Valuable Car Finance Tips

The second largest investment you will have in a lifetime perhaps is getting your own car. After you have scrutinized every model and zeroed in on the best car to purchase, the next process is to determine how you are going to pay it.

The road to car ownership is paved with car finance options. The package you choose will make the difference between monthly struggles and easy payments. Will you get to keep driving your car or have to default on the loan over a certain period?

When looking at your financing options, here are valuable tips to consider:

Think about interest rates. Your interest rate will depend on a number of factors such as the type of the car, the length of the loan term, your credit rating and the lender. Generally new cars have much lower interest rates. Higher interest rate is required for longer car loans. You will get lower interest rates if you have been pretty good at keeping a good credit rating score. Focus on the interest rates as different companies provide varying options.

Choose from as many lenders as possible. Your options for car financing could be banking institutions, the automaker, credit unions, and other lending sources. Weigh the pros and cons of the different types of lenders. Going through all the interest rates and loan-terms of the different lenders will be overwhelming task. Experts not only help you make the right choice, but also offer you a number of good options. Consumers today get the right financing for their vehicles with finance consultants working exclusively on helping consumers.

Seek expert guidance. A financial consultant would point out key features you may want for your loan, allowing you to get a tailored approach, and therefore an ideal solution, to your financing. Such expert help would also come in handy for businesses looking to invest in company cars and employers who may want to offer a lease (also known as salary packaging) to high performing employees.

Ask for special deals. Special deals on certain loans are offered by some lenders in order to get fairly competitive in the market. Depending on the automaker you have chosen, you could be given zero-percent financing or offered lower rates for short-term lengths.

Companies are able to help employees on their car financing needs through a special form of lease. The lease is a three-way agreement between the employer, the employee and the finance company. As the employer though, be aware that while you should be able to finance a car after a bankruptcy, you may not be able to get the best car finance rates.

Marketing Tips for Financial Advisors

As a financial advisor you are responsible for providing your customer with valuable information and advice on how to invest and utilize their money. This is not a job for the feint hearted and you need to know your industry in-depth to be able to make recommendations based on current trends.

As you can imagine, customers are very wary about the advisor they use. This is understandable because they don’t want to take unnecessary risks with their finances, especially when expecting to increase their funds for their retirement one day.

It is imperative that you take your marketing very carefully, ensuring that you reach your audience effectively and prove that you are a top choice to help them with their investment options.

The first step to success is to design an easy to use and informative website that can become a valuable resource for customers looking for various financial information. By increasing your brand visibility and becoming a resource in your industry, you can increase your customer base. If you become a reliable source of valuable information, more people will turn to you for your financial advisory services rather than using a company that they don’t know or have never heard of.

This is all about brand awareness, which is why your company should have an easy to remember and recognize name and logo. Over time your logo will be recognized by potential customers as the one that gives them the best and current advice and recommendations, again leading to your success.

Become an expert in your field. While you probably are already an expert in terms of knowledge and experience, it’s now time to prove that to your customers. You can create a blog which links back to your website. Writing regular blog posts on the latest financial trends can help you improve your visibility and prove to your customers that you are a top choice when they’re looking for financial advice.

Newsletters are a great way to reach your audience on a regular basis. It is imperative when creating a newsletter that you are consistent in when you send it out. This can be weekly or monthly, depending on your schedule. Remember your customers will expect to receive your newsletter regularly, so don’t fall into the trap of leaving it for another week. Again you need to write current and quality tips, advice and news.

It’s important to be aware that newsletters are not about selling, they are about you having an opportunity to inform your audience and get them to remember your name when they are looking for a financial advisor.

Another top financial advisor marketing tool is articles. There are a number of websites that promote articles across a range of topics. You should ensure that you have regular articles being published, enabling customers to find your company when searching for certain financial products and advice.

Press releases are an opportunity to keep your customers informed while telling them valuable information about you and your business. It is imperative when writing press releases that you eliminate any industry jargon and ensure that they are easy to read, enabling customers to understand what you are trying to portray.

A good opportunity when looking at your financial advisor marketing is to choose a services company that specialize in your industry. They should have a team of professional writers with extensive experience in the financial sector that can write your newsletters, articles and press releases for you, maybe even your website content. This can ensure that you provide customers with easy to understand and up to date information without taking time out of your own busy schedule.

Monaco Might Lose Its Status of Personal Income Tax Haven

That Monaco is crowded with celebrities is no piece of news. Since 1869, when the personal income tax policy became favorable, Monaco attracted very many individuals with high net income, such as movie stars, sporting stars etc. who became residents of the Principality in order to benefit from personal income tax exemption.

Take, for instance, Roger Moore, Shirley Bassey, Ringo Starr, Karen Mulder, Eva Herzigova, the race drivers Jacques Villeneuve, David Coulthard, Jenson Button.

