thumb12.jpgDoes your spouse or partner complain that you’re spending too much money? When your credit card bill arrives, are you surprised to you find that you charged more during the month than you thought? Does your closet contain lots of shoes or clothes that you almost never wear? Do you own every gadget known to man (or woman)? Do you come home from the mall with items you had no intention of buying? Do you spend money on things that you didn’t realize you needed until you saw them on display in the store?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you probably suffer from impulse spending. When people are unable to save money for the things that are really important to them, like a house, a new car, a vacation, or retirement, impulse spending is often the culprit. If you don’t have specific financial goals, it’s more difficult to resist spending money on items that don’t really have any meaning to you.

Once you’re already saving regularly towards your most important financial goals, you may want to have a fund to use specifically for occasionally spending money on unplanned items. Then you can indulge in occasional impulse spending without jeopardizing your financial future.

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…unless the stocks you own ARE beating the market!

2002-10-09-sydney-bear-bull-stock-markets-like-flock-530.JPGThere is no way on earth you could ever beat the market if the stocks you hold are not keeping up with the market. And hopefully, staying ahead of the market.

But yet, that’s what lots of people try to do. They’d rather keep all the dogs in their account and maybe “take a flyer” on one stock, hoping for a miracle. It’s like trying to win a Derby horse race with your Donkey. It just ain’t gonna happen.

But hey, maybe you don’t want to beat the market overall. Maybe you just want to own the BEST semiconductor stocks, or the best retailers, or the best utilities.

Seriously, how would you even KNOW if your stocks or mutual funds are beating the market, or are the best names to own in their group? Well, I can tell you this…the best indicator I’ve ever seen in twenty-plus years in the business has been relative strength. What is relative strength? It is simply the measure of how your mutual fund or stock is doing, compared to a group of other stocks, funds or indexes…or the market overall.

Perhaps you want to compare Intel with other semiconductor stocks. Maybe you want to compare Microsoft with the S&P 500 Index. Maybe you want to compare your mutual fund against the Dow Jones Industrial Average or the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

This is a very easy calculation. Here is how you do it: Simply divide the price of your stock or mutual fund against whatever yardstick you choose. You’ll get a fractional number as the result. But slide the decimal over so you can work with whole numbers. Then we begin plotting that result daily on a point & figure chart.

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Imagine, you need details of your last few transactions, but are stuck in a traffic jam on way to the bank. How you wish you could get the details on your mobile phone!

atts.jpgWell, you really can ‘bank’ on your mobile phone today, provided you have opted for the service from your bank. Just SMS (short message service) your bank’s customer service number and get the details in a few seconds – that’s how simple it can get, if you have a mobile phone, a personal identification number and a phone banking number from your bank. It’s the same with paying utility bills, transferring money to someone, whether in your home country or abroad, and making a purchase at a retail store.

Most banks already allow customers to make basic transactions over the phone. Banking might be getting a little easier than that. One of the largest banks, recently announced plans for a mobile banking service. To use the service, mobile users download an application to their cell phones, just like you would for a game or song, and use their cell phones to check balances, transfer funds, pay bills, or even find an ATM.

Having the ability to bank using a cell phone is an innovative idea, but will it make it easier for consumers to pay their bills? Perhaps. If your credit card payment is due today, this mobile banking service might allow you to pay it the second you remember it, rather than risk a late payment due to forgetfulness.

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funnymoney2.jpgBuy land. They’ve stopped making it.” – Mark Twain

Money won’t buy happiness, but it will pay the salaries of a large research staff to study the problem.” – Bill Vaughn

I made my money the old fashioned way. I was very nice to a wealthy relative right before he died.” – Malcolm Forbes

If all the rich people in the world divided up their money among themselves, there wouldn’t be enough to go around.” – Christina Stead

I finally know what distinguishes man from other beasts: financial worries.” – Jules Renard

A letter from a college student

The parents of a Northwestern student who just headed back from holiday received this letter: Dear Mom and Dad: Univer$ity life i$ $o wonderful! Cla$$e$ and $e$$ion are intere$ting, my cla$$mate$ are the be$t! But after $pending all my ca$h on Chri$tma$ pre$ent$, I am in a little need for $ome $pending money for book$ and $uch. But I don’t want to $end the wrong $ignal$ home.

Insufficient Funds

A
young college co-ed came running in tears to her father. “Dad, you gave me some terrible financial advice!” “I did? What did I tell you?” said the dad. “You told me to put my money in that big bank, and now that big bank is in trouble.” “What are you talking about? That’s one of the largest banks in the state,” he said. “There must be some mistake.” “I don’t think so,” she sniffed. “They just returned one of my checks with a note saying, ‘Insufficient Funds’.”

