Installment loan options for small businesses – How can you pitch into the market?

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No matter how big or small your business is, starting a business or growing it will require lots and lots of money. This is why the biggest challenge faced by the startup organizations is lack of funds and financing options. As compared to the grown-up organizations, such financial dilemmas are common among the startups as they usually lack enough money to initiate a business. Although it is true that taking out installment loans is difficult but at the same time there are resources that you can turn to.

Now that you have to pay back the monthly payments in regular monthly installments of principal and interest rate, installment loans can really work well for the startups. You just have to know where to look for the best loans for funding your startup business. Here are few options that you may take into account.

Creating a business plan before approaching the lenders

Before you start off with an active search for the startup installment loans, the foremost thing that you need to keep in mind is to create a solid business plan. When you introduce your business to the commercial lenders, they often ask you to show your business plan so that they may get to know about your products and possibility of achieving success with your product. Henceforth, it is critical enough for you to write a business plan and impress the lender to believe that you’ll be able to make timely repayments on your loan.

Approach the SBA

The Small Business Administration, since the 1940s, has been assisting the startup business firms to operate in a successful manner. Besides offering them expert advice and other resources, their loan programs also insure most of their installment loans that are issues within America. Usually the SBA favors long term installment loans because they offer you the opportunity to take cash and the repay the loan over a longer time period, when your business grows.

Credit unions and banks are also a viable option

While credit unions and banks are interesting sources of commercial loans, it is also a fact that they will have strict lending policies. Banks are more concerned with the risks that follow while starting a new business rather than considering the rewards. If bank loans don’t have an SBA guarantee, this can be challenging for the startup business firm. You should become habituated with rejection and try to grasp the fact that this is not something personal.
Seek help of friends and family

Though this is the most overlooked option but your friends and family members can be the most wonderful sources of startup installment loans. Any near and dear one you approach may have the capability to finance you new venture and offer you financial help. Still they are willing and able and the best thing about them is that they offer low terms and rates which are reasonable for the business owner who is already drowning in several other financial challenges.



Therefore, whichever option you may choose to obtain loans for your business, you should try your best to repay your loans on time so that this doesn’t affect your credit score and keep you from getting future lines of credit at a reasonable rate.


Timings for Trading the Euro

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The euro is the second most liquid currency after the US dollar. It is then followed by the Japanese Yen and the British pound. Whilst it is possible to trade the euro versus a whole range of other currencies, the most popular are the following:

EUR/USD
EUR/CHF
EUR/ JPY
EUR / GBP

As with the other currencies the euro trades from the open in Sydney on Monday morning, 24 hours a day until the close in the New York on Friday, which is essential Saturday morning in Sydney. The extensive trading hours means that there is plenty of opportunity. But just because the euro trades these hours, it doesn’t mean that it trades equally across these hours. Volatility and volume can vary greatly across any one 24-hour period. You will see that spreads can often increase in those quieter periods, whilst spreads can also narrow significantly during the busier periods. Yet despite having the ability to trade round the clock you will see that most signals to trade come from the busiest periods.

EUR/USD is the most traded currency pair in the world. It is also the most liquid therefore the pair is able to maintain a particularly tight spread across most of the trading day. Even so it is worth being aware of the hours that the European session and the US session trade and within these hours economic data will be released which is likely to impact on the currency pair.

The Hours

The European session opens at 07:000 GMT and continues until 16:00 GMT, whilst the US session opens at 13:00 GMT and trades until 22:00 GMT. So here we can see that the pair will be active session for 13 hours of the day. However, this is potential when it is at its most active, however given that the pair is influenced by events across the globe, fluctuations can readily happen at any point in a 24-hour period.

Economic Data

European economic data is generally released at 07:00 GMT. You will often notice that trading an hour or so prior to a release and several hours following the release of economic data sees increased volatility. Meanwhile US economic releases are often provided at 13:30 – 14:00 GMT and can generate big peaks in trading volume and strong trends for the hours following the release. When we consider than Japanese economic releases happen in the middle of the night for European traders it is easy to see why they don’t often create as much movement in the EUR/JPY as US releases cause in the EUR/USD pair.

