Will Interest Rates on Direct Loans Rise in the Future

As the interest rate on federal student loans has seen an increase in the past year (starting on July 1, 2014) some are worried that the rise in Direct Loans is going to cause a problem. In the 2013-14 school year, Direct Loans saw a record low in interest rates at just 3.86 percent for undergraduate students and 5.41 percent for graduate students.

For the 2014-15 school year, however, these numbers have rise and now Direct Loans carry a 4.66 percent interest rate for undergraduates and 6.21 percent for graduates. That doesn’t seem like such a large increase, but why is it such a concern.

Some economists believe that instead of trying to raise the interest rate in order to collect more money from the students that are borrowing on these Direct Loans that the interest should be dropped below it’s record point in 2013-14. They have explained that dropping the interest rate even lower will result in lower monthly payments, thus avoiding defaults and delinquencies, which has become a large problem in the United States.

With the student loan debt now topping over $1 trillion in America, there may be a point to that. If every student is able to pay the extra $2 to $3 per month that will result in this interest rate on time, then it will only make a small dent into the national debt. If dropping the interest rate in half would result in saving students an extra $5 or so per month, it wouldn’t make a huge difference for them either.

Learning in college nowadays is usually challenging. The rising price of education is making many Americans find it difficult to manage their money. The U. S. government seeks to address this need of countless American households to supply education for his or her children after high school through a program which offers direct loans to students to cover their college training.

Technically, there has to be an interest rate on Direct Loans or else the Federal Government would not be receiving any money at all in return. However, the problem with debt and defaults has become such a problem that lowering the interest back to its record low points is certainly something to consider.

For more information on student loans and to receive updates about news regarding student loans, log onto www.afbcenter.com to get the scoop from American Financial Benefits Center today!

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Unit Trusts And Open Ended Investment Companies Collective Investments

Unit Trusts and Open Ended Investment Companies Collective Investments

Unit trusts and Open Ended Investment Companies (OEICs) are types of collective investments. In a collective investment, each individual investment is pooled with every other individual investment and then invested as a whole by the manager of the investment.

Different unit trust and OEIC funds invest in different asset classes – shares, bonds, cash and property. Some funds focus on just one asset class, while others invest in two or more. Irrespective of the asset class or classes they invest in, most fund managers will hold a wide spread of investments in their chosen asset class. That is one of the reasons why unit trusts and OEICs are popular with investors spreading investments across a range of businesses can help reduce a funds volatility and the risks for its investors.

Although unit trusts and OEICs are both open-ended investments, where the size of the fund varies according to market supply and demand, there are a number of key differences between the two types of funds.

Investors in unit trusts buy and sell a portion of the total fund in the form of units. The price unit holders initially pay for units (the bid price) is higher than the price they can sell the units for (the offer price): the difference between the two prices is known as the spread. In order for unit holders to make a return on their investment, the closing bid price must always be higher than the opening offer price. An OEIC fund on the other hand, does not trade in units but issues shares to its investors and is therefore an investment company – a less complex entity than a unit trust. Shares in an OEIC have a single price, which is determined by the value of the fund’s underlying investments. All shares in an OEIC are bought and sold at one single price, so theres no bid/offer spread to take into account.

The value of an investment in a unit trust or OEIC will vary according to the total value of the fund, which is determined by the performance of the investments the fund manager makes. Unit trusts and OEICs usually impose an up-front charge and annual management fees, some of which are declared as a percentage of the investment, while others are built into the price.

Tips On Finding A Business Strategy Consulting Firm

Business strategy consultancy companies can help identify problems in your business that stop you from realizing your objectives and then come up with a strategic plan so you can address those. They can also provide answers to any fears you could have about desired undertakings or projects for your company. They can evaluate the present state of the consumer market and ascertain if it is the correct time to start with planned projects or significant changes in your business.

Consultants can provide useful expertise to your business, but if you don’t select properly, you may wind up with somebody who feels disconnected, or worse, is ineffective.

Finding a business strategy consultant

Other organizations similar to yours can suggest strategy consultants you can hire. Attending trade exhibitions, checking out trade publications or websites can also help you find consulting firms existing in your city. Websites of relevant professional or trade associations also have directories or tools to help you find consultants in your area.

There are a lot of strategy consultancy companies on the web and offline. The right one for you is one that has relevant experience in businesses similar to yours and the future campaigns or organizational changes you are contemplating. The last thing you want is to have a consultant who will still cut teeth at your expense. Don’t just find a veteran consultant though. Working with a consultant who has a network of connections and a variety of skillsets can help your company significantly.

You must request a preliminary meeting with the potential consultancy companies. Ask them how working with them would increase the value of your company and what specific services do they offer. Consulting firms typically spend time on location to know your company more and study your processes. Some consulting firms only give you a report on how you can attain your goals. Others stay for a longer time and help execute the strategic plan. Choose a company that can give you the level of engagement you need.

