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How to Pick the Best Residual Income Model, best residual income opportunities.#Best #residual #income #opportunities

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How To Pick The Best Residual Income Model For You

Best residual income opportunitiesPerhaps you re looking to earn some extra money in addition to your normal salary. Or maybe you just plain want to leave your ordinary, boring eight to five job. No matter what your reason is, there is no better way to see your goals through to the end then to follow the residual income model and achieve your dreams.

Just in case you ve never heard of this model before, it s quite powerful. Basically it s a practice (or theory if you will) that money can be made passively without much involvement from yourself.

That s the whole idea behind the concept of residual income. You will only need to do a certain job a few times (mostly in the beginning). And then it will continue to earn money as time passes on. Eventually, you will be earning money for something you did weeks, months or even years ago.

If you have limited time on your hands this can be a great way to make extra money. And fortunately there are several different types of residual income models out there to choose from all with their own pros and cons.

Here is the best way to choose the right one for you.

Does The Residual Income Model Provide Continuous Income?

Before you read any further, I highly encourage you to check out this list of 19 great residual income ideas I put together.

For me, my favorite income model from this list is blogging. (Obvious I own this website!)

Here s what I like about working with websites and blogging:

  • I get to research and write about stuff I like.
  • I publish it once and then never do anything with it ever again.
  • For months and years later money trickles in from my websites.

That s a very important fact. Most residual income models claim to bring you money continuously. However, that may not always be the case. The amount you receive may be temporarily high at one time, and then nothing at a later time. Inconsistency is not good!

When choosing the best model for your needs, you should take a look at the model and your potential earnings. Will you truly continue to make money after you do the work? If so, will this money appear in a continuous fashion or is it possible that you will make small amounts several weeks apart? If you are looking to replace your current job, you will need continuous income but if you are simply looking to supplement it, occasional earnings may be enough.

What Are The Long-Term Earnings?

While examining whether a given residual income model will provide you with continuous income, you should also try to determine how much you will earn in the long-term. You want to make sure that your efforts are worth it and that means that you will be able to not only achieve your return of investment, but will be able to keep earning afterwards.

For example, let s return back to my blogging example. Do you want to know how the BIG bloggers actually make their BIG five figure months? They promote affiliate products and get a cut of every product sold.

But here s the secret part. They don t necessarily use their own audience to sell to. Nope. They use other people s!

Just check out the residual income earnings potential in this model example I worked up here. You might be surprised by the possibilities of how much money there is to earn!

When considering this aspect of residual income, be sure to consider not just the length of time for which you can expect to receive income, but also the quantity of income you will receive.

How Many Ways Can You Earn?

Best residual income opportunitiesIt is a given that models that offer more ways to earn money will offer a higher pay out in the end. That s because you ll be making money in multiple different ways. But because of that, before you opt for a particular model, you ll want to examine the ways in which it will allow you to create an income.

For example, here s a brief list of 15 different ideas I had for making money on the side. Though most of them are pretty diverse, they are all things you can try and build upon one another to get the most of amount of residual income you could possibility generate in a month.

If you are able to find one that seems to be something you d like to try, then go for it. But if you are able to try multiple ones with the same conviction, than that is just going to be even better for you!

Does The Model Motivate You?

Like we said in the beginning, many people turn to a residual income model because they are bored of their job or looking for a way out. If you think this is going to be a cakewalk or free lunch, think again!

Especially in the very beginning when you re just getting going, you ll have to put in a tremendous amount of effort to get your residual income model to the point where it works in autopilot. Take this website for example. It probably took me about 6 months before I had enough pages of content to be fully satisfied with it. And after that it started to make a handsome passive income stream. But it took A LOT of work in the beginning to get there!

Sometimes when you re looking for something different or an escape, what your mind really craves is something that it can sink it s teeth in to. It wants something that will keep it motivated! So why not give your brain what its looking for. Use this website and the suggestions I ve laid out for you to pick the right residual income model, and find yourself working on something that will keep you motivated for a long time to come!


2 Year Fixed Rate Bond Rates, Best Savings Rate, income bonds best rates.#Income #bonds #best

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Best 2 Year Fixed-Rate Bond Rates

Compare 2 year fixed rate bonds by interest rates and eligibility criteria. Click below to find out more about each bond.

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2 year bonds represent a useful asset class for investors wanting to generate an income or get the best savings growth for this short period of time. Although different types of investment bonds can be part of a balanced asset portfolio, it can be difficult to keep on top of the best rates when you need them from the vast array of providers on the market.