This also applies to central bank meeting. The Federal Reserve tend to give their rate decisions at 19:00 GMT, which is still a reasonable time for European traders. The European Central Bank tends to give their rate decision at 12:45 GMT.



So whilst it is possible to trade the EUR/USD, the most traded currency pair in the world, throughout the 24 hour period, it is possible that you may notice more activity and volume during certain hours, when data is released or central banks take monetary policy decisions.


Why Are Support & Resistance Lines So Useful?

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Support and Resistance is one another extremely useful tool in trading and one that I don’t think gets the attention it deserves. If I was told I could choose just one indicator to use, I think it would probably be support and resistance. The reason for this is because support and resistance give so much information about the market.

The concept is very easy. These are prices where the market thinks things have got too expensive, or too cheap and then reacts on the back of that. In other words, support and resistance levels identify prices levels where historically the price has reacted by reversing. These price levels are considered clues for future price behavior.
The market might be running higher, it hits a price and bounces back lower, this is the resistance where selling overwhelms buying and the price increase stops, you might look to place a sell position.

Likewise, the market sells off hits a resistance point bounces back, this is the support where buyers overwhelm sellers and the price reverses you might look to buy.

It also helps to remember than support and resistance are not exact numbers, but think of them more as a zone, sometimes the price can move a little past the support or resistance price but then still bounce. Don’t confuse testing a support with breaking a support.

So, why do we often see these resistance and support levels come at round numbers?

This basically comes down to the fact that we as humans prefer to deal with round numbers, for example it’s unusual to put an order in for £3.04, you and the rest of the market are much more likely to put an order in for£3. This is just easier to calculate, and this is easier to think about. Therefore, as humans we have a tendency to gravitate towards whole round numbers and why we often see support and resistance levels form at these levels.

When looking at the volumes in markets you will often find that there are a large number of people waiting to buy and sell at these numbers.



Drawing Support and Resistance Levels

Starting out it could actually be easier to use a line graph rather than a candlestick chart. This is because the candlestick chart brings the extreme highs and extreme lows into the picture, rather than just the closing prices, as with the line chart. But then once you’re comfortable with the concept the candlestick chart contains more information.

Looking at the chart identify levels where several peaks or valleys form. Draw a line and this is the support or resistance zone.

This can be done on the charts offered by Vantage FX including the world renowned MT4 account which Vantage FX offers its clients. Information on how to use the charts can be found on this website.


Everything you Didn’t Know about Retirement Taxes

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Nobody has actually told you this – but do be duly informed about the fact that you’ll be paying up more “complicated” taxes during your retirement than what you are paying up now – while you’re working. So, anyone who’s on the verge of retiring should consider a thorough perusal of this write-up – because, here, we’ll explore one of the little-known nuances of retirement – i.e. taxes. Documented below are details.

How Much do you Know about Retirement Taxes?

The key is to understand what is taxed while you’re retired and what is not! Do let us tell you that when it comes to money – a couple of “loose” statements don’t really help. For instance, how many of you know that Social Security checks are not taxed? The answer is many. However, on further education, you will actually come to know that a lot depends on your income! While most of the retirement withdrawals involve Federal Taxes—the amount of tax that you will have to shell out depends on where you live. The tax rates on your investment will vary widely as well.

Taxes as Per States

There are 13 states, for instance, where residents have to pay State Income Tax as well! Kansas, Colorado, Missouri, Connecticut, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Vermont, North Dakota, West Virginia, Rhode Island, Utah and Minnesota are among these states. The seven states that don’t charge you State Income Tax are Florida, Nevada, Alaska, South Dakota, Washington, Texas and Wyoming.

However, if you’re staying either in Tennessee or New Hampshire you will have to pay taxes only on the interest and dividends. So, retirement income might as well be exempt or partly exempt or just offset or just fully taxable.

