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Are you interested in investing?

admin on April 21st, 2012

Whether you are an employee at a large corporation, self-employed entrepreneur or a rich guy who has just landed on a briefcase full of cash, there are always side-earning possibilities we all can take advantage of. A friend of mine, who used to work as a journalist, and at some point started trading and investing in the stock market as a side job, ended up quitting his job and started working as a broker for himself full-time. It just made him enough money. And that’s the truth.

However, let’s be honest, not all people are made for stock market. It requires knowledge, it requires skills, experience, initial bankroll, and in my opinion, most of all, self-discipline. I might have all the other attributes that being a trader or investor requires, but if I lack self-discipline, I can never become a successful investor. And that’s a fact. And I really was talking about myself.

But if you have the necessary self-discipline, and are interested in trading, you could take a look at CBOE VIX Options and Futures. VIX Options and Futures are offered only at CBOE and CBOE Futures Exchange. VIX is a risk powertool that helps you manage risk, leverage volatility and diversify your portfolio to minimize the risks in the market due to its strong negative correlation to the broad market.

Interested in learning more about it?

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5 Do Not Miss Tax Credits

admin on April 21st, 2012

Income Tax time is always a difficult time if you find you have to pay.  Many times sadly the difference between paying and a refund can be as simple as knowing what tax credits are available and claiming them.  I read an article recently that claimed that over 1 trillion dollars in tax credits is missed by tax payers every year.  Thats right I said 1 TRILLION dollars!!  Some of these credits are missed because we dont know they exist and others because we dont know we are eligible for them.  The difference with a tax credit is that they pay you.  Unlike a deduction which simply brings your tax liability to $0, tax credits will pay you any remaining amount after your taxes for the year are cover AND are calculated last.  SO if your deductions reduce your tax payment to $0 then your credits equal a refund check to you even if you didnt have any extra withholding for the year.

Here are a few of the most popular and common tax credits.  You might be surprised that you missed one too.

  1. Earned Income Credit (EIC) – This credit is NOT just for people with children.  Although the highest credit from this is for families with 3 or more children living at home, even single people with low income can be eligible for this credit of up to more then $5000 (depending on your income).
  2. Child Tax Credit – Have children?  Did you know that based on your annual adjusted gross income you may be eligible for up to $1000 per child.
  3. Dependent Care Credit – Do you pay for child care?  Did you know that as well as being a possible deduction you may also qualify for a tax credit for a portion of the money you pay for child care each year?
  4. Retirement Savings Credit – Do you save?  Is money taken out of your check for an IRA or other retirement fund.  This credit, sometimes called the “savers credit”, will actually give you a tax credit for saving for your retirement.  Qualification are:
    • You’re age 18 or older.
    • You aren’t a full-time student.
    • You aren’t claimed as a dependent on someone else’s return.
    • Your AGI doesn’t exceed $27,750 ($55,500 if Married Filing Jointly, or $41,625 for Head of Household).
  5. Energy Efficiency Credit – When you replace the water heater or furnace, did you know that it may actually pay to get the more expensive unit that will cost less monthly to operate?  Buying certain high efficiency energy devices for your home may make you eligible to receive a tax credit for the higher cost of buying some that is  an energy and environmentally better device.

Ask your tax guy if there are any credits you missed and get the maximum refund possible.

Debts; The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

admin on March 15th, 2012

I’d be lying if I said that debt is always a bad thing. Well, in a sense that it will always have to be paid back, it is. But there are other things to consider.

Recent studies have showed that debt and credit cards can have positive effects as well. One of them is the feeling of empowerment. The studies showed that carrying a debt raised people’s self-esteem, both among young adults and adults. However, it can be considered partly positive only and only then, when the acknowledgement of negatively felt debt and credit card effects are 100% admitted. Only this way you can actually be responsible with all of your debts and never let them get out of hand.

As a home owner (current or future) you can probably also understand the positive side of debt. If you had to pay $100k or $500k upfront for your new home, only a few of us would actually own our houses and apartments. Even the ownership of a new car – could you afford to pay $20k upfront?

These are just couple of things the world of debt has made possible. And we could also add that certain credit cards offer cash backs, free travel insurance and other promotions that may make our lives just a bit easier. So by the end of the day, debt is not 100% a bad thing.

However, everything’s good until a certain point. While getting a home loan or car lease or a credit card packed with bonuses isn’t necessarily a bad thing, we have all seen what’s happening in the world right now and we have all seen the results of borrowing too much. The truth is that not just someone from our neighborhood is borrowing too much, actually it’s 2/3 of our neighborhood.

When is a debt too big? That’s easy. The debt is too big if you can’t afford to pay the monthly payments anymore. In my humble opinion, if you have a job now that pays for all the monthly payments without any problem, then it’s good. Now you lose your job and you have no income anymore.

Imagine that happens. Do you have enough emergency-savings that will keep you alive and allow you to keep paying back your debts for at least the next 6 months? Even if you don’t get a job within that time? I have a feeling that most people don’t have that emergency fund. And if you don’t have that, this means your debt is too big already now. It’s time to get out of debt with the help of Incharge Debt Solutions. It’s a 14-year-old non-profit company and they have helped thousands of individuals to solve their financial problems.

Incharge Debt Solutions in short

  • They have been in business for over 14 years.
  • They have helped thousands of people struggling with debt.
  • They have A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau.
  • They are members of and adhere to the professional standards of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC).
  • They are accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA).
  • They are a HUD-approved housing counseling agency.