'Investing Know-How' Articles

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Investing Know-How articles address many issues related to investing. These include investing techniques for both equity and income investments. How to allocate and diversify your investment to achieve the both the type if earnings (income or growth) and protection from market hazards. Learn the basics of investment here by following our articles here.

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Money Market Accounts, Money Market Mutual Funds, PODs and TODs
Understanding the difference between bank money accounts and mutual funds and what you use them for. You can make them Payable on Death (POD) or Transfer on Death (TOD) too...read more

Choose Investments Suitable to Your Circumstance and Understanding
It's important to understand how different types of investments put your money to work. Risks and potential returns vary greatly among investment types. Stocks offer you the potential for growth, but they can be volatile. Bonds generally provide income and lower volatility, but also lower potential for growth. Treasury bills, CDs, and money market funds are secure but may not keep up with inflation...read more

How to Buy Bonds for Steady Income and Lower Costs
Retirees desire an income they can count on. Bonds are designed for delivering an annual fixed income and payback its face value at maturity. What more is there to know? …Actually a lot more...read more


Always Ask Yourself Five Key Questions before You Invest
If you’re anywhere near retirement, you don’t want to unnecessarily risk what you’ve saved. So before you invest, ask yourself these key questions...read more


Turn Your Vacation Property into an Investment Property for More Income and Tax Breaks
If you’ve been using your vacation home just for your own enjoyment, you’re tax breaks on mortgage, taxes, and expenses you pay on it are limited. Turning it into an investment property can not only bring in some extra income but increase your tax breaks for holding it –and still allow you to enjoy it...read more

Keeping Your Portfolio Balanced Is a Wise Hedge
No one really knows which way the markets will move. So how do you survive market moves? You hedge your bets. That goes for both professionals and responsible investors...read more

Owning is Riskier than Lending but More Rewarding
Approaching your retirement means shifting your investments more towards income-based investments and away from equity-based investments. You’ve less time to recover from equity losses and need to rely on investment income. Here’s why…read more

Use Annuities in Place of Bonds for Retirement Income
Beyond their Social Security benefits and a pension, retirees rely on their savings to supply extra income for living. Using annuities rather than bonds in their savings portfolio may boost the assurance of maintaining that savings’ income. Here’s how…read more

Investment Strategy Using ETFs For A Retiree
The common benefit of exchanged traded funds (ETFs) and mutual funds (MFs) is the diversification in the underlying stocks or bonds to support their investment purpose. That’s an important benefit. Now, when would you- as a retiree - choose to use an ETF instead of a MF?...read more

Hedge Funds Can Do More Than Hedge Fund-Type Mutual Funds
Hedge funds use a variety of techniques to seek an absolute return no matter what the markets do. Their performance has instigated the birth of many hedge-type mutual funds. But SEC restrictions on mutual funds limit techniques that real hedge funds rely on for their high gains...read more

Don’t Forget Lessons You Learned From Previous Market Downturns
In the market crash of 2007-8, most everyone got burned. Many investors saw, perhaps, a loss of 40% of their portfolio. About-to-be retirees have pushed back their retirement date and some retirees have looked for part-time work to supplement their income...read more 

Do Those 401(k) Fees Matter To Overall Investment Performance?
The Investment Company Institute, a mutual-fund trade organization, found that 62 percent of 401(k) plans are “small plans,” with less than $1 million in assets. They found that businesses with up to 100 employees paid about 2 percent in plan assets in annual fees, whereas businesses with 100 to 1,000 employees paid about 0.9 percent...read more

How to Re-evaluate Your Portfolio and Put Its Performance in Perspective
It’s important to take a fresh look at your investments every now and then. And it’s especially so when either markets have changed significantly or your life situation has. Here’s an approach to doing so...read more

Managing Your Retirement Income Portfolio Isn’t Rocket Science
Think you’ll need to use some of your savings for retirement income? Here’s an approach to figure and manage your portfolio for income that’ll maintain its value...read more

Bonds with Higher Interest Rates Come with Higher Risks
Retirees seek interest income either directly from bonds they own or from income funds invested in bonds. But investments that pay higher rates of interest do so because they present higher risks. Let’s review how this works...read more

Inflation Will Return Strongly - So Invest Accordingly
Inflation has always taken a significant bite out of the dollar’s purchasing power over any 25 year period. You must make provision to combat it with equity-based investments in your retirement portfolio. Don’t be tricked by temporarily near-zero inflation. Our government debts and promised benefit obligations will force strong inflation down the line. So get prepared...read more

Average Your Way into the Markets – With The Right Investment
Timing market highs and lows is difficult. No, it’s impossible. But you can get back into the market while minimizing your exposure to unexpected losses like jumping in before the ‘bottom’ occurs. Just average your way in!...read more

