April 12, 2016

Below are the articles for the week with a short summary:


  • Tax havens have existed as far back as the Greeks, and more familiar examples to us are Switzerland and Panama. There are three key attributes classified by the OECD: No or only nominal taxes, protection of personal financial information, and lack of transparency. The United States Government Accountability Office has listed two additional attributes of a tax haven: No requirement of substantial local presence and self-promotion as an offshore financial centre. According to this article there are at least 7 socio economic factors that make a particular destination a popular tax haven. A few examples of popular tax havens are the Cayman Islands, Hong Kong, and the Isle of Man. “The existence of tax havens has many effects. At one level, the lower taxes or no taxes in one country put pressure on other countries for keeping their taxes low. This is good for taxpayers in the short term, but the secrecy and opacity associated with some of the tax havens may encourage money laundering or other illegal activities that can harm the world economy in the long term. The crackdown on tax evaders in some countries shows that taxpayers need to tread with caution.” Make sure you give to Caesar’s what is Caesar’s, but more importantly give God what is God’s.


  • “Small-business owners usually start a company because they have a passion for a particular product or service. However, people should not open a bakery just because they love baking cakes. If you love baking, get a job as a baker.” Remember that running a business requires many essential components.  Those components include having the right legal entity in place, having a good financial structure, having a clearly defined value system etc. As your business grows create margins to keep it running efficiently. If you’re building a business define why you’re doing it. “The first step for most entrepreneurs is to sell something. Put in place the minimum amount of infrastructure that you can get by with and focus on generating revenue. Many new businesses fail because they simply cannot generate enough revenue to sustain themselves. Test the viability of your business as quickly and as inexpensively as possible.” It’s important to keep your infrastructure as efficient as possible without cutting back on quality. As your business grows, you should start weighing your cost-benefit options. You have to start accounting for these options, because your business will reach its capacity. “For example, would the business be better off if you spent time putting entries into QuickBooks or if you hired someone to do that work and spent your time selling? You are in effect buying yourself more time that you can invest in other aspects of the business.” Time is fixed. There is only 24 hours to complete a set amount of work in day. Investors care about time value. Our Lord is a redeemer of lost time so make sure you Sabbath.


  • Before you take your Social Security benefits early make sure you’ve explored the benefits and consequences of your decision. This author points out three key points: you only have 12 months to change your mind, your decision can reduce someone else’s benefits, and there’s less incentive to wait than there used to be. This information is helpful, but in conclusion there is an advertisement at the bottom for a service that you may or may not need. Rather than recommend his last piece, I suggest you listen to the Lord and decide as He leads you. “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it.’” (Isiah 30:21 NIV)


  • “The idea of building wealth through passive income has understandable appeal, especially if you’re worried about being able to save enough from your work earnings to meet your retirement goals…Passive income includes regular earnings from a source other than an employer or contractor. The IRS says passive income can come from just 2 sources: rental income or a business in which an individual does not actively participate. Examples include book royalties and dividend-paying stocks. Investopedia defines passive income as “earnings an individual derives from a rental property, limited partnership or other enterprise in which he or she is not actively involved.” Popular culture, however, defines it as “any money you earn while sitting on a beach sipping mojitos.” Financial coach and expert Todd Tresidder thinks it falls somewhere between the two, defining passive income as the money you earn from a project or investment after you’ve made an initial contribution of time or money.” It takes work to build a passive income generating asset. All things in this world operate under the principle of seed, time, and harvest. You have to be willing to put in the time to reap the harvest. This article provides 5 passive income strategies as an example: selling information products, rental income, affiliate marketing, peer to peer lending, and dividend yielding stocks. Each strategy requires diligent work, and I suggest you find a strategy that works for you, and seek the Lord. If you want to build wealth, build assets that generate passive income that is greater than your monthly expenses. If you were to lose your job today, do you have any passive income generating assets that can replace your income? The game Cashflow Classic simulates life with and without passive income. If you want to be wise walk with wise people.

Please let me know if you have any anything I can agree with you in prayer about, or if you’re in need of a financial check up.

“But those who want the best for me, Let them have the last word—a glad shout!— and say, over and over and over, “ GOD is great—everything works together for good for his servant.” I’ll tell the world how great and good you are, I’ll shout Hallelujah all day, every day.”

Psalm 35:27-28 MSG


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