Saving money
Mother had decided to trim her household budget wherever possible, so instead of having a dress dry-cleaned she washed it by hand. Proud of her savings, she boasted to my father, just think, Fred, we are five dollars richer because I washed this dress by hand. Good, my dad quickly replied. Wash it again!

Gone are the days of mid 50’s and 60’s when a family could survive upon a single income. Today the inflation and economic factors are such that survival on two incomes has become hand to mouth. Going by this trend we can very well imagine what the future holds for us. Two incomes certainly will not be enough. It’s best to prepare for the worst and expect the best instead of vice versa. Its best then to have multiple incomes flows into your finances than to have an insecure future. The concept and importance of extra income becomes all the more apparent.

make-extra-money.jpgPeople who have been well-to-do have always known and taken care of this. If one income dries up, one can always fall back upon the other streams of income, and if all go well you can only get richer, no harm in that. Ordinary and average living people have always been in a dilemma regarding this. Loss of one income really affects them adversely and it would take years of hard work before any normalcy returns. Not to mention, the rippling effects of financial distress that could cause a lot of heartburn and unwanted emotional disturbances.

Having diverse sources of income or extra income gives you a backup to fall back upon. If one source vanishes, you should not feel the difference. One should have enough time to reorganize and regroup, that’s it, and you are back on the happiness highway, safe and sound. The importance of extra income and extra sources of incomes is not lost on anyone today, therefore the want and rush.

Extra Income can be of two kinds – Linear and Residual.

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Are you short for month at the end of each month? Do you have 5-10 credit cards, all maxed out to the limit? Do you forget to pay your bills on time? If you have answered, “Yes,” to any of these questions, don’t feel bad and don’t worry. I have some tips that can help you improve your financial picture: Create a Bill-Paying System

forms_paper_stack.jpgThe first thing you’ll need to do is to go out and pick up some colored hanging folders. If you don’t have a file cabinet, get a file box that you can find in any stationery store or discount department store. They’re very inexpensive. Then, make a folder for each expense. Use one color for your bank statements, another for your utility bills, and another for credit cards. Keep the system pretty simple or complexity could let procrastination) take over.

Each day when your mail arrives, separate it immediately into what you don’t need and want to throw away and your bills and other things that need attention right away. Do the things that are needed and either pay the bill right away or put them in a central place where you can retrieve them when the money is available for paying the bills. This could be the front of a desk drawer, for instance, or even a basket on top of your desk. Just be sure that nothing goes into that basket besides your bills.

Online banking is a great way to streamline the bill paying process. Bank security is top notch, so the question of you having a problem online is really out of the equation. The chances are very slim. So, what you do is you take each bill that you receive and you put the information needed into the online banking account. You don’t have to do this all at once. Wait until your next bill comes in and do it one or two at a time. That way, it seems less daunting, and remember, you only have to do it once. After all the information has been entered, paying a bill becomes as simple as clicking a button, a mouse button, that is.

When you’re finished paying your bills, be it online or off, put the paid bills with the date of payment written on the front, into one of the colored file folders. That way, when tax time comes around, all your financial records will be at your fingertips.

Don’t carry around huge wads of cash or a debit card linked to your bank account, either. If you prefer the convenience of plastic, open a separate bank account and put a monthly “allowance” into it for yourself. When the money’s gone, you’ll just have to wait until next month to get more. This should help you to budget your spending and hold back on those impulse purchases a little.

And if you want to buy something, decide whether you need it or just simply want it. If you think you need it, just walk away and take 25 hours or longer to consider the purchase. Once it’s out of your site, you may find that it’s really a want, disguising itself as a need.

Before you pay any bill, any expense for the month, you should always be paying yourself. Ten percent of your income, every time you get money or a paycheck, should go into a savings account. If you don’t have a savings account, get one and never, ever use it except for depositing. Your savings account is for huge expenses, like buying a house, repairing your car, or retirement.

Put at least one of these tips into practice and see how well it works for you. I guarantee that you’ll be back to try another.

market-timing.jpgMarket timing is the most important expertise you must master to become a successful trader. This is where the majority of stock market traders fall by the wayside. Buy too early and you are squeezed out on any temporary falls. Sell short too early and you are squeezed out on any up moves, even if, after a few days or so, you are proved correct in your analysis..

Most of the pundits and so called “experts” will tell you that stock market timing doesn’t work, that it’s dangerous, and that “buy and hold” is the best and only way to invest.