Why it’s important to beat inflation with your savings

If you’ve got some cash to invest in a savings account, you will effectively lose money if the interest rate is below that of inflation.


The Highest Yielding Fixed Income Investments, best income bonds.#Best #income #bonds

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The Highest Yielding Fixed Income Investments: Where to Find Yield NOW

Best income bonds

In recent years, the extremely low rates on U.S. Treasuries and other lower-risk investments have fueled rising demand for high-yielding investments. Below are six ways that investors can boost their yields and overcome the low-rate environment. But beware: with higher yields also comes higher risk. Even if you need to boost your investment income, it isn’t worth excessive risks if you need to use the money soon, you depend on it for retirement, or you aren’t used to more volatile investments.

Two Ways to Find Yield

With that said, there are two ways to pick up higher yields in the bond market.

First, long-term bonds tend to offer higher yields than their short-term counterparts. The reason for this is simple: since more can go wrong with a bond issuer in a ten- to 30-year period than in a shorter interval, investors demand compensation for the added risk. Keep in mind, longer-term bonds tend to be much more volatile than shorter-term issues, so they aren’t appropriate for all investors.

Also, there are times when long-term issues don’t offer much of an advantage over shorter-term bonds – a condition known as a flat yield curve. When this is the case, investors may not be getting appropriate compensation for the added risks of long-term bonds.

Investors can also find higher yields in the segments of the bond market that come with above-average credit risk. Five areas of the bond market that stand out for their ability to provide above-average yields:

Investment Grade Corporate Bonds

Corporate bonds are a lower-risk way for investors to pick up extra yield, especially if they focus on higher-quality and/or shorter-term issues. From 1997 through 2012, investment- grade corporate bonds averaged a yield advantage of 1.67 percentage points over U.S. Treasuries.

The tradeoff for this higher yield is a higher level of risk than an investor would experience in Treasuries since corporate are influenced by both interest rate risk (the impact of rate movements on prices) and credit risk (i.e., changes in the financial health of individual issuers).

Over time, investors have been paid for this risk: in the ten years ended on August 31, 2013, the Barclays Corporate Investment Grade Index produced an average annual return of 5.57%, outpacing the 4.77% return of the broader investment grade bond market, as gauged by the Barclays U.S. Aggregate Bond Index. Long-term corporate bonds performed even better, producing an average annual return of 6.82%. But always keep in mind that what the mutual fund companies tell us is correct: past performance truly is no guarantee of future results.

High Yield Bonds

High yield bonds are one of the riskiest areas of the bond market, and their volatility is often close to what an investor could expect from stocks. However, high yield bonds continue to be one of the most sought-after investments among those who need to boost their investment income. From 1997 through 2012, high yield bonds have averaged a yield advantage of 6.01 percentage points over U.S. Treasuries.

In the ten years ended August 31, 2013, the total returns of the Credit Suisse High Yield Index, produced an average annual total return of 8.78%. That return is over three percentage points better than the investment grade market and ahead of even the stock market, as gauged by the 7.11% average annual return of the S P 500 Index. High yield bonds can, therefore, be one of the most important components of an income portfolio – as long as you’re comfortable with the risks.

Senior Bank Loans

Senior loans are a previously obscure asset class that is growing in prominence amid investors’ frantic search for higher-yielding alternatives. Senior loans also referred to as leveraged loans or syndicated bank loans, are loans banks make to corporations and then package and sell to investors. Since the majority of these senior bank loans are made to companies rated below investment-grade, the securities tend to have higher yields than the typical investment-grade corporate bond.

At the same time, senior loans typically offer a yield about 1-2% less than high yield bonds since the bonds themselves aren’t as vulnerable to default, and the funds that invest in this area tend to be less volatile than those that focus on high-yield bonds. One of the most compelling aspects of bank loans is that they have floating rates, which provides an element of protection against rising rates. Funds that invest in senior loans can typically be expected to offer yields about two to three percentage points above broad-maturity U.S. Treasury funds.

Foreign Corporate and High Yield Bonds

Until just recently, there were very limited options to invest in corporate and high-yield bonds issued by companies outside of the United States. Today, however, the demand for higher yielding investments has led to the birth of numerous mutual funds and exchange-traded funds dedicated to this space. The yields are high: funds this area will offer yields anywhere from three to six percentage points above U.S. government bond funds. But again, caution is necessary: the risks are high here, and when the markets are hit by broad economic concerns or major international news events, these funds will take it on the chin. Still, those who have a long-term time horizon and a higher tolerance for risk can take advantage of this relatively new and growing asset class to boost their income and augment their portfolio diversification.

