Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Five Common Financial Mistakes To Avoid

Industry experts say that financial literacy is more important than ever. Current political and economic climates have created shifts within the financial industry. While the market remains stable, adults should be more knowledge-savvy. This implies doing one’s due diligence and avoiding these five common financial mistakes.

Image Sourceconsciouslifenews.com

Paying debts with savings: This initially sounds like a good idea, but this is detrimental in the long run. Most people shave off their retirement savings, under the impression that they can easily fill the gap. However, even the most disciplined planners have difficulties placing money aside once the sense of urgency is gone. Most of the time, the pace just continues and people forget saving after the debt is paid.

Not having an emergency fund: This is not a nice thing to plan for, but the reality is, emergencies happen. People need to have an emergecy fund when the uexpected inevitably occurs. More importantly, these funds should not be supplemented by credit cards. These can add more to one’s debt.

Not budgeting: Again, a seemingly tedious task. However, analysts have found that people’s financial futures are highly dependent on their budgets -- or lack thereof. Present-day actions affect future financial status so it is necessary to begin budgeting now. Having a budget also helps people decide where they want to go in terms of their short- and long-term goals.

Image Source: sweetcrudereports.com

Having no insurance: As with the emergency funds, these are important (though admittedly boring) tasks that all adults need to do. Insurance, whatever the coverage is, is essential to securing a stable and comfortable future.

Ignoring additional income opportunities: The previous four points were more of reactive measures, but emphasis should also be given on proactive action. Thinking that one’s current job pays the bill is enough is poor thinking. Nothing is guarenteed and there are many ways to earn additional income while still having personal time.

Another great advice is to speak with a financial advisor for a more in-depth discussion. Steve Sorensen is a financial blogger interested in emblezzement topics and how to develop better financial literacy. Learn more when you follow this blog.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Golden Rules For The Golden Years: How To Plan Your Retirement

Ask any financial advisor for trade secrets and almost all of them will mention setting up a good retirement plan. Current studies suggest that young adults need to start saving as soon as possible to assure themselves a happy and financially secure retirement. Despite recent surveys revealing that around 60 percent of workers say they need less than a million to retire well, financial analysts say that professionals should take their 401(k) very seriously. Planning ahead and saving for retirement now are crucial financial milestones.

Image Source: money.usnews.com

There are several ways to improve one’s retirement plan.

Retirement is expensive: It is impossible to fully know how much one would need to retire comfortably. However, it is always safe to overestimate and work from there. Retirement is an expensive time - especially if you are considering a well-off lifestlye. Financial analysts advise taking a look at your most lucrative job and needing at least 70 percent of that to suit your retirement needs.

Get involved: Most companies offer a retirement savings plan. Make sure to sign up for their personalized 401(k) plan and contribute as much as you can. Not only will the taxes be lower, but there is a strong possibility that the company will give a little bit extra. The more funds invested in the plan, the wider the safety net.

Consider inflation: It is best to start early. Young adults are asked to consider inflation and learn how to invest wisely. This means knowing how much you can save every month and your own pension plan. A good way to allocate funds is to spread capital among several investment options. This way, there are multiple channels for growth.

Image Source: forbes.com
Don’t touch it: This is a big no-no. There will always be extenuating circumstances that will tempt one to withdraw just a little from their retirement savings. Do not give in to the temptation. Take care of this savings account. If you change jobs, try rolling them over to an individual retirement account or to your new employer’s plan.

Most importantly, keep up-to-date with the latest financial trends and consistently follow your budget.

My name is Steven Sorensen and I write about the financial industry and tips on how to be more business-minded. Learn more about me and what I write about when you follow this Twitter account.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Know What To Invest In After Retirement

One of the biggest mistakes people make is that they don’t prepare themselves for retirement. Making the right decisions regarding finances can assure people of the life they want after retiring. This is why they need to consider investing in the things that would offer positive returns. Let’s take a closer look at some of the more sound investments you can make.

Image source: cu.edu
Cash

One of the more obvious investments is of course, money. Let me explain. When you consider retirement, think of it as a long-term business. Retirees should be able to live on their money for at least two years, if they have no income at all (although this is rarely the case). It’s very important to have a nest egg and emergency funds. It’s no secret that as we age, our health deteriorates. Having extra cash will certainly make a difference.


Bonds

Owners of bonds rake in interest over time, which can offer steady income over a period of time. Great bonds to invest in are treasury inflation protected securities, otherwise known as TIPS. These bonds handed out by the government adjust with inflation. With that in mind, you might want to put them in an account that isn’t taxed.

Image source: openclipart.org


Real estate


Whether you’re retiring or not, real estate is always a great investment. It can be very lucrative because let’s face it, everybody’s looking for places to live, or for places to put up their businesses. Having a house, townhouse, condominium, apartment, or other spaces rented out also assures people that they’ll be busy during their retirement years, and they’ll have a lot of income.

Hello there. I am Steve Sorensen and I’m a CPA and business writer based in Colorado. For more business discussion, check out this blog.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

What will happen to the global economy in 2017?

Lots of changes are happening in the world right now. As new leaders in many countries try to tighten their respective administrations, these adjustments have a direct effect on the world economy. This is evident especially in the case of the U.S., one of the world’s strongest nations. Here are some things that experts predict could happen to the global economy in 2017:

1. Europe could face a recession.

The Brexit is the least of the EU’s problems. The rising anti-European sentiment is becoming quite visible in Italy. If the country eventually decides to leave the Euro Zone and the European Union, this could lead the rest of the region into a dreaded recession.

