Category Archives: Smart money

How to effectively protect yourself from investment risks?

Risk/Reward

 

Every time we think about the idea of making investments, the first thing that automatically comes to mind is the notion of risks.

This way of thinking is typical for the field of investments and is much less present in our normal, everyday life.

Or not…?

How present is the concept of “risk” in our lives?

Obviously, certain risks normally exist for us no matter what we do, only we don’t think about them all the time and we don’t worry too much.

Because they are quite small, and most of the time they are even EXTREMELY small.

For example, how many times do you happen to climb the stairs and fear that you might stumble and break a leg? Or how many times do you walk down the street with fear of having a serious accident?

Probably quite rare…

And yet, such accidents happen, because we hear about them many times and we even see them on TV.

However, they are very rare (thankfully!), So it would be abnormal to live our lives in constant fear of them, always thinking about these risks and everything that could happen.

In terms of investments, however, the way of thinking is exactly the REVERSE!

Every time we are interested in a certain investment, we must analyze very carefully the situations in which things could go exactly the opposite of how we hope.

What would happen in those cases, how we would react to an adverse scenario, how much we could lose – all this must be part of our plan from the beginning.

For the simple reason that sometimes these investment risks do occur, no matter how carefully and inspiringly our initial plan was made.

Therefore, the question we need to ask ourselves is not “IF” but, rather, “WHEN” the risks associated with each investment will occur.

It is very important to find out the answer to the question “HOW MUCH” can we lose if those risks occur. Because depending on this answer we know how to plan and manage our investment correctly from the beginning.

In any investment, the main concern related to risks is that, in case they occur and we have losses, they should be as limited as possible.

Because all investors, absolutely ALL, face these investment risks and therefore sometimes incur losses.

Even the famous Warren Buffett, probably the biggest investor of all time, constantly in the top of the richest people in the world, reported a significant loss a few years ago as a result of his investment in Tesco.

What is interesting is that, although in absolute terms this loss seems huge (being several hundred million dollars), in fact it represents only about 0.2% of the net value of the company run by Buffett (Berkshire Hathaway).

In fact, over the last 50 years, Berkshire Hathaway has once lost 2%, with the rest being less than 1% of its net worth. These impressive results confirm that the winning strategy is to keep the risks to a low level, and therefore the potential losses.

How can you effectively protect yourself from risk?

Self-knowledge and study are the most important elements when it comes to investing.

If you understand how you react to risks and potential losses, it will be much easier for you to build a portfolio that fits your risk profile and helps you achieve good long-term results.

Here are 4 things you should always think about BEFORE making a certain investment, so as not to expose yourself to too much risk:

1. How much can you afford to lose?

How much money do you have available for these investments? And, most importantly, how many of them could you lose without significantly affecting your portfolio (or even your standard of living)?

In addition to answering these questions, you need to think about whether you are comfortable with the fact that you will make those amounts unavailable for a certain period of time, specific to each investment.

2. What is your time frame?

The time frame for which you intend to invest is directly related to those risks that you are willing to accept.

The longer you invest for the longer term, the more chances you have of recovering from any declines, so you could take, at least theoretically, higher risks.

On the other hand, as you get closer to your goal (eg financial independence), you need to prepare your portfolio properly so that you decrease the total level of risk you take.

3. How well do you know the investment you want to make?

The main risk of an investment is the investor himself. Or, as Warren Buffett says, “Risk exists when you don’t know what you’re doing.

So, before you embark on a particular investment, get seriously informed and try to really understand how that investment works.

What are the main risks? What might not be going well? What are the positive scenarios and what are the negative ones?

And, most importantly, what will YOU do in each of these scenarios?

Once you find the answers to these questions, it will be much easier for you to make a concrete plan, which you can implement when the situation demands it.

4. How do you deal with these risks emotionally?

Your emotional ability to cope with change, unforeseen and potentially dangerous situations is very important.

If riskier investments stress you out and affect your daily life, you should probably turn to lower risk instruments.

Even if it is said that high profits are usually brought by investments with higher risks, you should know that there are enough profitable options to invest with medium or even low risks, so that, in the long run, you do not end up ruining your life and the health.

IN CONCLUSION, you can reduce the risks of your investments by investing:

– in a diversified portfolio, with investments that you understand

– which is adapted to your risk profile

– long-term and very long-term

– investing regularly, amounts with which you are comfortable.