What Should you Know about Social Security Taxes?

As far as your Social Security is concerned, it’s your combined income which determines whether at all it will be taxed or not. Your combined income is the result of your adjusted gross income along with any non-taxable interest and around half of your Social Security benefit. For instance, if your Combine Income is below $25,000 and you’re single then you will not really be taxed. If your combined income is something around $25,000 – $34,000 then you might as well have to pay taxes on around half of your taxes. If your combined income exceeds $34,000 then around 85% of your benefits are taxable.

Retirement taxes also entail estate taxes. Yes! There are around 12 states and the District of Columbia that also end up levying estate taxes. Maine, Hawaii and District of Columbia use the Federal exemption amount. However, if you’re in Massachusetts or Oregon, your estate worth $ 1 million or more might as well be taxed.


5 Reasons to Open a Business Checking Account

You may wonder if opening a business checking account is worth the time it takes to set up. Think about how many hours you spend sorting through your business and personal records in a single report. You’ll save time if you open a business checking account. Here are a few other reasons to head to the bank and separate your business and personal expenses.

Build Credibility

Part of running a successful business is creating a professional image. Paying vendors with personal checks makes your business look more like a hobby than a job. Using personal checks can also indicate that you just started a business. Personalized business checks show that you’re committed to your business and can build your credibility.
Automate Payroll

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Getting your payroll correct is daunting when you complete this task manually using spreadsheets. When you have a business checking account, you can automate the payroll process. Software lets you manage payroll and print out secure checks on a laser printer. You’ll focus more time on running your company and growing sales.
Automated payroll systems can trim your expenses, too. You can cut processing costs up to 80 percent by limiting errors.

Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) with the IRS before you set up your business bank account. Check state laws to find out if you must file a fictitious name statement and register your business.

Simplify Tax Preparation

Imagine sorting through bank statements and picking out your business transactions from your personal account at tax time. That’s a bookkeeping nightmare. Why not skip the hassle and stop wasting valuable time by opening a business checking account? You’ll also have accurate records to complete your tax return at the end of the year.

Protect Personal Assets

Legal problems and accidents are part of running a business, and these things can happen to you. Protecting your personal assets is essential. The first step in protecting your personal property from business liability issues is to form a corporation or limited liability company.

You must have a business account to set up a corporate entity. When your business generates a lot of transactions, you also put your identity at risk when you send out personal checks. Use a business account to limit your exposure to fraudsters who commit identity theft.

Accept Credit Cards

Are you turning customers away who want to pay with debit and credit cards? Visit your bank or credit union to set up a merchant account so you can accept card payments. If you’ve incorporated the business, you must use a business checking account to set up a credit card processing account.



Even if you run a sole proprietorship, using your personal account for credit card transactions can get messy. You’ll need to sort out your business payments and sales tax. Simplify your sales records with a business checking account.
Stop using your personal checking account and show customers and vendors that you own a legitimate business. A business checking account can also help you automate payroll systems and keep accurate records.


6 Things to Consider When Choosing Car Insurance

Buying car insurance is one of those tasks in life which is absolutely necessary, yet so incredibly dull that many of us wish we could simply not bother. The following guide will help to take some of the stings out of it by preparing you for the kind of considerations that go into determining the terms you can secure.

Car Insurance

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What Sort of Car Do You Have?

Potential insurers will want to know what sort of car you are driving. Is it a small family car, a car for a single person, or even an off-road vehicle that will be going over some difficult terrain? Your chances of getting a competitive premium rise significantly if your car is a family car or small car of a common make and model.

What Colour is it?

You might laugh but the colour of your vehicle can affect the amount that you have to pay for your insurance. This is because some paintjobs are significantly more expensive to fix than others, making you a riskier bet for the insurer. For example, black vehicles regularly cost more to insure than their white counterparts. Research also suggests that white cars are safer on the road.

Do You Plan on Modifying it?

