February 22, 2017

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-02-16/norway-central-bank-chief-warns-of-sharp-drop-in-wealth-fund

Norway’s central bank governor sharpened his warning on rising spending of oil revenue as he drew up scenarios for a 50 percent loss of capital over the next 10 years for the world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund. Governor Oystein Olsen said that the continued rise in oil cash spending, which now accounts for about 20 percent of the budget and 8 percent of gross domestic product, must now be halted to protect the $900 billion fund, the world’s largest sovereign pool of cash. “With a high level of oil revenue spending, there’s a risk of a sharp reduction in the fund’s capital,” Olsen said in the traditional Annual Address in Oslo Thursday. “This could, for example, happen if a global recession triggers both a decline in oil revenue and low or negative returns on the fund’s capital.”  This conservative government was forced to dip into this fund for the first-time to cover its budget and protect the economy amid plunging oil prices. The Norway central bank oversees the fund, and has been able to have outflows without selling assets, however there are worst case scenarios. For example, it sees a 1 percent chance of a 50 percent decline over 10 years if spending is kept at the current level of about 3 percent of the fund. If spending is raised to 4 percent that probability rises to about 5 percent. If the fund’s allocation to stocks is boosted to 75 percent from 60 percent, which is currently being discussed, the probabilities rise even further to about 2 percent and 6 percent, respectively. The government had come up with various strategies to replenish the fund such as increasing the stock portion in the fund. In the end, it’s a combination of monetary policy and fiscal spending which has saved Norway’s economy. “It must be recognized, however, that the longer-term challenges facing the Norwegian economy can’t be resolved by spending more oil revenue and keeping interest rates low,” he said in the speech, arguing the Norwegian economy needs more legs to stand on. My concern is the effect of our aging generations globally. As our baby boomers reach the retirement age, I believe there will be a shift in the stock markets, and this shift will affect pension plans, and a lot of the wealth funds globally. The question is how will these countries find ways to continue to increase their gross domestic product? How will the coming change from oil to electric affect established industries? Just as important, how will the changes in the next decade affect you?

http://www.business2community.com/social-media/social-video-dynamic-duo-marketing-2017-01777615#XkuWiUK8RxE1hB7I.97

The boundaries of social media are endless and the number of people you can reach through it is limitless. The impact social media has on our society can pose many disadvantages, but it presents many advantages for companies. Businesses can build an advantage over their competitors and reach a wider market than ever before by adopting creative ways to brand themselves. Traditional marketing tactics like direct mailing, and telemarketing have all gone downwards. With advancements like ad block technologies, the world’s simply gone numb to conventional strategies businesses used to market their brand. What’s a compelling way to win over your audience in today’s digital world? By creating unique and interesting content, of course. And what epitomizes unique and interesting content more than video? Video is undoubtedly the most effective form of visual content in regards to driving brand engagement. The world’s riding the wave of digital transformation so it’s necessary marketers do so as well. The author suggests five simple tips to integrate video into your social media strategy: create killer content, engage with everyone, live stream, partner with influencers, and move fast. When creating content, it’s important to ensure that it is relevant, that you’re knowledgeable, and credible. Another important factor is being able to inject humor and to keep it lighthearted. If your audience is for a specific target market, then adjust your content as necessary. Listening to your audience and replying is important in showing that you’re paying attention to your audience. Live streaming is an important tool to build your audience too, because it allows your audience to get a personal glimpse behind how you operate, and makes the audience feel a part of the process. Influencer marketing is soaring and this is the optimal time to hop on the bandwagon. Influencers are masters of their craft who have a loyal following, regardless of how big it is. A big segment of successful influencer marketing is achieved through video. Just go on YouTube, the holy land of influencers (and where influencer and brand partnering can easily go unnoticed) and you will see a sea of this marketing strategy. You can significantly increase reach by partnering with the right influencers and are likely to reach more authentic leads and potential customers than traditional marketing. Finally, topics and trends are constantly changing so it is important to stay relevant, however do not sacrifice your good quality content by trying to stay current. Video and social are the cool kids on the block in 2017 and beyond. Leverage your social strategy with the powers of video today. Video is a forceful tool in driving social engagement and interaction. Capitalize on these powerful tools to boost your brand’s value and ultimately your bottom-line. Note: This in-depth guide by MarketPro may help you start your in-house video production initiative for as low as $200. Download free. If you are going to build your digital brand, then it’s important to not try to do it alone. Find a mentor, and learn from the person. If you want to be wise then walk with wise people, and remember a companion with fools will suffer a lot of harm. I often encourage the members of my small group to consider creating a YouTube channel, or some form of social media to get their presence out into the world. If you’re already using social media as a consumer, then why not use it and be a producer. Even if you don’t make a monetary return on your investment, you as an individual have a lifetime of experiences which some one of this world may see as valuable. Your life is your legacy.
Items in italics are direct quotes from the articles above

If you need are interested in creating a budget, then contact me for a financial checkup in the contact me section. Also, learn more about Mustard Seed in the mustard seed section.

