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Friday, October 16, 2009

Trade Currencies Through ETFs in Your Stock Account

So you have wanted to trade currencies, but the whole FOREX world has you confounded? Or you like the idea, but the fact that banks and governments are involved has you scared out of your wits!

Here are a couple of options for ones that want to take advantage of the opportunities in foreign currency without the huge learning curve to learn the FOREX market.

Maybe the pairs have you stumped. Which pair to trade and when? Can't I just park some of my money in a Foreign currency and not have it all in USD? We will get to that in a minute, but first let's cover a simple way to trade and invest in currency.

You can now use ETFs (exchange traded funds) to trade or invest in currencies through your current stock brokerage account. Many brokers don't know much about these because they focus on other areas, so don't waste your time asking them too many questions.

But, you can use ETFs to buy many of the world's major currencies. You can buy ETFs that track the Euro (stock symbol FXE), the British pound (FXB), the Australian dollar (FXA), the Japanese yen (FXY), the Swiss franc (FXF), and the Canadian dollar (FXC).

There are even ETFs for some of the smaller currencies. For instance you can play Sweden's krona (FXS) and even the Mexican peso (FXM). And, more currency ETFs are coming out all the time. There are even ETFs that cover a basket of currencies, like the Asian (check the Yahoo Finance web site for more) currencies.

Instead of having to open up a FOREX account, you can buy these ETFs right from your Scottrade (my favorite), Ameritrade, or any stock brokerage account (Just ask Chuck).

There are a couple of drawbacks to investing in currency ETFs. First, ETFs don't provide the leverage you can get with a Forex account (which can be good since leverage can also mean larger losses). Second, you will need to pay commissions as you would on your stock trades. This might be considered a disadvantage for some since one of the big selling points with FOREX is the supposed "No Commissions" (but like everything in the investment world, they will get fees out of you in other ways).

If you do your homework, you could be trading currencies right there in your E*Trade or Charles Schwab account. With all the talk of the USD dropping into oblivion, it might be good to park some of your money in other currencies!

One other way you can do that is to look into the options they have for you at Everbank.

Everbank is an online bank that has some truly innovative products. They offer several accounts that are held in, or profit from foreign currency. Most of these are in the form of Certificates of Deposit (CD's) and may or may not offer the protection of FDIC insurance.

There you have it, two simple ways to invest in currencies without opening up a FOREX account, or leaving the country!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

You Only Lose If You Quit!

I found this article I wrote Years ago while surfing the web (slow day in the market - even though the Dow did hit and close above 10,000 Yea!), and thought I would share it with you. It's a good pick-me-up for anyone that might not be where they want to be financially right now. Enjoy!

I received an email from a man who told me that his family would all leave him if he got involved in another home business opportunity! Apparently, he had failed in a few attempts at home business, and online trading, so the family had this man labeled as a loser. Sound familiar?

I cannot understand why your family would disown you because of your wanting to set up a business to provide for them. Just because you have failed in business, that does not make you a loser! Many of the wealthiest men in the world have failed many times! Most of us have heard the story of Abe Lincoln, who failed in about everything he tried, until he became the 16th president of the United States.

I have failed in many of my business ventures, but the lessons I learned from those experiences are invaluable to me. I have earned more in one week than many people in the US earn all year! If I'd quit years ago, I would probably be working 40 hours somewhere for a lousy $300 or $400 per week right now. With my home biz, and the Internet, I can make that much or more if I work or not!

In many businesses, including any good home business, you only lose if you quit! Think about it. In many home biz opportunities today, you have the possibility to earn more than many doctors, lawyers and other professional people earn! It may take you a few months or even years to get there but how long did those professionals have to go to school to get to the large incomes? YEARS OF STUDY AND BIG TUITION CHECKS - MUCHO $$$$$$ !

I have a good friend who has been in networking over 20 years now. In the first 18 years, he barely scraped by. Finally, he got with the company that was right for him. All those years of experience PAID OFF BIG! He now is the top dog in a very popular nutritional MLM company, and earns over $300,000 PER MONTH! This is not some hyped up story, because I actually have seen the man's checks. How many professional men would like to make that kind of income? If he would have listened to everyone telling him he was wasting his time, he never would have gotten there.

If you have been involved in the home biz industry for any amount of time, no doubt you know folks who make incredible money. Sure, there is a lot of hype but, there are a lot of true success stories as well. What if my friend had worked a 40-hour per week job all his life? Just over broke, right?

One woman we know of made over $400,000 last year selling other people's products with online Free Affiliate programs! The opportunities are endless for anyone with a creative mind who is willing to work.

With the Internet in the picture, we have not even seen the start of the types of income that will be generated online. Online networking is where mail order MLM was back in the 60's - its infant stages! For those who have taken the time to do their homework, and/or get with someone who has, the sky is the limit!

If your family and friends make fun of your business, smile! Many others before you have dealt with the same thing. One day, if you have the right product or program, do your work, and stay consistent, those folks will just have to eat their words.

I love to run into ones who at one time spoke to everyone in my county and told them what a "fool Doug West is" for being involved in that "no-account business", that I should "get a real JOB!" Now, I do not believe in a showy display of one's means of living by any means, but in a small area, word gets around when you are doing pretty well financially. Those good old boys with the real jobs... they'll start to wonder what would have happened if they had started their own home biz way back when.

Things come back to ya' sometimes. Let people talk - because they will anyway. Just remember - YOU CAN'T LOSE UNLESS YOU QUIT!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Index Investing - Your Own Hedge Fund

With the Bernie Madoff fiasco, some investors feel that any hedge fund is just a scam. It is easy to see why you might feel that way. Savvy investors know that there are still some great hedge fund managers out there, but how do you find them?

In this article we want to talk a little about creating your own hedge fund using Index Investing.

When you invest in an index you are just wanting movement of that index, such as the dow, mini dow, S&P, emini S&P, Russell, mini Russell

Millionaires Are Made During Depressions and Recessions, and there are savvy investors that are making tons of money right now in the markets (and with Real Estate).

To create your own hedge, you need to learn how to make money when the market is dropping. Did you know that 80 percent of all investors have not plan for capitalizing on market drops? That is a MAJOR disadvantage, don't you think!

To really HEDGE anything you need to be able to earn money no matter what the market is doing. That is what the Wall Street insiders do, and that is what YOU should be doing too.

Stock Trading Vs. Index Investing

Most people who invest in anything look to the stock market. That's only natural, that is what you hear the most about. You have no doubt also heard things like "Stay away from futures or you will lose your shirt". My response to that is, look how many stock investors lost their shirts with the meltdown. Then many pulled their money out of the market (sadly - many had their cash in mutual funds - we like ETFs MUCH better) and missed the ride back up.

Wall Street hopes you get out at the bottom, and they want you to buy at the top. So, you are getting out when they are getting in, and when you are getting in, they are exiting!

It can be tough for most folks to make money with stocks when the market is tanking. Finding a company that you will bet against (by shorting their stock), in my opinion is harder than finding a good company to ride up with.

There are so many ways that these big corporations can cook the books. That should be more obvious after the melt down than ever.

We like trading the index, cause it is just as easy to short and ride it down as it is to ride it up. In fact, it is even easier on the way down because prices nearly always drop faster than they rise. It took Microsoft YEARS to reach is pinnacle, but only a few months to fall down to earth (with must of that drop coming within a couple weeks). The overall index acts the same way, only within minutes or sometimes seconds.

In my opinion, learning to trade an index, either long or short term is one of the best ways to hedge.