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While Christianity is filled with competing voices like anything else, there are many things that I see as common sense. One of these is caring for the environment. Maybe I am naive, but I think it only makes sense that God would want everyone to care for the world that God created. Why would any creator create something and not care if anyone destroyed it? To put it simply, God DOES care whether we preserve the environment that we are responsible for.

This may sound a little idealistic to many of my readers. And in many ways, it is. It is idealistic. It is one of those “perfect world” attributes. It’s idealistic because real life is much more complicated than caring for the environment or not. Most of us probably drove to work today, emitting CO2 along the way. It’s easy for someone else to say that you need to take public transportation, live within walking distance, or bike to work, but it’s much more complicated than that, isn’t it? We obviously need to work and earn a living for our families, but at what cost to the environment. Until recently, there was no easy solution to this dilemma.

What’s changed? The introduction of the hybrid or the eco friendly car. Along with the invention of hybrid or electric cars, we have seen the fuel efficiency increased of cars and the potential for decreasing the CO2 emissions. Today, I’d like to talk about whether the hybrid is a necessity for bible-believing Christians.

Green Bible Verses

For those who don’t agree with my basic premise that environmental concern is a Christian theme, here are several passages that illustrate the green theme within the Bible.

Genesis 1:31

“God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good.”

Numbers 35:33-34

“‘Do not pollute the land where you are… 34 Do not defile the landwhere you live and where I dwell, for I, the Lord, dwell among the Israelites.’”

 Psalm 19:1

“The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.”

Revelation 11:18b

…destroying those who destroy the earth. 

While I don’t have time to give the context of each of the above passages, suffice it to say that each one supports this idea of preserving God’s creation. Throughout the Bible we are told to preserve that which God has given us. Why would the earth be any different?

Why You Should Get a Hybrid

Getting a hybrid car may seem like an unnecessary expense (or too costly of an expense to justify the reward), but it is well worth it. In fact, there are a number of benefits for getting a hybrid.

  • Lower Fuel Costs – The obvious savings on gas is huge. If you look at the best green cars and see that they get 50% better MPG, that means your fuel costs are 2/3 of what they used to be.
  • Less CO2 Emissions – While this may also be obvious, people fail to realize how much lower Carbon Dioxide levels benefit them. It not only means less pollution to the earth, but also lower rates of environment-caused diseases/medical conditions.
  • Increased Focus on Hybrids by Manufacturers – Another benefit of buying a green car is that it notifies manufacturers that consumers want more fuel efficient cars. Manufacturers want to make a profit, so they will target their products appropriately. Think about how big of a change the car industry could have if consumers demanded more fuel efficient cars. It is starting to move that way now with completely electric cars, but it still has a long way to go.

While it may take a few more years for hybrid cars to become popular, it doesn’t mean that you should wait. The increased affordability and instant savings in gas should be enough. If it isn’t, consider your ethical commitments to preserve that which God created.

CFDs are derivatives products through which you are able to trade on the movements of the live market price and you do not need to own the underlying instrument on which the contract is based. Regardless of the fact that the markets are rising or falling you can speculate on the future movement of the market prices. CFDs are contracts and they are made between the buyer and seller of the CFDs to exchange the differences in the prices of the assets when the contract was opened and closed.

What are and how to trade CFD

CFDs are leverage instruments and you can benefit from the volatility of the various financial markets without actually owning the assets based on them. You gain access to the markets which you never had with a single trading account. In the next section we will discuss how to trade CFD effectively with XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade with an example.

Let us see how to trade CFD with an example.

You think that the share of an Airlines company will rise in the coming weeks as there is some positive news from the company. You decide to buy 1000 CFDs of that Airlines Company. The quoted price of the Airlines is 10.30 at the time of opening the CFD contract through your account at XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade.

The value to total position at the opening of trade is 10300. With the margin requirement of 10 percent, you deposit 1030 only.

After three days you see that the price actually rises and you decide to close the contract and take the profit. The price has gone to 14.00 and the value of total position now goes to 14000.