For this week, I’ve included VETERAN MINDSET – Military Motivation (ft. Jocko Willink) from the RedFrost Motivation YouTube channel.

“If you think you know it all, you’re a fool for sure; real survivors learn wisdom from others.” Proverbs 28:26 MSG

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February 15, 2017

http://www.investopedia.com/articles/financialcareers/07/portfolio_manager.asp

One of the most coveted careers in the financial industry is that of the portfolio manager. Portfolio managers work with a team of analysts and researchers, and are ultimately responsible for making the final investment decisions for a fund – or asset-management vehicle. While a portfolio manager is a position that a person must work his or her way up to over the course of a career, there are a few initial steps that you can take to help you on your way to being a portfolio manager. The author recommends that if you are in college and are interested in this type of career, then you need to have taken courses in business, economics, accounting and math. Many portfolio managers also possess the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charter. In order to achieve this designation, candidates must demonstrate a proficiency in financial and accounting terms and techniques, economics and quantitative analysis, as well as prove the required work experience. Portfolio managers are usually promoted from the position of research analyst. A research analyst has a framework on buying and selling a security as well as understanding the economic conditions that can affect a security. There are many types of portfolio manager positions determined by the size of a fund, type of investment vehicles, and investing style. A portfolio manager’s day involves checking the status of the financial markets, and keeping on top of current events. The manager will meet with analysts and make final decisions on the direction of securities in a fund. Managers also meet with high-level and or potential investors.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/5-surprising-things-you-can-deduct-from-your-income-taxes-2015-02-27

“Can I deduct this?” When Americans sit down to fill out their income tax forms on or before the April 15 deadline, that’s the question they’ll likely ask the most. They may be shocked by how often the answer is “yes,” and the sheer variety of expenses they can deduct. Most people know that business-related items are usually tax deductible — no matter how odd. That could include body oil for a masseuse or professional body builder, says Dave Du Val, vice president of customer advocacy at TaxAudit.com, which is based in Sacramento, Calif. Ditto, free beer used for a sales promotion. But a recent survey showed that only 51% of over 1,000 people understood mostly basic questions about their income tax, and the estimated average $2,840 tax refund for 2017 likely does not include the refunds that people did not know they could claim.  Per the author, here are five things you can deduct from your income taxes: swimming pools, abortion, gambling losses, service dogs and dog food, gender confirmation surgery. In the case of the swimming pool, this deduction was allowed because the pool is used for swimming therapy and prescribed per a doctor. “If you have gambling gains, you can deduct a large number of expenses to go to Vegas up to the point where it offsets much or all of the gains,” says Scott Bishop, director of financial planning at STA Wealth Management in Houston. You can deduct your losses, but no more than your winnings in that tax year. Gambling income includes winnings from lotteries, raffles, horse races and casinos, and fair market value of prizes such as cars and trips. “To deduct your losses, you must be able to provide receipts, tickets, statements or other records,” the IRS states. For casinos, you need copies of check cashing records. Some states don’t give deductions on gambling losses, however. In this article, various examples are presented. It’s important to understand that tax avoidance is legal and tax evasion is illegal.  Tax avoidance as defined by www.investopedia.com is the use of legal methods to modify an individual’s financial situation to lower the amount of income tax owed. This is generally accomplished by claiming the permissible deductions and credits. This practice differs from tax evasion, which uses illegal methods, such as underreporting income to avoid paying taxes. It’s about paying the amount in taxes that you owe, and taking advantage of every possible tax deduction that is legally available to lower your tax liability. There are two certainties if you live in the U.S., death and taxes. One of these can be lowered, and the other will come sooner or later. It’s important to keep as much income as possible to create a legacy for your children’s children and the world around you.

If you need are interested in creating a budget, then contact me for a financial checkup in the contact me section. Also, learn more about Mustard Seed in the mustard seed section.

For this week, I’ve included CHANGE YOUR MIND AND BECOME SUCCESSFUL – Best Motivational Videos Compilation for 2017 from the Be Inspired YouTube channel.