High Yield Municipal Bonds

Investors in higher tax brackets have the option of investing in high-yield municipal bonds, which are the bonds issued by government entities with lower credit ratings. Funds that invest in this area will typically offer yields about 1.5 – 2.5 percentage points above funds that focus on investment grade munis (on a pre-tax basis). While volatility is higher in this area of the market, longer-term investors have been paid for the risks. Due in part to their yield advantage, high-yield munis have outperformed their investment-grade counterparts over the past decade. Learn more about whether this asset class is appropriate for your portfolio from my article, Are High Yield Municipal Bonds Right for You?

Finding Yield Outside of the Bond Market

There are also a number of high-yielding (and higher-risk) investments outside of the bond market, including:

  • Convertible bonds
  • Dividend-paying stocks
  • Utility stocks
  • Real estate investment trusts
  • Master limited partnerships (MLPs)
  • Preferred stocks

To learn more about these investment options, see my series of articles Investing for Income.

Disclaimer: The information on this site is provided for discussion purposes only, and should not be construed as investment advice. Under no circumstances does this information represent a recommendation to buy or sell securities. Talk to an investment advisor and/or tax professional before you invest.


Best income investments of 2015, best income bonds.#Best #income #bonds

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Best income investments of 2015

Income investors have enjoyed a nice run. In six of the last eight years, yields have fallen and the 10-year Treasury bond returned more than the interest it paid. Other investments with a yield have done well too. But this year shapes up as a challenge.

For one thing, yields have again fallen to near historic lows, and most experts believe a reversal is inevitable. “Long term, there is only one direction rates can go from here,” said Lane Jones, chief investment officer at Evensky and Katz/Foldes Financial Wealth Management in Coral Gables, Florida. “Our approach is to remain defensive and not reach for yield.”

Best income bonds

The U.S. economy shows signs of gaining momentum, and the Fed has signaled it will boost short-term rates later this year. That would provide further upward pressure on bond yields, leaving fixed-income investors vulnerable to loss of principal.

Yet a reversal is by no means certain. The T-bond’s stingy 1.8 percent yield looks juicy next to government bonds yielding half as much in Europe and Japan. Foreign buying could push bond prices up and yields even lower for a while, especially if the dollar remains strong. Depressed oil prices also tend to work against the case for higher bond yields by tamping down inflation worries.

Still, the prevailing view is for modestly rising yields this year, which means income investors already earning little return need to be more careful about where they put their money. Here’s a look at some of the most popular income options:

Bonds

Any income portfolio should have bonds for stability and diversification, and also because no one really knows where interest rates are going. Wall Street is littered with experts who mistakenly forecast higher rates last year. Making a big bet on direction is often a mistake. But not all bonds are created equal—even though they all seem overvalued early in 2015.

Corporate junk bonds have the highest yields and may appear most tempting. Top-performing junk bond funds, like Vanguard High-Yield Corporate and Federated High Yield, sport yields above 5 percent. This group has gotten more attractive after slumping in recent months. But the yield premium over Treasuries and investment-grade corporate bonds remains historically slim. “You’re not getting paid much for the extra risk,” said Jacob Wolkowitz, investment manager at Accredited Investors in Edina, Minnesota.

The problem is that other options don’t look great, either. The paltry 10-year Treasury bond yield doesn’t offer much cushion against loss of principal if yields rise. Investment-grade muni bond funds look attractive—but only for investors in the highest tax bracket, where the effective yield is around 3 percent. Your best bet in the bond world might be investment-grade corporates, which offer relative safety and a yield near 3 percent. The Vanguard Total Bond Market fund yields 2.5 percent, sticks with high quality and has an average maturity of 5.6 years—which most bond pros say is in the sweet spot on the yield curve.

Dividend stocks

Best income bonds

The stock market has a lot to offer yield investors in an environment where the economy is expected to grow at about 3 percent, which should underpin share prices while allowing companies to keep raising their dividend. But as with bonds, advisors say not to stretch for the highest payouts.

“Shy away from those with the highest dividend yields,” said Tom Fredrickson, a fee-only financial planner in Brooklyn, New York. Unusually high yields suggest a company is struggling and may cut its dividend. Meanwhile, he added, “if interest rates rise, bonds will become more attractive,” and investors will sell these stocks to get the income they want with less risk. He would avoid, for example, AT T now yielding about 5.5 percent. He is also looking beyond utilities, which are traditional yield stocks but posted big returns last year and seem vulnerable.