So, the profit here is 14000-10300 = 3700. There may be some commissions involved too with your broker. Here you see that by depositing only 1030 as margin you are able to gain 3700 which gives you a profit which is more than 2.5 times the initial deposit you did. Thus trading CFDs with margin is profitable if the trade goes to the right direction.

How to start trading CFD with XFR Financial (XTrade)?

The best way to trade CFDs is to start trading them online. Let us understand how to trade CFD online. It is easy and all you need is to find out a good CFD broker like XTrade or XFR Financial Ltdwho can provide good CFD services to you. Check the reputation and reliability of the broker like XFR Financial Ltd or XTrade with whom you want to start trading CFDs. Register a CFD trading account with the online CFD broker to get the account credentials. The online broker provides a trading platform for online traders where you can perform all the CFD trading and also perform the analysis activities. This is how to trade CFD online with an online broker.

Technology has become an integral part of the business experience. The power and reach of websites has been elevated thanks to the arrival of mobile internet technology. One particular element of the online experience that can be put to good use in any industry is social media. Websites and applications like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and more can ease communication goals, allow for quality engagement, and provide precise marketing strategies. The keys to any social media strategy involve organization and planning, which means there are a few ways to enhance the effectiveness of social networking in any business.

Separate Accounts

With a number of different social media sites available, utilizing different service for particular clients can greatly simplify the experience. For example, users attempting to secure access to a particular corporation, like the M1 Group for example, are usually seeking to connect to Azmi Mikati because of his position as CEO. By separating accounts dedicated to business from personal accounts, the total advantage of social media can be harnessed.

Pictures

People respond to visuals, and since cameras exist on just about every device imaginable, putting images to use in social media should be priority for any business. To eliminate any potential confusion, pictures should be focused, well-lighted, and clearly state a relationship to the company. For directory type of social media accounts, a professional portrait of the individual should be used because it could be the first thing any customer or potential employee sees.

Links

The gift of the internet allows pages, profiles, and social media accounts to be linked together in a finely choreographed dance of information. To avoid sending users to the wrong pages or locations, links should be verified. In addition, search engine optimization strategies utilize links, which means some adjustment might be in order to get the social media page to appear higher in search rankings.

Complete Profiles

Information is at the heart of the internet. Because social media deals with companies, rank and file employees, and executive officers, a complete profile is of the utmost importance. While a few short sentences can give users a clear look at the company or individual, a few well thought out paragraphs can remove all doubt. In short, a little more information is much better than too little information.

Easy to Find

Social media is a phenomenon that counts billions of users across the globe. The chance of similar names, duplications, and omissions making an account hard to find is always a distinct possibility. Companies, organizations, and individuals want to make sure their profiles are easily distinguished from the pack. A combination of images, names, and other indicating factors can help ease the process and make the company account much easier to find for customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders.

In the end, social media can be a valuable property for every business. Enhancing the effectiveness of the tool and elevating the reach of the page relies on a lot of factors. By using complete profiles, relevant pictures, and making the page easy to find, companies and organizations can increase traffic to websites, smooth communication challenges, and seize a number of marketing opportunities. Use of technology is increasing as companies strive to optimize processes, and social media is playing an integral part of those plans.

The Hard Truth about Bad Credit Loans

Corey —  September 11, 2015

Bad credit loans are the only avenues available for people with bad credit. The best way to avoid having to take them is to not have bad credit in the first place, but sometimes there is no other choice. Before you do take one of these credit loans, you need to learn some hard truths.

Expect High Interest

The better your credit record the better interest rates you can get. Those with negative credit records will have to pay higher interest rates. Look at payday loans and you will see that the interest rates can sometimes enter triple figures. Other financiers will not give you anything below double figures if you have bad credit.

This means you can end up paying far more for a loan than is necessary. 

Secured Only

To lenders, a bad credit record means you are untrustworthy when it comes to money. Nobody in his or her right mind is going to take a risk on you. Instead, they will ask you to provide some collateral. This is known a secured loan.

The most common type of collateral you will be asked to put forward is your home. Fail to pay the loan and you could find yourself on the streets.