What Are the Investment Advantages of Mutual Funds
Mutual funds offer some key investment advantages for those with deep or shallow pockets. But small investors are particularly advantaged by them. Let’s consider some of them...read more


Allocate Your Investments More Conservatively As You Approach Retirement Age

Sticking to your retirement plan as you approach your retirement date includes timely investment allocations to help assure you achieve your goals. That’s because you can’t recover from downturns when you get too close to your retirement. John and Jean forgot that and suffered for it. Here’s what happened...read more


Several Ways You Can Buy Gold for Diversifying Your Portfolio
Should gold be a part of a retiree’s portfolio? I would say yes, as long as he understands his purpose for buying gold. Gold is a volatile investment. People buy it as a hedge against declining purchasing power of their money – i.e. inflations; and speculators try to profit on expected moves in currency values. But over the long run it’s shown an upward trend – see graph – and that’s what’s good about it for the ‘buy and hold’ crowd...read more


The U.S. Treasury’s TIPS Protect You under Both Deflation and Inflation
A recessionary environment can produce deflation; a booming economy may eventually produce inflation. So, what kind of investment can accommodate your interest under either scenario? The U.S. Treasury’s Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities – TIPS for short – may be the answer.  Here’s how they work...read more


When Deflation Sets In, Lower Your Cost of Debt
If a recession becomes severe, deflation sets in making your money more dear and your debts more severe. What should retirees consider doing if deflation sets in? read more


However Complex Invest With Full Understanding Always
Investment types range from simple to the complex. But whatever the case, you must understand how your investment will work for and against you – or suffer the consequences. Don’t let complex investments lure you into investing without proper understanding...read more


How a Mutual Fund Works As an Investment And Its Cost to You
Investing in mutual funds is attractive to retirees because they offer the advantages of diversification and professional management. But investors should understand how a mutual fund makes money for them and at what cost to them. Here’s the scoop…read more

If You Can Save during Retirement, Put It Where It Will Count
In economic downturns everyone tends to tighten their budgets, and that includes retirees. In fact you may find you’re actually saving money in retirement after paying your regular expenses. So where should you put this ‘extra’ savings as a retiree?...read more


Use Solid Equity Investments to Offset Inflation
Offsetting inflation’s effect on your portfolio requires you to seek higher returns than conservative income investments can offer. That means moving your money into equities and that often means assuming more risk. Here’s why…read more


Make Your Investments Consistent With Your Risk Tolerance
A retiree necessarily has a different approach to investing than a young person. Each is in different financial circumstance. They’ve got different goals, prospects, and, most importantly, different time lines to achieve what they want. These differences support different risk tolerances for each – and therefore different investment choices for each...read more


The Dollar-to- Euro Exchange Rate Gives You an Opportunity for Profit or Protection 
The dollar has been on a roller coaster ride relative to the euro since 2007. Maybe you can make use of it for your portfolio for either profit or protection. Predicting the exchange rate fluctuations of the dollar-to-euro may not be so difficult. Here’s what’s been happening…read more 


Retirees Can Do an All-Bond Portfolio for Income and Portfolio Preservation
Are you of modest means and worry about how to invest your money in these tough times? If you really can't afford to risk any of your money to market downturns, then perhaps you should try an all-bond portfolio...read more

Allocate for Purpose then Diversify to an Acceptable Risk
Everyone needs an investment approach that serves his situation. Your situation determines both the purpose and associated risk your choice of investments must achieve. This article provides an understanding about how to choose investment types for your situation...read more

An Ultra-Short Bond Fund Can Give You the High Income You Need
You may be getting your earnings income from CDs or money market funds but you’re still looking for even higher interest earnings. If so, try an Ultra-Short Bond (USB) fund for higher interest rates but at a somewhat greater risk. A USB fund invests only in fixed-income instruments with very short-term maturities – about 1 year. It seeks higher yields than money market funds but with less price fluctuations than a typical short-term (1-3 years) bond fund...read more

Retirees Should Consider Investing More in Real estate
If you’re starting your retirement, consider your portfolio allocation strategy – i.e. how to split your money among different asset categories. You’ll want investment income to cover living expenses but you’ll also need long term investments to maintain your portfolio’s value against inflation damage.  Here’s why real estate investments can deliver both of these...read more

Get More Income and Tax Breaks from Your Other Home

If you’re looking for more income, why not let your other home help you out? You may have been using it just for yourself, but now you need more income. If you turn it into an investment property you’ll not only bring in some income but increase your tax breaks for holding it...read more