This way you will be able to build an investment plan to help you get good profits, in conditions of limited risks.

How to invest: 5 basic tips for beginner investors in stocks

Investments for beginners

The development of technology has increasingly paved the way for ordinary people to global financial markets. But easy access for individual investors to international markets comes with the need to be educated about them and to understand the risks they take.

1. Do your homework

Once you have decided on which platform you want to invest, you have to do your homework. Investing means more than choosing a few random shares, with the hope that everything will go well on its own. A familiar example would be that when you buy a house you do not choose one at random from advertisements, but you will go to visit it. And to determine if it has a fair price, you look at the neighborhood, the real estate market in general and then you make a decision.

Similarly, before you start investing in stocks or any other asset class, you need to research the market to understand what you are investing in. Read about each asset and invest only when you feel comfortable that you can make a well-informed decision.

Thanks to the internet, nowadays it is easy to access information about listed companies. You can see what their income and history are, you can read their news and recommendations for investors. Sector or market information or even political news is also important – for example, we can now see how airlines, even the best performing ones, are affected by Covid-19 travel restrictions or how incentive packages economically affects markets. Being up to date with things that happen in the media helps you better understand the evolutions of stocks and trends in the markets.

2. Define your financial goals

Before you invest your money, you need to have a clear idea of what you want to achieve and how you will do it. You need to understand your personal goals as an investor. Do you plan to invest in the long term (10 years for example) or in the short term? What types of investments will help you achieve your goals? What are you ready to risk?

Investors should be encouraged to define an investment strategy that suits their needs, including their risk attitude. To mitigate risk, they should diversify their portfolio, adopt a long-term attitude and invest only in financial instruments with which they are familiar and for which they understand the risks they take.

3. Invest the money you don’t need in the next five years

Risk appetite should always be linked to investment objectives. Evaluate your current financial situation to understand if you can take the risk and always invest with money you will not need in the next five years. Never invest more than you can afford to lose!
You need to have a long enough time horizon for the investments you make to avoid market fluctuations. If you have an amount at your disposal, but you know that you will need this capital in the next 12 months, then the recommendation is to invest in a less volatile asset class, such as bonds.

Over time, stock markets have provided excellent returns to long-term investors. For example, since the establishment of the S&P 500 index (stock index composed of the top 500 American companies) in 1926, it has increased by an average of 10% annually. This is a much higher return than those generated by other assets, such as government bonds. You can also start investing in shares with a relatively small amount of money using a commission-free platform, as commissions can affect your profit margins.

One of the factors that discourages people from investing online is cost. The idea is still widespread that you need a lot of money to start investing. Moreover, equity investments are often perceived as an extremely complex process, involving technical knowledge and attracting expensive commissions. This is no longer the case. A number of online investment platforms, conduct transactions with shares without commissions, as well as fractional shares – you can actually buy a part of a share, a percentage of it, expressed in dollars. This offers the opportunity to invest $ 50 in high-value stocks, such as those of Amazon (which trades at about $ 3,000 per share), Tesla (over $ 700) or Alphabet (Google) – whose shares would cost about $ 2,000 a piece.

4. Practice before you start investing

Start with small amounts of money or practice with a virtual demo account, while learning the markets and defining your strategy.
Demo accounts of several online platforms allow you to practice without risk. Every user who registers receives access to a demo account, credited with virtual money, so that they can practice their strategies, learning to work with the platform before investing with real money.

5. Diversify your portfolio

Diversification is a risk management strategy and the proverb “don’t put all your eggs in one basket” explains the concept very well. In other words, invest in different assets or market shares to limit your exposure to a certain class of assets or financial instruments.
The purpose of diversification is not to achieve very high returns, but to manage risks. Think about what it would have been like if you had invested all your savings in the shares of an airline company just before the pandemic, which made travel difficult. You don’t want to be completely dependent on the performance of a single company or a single sector, maybe even the economy of a single country or continent.

Coinbase International – Buy and sell cryptocurrency. Send money internationally for free

Coinbase International

Coinbase started in 2012 with the radical idea that anyone, anywhere, should be able to easily and securely send and receive Bitcoin. Today, they offer a trusted and easy-to-use platform for accessing the broader cryptoeconomy.