But the number of celebrities is far outnumbered by the number of business people who enjoy the country’s tax facilities: the retail tycoon Philip Green and the Barclay brothers are Monegasque residents.

Being a resident of Monaco implies proving you have a place to live and are rich enough to afford a very high standard way of life. And I mean really rich, as a place to live in the apartment blocks jammed into two square kilometres, either rented or bought, is extremely high.

Keeping residency implies proving you live in Monaco at least 6 months and a day per year. If you are rich, the advantage of being a Monaco resident is that, besides enjoying a sunny, pleasant climate, you can live at the same time in another country. The Principality is very close to main airports and is also easily reachable by sea, by car or by train. Thus, being a Monaco resident and working in another country is not only possible but it’s easy especially speaking of UK citizens: laws in UK permit a maximum stay of 90 days (without counting the day of departure and that of arrival!) for non-residents. Many UK business people reside in Monaco and work in the UK without surpassing the 90 days limit so that they are subject to Monaco lawas for taxation.

Having attracted so many rich resulted in a conflict of interests: many countries disapprove of this taxation policy, looking at it as an evasion from taxes in their national area. And not entirely wrongly! In fact, Monaco has been “tax-cheating” a little by attracting capital from the high tax countries.

Looking at the issue from the perspective of the Principality, seems to me only right to try and succeed to evolve with the few means and resources a state so small has. Monaco developed from one of the poorest countries in the world (in the 1860s) into a state with one of the world’s highest per capita income (around EUR22,000). And it was possible due to a strategic leadership of a resourceless country. It is after the territory was drastically reduced that this personal income tax policy came into being. Attracting foreign capital become one of the main targets for development. That’s how the Casino became grand and famous and emphasis was put on tourism, being raised at luxury levels.

After the individual taxation regulations, in 1963 the Principality came with another financial artifice: no tax for local company profits or dividends. Thus the target was to enhance local business flourishing. This stipulation combined with an almost hermetic data privacy did nothing else than to increase even more foreign investments in Monaco.

So, from the point of view of big economic powers, Monaco should be punished, and so deserves any country daring to offer a better taxation alternative, putting at a disadvantage their high-tax based economy. The OECD has a project on “harmful tax practices” stipulating a set of punitive measures for the non-cooperating jurisdictions.

Invoking money laundering and international terrorism tracking, many OECD governments promote a policy of free information exchange that has as main purpose limiting the tax competition, beyond the intention to limit tax evasion and to combat serious crime.

Estimated negative results of OECD policy:

* Eliminating tax competition would result in uniformizing taxes to the amount dictated by some governments. Without the possibility of choosing a better alternative, there is no reason for governments to reduce taxes and make the tax system more efficient.
* This policy would change the present status of emigrants that pay taxes only to their new country and would promote the premise that the state still has a right to benefit from its former national labour. This sounds to me like a violation of fundamental human rights.

Although in 2004 still on the OECD black list of the tax policy non-cooperating jurisdictions, Monaco has changed its policy regarding the high confidentiality of financial data in the light of the expected, recent admission to the Council of Europe (Monaco joined the Europe Council on October 5, 2004 ). Modifications to legislation:

* October 2001: French citizens living in Monaco since 1989 must pay a wealth tax beginning with 2002.
* Information on French nationals are to be unconditionally provided to the Bank of France when required. Information may be passed on to the authorities of France or of a third country if necessary.
* 2004: Under EU’s Savings Tax Directive, Monaco will impose a witholding tax on the returns on savings such as bank interests earned by EU citizens. The tax quantum will be the same as in Austria, Belgium and Luxembourg (initially 15%). 75% of such revenues will be handed over to the Member State of the respective EU resident. This will be applied beginning with 2005.
* December 2000: Monaco signs the United Nations Convention Against Transnational Organised Crime. The treaty stipulates that its members do not permit anonymous accounts requiring identification of customers. Banks must keep accurate records of accounts and report any suspicious transaction. Moreover, the domestic law enforcement officials are permitted inspection of accounts.

With all these measures, it seems that Monaco’s attraction as a personal income tax haven will decrease. It remains to be seen how all these measures will affect Monaco financial and banking system after becoming operative.

Payday Loans for Unsteady Income – How to Make It Sure You Can Pay It Off

Congratulations! You undertook the commitment you can barely handle. Was it hard to get? Nope! Is it hard to get away with it? Sure! Here’s how you go through this challenge with minimum casualties and maximum security measures.

1. Don’t perceive it as the least fortunate measure to take. In fact, you could always take another job (what that would be, a 4th one?) or assign for some extra shifts (say after 32nd of October till the end of the month). Anyway, if you have chosen cash payday loans, don’t be harsh on yourself, simply organize your budget for successful discharge. Start with average income calculation. As soon as you know how much you can get, you know how much you can give.