How to Accomplish Complete Diversification with Mutual Funds
Diversifying your portfolio reduces the risk that the demise of any one company, investment area or market will rob much of your portfolio’s value. But how do you approach diversification especially if you have a limited amount of money. Here’s an approach using mutual funds...read more

Investment Duration Is Essential for Investment Return Statistics to Work
At retirement you have some 20 years or more to invest for income and growth. But what can you expect for returns to counter inflation and market variations?  Let’s look as what investment history has shown us...read more


Hedge Funds Are Risky for a Reason
Hedge funds pool investors' money to invest those funds in financial instruments to make a significant positive return in all kinds of markets. This isn’t easy, but hedge fund managers use a wide set of investment practices that may increase the risk of investment loss. read more

Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) Offer Flexible Investment Approaches
Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) offer low expense ratios and high trading flexibility. That makes them attractive alternatives to traditional mutual funds. And they can serve as part of both long-term and short-term investment strategy. Here’s the scoop…read more


What Bond Types Should You Buy for Income?
Investment income generally comes from debt (or loan) instruments – like bonds. Before deciding on what type of debt instrument you’ll use for your retirement income, you should know their characteristics. Here’s a quick overview (the table summaries key investment characteristics)...read more


How Can Retirees Benefit from a Weakening Dollar
Since June 2010, the dollar has been weakening with respect to the euro. The euro is the currency of countries in the European Union and because of that it, carries a good deal of weight in global economics. In June 2010 alone, one euro started out costing $1.26 and has more or less risen to $1.46 as of April 2011. What does this mean to retirees and travelers - and how can they benefit? read more

Diversifying and Laddering Are Two Ways to Protect Your Retirement Income
Assuring yourself a steady yearly income is important during your retirement. Your pension and social security income do just that. But if you also want to smooth out the income fluctuations that your investments produce, you can do so using two strategies – diversifying and laddering your investments...read more

Laddering Helps You Maximize Your Interest-based Income over Time
Retirees who have to live off their interest-based income investments are often a victim of interest rate swings that can lower their income significantly. Chasing after high interest rates without a strategy can often leave them with less income than they could get with a laddering strategy. Here’s the situation…read more

Rebalance Your Portfolio to Keep It Consistent with Your Goals
Retirement is a new stage of life. It calls for different income, expenses, risk considerations, and needs.  Along with determining your pension and social security incomes, you’ll need to allocate your investments to best achieve your needs for the short, medium and long term...read more

Know Your Investment Horizon When You Retire
New retirees often think they have about 10 years left. So they plan accordingly. But they misperceive their remaining life expectancy...read more

Allocate to Achieve a Goal and Rebalance to Maintain It
Entering retirement is a good time to strategize on how best to allocate your resources to achieve your goals. Maintaining your strategy will keep you on track. Let’s review the basics....read more

Diversify Your Assets among Different Asset Types to Preserve Your Portfolio Value

Allocating our wealth among different asset categories helps maintain its value in the face of downturns. A variety of asset types make up all investments such as Equities, Debt, Real Estate, Gold and Cash. See how to diversify among them and why...read more

Diversify Your Holding – Choose from the Pooled Investments

When you invest you should choose a mix of the 3 asset category types: stocks, bonds, and cash. The younger you are you should weight most of you portfolio to stocks for their growth potential...read more


Holding Time Makes Tax-advantaged Retirement Accounts Much Better Than Regular Taxable Accounts
Because of the income tax rates imposed on withdrawals from government-regulated retirement savings plans – like IRAs - you may think that they’re not all that much better than using regular taxable accounts. Below I’ll show how your IRA-type account can eventually put a lot more in your pocket...read more


Earnings Are As Important As Contributions to Your Retirement Savings
Just contributing to your retirement savings is not enough. You’ve got to make them earn decent returns so their compounding effects significantly add to what you eventually accumulate... read more


Real Estate Can Give You High Growth Rates at Low Risk
Buying residential housing offers the best investment for relatively little risk if done conservatively. Whether you buy home or a house to rent, tax laws, leverage, and demand help you to acquire...read more

Owning Residential Rental Income Property Grows Your Wealth Faster and Better
If you want to grow your wealth fast and better, buy residential property to rent out. Your investment will grow faster because of the leverage that a mortgage gives you, and it grows better because rental income, tax laws, and...read more

Making Yourself Financially Independent Isn’t Lucky - It’s Planning
If you're going nowhere you won’t need a plan. But if you want to accomplish something, you'll invariably need a plan – an effective plan. Most people think becoming financially independent is a pie-in-the-sky happenstance for those with high incomes, lottery winners, and lucky investors. They’re wrong...read more



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