“If you think you know it all, you’re a fool for sure; real survivors learn wisdom from others.” Proverbs 28:26 MSG

February 8, 2017

http://www.thepennyhoarder.com/most-common-credit-union-myths/

When you’re looking for a new place to park money and cash checks, it’s tempting to just pop into the nearest bank and open an account. Not so fast, my friend. You might want to give credit unions a look because they’re a great alternative to standard banking options. There are 4 myths that the author reveals aren’t true: “I’ll never be able to find a free credit union ATM”,  “Banks have better consumer technology than credit unions”,  “Credit unions only want customers with high bank balances”, and “You have to belong to a union or military branch to join a credit union”. Several of the credit unions are plugged into a co-op network which allows access to over 30,000 ATMs nationwide. Also, most credit unions have the same online banking technology as banks that’s either equal or even superior to some banks online banking. The reason is because the same company that creates the software for banks can in turn do the same for credit unions. Credit unions also have accounts that have low minimum balance requirements like banks, and finally membership is open to almost anyone in credit unions. As a voting member, you help elect the Board of Directors and can even show up at public meetings to offer input and opinions. My credit union takes benefits a step further. It offers discounts on everything from satellite television service to home security systems. It even provides access to a free budgeting app so I can hoard my pennies responsibly.  Credit unions are insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, the same type of regulatory agency as the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, which oversees banks. It’s worth considering a credit union to give yourself extra options when considering loans or higher interest rates for the sake of safe returns.

http://www.inc.com/associated-press/trump-financial-deregulation-dodd-frank-executive-order.html

President Donald Trump is taking his first steps aimed at scaling back financial services regulations, and the Republican-run Congress cast a vote early Friday signaling that it’s eager to help. The president will sign an executive order Friday that will direct the Treasury secretary to review the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial oversight law, which reshaped financial regulation after the 2008-09 financial crisis. The president would be meeting with top CEOs and banking executives at a meeting at the White House on Friday as of the writing of this article. One of the attendees is Jamie Dimon CEO of JP Morgan Chase. “There’s nobody better to tell me about Dodd-Frank than Jamie, so you’re going to tell me about it,” Trump said. He told the group that he expects his administration “to be cutting a lot out of Dodd-Frank because frankly I have so many people, friends of mine that have nice businesses that can’t borrow money. They just can’t get any money because the banks just won’t let ’em borrow because of the rules and regulations of Dodd-Frank.” It’s likely that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) will be reviewed because of its ability to police consumer products such as mortgages, credit cards, student loans etc. Dodd-Frank has been viewed as many critics as an example of government overreach. It’ll be interesting to see what banks will do if the regulations are loosened.

If you need are interested in creating a budget, then contact me for a financial checkup in the contact me section. Also, learn more about Mustard Seed in the mustard seed section.

For this week, I’ve included Focus On One Goal At A Time – Motivational Video from the Endless Motivation YouTube channel.

“If you think you know it all, you’re a fool for sure; real survivors learn wisdom from others.” Proverbs 28:26 MSG

 

February 1, 2017

http://www.daveramsey.com/blog/how-teachers-can-be-millionaires

“Money is a wonderful servant but a terrible master,” says 72-year-old Terry. This retired teacher grew up on a farm in Minnesota and never made more than $50,000 per year in her career. Today, her net worth is $1.4 million. Terry advocates changing your mindset. Especially through finding a mentor and creating and following a plan and a goal. Her vehicle of investing was mutual funds. I recommend becoming familiar with all four known asset classes and being focused yet diverse. It’s important to create value, add value and share value. Use your mind and creativity, and when you feel overwhelmed seek help. At the end of today’s blog, I’ll include Terry’s video feature from the Dave Ramsey show.

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-31/the-2-trillion-woman-who-s-turning-around-pimco

Walk down a side alley in Munich, beneath apartments with net curtains in the windows, past figures of female superheroes on a cafe storefront, and you come to the unprepossessing headquarters of a $2 trillion asset manager. On the fifth floor, an elegantly dressed woman leans forward to field questions. She’s focused. In her hands is a coffee mug emblazoned with the word “integrity” in six languages. Jackie Hunt is one of the most important women in global finance. She oversees Allianz’s asset management and U.S. life insurance divisions. In July, she took over responsibility for Pacific Investment Management Co, and Allianz Global Investors. A trained accountant with little background in money management, she’s taken on a formidable challenge. The industry is under pressure to consolidate as fees decline, ultralow interest rates erode returns, and investors abandon active managers for low-cost passive strategies. Pimco, the firm based in Newport Beach, Calif., that Allianz bought in 2000, could hardly loom larger on her agenda. Three years of bleeding have cut Pimco’s assets by about a quarter, to $1.47 trillion. The article itself is interesting, because it tracks her career to her current position, and explores her strategy for Pimco and AGI. Toward the end of the interview, Hunt talks about how being a mother of two teenagers has taught her patience. She says she likes to know what makes people tick. She’s also learned that being dogmatic creates unnecessary conflict. Only time will tell if these life skills prove useful in overseeing her new charges.

If you need are interested in creating a budget, then contact me for a financial checkup in the contact me section.

For this week, I’ve included Millionaire – Terry from Colorado Springs, CO from the Dave Ramsey Show YouTube channel.

“If you think you know it all, you’re a fool for sure; real survivors learn wisdom from others.” Proverbs 28:26 MSG