Image source: Insidegov.com


2. China’s renminbi will be more stable.

The devaluation of the RMB will end in 2017, but the growth of the Chinese economy will slow down. This will make way for other emerging markets like Russia and Brazil to come out of recession and start an ascent in the global field.

3. Trump’s new policies are expected to boost growth.

Not many might see it yet, but experts predict that the fiscal policies and effects brought by the new administration will further benefit the U.S. economy. As the economy becomes more stable and as the financial markets continue to develop, the rest of the world will also be affected by these changes.
What do you think of these predictions? For me, some of these seem possible. But I’ll guess we’ll just have to see after a few months.

Image source: Worldatlas.com


Welcome to my blog. I am Steve Sorensen and I’m a CPA and business writer based in Colorado. I advise businesses on issues such as avoiding employee embezzlement and developing their retirement plans. For updates, visit this page.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Three Strategies To Protect Your Portfolio In a Stock Market Crash

Investors understand that stock market crashes are an inevitable part of business. Savvy businesspeople take the necessary steps to protect their portfolio. Financial analysts have listed three of the most ideal strategies.

Consider peer-to-peer lending websites: This is a relatively new financial concept and describes the borrowing and lending of money between two individuals for a profit. These websites keep track of the money and makes it incredibly easy to invest money. A lot of these websites also offer pretty good rates of return. However, there is always a chance that the person who borrowed the money will not pay the money back. This is a risk that lenders have to take.

Image Source: history.com


Think diversity: One of the best ways to protect one’s portfolio is to have many different assets. Economists say that it having one sole income-generating equity is not a good idea. One’s portfolio should be reflective of the individual’s own risk tolerance and proximity to retirements. Regardless, it is highly recommended to have a portfolio composed of bond funds, cash, and other assets.

Image Source: thinklikeagiant.com


Remember tradition: There is still appeal to traditional investment strategies. Consider an insured high-yield savings account. A lot of modern adults think that this is a bad idea; saying that the return of investment is not worth the capital. Nevertheless, an old-fashioned savings account does have its uses. It still is a guaranteed revenue stream and tempers whatever damage caused by a stock market crash. A wiser investor recognizes the advantages offered of tradition.

It is important to carefully look at these strategies. Crashes usually occur during major political or global events.

Steve Sorensen specializes in embezzlement topics, being a financial blogger. To know more about his professional background, view this LinkedIn page.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Checks And Balances: Preventing Employee Embezzlement

A risk that comes with running a business is the chance of being a victim of employee theft or embezzlement. The risk is especially higher for small businesses as it is more common for owners to overlook, and not implement, the necessary measures to prevent such occurrences.

There are steps that can be taken to substantially diminish the likelihood of embezzlement, such as the following:

Trust, but verify
 
Taking heed of Ronald Reagan’s advice to “trust, but verify,” it is important to understand that employee theft can happen to anyone. There are cases that even the seemingly most trustworthy of employees or partners are the first one to steal from the coffers of the company.

https://assets.entrepreneur.com/content/3x2/1300/20150618164206-money-10-bill-cash-lend-pocket.jpeg
 Image source: entrepreneur.com

Checks and balances

To make sure that employees, particularly bookkeepers, are not given an opportunity to embezzle, receipts and disbursements should be ran through a checking account. In doing so, manipulation of financial statements can be prevented and reconciliation can be conducted more regularly and punctually. The duties of setting up a vendor, approving payments, and issuing checks, can also be assigned to separate employees to make sure that there are more than two people involved whenever money leaves the business. Division of labor can be done for other business procedures, as well.

http://neworleanscitybusiness.com/files/2013/05/Focus-May-10.jpg

Review and audit

Periodic and surprise reviews of financial statements and employee records, as well as books and accounts, can help deter employee theft and embezzlement.

I am Steve Sorensen, a CPA and financial advisor from Colorado. With a strong background in business and finance, I have helped clients from both the public and private sectors by providing advices on various money matters, including preventing employee embezzlement, legally lowering taxes, and improving overall financial structure. Visit this blog to learn more.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

A month post-Brexit: The impact on various economic sectors

After a month since Britain voted to leave the EU, has its economy taken a blow as experts predicted it would?

                                                         Image source: afr.com


Officially a month after the U.K. referendum to leave the European Union, the Office for National Statistics is expected to release an official data chart about consumer prices, jobs, and public finances. Several economists and banks such as the Bank of England and Markit already released forecasts expressing the possibility of the U.K. falling into a recession, although investors are yet to see official reports. This is based on the declining rate of inflation in July as well as household spending weakening more rapidly.

On the other side of the spectrum, the number of people claiming unemployment benefits fell by 8,600 between June and July, making the unemployment rate at a steady 4.9 percent for 11 years now. While contrasting data from economists and trade associations appear, the seemingly changing movement in the U.K. economy post-Brexit is not entirely discouraging.

Interestingly, public confidence has also recovered this month, despite the fear most people had about Brexit harming job prospects and wage increase. This new level of confidence was mostly expressed by the highest earners and private sector workers while the low earners and workers at the public sector remain pessimistic about the referendum.

In the U.S., economists expressed fears about the possible consequence Brexit has on the export sector. The impact of Brexit on the American economy will not be as profound in relation to the overall economic activity. However, the regression could be deepened if the consumer sentiment continues to fall and Americans spend less. This will definitely affect the performance of the US economy as a whole, as consumers fear what Brexit may bring.


                                             Image source: theguardian.com


My name is Steve Sorensen. I am a finance professional and business analyst offering financial advisory services to both the public and private sectors. I also help businesses design strategies to avoid employee embezzlement and improve retirement plans. Please follow me on Twitter for similar updates.