Individual stocks with a history of raising their dividend include Johnson Johnson, Emerson Electric and Coca-Cola, all with dividends around 3 percent. Other choices to consider: Vanguard High Dividend Yield or iShares Select Dividend, both ETFs yielding around 3 percent and holding stocks that should keep raising their payouts.

Alternatives

The rest of the income world offers a mixed bag that may be best held as part of a diverse income portfolio. Real Estate Investment Trusts had a great 2014 and appear expensive. Like junk bonds, they offer a slim yield premium over Treasuries for the risk. For exposure, consider iShares Dow Jones U.S. Real Estate, an ETF.

Master limited partnerships (MLPs) are mostly tied to the oil and gas industry, which is in a funk, with oil near $45 a barrel. Avoid those with yields above 10 percent, a signal they may cut their payout. Consider capturing this group’s attractive income through Alerian MLP, an ETF with a 6.5 percent yield. Warning: MLPs come with complicated tax rules and may be best held in an IRA.

Preferred stocks offer yields in the 5 percent to 6 percent range but give you little of the upside of common stocks. They also come in many flavors that may be difficult for individuals to vet. Here again, an ETF like PowerShares Preferred Portfolio, recently yielding 5.9 percent, might be the best choice.

“I like all these strategies, and they work best when combined,” said Jack Ablin, chief investment officer at BMO Private Bank in Chicago. In this low-yield environment, income investors have to look beyond traditional vehicles, which do little more than keep up with inflation. Holding a range of income investments, he said, “can give you a higher yield than traditional bonds with similar risk and which will adjust as rates rise.”


Our pick of the best fixed-rate savings bonds, best income bonds.#Best #income #bonds

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Our pick of the best fixed-rate savings bonds

B y tying up funds in fixed savings bonds, customers can guarantee the rate for the term and protect themselves against future cuts.

The best deals are unlikely to be around for long so it’s advisable to act fast when you find a suitable account.

Savers who have used up their cash Isa subscription for this tax year (£20,000), and want to deposit any extra savings into fixed-rate bonds or easy-access savings accounts, should read this guide (which will be updated as deals change) to find out the best rates on offer. It’s part of our series of articles that highlight the best savings deals – and expose the catches.

Best fixed-rate bonds

ONE YEAR

Metro Bank pays 1.95pc to customers who have a minimum of £500 to save.

If you open the bond online an instant access account will be opened automatically at the same time. This account is used to transfer funds into the bond and back again when it matures.

Y ou’ll need to deposit cash into the instant access account within 30 days or it will be closed and your bond won’t be activated.

Customers who open the bond in one of Metro Bank’s branches will need to open an instant access account or current account first.

Those interested in an alternative type of bank account could earn more with the Islamic provider Bank of London and the Middle East. It pays pay 2pc over 12 months, however the rate is not guaranteed.

Adhering to Sharia principals, the banks offer an estimated profit rate which could change during the term.

I f it cannot deliver, it offers customers the option of withdrawing their funds, plus the profit earned up to that point, without penalty.

BLME customers need at least £25,000 to open an account.

TWO YEARS

Atom Bank’s account must be opened and managed on its mobile app which can be found on the App Store or Google Play. Customers must have at least £50 to save.

Paragon Bank accounts can be opened online with £1,000.

Al Rayan Bank, another Islamic provider, pays a target profit rate of 2.2pc. Accounts can be opened with £1,000.

B LME pays an anticipated rate of 2.1pc on deposits of at least £25,000.

THREE YEARS

The top three-year bond is offered by National Savings Investments and Sensible Savings which both pay 2.2pc.

NS I’s Guaranteed Growth Bond can be opened online but customers can only deposit a maximum of £3,000. Withdrawals are permitted subject to 90 days loss of interest.

Sensible Savings, part of the Access Bank UK, pays a top rate on deposits of at least £5,000. Accounts can be opened online or by post.

Al Rayan Bank anticipates a rate of 2.3pc although this is not guaranteed.

FOUR YEARS

Tesco Bank offers a top rate of 2.12pc – significantly less than the market leading three year bonds.

Accounts can be opened and managed online and by phone. Interest must be paid into a nominated account.

Those willing to seek an alternative savings account could earn 2.4pc with the Islamic provider Bank of London and the Middle East. However savers need at least £25,000 to open the account.

