a good deal of research before any trades are made. It’s even more helpful for traders to specialize in the USD/HKD pair. That’s one way of developing a decent amount of expertise and depth in a pair that has as many unique characteristics as this one.

Never Break Your Trading Rules

Sticking to your personal trading rules is always a good idea, but when it comes to the USD/HKD pair, it’s almost a necessity. So many traders become frustrated after putting time and effort into a trade that ends up showing no profit. It happens to the best of them but is a tough pill to swallow sometimes. One common reason for losing trades is lack of discipline. A trader who has a rule about stopping losses can easily get caught up in the mindset that “things will get better soon,” and end up losing more on a given trade than personal rules would have allowed. Letting emotion get the best of you is not the path to success in trading the USD/HKD pair.

Understand the Uniqueness of the Hong Kong Economy

Hong Kong’s economy is unique in the developed world because its political structure is still in a state of flux. For a hundred years, Hong Kong was governed by the U.K. and enjoyed a free-market environment like no other place on earth. After political control reverted to China, the Communist regime of that country has pretty much allowed Hong Kong to itself but institutional traders worry about the future of the currency. For this reason and many others, traders need to spend extra time researching any USD/HKD trade before jumping into a position.

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IMF chief Christine Lagarde has warned that giant tech companies might cause significant disruption to the world’s financial system.

She said just a few companies with big data access and artificial intelligence could run the global payment and settlement arrangements.

Christine Lagarde’s warning came as the G20 finance ministers met in the Japan’s south-western city of Fukuoka.

The G20 summit is also discussing the need to close tax loopholes for internet giants like Facebook and Google.

One of the options being considered is to tax such companies where they make their profits – rather than where they base their headquarters.

She said: “A significant disruption to the financial landscape is likely to come from the big tech firms.”

IMF Revises Down US and UK Economies Growth Forecasts

IMF Cuts US Economy Growth Forecasts

The International Monetary Fund head said such companies “will use their enormous customer bases and deep pockets to offer financial products based on big data and artificial intelligence”.

“This presents a unique systemic challenge to financial stability and efficiency,” she added.

Christine Lagarde cited China as a most recent example.

She said: “Over the last five years, technology growth in China has been extremely successful and allowed millions of new entrants to benefit from access to financial products and the creation of high-quality jobs.

“But it has also led to two firms controlling more than 90% of the mobile payments market.”

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While it is often confused with a life settlement, a viatical settlement actually has some notable differentiating factors regarding how it works and the circumstances of eligibility. A life settlement is when a policyholder sells their life insurance policy for a cash payout. This is typically done when the insured no longer needs the policy, can no longer keep up with the premiums, or if they would simply rather have a smaller payout sooner to cover their financial needs. Viatical settlements, on the other hand, are less common and pursued specifically by those with serious illnesses and short life expectancies. The policy holder sells their life insurance policy to a third-party buyer, usually at a significantly discounted rate, in exchange for an immediate payout. This is usually done because the seller needs financial assistance dealing with their illness.

Viatical settlement history

Viatical settlements have existed along with life settlements since the 1911 Supreme Court ruling in Grigsby v. Russell where it was decided that life insurance policies are personal property that may be lawfully sold to third parties. They didn’t become prominent, however, until the AIDS epidemic of the 80s where young people were suddenly facing the possibility of dying from the disease in just a few years. By selling their life insurance policies, many were able to afford medical treatments that could extend, and in some cases even save, their lives.

Seller qualifications

A seller needs to meet three basic criteria in order to qualify for a viatical settlement. First, they must have a terminal illness with a life expectancy in the timeframe of two to four years. Second, the policy needs to have been in effect for at least two years. Finally, the policy must come to a value of $100,000 or more.

All life insurance policies are acceptable, whether they’re term or permanent policies. There are still a variety of factors, however, that can affect the payout of a viatical settlement. Such factors may include the seller’s illness and its stage, individual policies of companies and brokers involved, the death benefit of the policy, and any other factors deemed relevant.

 Why pursue a viatical settlement?

One of the most common reasons to pursue a viatical settlement is because the seller simply can’t afford their insurance premiums any longer. The settlement frees them from this financial burden and also provides a payout for the seller to pursue medical care or other needs. This is a particularly good choice if the seller no longer has anyone relying on the death benefit of their policy.

A viatical settlement can also be a good choice when a term policy is nearly expired. Instead of letting it run out, it may be possible to convert to a whole policy and sell it. It’s also worth looking into selling a policy if it’s about to lapse. Most companies offer a grace period before the policy lapses from non-payment, and even a small payout is better than just wasting the policy. 

Advantages over other options

There are two main advantages to a viatical settlement over other options for those inclined. A viatical settlement will almost always provide a larger payout than other forms of financial assistance. Viatical settlements also have a specific advantage over life settlements in that they are tax free. They can often be the best option for a seller to improve their quality of life during the time they have left. If one decides to pursue this option, it’s often as easy as a brief application and a payout within days, if a buyer is found.