If you want to be a successful stock market timer, you need three key elements: A system that actually works. Discipline to follow the system. Patience to stick with the system long enough to make it work for you.

And it’s tough to do all three. Here’s why:

Most market timing systems don’t work. Or don’t work consistently enough to be valid. Some will work in trending markets but get slaughtered during flat times. Most systems don’t work in all markets.

Investors lack the discipline to follow a proven system. Once an investor finds a viable program, he or she needs the discipline to follow it. Sadly, some either can’t or won’t do that. When they let their own judgment or intuitions interfere, they don’t get the results they want or could have enjoyed by simply following the buy and sell signals they receive.

Investors lack the patience to stick with their system. The fact is, no method will win every trade, and investors without patience will find themselves hopping from advisor to advisor with no rewards to show for their efforts.

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Dollar-cost averaging is a strategy in which a person invests a fixed dollar amount on a regular basis, usually monthly purchase of shares in a mutual fund. When the fund’s price declines, the investor receives slightly more shares for the fixed investment amount, and slightly fewer when the share price is up. It turns out that this strategy results in lowering the average cost slightly, assuming the fund fluctuates up and down

dollarcost1.jpgDollar-cost averaging is carried out simply by investing a fixed dollar amount into your mutual fund (or other investment instrument) at pre-determined intervals. The amount of money invested at each interval remains the same over time, but the number of shares purchased varies based on the market value of the shares.

When the markets are up, you buy fewer shares per dollar invested due to the higher cost per share. When the markets are down, the situation is reversed and you purchase a greater of number of shares per dollar invested. It’s a strategic way to invest because you buy more shares when the cost is low, so you get an average cost per share over time, meaning you don’t have to invest the time and effort to monitor market movements and strategically time your investments.

Dollar-cost averaging – the basic premise behind employer-sponsored savings plans like is the practice of investing a set amount each month in a particular investment vehicle. As the share price of your investment fluctuates, so will the number of shares your set amount buys. Sometimes you’ll pay more and sometimes the stock or mutual fund will decrease in value, allowing you to purchase additional shares.

With the vast and varied information available on investing, many have chosen to stop chasing yesterday’s high returns. Using dollar-cost averaging helps them ride out the ups and downs of the market.

Dollar cost averaging involves continuous investment in securities, regardless of fluctuating price levels. Investors should consider their ability to continue purchases through periods of low price levels r chancing economic conditions. Dollar cost average does not assure a profit and does not protect against a loss in a declining market.

Dollar-cost averaging isn’t for everyone. Short-term investors and those concerned about market volatility won’t benefit from the slow and steady pace of dollar-cost averaging. Always meet with a financial professional before investing. For those who want to invest a consistent amount each month and potentially lessen the effects of market volatility, it might be an option.

The main conclusion I can draw that one should not delay investing. If you want to invest, say, $100 in a mutual fund in a year, you should start invest immediately. If you have $1,200 spare money to invest on the first work day of January, split it to quarterly or monthly, as the markets could be on a high on 1st January and you are stuck with the same purchase price. It also helps make investing easier to budget, as the same dollar amount will be purchased at regular, predictable intervals.

Today is the “One Day Blog Silence“, so this will be my only post today, please take some time to visit the One Day Blog Silence website. I will be back tomorrow with new posts, keep in touch and stay tuned!

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Economists report that a college education adds many thousands of dollars to a man’s lifetime income – which he then spends sending his son to college”. – Bill Vaughn

He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money”. – Benjamin Franklin

funny_money.jpgOur incomes are like our shoes; if too small, they gall and pinch us; but if too large, they cause us to stumble and to trip”. – John Locke

I‘m so naive about finances. Once when my mother mentioned an amount and I realized I didn’t understand, she had to explain: ‘That’s like three Mercedes.’ Then I understood”. – Brooke Shields

If hard work were such a wonderful thing, surely the rich would have kept it all to themselves”. – Lane Kirkland

Someone stole all my credit cards, but I won’t be reporting it. The thief spends less than my wife did”. – Henry Youngman

There’s no reason to be the richest man in the cemetery. You can’t do any business from there”. – Colonel Sanders

Financial Joke:
A tour guide was showing a tourist around Washington, D. C. The guide pointed out the place where George Washington supposedly threw a dollar across the Potomac River. “That’s impossible,” said the tourist. “No one could throw a coin that far!” “You have to remember,” answered the guide. “A dollar went a lot farther in those days.”

Being successful:
A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend. A successful woman is one who can find such a man.

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