FIVE YEARS

Close Brothers pays 2.4pc on deposits of at least £10,000. Accounts can be opened by post or phone.

Those with smaller balances might want to consider Paragon Bank or Vanquis Savings’ five-year bonds which offer 2.35pc. Both accounts can be opened with £1,000.

B LME offers a target rate of 2.5pc to those who have £25,000 to save.


Compare Income Protection Insurance at, best income protection insurance.#Best #income #protection #insurance

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Income protection insurance

Compare income protection insurance quotes with ActiveQuote [1]

  • Cover outgoings and maintain your lifestyle if you’re unable to work
  • Protect against accident and sickness, unemployment or both – tailor to your budget and needs
  • Receive a tax-free, monthly benefit of up to 70% of your gross annual salary

Best income protection insurance Best income protection insurance

Do I need income protection?

Income protection insurance will provide you with financial support if you find yourself unable to work, due to accident or illness, or if you’re made redundant.

It’s easy to compare income protection insurance

One search is all it takes to compare income protection insurance (IPI) policies, with a helping hand from ActiveQuote. [1]

Get informed


  • Peruse our Income protection library Would life insurance or critical illness cover be a better fit for you? Find out!

Cover options

There are three cover options available for income protection insurance so you’ll be able to take your pick:

  • Accident and sickness only
  • Unemployment only (redundancy insurance)
  • Accident, sickness and unemployment cover (ASU)

Income protection insurance can pay out up to 70% of your gross annual income and you choose how much you want to cover. Bear in mind that your premiums are going to be higher if you want to protect the full 70%.

There’s also the option of looking at cover for employment benefits in kind (P11D benefits) such as private health insurance or a company car.

But to be honest, if you’re looking to cover 70% of your income and/or P11D benefits, your choice of insurers will be limited.

Deferred/wait periods


  • The deferred or wait period is how long you have to wait before a policy pays out. This could be from back-to-day-one to 112 weeks

Providers take certain information into account when deciding your premium, such as:

  • The number of hours you work
  • How long you’ve been in continuous employment
  • Your occupation
  • Residential status
  • Whether you use tobacco and/or nicotine products (including cigars, cigarettes, chewing tobacco, pipes and nicotine replacement products such as e-cigarettes or ‘vapers’)

It’s really important that you’re as accurate as possible with the details you provide as mistakes or omissions may invalidate the policy.

Types of income protection insurance

You’re spoilt for choice!

Occupation classes


  • Policies can offer cover for ‘own occupation’ (if you can’t do your specific job), ‘suited occupation’ or ‘any occupation’ (if you can’t do any job)

After you’ve chosen the cover option you need, you’ll be able to decide what type of income protection policy you want.

The different types include:

  • Guaranteed policies – the amount you’ll pay will always stay the same – guaranteed! Oh, unless you decide to up your cover in which case your premiums will go up – sorry
  • Reviewable policies – your insurer will review your policy regularly, so your premiums might increase year on year
  • Age-related policies – premiums will increase yearly in line with your age. But they’re not affected by lifestyle or occupation so it suits those who are a bigger risk to insure

Income protection insurance products

If you have regular outgoings for your mortgage or loan repayments, there are products which will specifically cover these payments for you, should you find yourself unable to work.

These can include:

  • Payment protection insurance (PPI) – it’s got a bad reputation due to mis-selling in the past but it’s actually a legit way of covering your loan repayments or minimum credit card payments
  • Mortgage payment protection insurance – does what it says on the tin – covers your monthly mortgage payments
  • Loan protection insurance – no prizes for guessing this one – it pays your monthly loan repayments

What are the odds?


  • The average claim paid out for income protection insurance in 2016 was nearly 18,000 [2]
  • 84.7% of claims were paid out


More information

We’ve got an abundance of income protection insurance guides nestling in our Income protection library to help you out if you want to know more.

Our guides can help with the basics such as whether you need IPI, the impact on state benefits, typical exclusions and the factors that impact on the premium price.

Delve deeper into the different types of products and find more information on areas such as terminal illness cover, lump sums at death, waiver of premiums while incapacitated and support for rehabilitation.