Lower Limits

Need $5,000 to buy that new car? Forget about it if you have bad credit. It can be extremely difficult to find a reputable lender for bad credit loans let alone for higher limits. It is why credit cards designed for people with a negative credit score only have limits of a few hundred dollars. These loans are not as useful because you are heavily limited on how much you can apply for.

Higher Risk

Due to higher interest rates, you will have to make greater monthly repayments. This brings a higher risk on your part. Monthly repayments are less manageable, so you are going to have to put up with the fact you may find yourself in a situation where you are further damaging your credit record because of missed payments. We recommend carefully thinking about your finances prior to taking out a bad credit loan. Sometimes it’s better to not take out the loan at all. You don’t want your credit record driven further into the ground.

Scammers Galore

Many debtors take out bad credit loans because it is the last place they can turn. They are desperate for funding. This has led the industry to becoming a haven for people who are prepared to take advantage of people.

If you are searching for one of these loans, you have to examine the lender to ensure they are genuine. There are no guarantees because these are private companies and moneylenders. When checking out a lender, here are some of the points you should keep in mind:

  • Do you have to send out an upfront payment before you can obtain the loan?
  • Does the company have a history of unhappy customers and/or fraud?
  • Watch out for companies that claim to not care about your bad credit. No responsible lender takes such an approach to loaning money to people.
  • Is the company a copycat company?
  • Does the company have a physical office you can visit?

Handing Over Responsibility

Many bad credit loans require you to have a co-signer. The person who co-signs the loan must take on the responsibility of you paying back the loan. This is a lot of pressure and it’s an unfortunate hassle you’ll have to go through if you want to obtain the funds you want.

Conclusion

A bad credit loan may seem like an easy way to negate the problems associated with a bad credit record. It’s not all it seems, though. There are many harsh truths you are going to have to face if you want to go down this route. When in need of a loan, one can always leverage the equity of their home. It is important to become familiarized with Home Equity Loan Rates.

If you do decide to take out a bad credit loan, crunch the numbers and think carefully about whether this is the right option for you. Getting this wrong could make a bad credit record even worse, thus further ruining your ability to obtain loans.

On average when a loved one passes away the family can expect to need about $10,000. This number does vary based on the specific situation, however regardless of the number you do not want to leave your loved ones with financial burdens. You probably have considered investing in burial insurance yet you do not know how much burial insurance costs on average. Today, we will be discussing the average cost of burial insurance.

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If you have been injured in an accident or you have won a worker’s compensation claim or you have won a settlement for the wrongful death of a person you depended upon, then in all probability you will get the compensation you are to receive in the form of an annuity. This annuity pays out awards from any form or type of legal settlement or lottery winnings or as has been mentioned earlier, any award from worker’s compensation claim or personal injury case in the manner of a periodic inflow of cash which has a number of tax advantages added with it. This sort of annuity scheme is called a structured settlement which is the most beneficial and most advantageous way to avail money to be received in the form of settlements.

The many advantages of structured settlements

There are many benefits of structured settlements, the most noteworthy among which is the exemption from all form of taxes, be it state taxes or federal taxes or local income taxes. This means that the savings of the investor in structured settlements is much higher than the investor in any other securities. In addition to this the fact that this form of annuities does not depend at all on any economic condition and the payment can be scheduled upon your wish and desire and can be deferred or may begin immediately makes up for the icing on the cake.

What is a cash annuity and what are its variables?

If at any moment you find yourself trapped in any financial difficulties and are in dire need of cash then you may sell your annuity and upon the determination, receive a lump sum amount in lieu of your future annuity incomes. In determination of the amount one will have a number of factors need to be taken into consideration, these are as follows:

  • Interest rate – The interest rate plays a crucial factor in determining the amount one receives on sale of annuity.

  • Inflation – The ongoing rate of inflation in the economy will also affect the amount receivable on the sale of the annuity.

  • Payments- The amount of annuity that one wants to sell will also be a factor in determining the cash amount which will be received by the investor wanting to sell the annuity.

  • Demand- At last, the demand for the payments will also affect the scales when it comes to determining the amount that you are likely to receive upon sale of the annuity.