Coinbase have approximately 43 million verified users, 7,000 institutions, and 115,000 ecosystem partners in over 100 countries that easily and securely invest, spend, save, earn, and use crypto.

You can now send money to any user with a Coinbase account around the world using XRP or USDC. By using cryptocurrencies that are optimized for cross-border transmission, you can send and receive money virtually instantly by sending those cryptocurrencies and having the recipient convert them into local currency. There’s zero fee for sending to other Coinbase users and a nominal on-chain network fee for sending outside of Coinbase.

In fact, you can send any cryptocurrency supported by Coinbase to another Coinbase user or to an account outside of Coinbase. XRP and USDC may be better suited for smaller international money transfers due to their faster processing and lower transaction fees. USDC also has the added advantage of being exchangeable for one US dollar, rather than being volatile in price like other cryptocurrencies.

What you’ll need to open a Coinbase account:

– be at least 18 years old
– a government-issued photo ID (they don’t accept passport cards)
– a computer or smartphone connected to the internet
– a phone number connected to your smartphone (they will send SMS text messages)
– the latest version of your browser, or the latest Coinbase App version. If you’re using the Coinbase app, make sure your phone’s operating system is up-to-date.
Coinbase doesn’t charge a fee to create or maintain your Coinbase account.

How to send money internationally with Coinbase?

1. Sign in to your Coinbase account, or create one.
2. Confirm your recipient can convert XRP or USDC into local currency.
3. Convert your desired funds into XRP or USDC. 6
4. Access your XRP or USDC wallet and select send.
5. Enter the amount you’d like to send and the target wallet or email address.

With Coinbase you can create your cryptocurrency portfolio

Coinbase has a variety of features that make it one of the best place to start trading:

– Manage your portfolio: Buy and sell popular digital currencies, keep track of them in the one place.
– Recurring buys: Invest in cryptocurrency slowly over time by scheduling buys daily, weekly, or monthly.
– Vault protection: For added security, store your funds in a vault with time delayed withdrawals.
– Mobile apps: Stay on top of the markets with the Coinbase app for Android or iOS.

The “secret” to reaching the first 1000, 10000 and 100000 EUR / USD

Compound-interest

Most people get stuck until they reach the first 1, followed by a few zeros of  earned /saved/invested money, and they stay in the “start” area for the rest of their lives, taking it over and over again from the beginning.

This is why most people do not become financially independent and do not truly achieve financial prosperity.

The first 1000 EUR invoiced from the new business;
The first 10,000 EUR invested on the stock exchange;
The first EUR 100,000 in the personal portfolio;
The first studio for rent;
First salary / bonus etc. of EUR 3000 (the example is relevant, even if it does not start with 1)

The effort to reach the first 1, followed by a few zeros, is enormous and many give up along the way. What they don’t know is that after you hit a 1 followed by a few zeros (2,3,4 etc.), the rest of the zeros are much easier to reach.

After 10 years of struggling to reach a portfolio of 100,000 EUR, most likely up to 200,000 EUR could take you much less, up to 300,000 EUR less and so on.

The same applies to investments. You can constantly invest 200 EUR per month, without seeing a big difference in the portfolio, until, at a certain moment, the compound interest intervenes and your portfolio grows rapidly.

 

The graphic result is more than clear:

Calculator_initial

200 EUR invested monthly for 20 years at 10% interest

The result is:

Calculation result

Result after 20 years

The graph “speaks” for itself:

Balance after 20 years

Balance after 20 years

So don’t get lost on the road, but continue at maximum acceleration, until you reach that goal of 1 followed by a few zeros.

After that point, things will become easier, automated, routine.

So the “secret” is that there is no secret: all that is needed is discipline, patience and time.

What to do: pay off the credit or invest for passive income?

Pay off the credit or invest for passive income?

I saved a certain amount of money and I manage to keep saving month by month, what do I do? Do I pay off my credit or invest to generate higher income in the future?

Probably many of you have at least one mortgage loan and/or one or more consumer loans (if you read this article) and at the same time you have started to accumulate some financial reserves and may have thought or even started to put the money to work. In this context, you may also think about the fact that interest rates may rise, a crisis may occur at any time and at the same time you can see the good profits that have been made and are made from real estate investments, stock exchange, cryptocurrencies and business.