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    [1] Gocompare.com introduces customers to ActiveQuote who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Gocompare.com’s relationship with ActiveQuote is limited to that of a business partnership, no common ownership or control rights exist between us. Please note, we cannot be held responsible for the content of external websites and by using the links stated to access these separate websites you will be subject to the terms of use applying to those sites

    [2] Source: Association of British Insurers media release, 5 May, 2017, ‘Protection insurers pay out £13m per day in claims’


  • The Best Residual Income Opportunity Online – FINALLY, best residual income opportunities.#Best #residual #income #opportunities

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    Earn Residual Income

    I m absolutely convinced that I have finally found the best residual income opportunity on the internet! Hear me out on this

    I started my internet marketing business exactly 10 years ago at the time of writing this, and in that time I have basically done it all and seen it all. I ve been in all sorts of different business opportunities, affiliate programs, multi-level marketing systems, and just about every other type of business out there. I ve had great success in some, total bombed in others, and everything in between.

    I ve even been scammed a few times along the way. But I learned lessons from each and every failure or success.

    And I have also purchased more information products than I would care to even admit! Some I learned a lot from and some were absolutely horrible.

    On top of that, I am also the co-owner in a very successful offline marketing business with 15 employees, and clients all over the world. I also run several popular business blogs.

    I guess you could say that I have a LOT of knowledge and experience in the world of business, both online and offline. I started in the trenches with no money and no experience, without a mentor or system to follow, and I worked my way up to now having several streams of passive or residual income.

    But I don t believe in getting complacent because you never know what s going to happen, so I still keep my eye out for worthy opportunities to join. After being battle tested for the past decade, I know a good program when I see it, and I know how to sift through all the hype to truly figure out if it is worth joining or just a bunch of crap.

    I have a very strict and rigorous process that I put every business I am considering through and 99.99% of the time they don t pass. So I rarely get into anything new these days. In fact, the last time I joined any sort of program or opportunity was almost 3 years ago.

    However, I have FINALLY found what I believe to be one of the best business opportunities I have ever come across. It combines the power of blogging with the proven performance of affiliate marketing and the commission structure of a top network marketing program, and packages it all up into one very easy to follow system that anyone from a total beginner to a full out guru can use and massively profit from!

    If you have read this far then you are obviously interested in building residual income for yourself, and I KNOW you won t find any better option than this


    5 Year Fixed Rate Bond Rates, Best Savings Rate, income bonds best rates.#Income #bonds #best

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    Best 5 Year Fixed-Rate Bond Rates

    We do the hard work for you – seeking out the best 5 year fixed rate bonds from a full panel of UK providers daily. See below for details of interest rates and eligibility.

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    Looking to invest in a 5 year fixed rate bond? These are attractive investment products for those looking for higher interest returns and a means of balancing an asset portfolio over a longer period of time. However, it can be hard to keep on top of the latest offers within a constantly changing market.

    Why it’s important to beat inflation with your savings

    If you’ve got some cash to invest in a savings account, you will effectively lose money if the interest rate is below that of inflation.


    Fixed Income Alternatives For Retirees, income bonds best rates.#Income #bonds #best #rates

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    Fixed income alternatives for retirees

    With paltry interest rates on money market accounts and funds — and yields on certificates of deposit not much better — retirees are looking for safe alternatives.

    “We’re getting a lot of questions about that,” says James Holtzman, a shareholder at Legend Financial Advisors in Pittsburgh.

    He and others recommend an array of alternatives that improve yield, ranging from short-term government bond funds to utility stocks. But keep in mind that while many investments offer a higher return than money market funds and short-term CDs, virtually none of them offers as much safety.

    “When you move from money markets, risk increases. That’s the first thing you have to keep in mind,” says Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer at Solaris Asset Management in Bedford Hills, N.Y.

    Bonds

    Bonds are probably the first place you’ll want to look, as their returns beat money market accounts and funds with more safety than you get in stocks.

    The risk with bonds — also known as fixed-income investments — is that when interest rates rise from their historic lows, bond prices can fall. Remember that bond prices move in the opposite direction of interest rates.

    “The environment for the fixed-income market over the next several years is likely to be very different than the past 10 to 20 years,” says Michael Sheldon, chief market strategist for RDM Financial Group in Westport, Conn.

    “These are the lowest interest rates we’ve seen in a generation. So it’s logical that rates can only go in one direction from here, namely higher.”

    Legend Financial recommends a short-term adjustable-rate government bond fund for some of its clients. Short-term bond prices decline less than long-term bonds when interest rates rise. Adjustable-rate bond funds can offer more stability in dividends and share price than fixed-rate bond funds. And government bonds are safer than corporate bonds.

    Given the risk of higher rates, Holtzman says retirees should consider putting just a portion of their cash reserves into this type of fund. “You hear about keeping six months of your spending needs in cash reserves,” he says. “Maybe put one to three months of it in a fund like that.”

