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Introduction
Investment Portfolios
Investment Terminology and Instruments
Technical Analysis and Trading
Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain
Retirement
Retirement Accounts
Personal Finance
Corporate Basics
Is successful asset allocation an art or a science?

Is successful asset allocation an art or a science?

Successful asset allocation will cater to the risk tolerance and goals of a client based on past performances while seeking gains in an uncertain future; this calls for a mixture of art and science. We believe that successful asset allocation is based on rigorous statistics, but as with any other statistics, it’s 20/20 retrospective vision. Proper diversification can help to make the future performance slightly more predictable, but as market conditions unfold, the appropriate rebalancing or reallocation may not always be obvious, especially to a computer. Continue reading...

What are Load Mutual Funds?

“Load” mutual funds are those which have a fee structure that includes a front-end or back-end sales charge. All funds have expenses, but not all funds have loads. Loads are sales charges that are part of the fee structure of a mutual fund. Each mutual fund will typically offer a few types of shares classes to its investors, and the main difference between the share classes are their fee structures. There are front-end loads, which come out of your initial investment and can be up to 5%. Continue reading...

What is a bull put spread?

What is a bull put spread?

A bull put spread is used when an investor thinks the price of a security is set to rise modestly. The strategy involves buying one put option on the security while simultaneously selling another put option at a higher strike price. A Bull Put Spread is usually a vertical spread, meaning the two options used have the same expiration date (and different prices). The lower-strike put option is bought and held long, while the higher-strike option is sold short. The short position sold will be at or just below the current market price for the security, and the long position will be at a lower strike price than the short position. Continue reading...

What should I know about IPOs?

What should I know about IPOs?

IPOs are initial public offerings of a private company ready to turn public and trade on an exchange, with the scrutiny of shareholders. IPOs are priced by the investment bank selling them, instead of the supply and demand of the market. Many have heard the term "IPO" (Initial Public Offering), which is the issuance of the first publicly-available shares of a company. It actually represents the only capital a company will ever raise with its stocks, unless they issue more at another time or if they have issued convertible bonds or warrants. After the IPO, any money made on those shares of stock will be by the buyers and sellers in the market, which is known as the Secondary Market-- the Primary Market is where stocks are issued and purchased directly from the company. Continue reading...

What are the Projections for Social Security Benefits?

What are the Projections for Social Security Benefits?

It looks like the Social Security Trust Funds may be depleted by 2037. The system can most likely continue while paying reduced benefits that come directly from the current social security taxes to the workforce. Estimates are that the Social Security Administration could pay about 70% of its obligations at that point. There is enough money to pay Social Security benefits at the current rate until about 2037. Continue reading...

How Much Money Will I Need to Get Started Investing?

How Much Money Will I Need to Get Started Investing?

First things first, accumulate six months’ of cash as emergency savings. Then you can start investing. From there, it makes sense to try and set up a monthly investment plan, where you set aside a certain amount of money each month and stick to that schedule. If there is any extra money in any given month, put that away too. Once you build up a few thousand dollars, you can start buying broad-based ETFs or mutual funds to gain diversification while also getting equity exposure for growth. Continue reading...

What is Federal Debt?

What is Federal Debt?

Federal debt is the money owed by the government. The primary source of this debt is Treasury Bonds (Notes), which constitute debt obligations. About 25% of the current national debt is owed internally between different government agencies, mostly to the Social Security Trust Funds. The Federal Debt is also, and perhaps more commonly, referred to as the National Debt. Currently the debt is approximately $19 Trillion. Continue reading...

What is Times Interest Earned (TIE)?

Times Interest Earned (TIE) is also known as the interest coverage ratio, is a cash-flow analysis that compares the pre-tax earnings of a company to the total amount of interest payable on their debt obligations. A healthy ratio indicates that a company will probably not default on loan repayments. To compute this ratio, divide a company’s annual income before taxes by their annual interest payments on debt obligations. This ratio is not concerned with the actual principal due on loans since the principal amount is already pegged to some of the assets on the books of the company, and other fundamental equations will already factor that in. Continue reading...

What is Housing Expense Ratio?

When deciding whether to issue a mortgage loan to a customer, a bank or lender will look at the housing expense ratio, which is the annual cost of the mortgage payments, including all insurance and expenses related to owning the property, divided by the gross income of the individual. Gross income is used because tax deductions can be taken for mortgage payments. If a proposed mortgage leaves the borrower with a housing expense ratio (HER) over 28%, they will usually not be approved for this mortgage loan. The HER is found by dividing all annual costs associated with the new home with the gross annual income of the (proposed) borrower. Continue reading...

What is the Broadening Wedge Ascending (Bearish) Pattern?

What is the Broadening Wedge Ascending (Bearish) Pattern?

The Broadening Wedge Ascending pattern forms when a security price progressively makes higher highs (1, 3, 5) and higher lows (2, 4), following two widening trend lines. This pattern may form when large investors spread their buying over a period of time. When initial buying occurs, other market participants react to rising price and jump on the bandwagon to participate. Then value investors begin to sell, believing the price has risen too much, which spurs the original large investor to resume buying again. Once these activities stop, the price may break out in either direction. Continue reading...