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A Complete Guide to Investing in Gold

During times of crisis and higher-than-average inflation, gold’s price rises, making it attractive to investors looking for assets that can survive economically challenging times. Contrary to this, cash and several other asset classes lose value over time because of inflation. Moreover, gold is also more liquid than real estate and retirement accounts. Despite this, the reality of investing in gold is more complex than it may appear at first glance.   Is Gold A Good Investment? Gold has the benefit of preserving wealth. Gold has been a valuable resource used by multiple civilizations and empires for thousands of years. Many of those civilizations devised currencies that today only have historical significance. On the other hand, gold still has monetary value and can easily be bought and sold. When considering if gold is a good investment, we can compare the performance of gold with that of the S&P 500 to determine gold’s investment merits. The S&P 500 has performed significan

Why Is Retirement Planning Important?

An effective strategy for ensuring a comfortable retirement is to plan ahead. A thoughtful approach can help you maintain your lifestyle as you move to the next phase of your life, whether by keeping track of your savings or implementing strategies to generate income.   What Is Retirement Planning? Planning for retirement involves setting retirement income goals, making decisions to support those goals, and taking actions to reach those goals. Retirement planning includes: ✔ identifying sources of income, ✔ sizing up expenses, ✔ setting up a savings plan, and ✔ managing assets and risk. Estimated future cash flows are needed to assess the likelihood of achieving retirement income goals. The most straightforward way to define retirement planning is the act of preparing for life after paid work is over, not just financially but in every aspect of one’s life. Some non-financial factors include how to spend time in retirement, where to live, when to retire , etc. can influence retireme

IHerb - The Leading Online Health Product Marketplace (10% Discount Offer)

iHerb is a United States-based retailer offering over 30,000 natural products from over 1,200 popular brands. It has been the global leader in health and wellness since 1996, offering a wide range of products, including vitamins, supplements, grocery items, beauty products, and self-care items.  iHerb ships to over 185 countries, offers 34 localized payment options in 74 currencies and provides 24/7 customer support online. It ships orders quickly and at low rates and offers free shipping to over 50 countries. All orders are shipped by iHerb from its climate-controlled fulfillment centers in the U.S. and Asia to ensure product quality. For items such as those containing acidophilus which requires regulated temperatures, all iHerb distribution centers are maintained at 74-75 degrees Fahrenheit (23-24 degrees Celsius). Further, NSF International has certified iHerb's distribution facility in Hebron, Kentucky, as a Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) facility, certifying that the compa

Secured Loans Vs. Unsecured Loans

There are generally two types of consumer loans available: secured and unsecured. The primary difference between the two is the presence or absence of collateral , which backs the debt and serves as a form of security to the lender against non-repayment.   What Are Secured Loans? Secured loans refer to those in which the borrower pledges an asset as collateral or security for the loan. A secure debt instrument means that the lender can sell the asset to recoup the funds advanced to the borrower in the event of default. The most common type of secured loan is a mortgage, in which the collateral is the mortgaged property. When a borrower takes out a mortgage, the property is used as collateral to secure the loan; the lender maintains an equitable interest in the property until the borrower repays the loan in full. If the borrower fails to make payments, the lender may repossess the property and sell it to recoup the funds owed. Likewise, if a borrower fails to make timely payments on a c

Recourse Loans vs. Non-Recourse Loans - What Is The Difference?

What Is a Recourse Loan? In recourse loans, the borrower is 100% personally liable for the loan amount. This could result in a lender repossessing or foreclosing the collateral stipulated in the loan agreement. If the lender cannot recoup the entire loan balance from the sale of the collateral, it may file a lawsuit and pursue the borrower’s other assets.  Some common types of recourse loans include: ✔ Personal loans ✔ Credit cards ✔ Auto loans ✔ Short-term real estate loans. Recourse Loan Example: If a borrower takes out a $25,000 auto loan to purchase a $32,000 vehicle, the loan will be secured by the car. Should the borrower, after several payments, default on the loan with $20,000 remaining, the lender may repossess the vehicle and sell it to recoup the outstanding loan amount. However, let us suppose that the car has depreciated and can only be sold for $18,000. In such a case, the lender may also seek a judgment from a court and garnish the borrower’s wages to recover the remain

The Six Factors Affecting Gold Prices

Understand how gold prices are affected by changes in interest rates, inflation, central bank decisions, and crises. Gold is notable for its dual role as a precious metal and an investment. There are more significant factors influencing the development of gold demand and, therefore, its price than those affecting the growth of stocks. Though the gold price has tended to trend upward in recent years, it is also subject to frequent fluctuations. The gold price is significantly influenced by long-term, medium-term, and short-term factors. Global and national economic growth are among the more long-term influences. On the other hand, investors primarily affect the gold price over the short term through geopolitical crises and large-scale futures trading activity. Fundamental and psychological factors influence gold prices to a large extent. So let us look at the six most common factors that affect gold prices.   1. Central Bank Reserves Central banks hold gold and paper currencies in reser

Equity Financing vs. Debt Financing - Everything You Need To Know

If a business seeks to raise capital for its needs, it typically has two financing options: equity and debt. Debt financing involves borrowing money, whereas equity financing involves selling a portion of the company’s equity.   What Is Equity Financing? Equity financing involves raising capital through the sale of company shares. When a company sells shares, it effectively sells ownership in its company in exchange for cash. Companies may raise money to meet a short-term need, such as paying bills or fulfilling a long-term goal, like investing in future growth.   How does Equity Financing work? The equity financing process involves the sale of a company’s stock in exchange for cash. The proportion to be sold will depend on your company’s investment and the value of your business at the time of financing. With the growth of your business, the value of the investor’s stake will also increase. There are multiple ways for businesses to obtain equity financing, including business angels, c

Private Equity and Venture Capital - An Overview

Despite being often used interchangeably, “private equity” and “venture capital” are not synonymous. Both terms refer to companies that invest in private companies for equity, but they accomplish the task in different ways.   What is Private Equity? In private equity, a group of investors directly invests in a company. Private equity investors generally invest in mature companies that have passed the growth stage. Often, they provide funding to struggling businesses. Additionally, some investors will acquire a business, improve its operations, and then sell it for a profit. Private equity investors always strive to generate a return on their investment by enhancing company value over its initial value. Large institutional investors, including pension funds and large private equity firms funded by accredited investors, dominate the private equity sector.   Pros and Cons of Private Equity A private equity investor will provide you with more than just cash — you will also benefit from the