    Treasuries, munis and corporates

    A Treasury bond or Treasury bond fund will offer you the most safety in the fixed income market. Unless the federal government goes bankrupt, you can rest assured that the bond’s principal and interest will be paid in full.

    The second safest class of bonds and bond funds is the municipal market. These bonds come in two forms. First, there are general obligation bonds, which are repaid with general tax revenue received by the municipality.

    And then there are revenue bonds, which are paid back with revenue from a specific project — a hospital or a convention center for example. Obviously general obligation bonds are safer than revenue bonds. To compensate for the risk, revenue bonds have higher yields.

    Corporate bonds and bond funds offer higher yields than Treasuries and munis, but they also present greater risk. That’s because corporations can go bankrupt more easily than the government.

    If you’re going the corporate route, Sheldon suggests a short-term investment-grade fund. Investment-grade bonds are ones credit rating agencies think have little chance of defaulting. “In that kind of fund, you’re getting diversification; low interest rate risk, though you’ll have some; and low credit risk,” he says.

    One approach Sheldon recommends is a laddered bond portfolio. You buy bonds or funds with a range of maturities, so that you have the benefit of short maturities — safety — and the benefit of long maturities — yield.

    Individual bonds vs. bond funds

    If you’re buying bonds as opposed to bond funds, you have an advantage in an environment of rising interest rates. That’s because when your bonds mature in such an environment, you can reinvest the money into bonds with higher yields.

    Most experts recommend that you stick to bond funds unless you have at least $100,000 to invest in individual bonds. That’s because individual bonds can be very expensive, their fees are often opaque and many don’t have great liquidity, making them difficult to buy and sell.

    Bond funds also offer broad diversification and professional management. “When something fails, you want to be in a position to absorb it,” says Taylor Gang, vice president at Evensky Katz Wealth Management. “In a large, diversified portfolio there will be less of an effect.”

    In any bond strategy you choose, remember that the longer the duration of the bond or the bond fund, the more risk you are taking. Like bond maturity, duration is expressed in years. It’s designed to convey a fund’s sensitivity to interest rate changes. If a fund’s duration is five years, its share price will decline 5 percent if interest rates rise by a full percentage point.

    “You have to understand the risk of duration exposure,” Gang says. “People probably underestimate the degree of exposure to interest rate risk when they go out on the yield curve.”

    When the Federal Reserve next raises interest rates, long-term bond prices may fall 20 percent, says Legend Financial’s Holtzman.

    Stocks

    If you can stomach a bit more risk, you might choose stocks or stock funds that focus on stable companies with high dividends.

    “Between consumer staples, energy, utility and telecom companies, you can pick up attractive yields with low volatility,” Sheldon says. “But keep in mind if you buy stocks that they aren’t a perfect substitute for money markets because of the risk.”

    Risk could quickly derail the best-laid retirement plan, as many retirees learned in the recent stock market rout.


    How and where to buy income protection insurance – Money Advice Service, best income protection.#Best

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    How and where to buy income protection insurance

    Income protection insurance is important for many people, to give them peace of mind if they couldn’t work due to sickness or illness. It’s important to get a policy that will meet your needs in case you need to claim and getting expert help from an adviser is a useful starting place.

    How much does it cost?

    Not sure what something means? Have a look at our Protection insurance glossary.

    How much you pay for income protection insurance each month, depends on the level of cover you want (i.e. the amount you want paid out if you’re unable to work), the type of policy you take out and the likelihood that you’ll find yourself unable to work.

    Factors which will affect your monthly payments (premiums), include:

    You might find it useful to speak to a financial adviser to help you make the right choice.

    • Age
    • The waiting period you choose
    • Whether you smoke or have previously smoked
    • Health (your current health, your weight, your family medical history)
    • Job (some occupations carry a higher risk than others and might mean you have to pay more)

    The amount of cover you need will depend on:

    According to the ABI, the average payout in 2013 for individual income protection policies was £11,500 over the course of four years, to support those unable to work.

    • Debts
    • Take home pay
    • Mortgage/rent
    • Number of dependants

    The state might provide you or your family with some financial support, but the amount is likely to be less than you expect.

    How much cover do I need?

    Follow these three steps to work out how much cover you need.

    Step 1: First add up:

    • Your debts: your mortgage and other debts, including credit card debts or personal loans.
    • Expenses you wish to cover: your monthly spend and any other costs, such as childcare, future holidays, or other large cost you’ll pay out.