The benefits of selling structured settlement annuities

When one decides to sell off structured settlement annuities, he or she is subjected to a number of benefits. These advantages are enumerated as below:

  • Liquidity – Probably the most important factor of selling structured settlement annuities, liquidity assures you that you will not be cash strapped. This liquidity backs individuals not only financially but also mentally to go ahead with their dreams, plans and ideas. Whenever facing a financial crisis, you can encash your structured settlements and get lump sum cash.

  • Time value of money – When one sells structured settlement annuities, one can also take advantage of time value of money. Generally, it is seen that the rate of earning in case of the money in hand is much more than the amount which may be received on a future date. Inflation reduces the future value of money and hence the earning capacity is much more if the amount is given a chance to earn interest.

Slow annuities – what are they and what are their benefits

Slow annuities generally refer to normal annuities which cannot be cashed when one desires i.e. in the contract of the annuity with the company there is no clause as to sell the annuity before its maturity. These annuities are suitable for those who are assured that they will not be subjected to any financial problems. There are a number of benefits of these annuities as well such as:

  • Tax Free: Most of such annuities are freed from the burden of tax by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). This implies that your savings will be more.

  • Not affected by the economic condition: These annuities are not at all affected by the economic situation and are hence risk free.

Why opt for selling them off rather than clinging on?

When one has to make a choice between encashing now and letting the annuities continue, one must weigh in pros and cons of both and after careful analysis it will be evident that it is far better to go for the former:

  • An investor is assured of availability of cash in his hour of need.

  • Money which is in hand at the moment, if invested will fetch a lot much more than the amount which one will receive after a decade or any time period.

  • In case of slow annuities, IRS applies penalties and a huge surrender charge also has to be paid if one withdraws fund before the completion of age of 59 and half years.

  • With the rise in inflation the actual value of money that one receives in a slow annuity is less.

So, now that you are aware of all the factors as to why encashing now scores over slow annuities, invest wisely and efficiently!

Steps to Get Out of Debt

Corey —  October 22, 2013

Getting out of debt is only a matter of a few steps, but that doesn’t make it easy. While those who are debt free may claim that it’s easy, you got into debt for a reason. Whether it is a justified reason or not, there is a cause for you being in debt. You may have had to take out student loans to get through college, or you may have collected consumer debt as a result of a few bad decisions.

Regardless of the reason, in order to get yourself out of debt, you need to not only make smart choices, but understand how and why you got yourself into this reason in the first place. Below are a few steps that you can follow when trying to get out of debt.

Step 1 – Evaluate Why You are In Debt (Be Honest)

The first and most important step is to be honest with yourself. Many people try to get out of debt by simply earning more money or finding a cheaper interest rate. The problem is that debt often comes from not being able to control your spending. If this applies to you, admit it and move on. Acknowledge that you made some crappy choices and that you want to do better. Similar to getting over any other addiction, you have to admit your struggle in order to get over it.

Step 2 – Control Your Spending

The next thing you need to do, before you even think about paying down your debt is to limit the damage. In other words, don’t keep digging a deeper hole. You need to limit your spending. Interest rates will make your debt bad enough – don’t compound the badness.

Step 3 – Come Up with a Plan

The next thing you need to do is to come up with a strategy and concrete plan to get out of debt. This means looking at calculators or you may even want to use a car loan repayment calculator if you have a car loan. Each plan is going to be unique to each person. You have to figure out what works for you and write down the steps that you are going to take.

Step 4 – Stick to Your Plan

The second to last step is to carry out the plan. If you plan consists of earning $50 more dollars from babysitting, and not eating out, then do that. It’s easy enough to create a plan, but it’s even harder to carry it out. It’s going to take a test of will and hard work to get through it, but if you focus on the benefit, you can do it.

Step 5 – Celebrate

The last and equally important step is to celebrate once you are out of debt. It’s doesn’t have to be anything that special, but you should do something. This is a way to positively reinforce the good behavior. Without this, you could easily slip back into debt.

Getting out of debt may seem easy on paper, but it’s much harder in real life. Find people who can hold your accountable and support you through this process. And lastly, don’t give up! You can do it!