In all this context, it is normal for the answer to the question to pay the credit or invest the money to be complex, with many variables and uncertainties, but also so important. Basically the answer can guide your financial strategy for several years.

Let’s begin!

Before I should ask myself if I pay the credit or invest, there are some things we have to check:

  • If there are debts from credit cards and overdrafts with interest rates above 15% -20%, those should be paid before we think about investments;
  • Consumer debt, car etc. – we should focus on them and pay them in advance before investing;
  • We fail to save constantly – focus first on building this habit;
  • Reserve fund to cover living costs for a period of 6-12 months.

Before you have all the above checked, you should not even think about starting investing.

Any consumer credit used for the acquisition of liabilities should be paid as a priority. Real estate and investment loans (those used to purchase assets) are the ones we can doubt whether we will pay them in advance or not.

We will talk specifically about real estate loans, to simplify and make the analysis relevant, but we can have the same analysis process in the case of a non-real estate investment loan.Well, now the question that remains is: Do I pay the real estate loan or do I use my future reserves and savings for investments?

Economically speaking

From an economic point of view, we will compare the actual effective interest rate of the loan with the expected net return on investments.

For example, we have an interest of 5% on the mortgage loan and

a  return estimated by us of 10% of the investment in shares (historical average yield)

or

we find an apartment at a very good price and with a rent yield of 8%

or

bonds with 9% interest

and so on….

So we have on one hand a 5% safe interest vs. a yield estimate of 10% or 8% or 9%.The decision may seem obvious – at such a yield differential, in 20-25 years you pay the property 2 times.

But the decision is simple just at first sight and it becomes more complex when we go deep. Why? Because the interest rate on credit is safe (if it is 5%, it is 5% no matter what I do) while the return on investments is always an estimate.

Estimate because:

  • The stock market may no longer perform in the next 10 years as in the past or you catch a very weak interval;
  • The yield on the rental property may decrease, or it may not be at all, unless you have a tenant or you find a structural problem of the construction;
  • The issuer of the bond can go bankrupt and you lose all the money.

There are risks that you must take into account to adjust the returns on investments with the percentage of risk. Professionals always calculate their adjusted return on an investment. The calculation is very complex and has many variables. But for the sake of simplification we can estimate a differential for the degree of risk. For example: -1.5% for a very good real estate, -2.5% for small and medium-sized companies bonds and -3% for blue chips shares.Thus, we now have a comparison between + 5% credit payment and (10% – 3% = 7%) for shares; (8% -1.5% = 6.5%) for real estate and (9% -2.5% = 6.5%) for bonds.

Now it’s a little clearer. We know that up to a loan interest rate of 6.5% or 7% we can invest without problems, but if the interest exceeds these levels it becomes more profitable to pay the credit.

Of course, the calculation is relevant depending on how well we made our estimate of future profits.

Many investors and business owners maintain their long-term loans, knowing that they can generate higher long-term returns with the same amount of money. This is the case of many smaller or larger entrepreneurs, it is the case of those who invest professionally or even those who invest passively in the long term.

Obviously, a solution would be to make more risky and / or more active investments that can bring higher returns, but in this case you really should know what you are doing.

Important is to make your calculations as well as you can, because, after all, nobody knows the future.

Psychologically

The need for survival/safety is lower (and stronger) on Maslow’s pyramid than aspirational needs. From here comes a degree of stress that will make you quite conservative in investments when you have unpaid loans.

Emotions are not good in investments.

To make a decision:

  • Do your calculations – see economic analysis above;
  • Calculate your risk profile;
  • What decision would make you unable to sleep at night?;
  • How would you feel about paying off your debts? But what if you didn’t pay them?
  • How would you feel if you invested in passive income? But what if you didn’t invest?
  • How would you feel if you paid your credit with 5% interest and the stock would have a 50% yield that year, which you would not benefit from? But if you did not pay your credit and invest in the stock market, and the stock market would fall by 50% that year? Which of these 2 options would most disturb you?

When choosing whether to pay your credit or invest/accumulate reserves you must take into account both the economical and psychological aspects. Both are important, but more important are the psychological ones, because they have the power to sabotage you.

