More Than Finances

All about cryptocurrency, all the time.

By

What are altcoins all about?

According to the Investopedia website, altcoins, which stands for “alternative coins,” is a cryptocurrency. They got launched after Bitcoin did well in the market. Here when we say ‘they’ it is with regards to all the alternatives to Bitcoin that are available. Altcoins bring about a competitive advantage, trying to beat Bitcoin in certain areas in the cryptocurrency arena. Currently, there are hundreds of altcoins currencies. Bitcoin laid the foundations that they all follow, meaning that they are mined and involved peer-to-peer transactions and provide a cheaper way to make transactions online. 

What makes them different from Bitcoin?

The differences are in the details. The altcoin proof-of-work algorithm, and even how the mining gets done, the coin distribution and economic system varies, but everything is quite similar in other regards. One of the most familiar altcoin to come up after Bitcoin is called Namecoin; it got launched on 18 April 2011 with 21 million coins. What made it different was that it made domains less visible and allowed personal mining with greater anonymity.

Another well-known brand of cryptocurrency is Ethereum, which started in 2015 and is considered the second largest to Bitcoin, Dogecoin, which started in 2013 and Litecoin which came about in 2011.  The reason why these altcoins are important is that they expand the boundaries of cryptocurrency in this virtual industry. Some things are problematic with Bitcoin; that is where other players step in to make the changes. For example, if you want an altcoin that is more private or has a faster transaction, then you can get them. 

Drawbacks of altcoins

Anyone can open altcoin at any time, and there have been cases where some are no longer in existence even after people made investments in them. What remains to e seen is an altcoin that can outperform Bitcoin. These alternative coins tend to be more volatile and compared to the resources that Bitcoin dedicates to improving; a lot of these cryptocurrencies cannot match up. 

That is something all novice crypto users ought to be aware f. If you have come across a whitepaper of a cryptocurrency that is promising to go above and beyond what Bitcoin and other digital currencies have done, then you ought to be wary. If there is indeed anything we can learn from Bitcoin is that it is here to stay and nudging into out of its position will be quite the uphill task, though some try. 

Final word

With the awareness of altcoins, then you can go about trading or looking for those that are different from Bitcoin but still have considerable market value. You don’t have to be constricted to Bitcoin should these digital currencies be part of your online investment and trading plan and not, for example, real estate luxury condos for sale Toronto has.

By

4 Ways to Avoid Going House-Poor

There are lots of definitions of what it means to be house poor. Some sites will suggest that being house poor means your house payment or rent is more than a certain percentage of your monthly income. Usually, the suggestion is that anything over 30-40% of your monthly income will make you house poor. (30% is the number the US Census Bureau has been suggesting for years.)  

Location is key! For home buyers willing to commute or relocate, affordability may be within their grasp. Homes For Sale in Vancouver may be at the top of your budget, however, a few miles away may be more in your range. The best way to avoid becoming house poor is to only buy a home when you’re honestly ready. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Below are 4 ways to avoid going house poor. 

1. Budget for Home Maintenance

A guaranteed part of homeownership is home maintenance and repairs. Not staying on top of home maintenance is a quick way to end up being house poor. Include home maintenance in your budget to easily cover small home repairs like a leaky sink or plan for a large expense like a new roof. Set aside a specific amount of money each month into a home maintenance savings account so the money is readily available when it is needed.

2. Don’t do Improvements Right Away

You might want to wait a few months to see how your expenses pan out before you empty your savings on a new kitchen. Ditto for buying a houseful of new furniture. The desire to fix up the house to your standards or pack it with all-new everything is strong. But a little patience can go a long way. Spreading out your purchases while you increase your savings and waiting for sales and credit offers can help keep your budget in check.

3. Emergency Fund

Another way to avoid becoming house poor is to make sure you’ve established a healthy emergency fund. Six to twelve months of income is ideal, especially if you’re taking on a larger house payment, but at a minimum, you should consider having three months’ worth of income in your emergency fund. The bigger your savings cushion, the more options you’ll have should you face a loss of income for some reason. So before you buy that house, make sure you set aside a nice emergency fund cushion to prepare for unexpected expenses or a decrease in income. If you’ve already purchased your home, make accumulating a healthy emergency fund a priority by selling unneeded items on Craigslist or temporarily getting a second job.