– start with simple listing and day-to-day budgeting. When you know your expenses, it’s easier to cut down on the unnecessary.
– rethink your spending; sometimes it’s hard to get rid of the point in your list, but in the end, you can shift for better pricing.

2. Your second measure to prevent unexpected negative results from payday loan borrowing is division. We don’t mean become a tightwad, we mean become a rationalist. Count as precisely as you can all your expenses for the period of loan duration. As soon as you have it, check if you’ve taken into consideration unexpected issues and make the totals.

– when you do calculations, consider adding a bit to every point of your spending list. Just 1-2% can eventually result in a buffer zone. If you add only $1 to every fuelling, you eventually save some amount for unexpected cases.

3. When you have what you need, count what your perspectives are. It’s evident that you’ve taken a payday loan for a reason; your unstable incomes from different resources combined in one can actually form a pretty good basement for your loan repayment. Now that you’ve got the numbers, compare if your unstable income can afford your “stable” payday loan payoff.

– if you feel like your unsteady financial position is getting worse, try to get some support. It can be either professionals or someone from your family. As soon as you can guarantee stability for the time the loan is due, you can be sure to avoid penalties for delinquent activity with your debts. Simply, protect yourself from being late.

4. You’re confronted with two options; either you can clear your financial issue till the due date or need back up funds for payday loan coverage. If you’re a proud owner of the first lot, bingo! You nailed it! Your loan can be considered successful and your decision commercially correct. Unfortunately, if you concluded you can’t make both ends meet, your payday loan enterprise appears a failure as requires additional assets. Next time you do the same routine from the very beginning, but perform the whole procedure with a virtual so that to secure your decision from a drop-on.

– payday loans can become a more fortunate deal when you repay on time, but at the same time, if you foresee failure, you still can make it less painful for your financial state. Always consider rescheduling as soon as you realize your income can’t help you repay the loan on time.

It’s up to you to pay on time or drag down till your loan starts biting you. The only thing that remains unchanged is your attitude to financial operations. The more diligent you are, the more scopes you have; the more committed you get, the more options you get, and thus, more fortunate deals at your disposal.

Don’t you want to try one?

Are you ready for smart borrowing? Do you think it’s time to make only reasonable choices? Do you want to make more than you spend?

The time to get your financial security has come.

A Candid Interview With the “First American” Tony Salzman – How Did This Tiger Earn His Stripes?

As I sat across from Anthony Salzman, better known in the media as “The First American”, I couldn’t help but wonder what in the world could rattle such a charismatic, over-achieving, innovating man. Well, let me tell you not very much…

Having lived and worked in Vietnam for over 18 years, this native New Yorker is tough as nails. I mean how else could he have survived and succeeded in a country under U.S. embargo, with inexistant banking system, no cars and poor infrastructure?

When you search Salzman on the internet, you find out he played a key role in the normalization of the Vietnam-US relationship as well as the signing of the Vietnam-US Bilateral Trade Agreement.

But, you also read he was “the first” at everything in Vietnam… Really? I ask him… the first at everything?

Any powerful man has his detractors, I argue, and those probably wonder if Salzman was indeed the first to ever issue a check… Wasn’t there a banking system in Vietnam before Salzman arrived in 1992? – Was Salzman really the first ever to own a car? that seems so unlikely that in the 90’s a country like Vietnam wouldn’t have cars? and then comes the biggie, the Chicago Tribune states that Salzman was “the first” American to ever do business in Vietnam. Come on! surely there were other Americans who flew to Vietnam with a dollar and a dream and somehow did business there in 1992, no?

Tony Salzman aka “Tony the tiger”, the chairman of V-TRAC Development Co. is a soft-spoken, charismatic (yes I already said that), almost humble man… As he sits across from me while I’m playing the devil’s advocate, he chuckles at my questions and smiles calmly… unbothered he explains:

T.S: “Banks. No, there were no foreign banks in this country when I arrived. No means zero. While I was here, sometime after I arrived, the ANZ bank Australia was the first. Citibank was the second. The country manager for the Australian bank was a wonderful guy named A.M. I chose to deliver the caterpillar banking business to him.

I ran one of the most successful and innovative marketing programs ever: it was a contest to find the oldest operating piece of caterpillar equipment in Vietnam. The reward was $1000. At that point in time the average monthly wage was $80. Submissions poured in from all over Vietnam. And, I thought it was high time that the first check be issued in Vietnam. It was after all a 100% cash society. A virgin banking market. So, we found the oldest caterpillar in the country that was still operating, a bulldozer built in 1937. The runner-up was 1939.