    Step 2: Find out what kind of cover you already have

    For example, if you’re employed, your benefits package might include a certain level of sick pay.

    You should be able to find this out in your contract or by speaking to the HR department.

    If you’re self-employed it’s unlikely that you have a similar scheme in place.

    Step 3: Calculate the cover you need

    When you have these two figures, take away the benefits or cover you already have from the total amount you need.

    The result is the amount of income protection insurance cover you might need.

    Income protection insurance example

    Add up

    John (42) and Judith (39) have a joint household income of £41,000 per year.

    They have an outstanding mortgage of £213,000 and took out a £5,000 loan to purchase a car.

    Their basic monthly outgoings are £1,000 (£12,000 per year).

    What you already have

    Through his employer, John has a company sick pay scheme which ensures he will receive a full salary for his first three months.

    He will then receive half his salary for the next three months and, if he remains unable to work, he will not get anything else from his employer.

    This adds up to £7,200. Judith is self-employed and does not have a similar benefit.

    Calculate what you need

    They decide that they need enough income protection insurance to help pay off the mortgage (£400 per month), car (£150 per month) and living costs (£1,000 per month).

    John’s company sick pay scheme will cover some costs for the first six months.

    They also have Judith’s salary of £1,150 per month.

    They pick an income protection policy which starts paying out after six months and covers 65% of John’s take home salary (£1,040 per month).

    Should you get an inflation linked policy?

    You don’t need your policy to be inflation linked if you just want to cover your mortgage.

    If you want to protect your current lifestyle then it should be linked to inflation.

    What happens to my policy if I die?

    Income protection insurance won’t pay out if you die, so if you have dependants it might make sense for you to take out a life insurance policy.

    Where to get quotes

    The best way to make sure you get what you need is to seek advice from an independent financial adviser or specialist broker.

    These might charge a fee for their services – or they might be paid in commission by insurance companies.

    Specialist advisers and brokers can:

    • Narrow down the income protection policies on the market to those which best suit your needs
    • Identify which policy is really right for you
    • Help you decide how much cover you need, and
    • Recommend how long the policy should last

    There are also specialist brokers and insurers for people who have been declined insurance.

    Perhaps because of a medical condition or because you have a job that isn’t covered by standard policies.

    Be honest about your medical history

    97% of all individual claims were paid out in 2013 – an average of £8.4m a day for individual life, critical illness and income protection insurance claims.

    It’s vital that you take care to answer all the questions honestly and give the insurer the full facts to the best of your knowledge.

    It could be the difference between getting a payout and getting nothing.

    If you need to claim, the insurer might check your medical history and if they find something important that you didn’t tell them, they could refuse your claim.

    Use our FAQ guide, which covers the basic questions that you might want to ask an adviser, or the questions they will ask you.

    Buying a policy

    Read the small print

    Read the terms and conditions so you know exactly what is and isn’t covered.

    If there are any areas you don’t understand, ask the insurance provider or financial adviser right away.

    When you complete the application:

    • Take your time
    • Read the questions carefully
    • Ask for advice on anything you don’t understand
    • Keep a copy of your application form to refer back to
    • If you apply online you’ll get a copy of your answers – keep this, and
    • If you’ve forgotten anything, get in touch with your insurer

    Changing your mind

    The rule for income protection is that you can cancel your policy any time in the first 30 days and get a refund of any premiums you’ve paid.

    Switching products/providers

    If you switch to another provider or change policy and keep the same provider, you might find yourself paying more.

    This is because you’ll be older than you were when you bought the first policy.

    If you’ve been ill, the insurer will take that into account when calculating your monthly payments.

    Keeping your cover up to date

    You should frequently review your income protection policy to make sure your monthly payments are competitively priced and that you still have the right amount of cover.

    Reasons to increase your level of cover include:

    • You’ve had a child
    • Your partner has stopped working
    • You’ve taken out a new mortgage

    On the other hand, if you get a new job and it comes with a more generous sick pay policy, you might be able to decrease your level of cover.

    Do you need life insurance? This product will provide some financial support to your dependants if you die.

    Do you need payment protection insurance? Also known as PPI, this product will help you keep making payments if you can’t work due to an illness, injury or if you’re made redundant.

    Do you need short term income protection? This solution provides short term cover to help you pay for essential outgoings if you find yourself unable to work.

    Do you need critical illness insurance? This type of policy will provide you with a tax-free ‘lump sum’ if you’re diagnosed with a serious illness covered by your policy.

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