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7 Important Investing Tips You Need to Follow

7 Important Investing Tips You Need to Follow

The world of investment is a constantly changing entity, one that continues to evolve according to global economy shifts, political events, and social upheaval. This has been particularly true in recent times, as there have been a number of significant trend investment reversals within both developed and emerging markets.

Despite this changeable and unpredictable nature, however, there are a series of fundamental rules that all investors must abide by if they are to succeed. These are based on the philosophic principle of determinism, which dictates that investors must adhere to their philosophy at all times and understand the underlying laws that govern change.

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With this in mind, what are the key tips that investors should follow when looking to commit their capital in 2014? Consider the following:

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    1. Never invest more than you are prepared to lose

    As a starting point, you should never commit more than you are prepared to lose when investing capital. It is therefore important to fully appraise your financial circumstances before making a commitment, paying careful attention to: the chosen vehicle for investment, your disposable income levels, and any potential returns. Failing to adhere to this rule will create a debilitating cycle of debt and loss, and may eventually force you to take ill-advised risks in the quest to recoup your capital.

    2. Build a contingency fund

    On a similar note, the most experienced investors tend to operate within their financial means while also developing a viable contingency fund. This is a must for anyone with an appreciation of risk management, as this capital can be used to offset losses, balance your trading account, and provide security in the event of an economic downturn. A contingency fund can serve alternative purposes that suit your exact need, and generally afford you flexibility in the quest to maximize your profitability.

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    3. Develop your investment portfolio over time

    Another fundamental rule of successful investment revolves around timing, as you need to pace yourself and develop your portfolio over time. Whether you wish to deal predominantly in derivatives, such as currency, or if you want to invest in physical commodities, such as shares or property, you must start slowly and look to expand your portfolio in line with the return that it generates. Patience is the key to accessing long-term gains, especially in a volatile or unpredictable economic climate.

    4. Diversify your portfolio

    As your financial returns begin to grow, you should look to diversify your portfolio and invest in a wider range of market sectors. This not only helps to offset the potential risk posed by economic decline and sudden market shifts, but it also affords you the opportunity to maximize your earnings over a prolonged period of time. Diversification also brings great responsibility, however, as you must adopt a proactive approach towards managing your portfolio and changing it to suit prevailing economic trends.

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    5. Automate your investments and offset risk

    One of the ways through which you can streamline the diversification process is to automate your accounts, using online trading platforms and software to implement risk management measures. Online trading accounts feature a host of automated tools that have been designed to minimize your risk as an investor, including stop losses. You could even take this principle further by embracing the concept of automated trading, which uses predetermined algorithms to execute trades in real-time across a range of financial markets.

    6. Take advantage of tax-free growth and investment options

    From bank accounts to financial markets and derivatives, there are numerous investment options that remain free from capital gains tax. In terms of the former, you should consider investing your idle capital into cash ISAs. Any interest that you accumulate on these accounts is completely tax free in the current economy. With regards to the latter, there are also tax-free stocks and share ISAs, which are far higher risk but also capable of delivering inflated returns over time.

    7. Look to reinvest any interest that you generate from your income

    It is extremely difficult to maximize your financial returns without encountering risk, so it is important to strike a balance between being risk-averse and conscientious as an investor. One of the best ways of achieving this is by looking to reinvest any interest that you generate from the income that you have invested, whether it is withdrawn from a standard savings account or an online trading portfolio. This enables you to invest more into your portfolio without placing existing capital at risk, while it is also an excellent way of maximizing both your short and long-term returns.

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    Published on November 8, 2018

    How to Answer the Tough Question: What are Your Salary Requirements?

    How to Answer the Tough Question: What are Your Salary Requirements?

    After a few months of hard work and dozens of phone calls later, you finally land a job opportunity.

    But then, you’re asked about your salary requirements and your mind goes blank. So, you offer a lower salary believing this will increase your odds at getting hired.

    Unfortunately, this is the wrong approach.

    Your salary requirements can make or break your odds at getting hired. But only if you’re not prepared.

    Ask for a salary too high with no room for negotiation and your potential employer will not be able to afford you. Aim too low and employers will perceive as you offering low value. The trick is to aim as high as possible while keeping both parties feel happy.

    Of course, you can’t command a high price without bringing value.

    The good news is that learning how to be a high-value employee is possible. You have to work on the right tasks to grow in the right areas. Here are a few tactics to negotiate your salary requirements with confidence.

    1. Hack time to accomplish more than most

    Do you want to get paid well for your hard work? Of course you do. I hate to break it to you, but so do most people.

    With so much competition, this won’t be an easy task to achieve. That’s why you need to become a pro at time management.

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    Do you know how much free time you have? Not the free time during your lunch break or after you’ve finished working at your day job. Rather, the free time when you’re looking at your phone or watching your favorite TV show.

    Data from 2017 shows that Americans spend roughly 3 hours watching TV. This is time poorly spent if you’re not happy with your current lifestyle. Instead, focus on working on your goals whenever you have free time.

    For example, if your commute to/from work is 1 hour, listen to an educational Podcast. If your lunch break is 30 minutes, read for 10 to 15 minutes. And if you have a busy life with only 30–60 minutes to spare after work, use this time to work on your personal goals.