4. Buy Less House Than You Can Afford

The less money you put into your monthly housing payment, the more money you have available for: funding retirement, rainy day savings, renovating your house and savings for vacations, parties, cars, boats. When it comes to buying your first home, always try to buy less house than you can afford. Chances are, you really don’t need as much space as you think you do. 

By

Street Charity: Should We Give Money To Beggars?

Street Charity

Street Charity

On an individual basis, giving money to beggars (also known as street charity) may seem like a passive form of philanthropy which makes a small, albeit commendable difference to society. On a larger scale, such actions may have negative effects for an economy and those that live within it. There are several considerations to take into account when analysing whether or not street charity is advisable: opportunity costs and taxes. Read More

By

4 Ways To Invest In Foreign Stocks

Today, geography does not hinder investment opportunities. If foreign economies are booming and you would like to invest, you can as well venture into those markets. All you need is to know how to make your way around the markets. If you live elsewhere and investing in the Hong Kong market interests you, it is not impossible. If you live in Hong Kong, it is even more comfortable.

Hong Kong is well known for its free trade agreements, low taxes and is a world leader on the Economic Freedom Index. Hong Kong has the fifth largest stock exchange in the world and as of 2018, the most significant initial offering worldwide.

You can invest in a trading platform in six primary ways:

American Depository Receipts (ADRs)

ADRs are a very convenient way to purchase foreign stocks. Most foreign companies make use of ADRs to establish a U.S. presence and to raise capital. ADRs are traded on U.S. exchanges, and you can buy them like ordinary shares via brokerage accounts. Some popular ADRs in Hong Kong include Sun Hung Kai Properties Ltd (US OTC SUHJY), Hong Kong Television Network Limited (US OTC HKTV), AIA Group Ltd (US OTC AAGIY)

Invest Directly Through A Broker Based In Hong Kong

Investors from all over the world can invest on the internet via local brokers who have their base on a trading platform in Hong Kong. There are restrictions on some countries, and there are things Hong Kong brokers should do before offering their services. For example, the U.S., a financial institution not registered under the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) cannot take on U.S. clients.

The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) put more restrictions, and thus, some brokers from Hong Kong avoid U.S. clients, but not other countries.

Brokerage firms offering universal access often provide several international exchanges. Ensure you research on brokers before doing business with them. Look at the account type, which should either be discretionary or non-discretionary, countries they cover and their commission structure.

Global Depository Receipt (GDR)

A depository bank gives out foreign companies’ shares in the international market, mostly in Europe. The bank makes the stocks available to the investors that are within and without the U.S.

Most GDRs are in the U.S dollar, while some use the British pound or Euro, and are traded and settled just like domestic stocks are. The Luxembourg and London stock exchanges are the most favoured locations for GDR listing. GDRs have also been listed on other exchanges such as Dubai, Frankfurt and Singapore.

Global Mutual Funds

Investors interested in the exploration of international market trading platform without any stress can choose to invest in global mutual funds. These funds mimic any mutual funds concerning benefits and procedures. However, they focus more on foreign stock, not domestic.

These funds are built for any investor, whether conservative or aggressive. They are comprised of international funds, global funds, international index and country-specific funds. These funds, just like any other foreign investment, have higher costs in comparison to domestic funds.

Conclusion

Hong Kong is a very beneficial investment opportunity, with it being a free country and a vital global financial center. Its proximity to the growth in Asian economies gives Hong Kong a definite advantage. Chinese investments have been flooding the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. If you are a long-term investor, you must keep in mind that these price appreciations on the trading platform, courtesy of these investments are not pegged on the basics, and are extremely volatile.

As an investor, you must be careful to base your investment decisions on economic factors and not on the price fluctuations. Any investor planning to invest in the Hong Kong Stock Exchange should first thoroughly understand the costs, regulatory compliance and tax considerations.

Once you understand these factors, you will be well on your way to owning a piece of one of the biggest stock exchange markets in the world. Start small and work your way up. The results will be evident with some patience.

By

Market Cap: Is Market Capitalisation Still Relevant for Cryptocurrencies?

Market Capitalisation

Market Capitalisation

One of the main issues with using market capitalisation as an indicator of cryptocurrency investment value is the fact that locked up cryptocurrencies can easily be overlooked by investors. There are significant amounts of cryptocurrencies that are either not in circulation or lost. Read More