Posts made in April, 2015

Investing In Precious Metals 101: Recession-Proofing Your Portfolio

Investment is a scary topic in a precarious economic climate, which certainly describes a large portion of the world in the years following the financial crises of 2007 and 2008. If you’re a fledgling investor who can’t afford to lose everything to a fluctuating market, and are willing to forgo some immediate returns to achieve that, then the answer may be in precious metals.

Why buy gold and other precious metals?

A lot of finance experts will tell you to buy gold for your portfolio, but many don’t explain why. The truth is that there are always people looking to buy and sell gold, so it and other precious metals always have value. As history proves — 1920s Germany, anyone? — that’s not always the case for currency. If the dollar lost all value today, you could still sell gold in exchange for a currency that’s still strong.

Know what you’re buying

There are a few ways to buy precious metals, which include buying the actual, physical metal and buying precious metal stocks. In physical gold, you have the option of bullion, scrap gold, or little collectible bars or unofficial coins. Collectible metals usually cost quite a bit more, but can be bought in smaller amounts and have a decorative appearance, which appeals to a lot of buyers. Bullion is cheaper by weight, but usually requires a far more substantial investment. Scrap gold varies widely in price, but also in purity. If you know how to decipher jewelers’ marks and are willing to deal with a little extra work, this could be a way to accrue value relatively quickly. Scrap dealers also provide an easy way to sell gold or other precious metals if you need to convert your metal to cash quickly.

Finally, metal stocks function exactly like other stocks – you pay someone to buy and store the metals for you. “Stock” is a catch-all term here; the precious metal market includes futures, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), bonds and even mining stocks. There are usually broker fees attached, and you have to be really careful and make sure you understand exactly what you’re getting. Often, these stocks don’t translate to an actual weight of gold or other precious metal.

Fit metals into an overall investment plan

As with any investment, precious metals aren’t meant to be the only thing in your portfolio. In fact, they’re not even intended to make any money – they do in a failing economy, but the real goal is to simply protect value. Putting assets into cash-based investments, such as traditional securities, is a way to get fast returns in the form of interest or dividends. The assets in precious metals, however, are intended as a true “buy and hold”; they’re your insurance against a true currency crash that could see your other investments go to zero.

Discuss your investment goals with a financial professional before diving in. Every situation is different, and these professionals can help you formulate an investment plan that works for your individual needs.

For more information, check out companies such as Rocky Mountain Coin Inc.

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3 Reasons To Consider Outsourcing Your Bookkeeping

Bookkeeping is a tedious process. You have to keep track of everything, from taking clients out to lunch to buying pens to stock the secretary’s desk. One way to lessen the hassle is to hire a bookkeeping professional from an independent company. Even though this would require sharing some of your company’s financial information with a person outside of the company, there are numerable benefits to outsourcing your bookkeeping. 

1. You Pay Exactly What You Need

If you hire a bookkeeper onto your staff, you will have to pay that person wages and benefits. This bookkeeper will be extraordinarily busy during tax season but will have downtime during the rest of the year. This means that you are paying for time when your employee isn’t working because there is no way to actually guess when financial services will be needed. By hiring an outsourced bookkeeper, you will only be paying for the bookkeeping services that you need. You won’t be paying for that individual’s downtime and will therefore save your company a great deal of money in the long run.

2. Automatic Double Checking

If you hire a bookkeeper on staff, you may only have the money for that one employee, rather than a team of bookkeepers. When bookkeeping services are needed, they need to be absolutely perfect. When you outsource your bookkeeping services, you can rest assured that anyone who is doing your bookkeeping will have a manager or team of people checking their work. This can save you tax audits and other costly mistakes that you may not be able to avoid with a single bookkeeper on staff.

3. Able to Access High Quality Bookkeeping Software Without Necessarily Having to Pay for It

Because the job of bookkeeping companies is to make sure that any accounts that they keep are perfect, well-organized, and easy to understand, they will be willing to invest in high quality, expensive bookkeeping software. You may not be willing to invest the hundreds of dollars into the software and into training employees to use it. By using a bookkeeping company, you will have access to this software and all of the advantages that it provides, such as easy to understand graphs and tax services, without having to directly pay for it. The cost of the software that the company uses will be split among all of the bookkeeping company’s clients.

For more information on the services that a bookkeeping company can provide, contact a local service like James Gioia & Company PC directly.

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