The urge to modify your car and take its performance to new heights is an understandable one. However, you shouldn’t undertake any modifications without first checking how they will affect your insurance premiums. Modifying your car, especially in a way that significantly alters its performance, is much more likely to increase your insurance premium. It will also make your vehicle a much more attractive prospect for potential thieves.

Who Will be the Primary Driver?

The age of the car’s primary driver is another significant factor in determining the terms that insurers will offer you. Younger drivers are more expensive to insure, simply because they are so much more likely to get into car accidents. You will find that this is the case even with the best car insurance offers.

Do You Need Roadside Assistance?

Some insurance packages will also entitle you to free roadside assistance. If this is a deal breaker for you, save yourself some time by eliminating any insurance providers who do not offer this service. If you are purchasing car insurance on behalf of a young adult, or if your children will also be driving the vehicle, opting for roadside assistance can put your mind at ease when they are driving.

How Much do You Drive?

The amount that you plan to drive the vehicle, as well as the expected pattern of usage, will both play a significant part in determining the offer you receive from the insurance company. A vehicle which isn’t going to be out on the road much is obviously much less likely to be involved in an accident. If the vehicle is on the road every day, it is unlikely you will be able to receive any discounts.


Thinking About Debt Consolidation?

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If you’ve been dealing with credit card debt, or other unsecured forms of debt, and times have gotten tough, you may be considering debt consolidation. While this option is indeed a good fit for many, there is no such thing as a one size fits all solution to debt. With that said, there are a few things that you should consider when thinking about moving forward with a debt consolidation loan or program.

What Is Debt Consolidation

Debt consolidation, in its most basic of explanations, is just what it sounds like. It is the consolidation of multiple debts into one single account. However, when you break it down, debt consolidation does much more than turn multiple payments into one. Ultimately, there are two basic types of debt consolidation:

  • Debt Consolidation Loan – A debt consolidation loanis exactly as it seems. It is essentially a new loan provided to those with multiple debt accounts for the sole purpose of paying these accounts off and combining them. The goal with this type of loan is to reduce overall interest by combining several high interest loans into a single, lower interest loan. Ultimately, this reduces the minimum payment required and creates a fixed payment schedule, not only making it easier on a financial level, but on an accounting and organizational level.
  • Debt Consolidation Program – Those who cannot qualify for a debt consolidation loan, often look to debt consolidation programs. Based on the idea that the borrower is going through a financial hardship, debt consolidation programs differ greatly from loans. With these programs, a debt consolidation company is generally granted power of attorney over your accounts. This means that they make the decisions and payments for you. From there, the company will negotiate a lower interest rate based on your financial hardship and willingness to pay the take a proactive step to ensure that your debts don’t go unpaid. Once lower rates are negotiated, the debt consolidation accepts a single payment encompassing all minimum payments and fees associated with the program, later dispersing the payments to the lenders which hold the accounts.

Benefits Of Debt Consolidation

At the end of the day, there are several benefits that come with debt consolidation, whether it be a loan or a program. Some key benefits include:

  • A Single Monthly Payment – Financial management resource DebtConsolidation.com found that the average American owns credit cards owns between 3 and 4 credit cards (3.7 is the exact number). Having several monthly bills to follow can be cumbersome. However, debt consolidation offers the benefit of breaking your debts down to a single monthly payment.
  • A Lower Monthly Payment – Another major benefit, especially those dealing with financial hardship, is the fact that debt consolidation will generally lead to a lower overall monthly payment. Ultimately, this allows you to keep more of your hard-earned money.
  • A Fixed Payoff Schedule – Whether you go with a debt consolidation loan or a debt consolidation program, you will be placed on a fixed payment schedule. Usually, debts included in these programs, like credit card debts seem to never have an end in sight. Not to mention, the payments on these accounts can fluctuate wildly. With a fixed payment schedule, you’ll not only know how much money your bill will be each month, but when you’ll finally stop receiving those bills.