Finally, if you are still not cleared how to proceed, you can choose the middle way and use the amounts saved according to the formula: Invest = (10 – Credit interest rate) and with the rest pay the credit. That is, if the credit interest is 4% and you save 1000 EUR per month, you pay in advance (or you set aside to pay in advance) 400 EUR and you invest 600 EUR.

Simple, right?

New1% cashback bonus from Iban Wallet

Iban Wallet informed that a new cashback opportunity is available at the platform to all new registered participants.

Every new investor who register through this link at Iban Wallet, use the code – LOVE1 – will get a 1% bonus on their Iban Account for the first 90 days for the first investment!

The promotion is not applicable to Iban One or Iban Market.

Campaign is valid until 29.02.2020.

For other bonuses visit our Cash-back & Bonuses page.

Mintos loan originator Kuki.pl misses the payment of the buyback guarantee?

Update:

As promised, I return with the response received from Mintos support. It arrived promptly, the next day, and you can read it below:

“Dans (Mintos)

Oct 18, 12:36 EEST

Hi Cristian,
thank you for your message.

After checking I found that the loan you are referring to had been closed by the 16.10.2019. 
It is listed in the finished Investments as well. The amount of days the loan is late, however, will keep increasing. As of now it is 63 days late, but that doesen`t change the fact that the loan had been in accordance to the buy-back guarantee on the 16.10.2019.

I hope that cleared it up and you may have a pleasant day
Let us know if you have any other questions.

Regards,
Dans”
Now, given the age of the platform, the volume of transfers and the experience with them so far, I will credit them, but there are still some doubts:
– if a loan was paid on 16.10.2019, why did it appear within the platform as late on 17.10.2019 (at night !!!) as it results from the image below, and only on 18.10.2019 as ” Finished prematurely “?
– if indeed the loan was paid on 16.10.2019, it means that there is a problem of the platform with the updating and/or displaying of data, which is worrying considering that we all make investment decisions in accordance with the information displayed.
As a personal opinion, for a while I will stay away from kuki.pl.
If you have questions or can explain these differences, feel free to comment on this post.

End of update

No money

Tonight, when I checked the Mintos platform, I had the unpleasant surprise to see that there are loans on my portfolio at Mintos that are more than 60 days late, given that I only invest in loans with buyback guarantee.I checked on the platform and noticed the following loan:

Kuki.pl buyback default

Kuki.pl buyback default

I am aware that this is only a one day late loan, but after the “experience” with Eurocent and Aforti I am very attentive to everything that happens within the platform.

I sent a message to Mintos about this topic, I will update this post when I get a response from them.

However, until then, I liquidated the entire loan portfolio from kuki.pl on the secondary market. I hope this is not another case like Eurocent.

Get 1,5% cashback bonus from DoFinance

The cashback campaign has been discontinued on 16.10.2019

“Dear investors,

We are letting you know that since the unexpected activity and volume of investments, we are stopping the 1.5% cashback campaign today on 16.10.2019.

During the time of the cashback campaign we received an unexpectedly large sum of investments, that have significantly decreased the available loan volume on DoFinance platform. In order to ensure the already active investment activity and re-investing process, we have to temporarily stop the campaign, but we promise to continue this offer as soon as there will be enough loans available for new and existing investors!

The funds transferred and invested until today are still qualified for the bonus.”

As the active investment season is here, DoFinance have a special offer to DoFinance investors!

All new investments made until 01.11.2019 (with a minimum term of 6 months) will get a 1,5% cashback bonus! This means that now with DoFinance it is possible to earn up to 13,5% annually!

This offer will be valid for all programs, except the 4% and 5% auto-invest programs. All the investor needs to do – transfer new funds and make a new investment.

The bonus is usually added to the investors account in up to two working days after the investment has been made.

Get 1% cashback bonus for your investments on ReInvest24

Reinvest24 informed that a new cashback opportunity is available at the portal to all registered participants.

How it works?

Campaign is valid from 23.02.2019 00:00 until 11.03.2019 23:59.