There ought to be some kind of archive photos of this someplace I’ll try to find them. When we announced the winner, it was a celebration attended by a lot of people, and the winner, who was an engineer who owned a tugboat. Sorry, the oldest engine was on the tugboat, the second oldest on the bulldozer. On the tugboat it was used for the propulsion. I remember having seen those huge checks when I was a kid on game shows. The ones the size of the bed. I decided that that was exactly what my company and the bank needed. A gigantic check with both of our logos on it made out to “bearer”. One of my staff members described the smile on the winners face as ear to ear Ivory! Well, the ivory disappeared when he saw this thing, the check, which I announced he had won. During the ceremony I proceeded to explain what a check is: a negotiable instrument. I told the audience that it was about time for Vietnam to start using negotiable instruments, and here is the first one! I invited the very perplexed men to come to the stage, and then I gave him a cheap plastic pen. He looked even more confused. The huge check was held by two bankers as backdrop to me and the very perplexed winner.

At this point in time I asked the bankers to turn the check around to show the blank side to the audience. They did this, and then I asked the winner to sign his name so as to endorse it. You can imagine, he looked even more perplexed then more perplexed then more perplexed! He did not want to sign. I then directed his attention to another representative from the bank who was holding two plastic shopping bags bearing the banks logo. The shopping bags were bursting full of cash. The ivory smile returned. He started to head for the bankers. I said no, you have to sign your name on the back of the check. He really did not know what I was talking about but he realized that he was not going to get near those bags of cash unless he signed his name

So, he signed his name. Then he headed for the bags of cash and once again I told him no, the two other bankers who were holding the gigantic check gave it to him to carry over to the guy holding the two bags of cash he carried the big check over to the other fellow, then an assistant took it from him, and the bags of cash were delivered into his hands. At that point in time probably only me, my wife, and the bankers understood what the heck was going on! Certainly nobody else did! Anyway, that was the first check negotiated in the history of Vietnam, regardless of which government regime one talks about.

Now, you have become the fifth or sixth person in the world to understand the nature of that ceremony and transaction. Unfortunately, I’ve never written any of this any place, or told any reporter. Eventually I’ll find the check picture I hope, in any case it’s quite a story.”

Quite a story indeed, and that takes care of how the tiger earned his stripe as “the first” American to ever issue a check in the history of Vietnam.

But how about being “the first” businessman to do business in Vietnam, that one is pretty preposterous I tell him, now how are you going to explain that Tony?

He smiles, and without a roar he says: “About being the First American doing business, here I confess that the media took some liberties. In fact, there were two others, neither of them had any employees, but there were two others. Oh yes, I am referring to two other Americans in Hanoi, there were some others in South Vietnam, I never knew who they were.”

So that settles it, Anthony Salzman may not have been the only ” first American” ever to do business in Vietnam, but he most certainly was “the first American” ever to have employees in Vietnam. And that is precisely why in 2010 he was bestowed with the most prestigious honor, by receiving the Vietnam Friendship Medal, from President Nguyễn Minh Triết, who recognized the American’s enormous contributions to Vietnam, principally as a pioneer whose personal and business commitment opened a new chapter of friendship and forged the way for others.

While I am impressed with all the anecdotes Salzman shared with me, I point out to him that the devil’s advocate is rarely satisfied…

IDG: I have to ask Tony, the “first” to own a car in Vietnam? Are you kidding? It was the 90’s, every somewhat civilized country had cars… really how could this be?

Without a pause Salzman explains: “NN-35-01, so 35 means United States,and 01 means the first person to register!

The problem arose when the first United States ambassador was appointed. According to protocol, he had to have the number one from the United States!

So I hated negotiation and sued during which I was told that I had to surrender my 01 license plate. There was a solution, typical Vietnamese style: I was given the license number 00 001!

There’s also a story about how I made the match between the ambassador, whose wife had tragically passed away due to terrible illness, and, you guessed it, the female banking officer from the Australia bank.

Now, if your friends the detractors do not believe that I introduced the first American ambassador to his wife, they need to read the next installment of the story!

Hint: The American ambassador had been a prisoner of war in Vietnam. And the lady banker was a Vietnamese immigrant to Australia. So, the Australian newspapers had headlines saying “U.S. ambassador marries Vietnamese girl”.

Well, this young woman was no slouch! She shot back to reporters saying the headline should have said “ex con Marries Australian diplomat”!

Hopes, I blew the punchline. She had been with the Australian aid organization in Vietnam before she joined the bank.”

That indeed takes care of the “First” to own a car in Vietnam, and of the best American matchmaker in Vietnam. Not only is the record straight but engraved in “steel” rather than stone, as Salzman tells me he still owns the older model Mercedes with its 00 001 Vietnam license plate.

As I thank Salzman for this rather uncanny interview, he graciously thanks me and adds: “When I was a kid there were these stories called “the just so stories” by Rudyard Kipling. My favorite was “how the elephant got its trunk”. I feel like I’ve explained a little bit the same way. [laughs]

In our Just So Story, I say this “tiger” has definitely explained how he has earned his stripes.