Drawbacks Of Debt Consolidation

While perfection is something we all look for, it very rarely exists, and chances are, it doesn’t exist across any debt relief option. There will always be some drawbacks. In the case of debt consolidation, these drawbacks include:

  • Damaged Credit – Often times, debt consolidation can lead to damaged credit. This is particularly the case when it comes to debt consolidation programs, not loans. With the changed terms, the closure of revolving accounts, and the various financial hardship programs likely included, borrowers can expect to see a negative impact on credit. If a loan is the route you plan to go, it can actually improve your credit, but it has to be done right. First and foremost, closing your credit cards once paid off will lead to closure of longest standing accounts and reductions in available credit. These factors can lead to declines. Therefore, to avoid declines in your credit score when choosing the consolidation loan option, keep your other accounts open and in good standing. Just don’t over use them!
  • Amount Of Assistance – With debt consolidation, only so much assistance can be provided, and it is usually provided through the reduction of interest. However, you’ll still owe the same amount of money, and minimum payments will have a limit as to how much they can be reduced. While they will cause more harm to your credit, if your financial hardship doesn’t allow you to make the minimum payment required with debt consolidation, you may want to consider debt settlement.



The Takeaway

The takeaway here is that debt consolidation is indeed a great program for many. However, it’s not the one-size-fits-all solution you may think it is. The truth is that as the borrower, you have many options, and before making any financial decisions, it’s important that you get a good understanding of these options.

 


How to Affordably Develop Skills

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It is a simple rule to follow that the more skills you develop, the better your chances of being able to earn more money in the future. In days gone by, you would have had to spend a great deal of cash to develop skills. However, the internet has changed all this – making a whole host of skills so much more accessible. And when you don’t have a huge amount of money to spend in the first place, this is so important. Here are some of the ways that you can learn skills without spending a fortune.

Read, Read and Read Some More

Books are expensive, but you can read as many online articles as you like for free. And with so much information readily available on the internet, you can learn any skill under the sun. If you still think that you need access to books, you can get them so much more affordably in electronic format. Though you may think that there is only so much you can learn by reading, you are giving yourself an invaluable starting point.

Join a Professional Organisation or Club

There are professional organisations out there dedicated to all sorts of subjects. While reading is a solitary activity, professional organisations and clubs can put you in touch with people who have the same interests as you. Social media provides a great place to start when you are looking for organisations which suit your needs well. Online groups are a good place to build up your confidence until you feel ready to attend a club in person.

Take Classes

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There are plenty of courses which you can take online to improve all sorts of skills. Some of these courses are even available entirely for free. Otherwise, there are all sorts of educational organisations such as an online bachelor’s in healthcare administration which offer courses at a reduced rate in comparison to their ‘real life’ courses. One of the major advantages of taking courses online is that you can study in your own time and fit learning around the other commitments that you have in your life.

Volunteer

If you feel like you need some real practical experience in your chosen skill, you could always volunteer your time in that area. For example, if you feel like you need to improve your writing skills, you could always write for some online publications for free. Sometimes, the practical experience that you get makes it worthwhile to commit your time for free.

Attend Events

There are plenty of free events out there which bring together people who are experts in the skill that you are trying to develop and people who are just learning. So, take a look online to find out what sort of occasions are available for you to attend.

Developing your skills is a lifelong pursuit which is worth taking part in seriously. These are just a few of the ways that you can do this without spending a vast sum of money for the privilege.


Warning To Business Leaders: Bad Habits You Need To Avoid 100 Percent

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Business Leaders

We all suffer from bad habits; some of which are caused by a lack of self-awareness. Sometimes, feedback is key, enabling us to pick up on the habits that are harming us. This is especially true in business, where some bad habits could lead to problems in your operations. Now, we aren’t talking about picking your nose in front of customers (though you should probably avoid that), but there are other habits that need to be brought to your awareness.

Consider the following:

Bad Habit #1: Failing to delegate to others

You aren’t a master at everything, no matter how much control you try to retain. Delegating to others gives you a break, and it also shifts some of your work over to other staff matters who may be better at a specific task than you are. Your team will probably appreciate the added responsibility too, and will be grateful for the trust you have bestowed.