  • Within the terms of the campaign, ReInvest24 will give Cashback to all users who make any investment in the amount of at least 500 euros on the Reinvest24 platform during the campaign period.
  • The investment amount will be calculated as follows: the sum of all gross investments invested into any properties on the Reinvest24 platform. Funds simply deposited to the user’s Reinvest24 account and not invested into a selected property do not qualify as an investment amount.
  • The following Cashback rates shall apply: 0 – 499.99 Eur investment = No Cashback
    500 – 999.99 Eur investment = Cashback 0.5% from the investment amount
    1000 – … Eur investment = Cashback 1% from the investment amount
  • The Cashback amount will be paid out to all users within 24 hours after the end of the campaign to the users’ Reinvest24 accounts.
  • Every user has the right to either withdraw their Cashback amount or reinvest it into any property as per the standard Terms and Conditions of the Reinvest24 platform.

For other bonuses visit our Cash-back & Bonuses page.

New Envestio project – Crypto-mining Container Phi200

Envestio logo

Envestio informed today that a new investment opportunity is available at the portal to all registered participants.

By launching the project “Crypto-mining Container Phi200” (Project ID EN018025), Envestio continues to expand the successful cooperation with the representatives of crypto-mining industry.

This loan is fully secured by mixed collateral and personal guarantee of the main beneficiary of Ostbin Group Ltd.

As usual, you can invest any amount starting from 1 EUR. Minimum deposit to the investment account is EUR 100.

If you invest for the first time at Envestio don’t forget that you can get € 5 and a 0.5% cashback bonus for the investments made in the first nine months (270 days), more details HERE.

Investment opportunity

  • High-yielding investment in crypto-mining sector, financing of a crypto-mining hardware assembling process.
  • Secured debt, 20,5% planned annual return.
  • Investment principal buyback is available at 5% penalty rate.

Project description

Ostbin Group is a company, established by IT professionals in order to conduct different operations on the crypto-mining market, such as assembling and selling crypto-mining hardware, direct crypto-mining using own hardware as well as management of crypto-mining facilities, owned by external parties.

The company is already known to Envestio participants by its fully-financed project “Crypto-mining Farm 130GTX1080ti”. Ostbin Group is constantly developing new approaches and works only with the newest hardware on the market in order to make mining process more efficient and achieve high and stable profitability even in volatile environment, which is observed on the crypto-mining market in 2018.

This time Ostbin Group is offering a “secured debt” type investment project.

Ostbin Group has recently received a new order and signed a contract with the end customer for assembling a modern crypto-mining unit of a larger scale. Now the company is looking forward to attract co-financing with help of Envestio participants in order to complete this project. The target amount is EUR 800,000 and investment horizon constitutes 9 months – term that is necessary for purchasing and delivering the hardware, assembling the mining unit, and receiving the final payment from the customer.

The mining hardware is going to be placed inside a standard 40-ft container, equipped with industrial-type automated cooling system, allowing it to operate within approximately 70 degrees wide temperature gap (-35oC to +35oC). The hardware filling of the mining unit is formed by 200 latest generation mining servers, built on basis of Intel Xeon Phi processors. This hardware is characterized by longer lifecycle, extraordinary operational flexibility, and higher effectiveness than most of the crypto-mining solutions that are available on the market in the second half of 2018. Consequently, this mobile mining unit is going to be one of the most powerful and efficient products of those offered on the global market.

Market

Cryptocurrency market currently experiences exponential growth with total capitalization exceeding EUR 215 billion in August, 2018. This is a rapid increase from beginning of the 2017, when gross capitalization amounted more than 10 times lower number, i.e. EUR 20 billion. The market remains highly volatile, however, the technology behind it is constantly developing and the involved number of important players is growing.

Bitcoin remains the leading currency on the market with around 47% of total capitalization value. It is followed by Etherium with 16% and Ripple on the third place with 6%.

An increasing number of traditional institutions such as central banks, stock exchanges, and even some governments are demonstrating increasing interest to the blockchain industry market.

Sample repayment schedule

Envestio participant’s investment – EUR 1 000.00
Payments:

  • 08.09.2018 – EUR 17.41
  • 08.10.2018 – EUR 16.85
  • 08.11.2018 – EUR 17.41
  • 08.12.2018 – EUR 16.85
  • 08.01.2019 – EUR 17.41
  • 08.02.2019 – EUR 17.41
  • 08.03.2019 – EUR 15.73
  • 08.04.2019 – EUR 17.41
  • 08.05.2019 – EUR 1 016.85

Total expected return: EUR 1 153.33

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