    Create a morning routine that will set you up for success every day. Start waking up 1 to 2 hours earlier to have more time to work on your most important tasks. Use tools like ATracker to break down which activities you’re spending the most time in.

    It won’t be easy to analyze your entire day, so set boundaries. For example, if you have 4 hours of free time each day, spend at least 2 of these hours working on important tasks.

    2. Set your own boundaries

    Having a successful career isn’t always about the money. According to Gallup, about 70% of employees aren’t satisfied with their current jobs.[1]

    Earning more money isn’t a bad thing, but choosing a higher salary over the traits that are the most important to you is. For example, if you enjoy spending time with your family, reject job offers requiring a lot of travel.

    Here are some important traits to consider:

    • Work and life balance – The last thing you’d want is a job that forces you to work 60+ hours each week. Unless this is the type of environment you’d want. Understand how your potential employer emphasizes work/life balance.
    • Self-development opportunities – Having the option to grow within your company is important. Once you learn how to do your tasks well, you’ll start becoming less engaged. Choose a company that encourages employee growth.
    • Company culture – The stereotypical cubicle job where one feels miserable doesn’t have to be your fate. Not all companies are equal in culture. Take, for example, Google, who invests heavily in keeping their employees happy.[2]

    These are some of the most important traits to look for in a company, but there are others. Make it your mission to rank which traits are important to you. This way you’ll stop applying to the wrong companies and stay focused on what matters to you more.

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    3. Continuously invest in yourself

    Investing in yourself is the best investment you can make. Cliche I know, but true nonetheless.

    You’ll grow as a person and gain confidence with the value you’ll be able to bring to others. Investing in yourself doesn’t have to be expensive. For example, you can read books to expand your knowledge in different fields.

    Don’t get stuck into the habit of reading without a purpose. Instead, choose books that will help you expand in a field you’re looking to grow. At the same time, don’t limit yourself to reading books in one subject–create a healthy balance.

    Podcasts are also a great medium to learn new subjects from experts in different fields. The best part is they’re free and you can consume them on your commute to/from work.

    Paid education makes sense if you have little to no debt. If you decide to go back to school, be sure to apply for scholarships and grants to have the least amount of debt. Regardless of which route you take to make it a habit to grow every day.

    It won’t be easy, but this will work to your advantage. Most people won’t spend most of their free time investing in themselves. This will allow you to grow faster than most, and stand out from your competition.

    4. Document the value you bring

    Resumes are a common way companies filter employees through the hiring process. Here’s the big secret: It’s not the only way you can showcase your skills.

    To request for a higher salary than most, you have to do what most are unwilling to do. Since you’re already investing in yourself, make it a habit to showcase your skills online.

    A great way to do this is to create your own website. Pick your first and last name as your domain name. If this domain is already taken, get creative and choose one that makes sense.

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    Here are some ideas:

    • joesmith.com
    • joeasmith.com
    • joesmithprojects.com

    Nowadays, building a website is easy. Once you have your website setup, begin producing content. For example, if you a developer you can post the applications you’re building.

    During your interviews, you’ll have an online reference to showcase your accomplishments. You can use your accomplishments to justify your salary requirements. Since most people don’t do this, you’ll have a higher chance of employers accepting your offer

    5. Hide your salary requirements

    Avoid giving you salary requirements early in the interview process.

    But if you get asked early, deflect this question in a non-defensive manner. Explain to the employer that you’d like to understand your role better first. They’ll most likely agree with you; but if they don’t, give them a range.

    The truth is great employers are more concerned about your skills and the value you bring to the company. They understand that a great employee is an investment, able to earn them more than their salary.

    Remember that a job interview isn’t only for the employer, it’s also for you. If the employer is more interested in your salary requirements, this may not be a good sign. Use this question to gauge if the company you’re interviewing is worth working for.

    6. Do just enough research

    Research average salary compensation in your industry, then wing it.

    Use tools like Glassdoor to research the average salary compensation for your industry. Then leverage LinkedIn’s company data that’s provided with its Pro membership. You can view a company’s employee growth and the total number of job openings.

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    Use this information to make informed decisions when deciding on your salary requirements. But don’t limit yourself to the average salary range. Companies will usually pay you more for the value you have.

    Big companies will often pay more than smaller ones.[3] Whatever your desired salary amount is, always ask for a higher amount. Employers will often reject your initial offer. In fact, offer a salary range that’ll give you and your employer enough room to negotiate.

    7. Get compensated by your value

    Asking for the salary you deserve is an art. On one end, you have to constantly invest in yourself to offer massive value. But this isn’t enough. You also have to become a great negotiator.

    Imagine requesting a high salary and because you bring a lot of value, employers are willing to pay you this. Wouldn’t this be amazing?

    Most settle for average because they’re not confident with what they have to offer. Most don’t invest in themselves because they’re not dedicated enough. But not you.

    You know you deserve to get paid well, and you’re willing to put in the work. Yet, you won’t sacrifice your most important values over a higher salary.

    The bottom line

    You’ve got what it takes to succeed in your career. Invest in yourself, learn how to negotiate, and do research. The next time you’re asked about your salary requirements, you won’t fumble.

    You’ll showcase your skills with confidence and get the salary you deserve. What’s holding you back now?

    Featured photo credit: LinkedIn Sales Navigator via unsplash.com

    Reference

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