Bad Habit #2: Spending too much money

This is something we can be guilty of in our personal lives, but it also spills over into our professional lives too. Whether it’s those unnecessary expenses, such as office lunches or spending way over the odds on tech that you don’t particularly need, you do need to curb the temptation to spend if you ever want to see the fruit of your profits.

Bad Habit #3: Not taking time out to learn

You may have been to business school, and taken courses such as an msc in management. Does that mean your learning is over? Of course not. It pays to brush up on your skills, especially when it comes to sorting out your weaknesses. You should also remember that in business nothing stays the same, so focus on your learning to keep up with industry and consumer demands. After all, you don’t want to be left in the dust by your nearest competitors.

Bad Habit #4: Not listening to complaining customers

Okay, so you probably nod your head and appease your customers whenever they have a complaint. However, you need to REALLY listen to them, as their feedback is invaluable. Good customer care will skyrocket your business, so make them the center of everything you are doing, and if action is needed after you have listened to yet another grumble, get on it straight away. Word of mouth is everything in business, and your reputation will plummet if your customers grumble about you elsewhere.

Bad Habit #5: Working too hard

There is so much to do in the day, so it’s unsurprising if you fall into the trap of pushing yourself to your limits at times. However, life is about more than work, and you will only make yourself ill if you continue to spend all your days working. Again, this is where delegation comes in, as do time-management skills. Get out of the office more, enjoy your family and leisure activities, and better organize your time at work.

Closing

Did any of those bad habits ring true to you? If so, take your finger out of your nose and concentrate on overcoming them. Both you and your business will benefit if you do.


Ever Watched Suits and Wondered What Some Lawyers Do?

Have you ever wanted to venture into the world of law? Perhaps you’ve seen a few too many episodes of Suits but the fire in your belly can no longer be sated by just watching and you want to look at what is out there for you. Well, look no further:

personal investigators

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Criminal Lawyer – This is a meaty one. You will be defending individuals, organizations, and companies that are facing (usually severe) criminal charges. In the state, appellate or federal court. One of the most active skills here is the criminal defense lawyer’s ability to investigate the case, using personal investigators as well as their own skills. Interviewing witnesses, looking up case law to strengthen your case and planning strategies. If you choose this you would be wise to head for the private sector rather than public sector – the wages are higher – by about double in the first year alone.

Real Estate Lawyer – You’ll be assisting clients in their purchase and sale of real estate. Issues such as zoning, property development, neighbor disputes, tenants and more also come under the umbrella of a real estate lawyer. The superior skill here would be astounding attention to detail, careful document drafting and incredible analytical skills. You might also be required to represent clients in court, suing tenants for unpaid rental charges, arguments over land and more considerable disagreements with companies, developers, and landowners. The salary for this is a peachy 90+ k a year.

Family Law – This one can be highly emotionally charged. Dealing with divorces, adoptions, custody battles, prenuptial, and custody agreements. Working with clients to get the best outcome for them and hopefully any children involved too. There are a few areas that you can specialize in like child custody, domestic abuse and child support. A few critical skills here will be the ability to keep a cool head in highly emotional situations, to provide support and assistance to people in their most vulnerable time and also get the best deal. A healthy salary of around 70k+ and upwards can be enjoyed by those who follow this path.

A Civil Rights Lawyer – This one is kind of like the forefront of standing up for people. They defend the rights and fundamental liberties of the public. A usual case would likely involve some or all of the following: discrimination based on race, religion, gender, age or some medical states like pregnancy, mental health, and others. They tackle anything that appears to have been mishandled and get justice for their clients. Lawyers who specialize in this field are incredibly passionate about getting justice for those who might otherwise not be able to obtain it by themselves. Most civil rights lawyers tend to specialize because the subject is so broad. A mixed bag of earning potential from 40k to well beyond 200k depending on where you chose to work.


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