Make sure to secure references and actually call or meet with them. Doing this will help you uncover several details which consultancy companies may not readily divulge. Getting in touch with past clients can require a bit of time effort, but this can help you get a better impression of the consultant’s quality and dependability of services.

Trust is essential to have a productive engagement with a business strategy consultant, so select one that you can establish good rapport with. An effective consultant is flexible to the ever changing needs of the client, but it is also important that you are open-minded to changes that they may recommend.

Go here to discover more about business strategy consultants.

Interesting Tips On Bad Debt Consolidation

If you are working on steps towards bad debt consolidation, it is wise to consider negotiating with the creditors. It is also important to know how you can do it successfully to help you come up with a good repayment plan. Remember that working with some creditors can be a difficult and emotionally draining.

It is not uncommon to feel stressed about the situation when one gets constant communication from their creditors. To avoid feeling strained or harassed, be sure to approach the situation with a clear head. File all written communications for future reference. Evaluate your finances to help you understand what you owe and what you have so that you can start paying out your debts.

One of the things you can do is to keep all types of communication with creditors in a safe place. This can help you to take a look at them as you work on a repayment plan. If you manage to make any settlements, be sure to have it in writing as well. This might become useful for future reference.

In your repayment plan, consider paying out creditors that you owe smaller amounts of money first. It is wise not to delay the process. You should start your repayment plan immediately. Once you have paid off your small debts, you can consider making plans to start paying creditors that you owe higher amounts of money.

Be sure to create a clear and well organized monthly budget. This is beneficial in numerous ways. It can help you to negotiate for an affordable repayment plan. Do not hesitate to show it to them. Giving creditors your financial situation in writing can help them to understand your situation better.

Remember that it is important to be in control of the situation even if you have debts to settle. One way of doing this is by letting them understand that you are willing to start making payment. Be sure to let them know how much you can afford. It is important not to strain yourself when repaying your debts.

Another tip that can help you go about bad debt consolidation successfully is to remember to show your creditor that you are committed to your repayment plan. You can do this by taking control of your finances. Make sure that all payments are done in a timely manner and without fail. Keep your spending in check and avoid acquiring more debt.

A Free Forex Trading Tool Forex Trend Indicator

If you are looking for tools to help you improve your finances while trading forex. There are some free tools available on the internet that can be beneficial and helpful in your currency trading endeavors. Forex trend indicators are tools that monitor and detect the trend of currency. It can be quite useful when trying to make trades without letting emotions get in the way.

A free forex trend indicator can help you decide whether to buy or sell a currency. It will know if the trend is heading up or down and notify you. By knowing, you can base your buy or sell trade on the trend of the market. This is quite beneficial for you if you’re a trader looking to make trades daily while researching and monitoring the markets.

It is quite easy to find a free indicator online you just have to do some searching. These systems aren’t that sophisticated and typically run off of a common platform such as Meta Trader. They are very easy to setup and work almost instantly in demo and live modes. Usually they label the graph with some sort of notification to tell you the trend of the market. For example, it may show an arrow or word UP or an arrow pointing down and the word DOWN.

On the other hand, this tool isn’t always useful for everyone. If you are unfamiliar with forex trading and don’t know how to use the direction of the market to your advantage there are other tools to consider. You can follow a professional trader, use a robot, or learn by doing research and then use the tool.

By reading eBooks, Books, following professional traders, watching training videos, and utilizing this tool you can learn to be an expert trader in no time. Or depend on an automated system such as an expert advisor that will make careful and calculated trades that can result in positive cash flow. This is a great way to benefit from the currency markets without spending your valuable time on learning how to trade and especially how to make successful trades.

The bottom line is the forex market is worth researching it is an alternative way to invest your money that most people do not consider. It can be quite profitable if done right, and the best part is it’s always trading, except on weekends. You can trade at late hours of the night. It is exciting to play this market and everything is at a faster pace than the stock market.

Unlike other markets, the currency market tends to not be affected by news and other political or economic factors that the stock market is affected by.

Claims Payment Record Of The Private Insurance Companies

As we know, there are 20 odd private life insurance companies in India, and there is LIC which is a public sector company. LIC is the 800 pound gorilla, managing to hold on to about 75% market share even 10 years after private companies have been allowed into the life insurance space. The private life insurance companies position themselves on being more customer friendly, wider array of products etc while LIC holds on to its positioning of trust, experience and government backing. One of the key parameters on which to judge a life insurance company is their claims payment record. At the same time, we must note that given that life insurance has become more of a savings and investment product, the returns that they provide are perhaps more important than claims payout ratios. Nevertheless, claims record is definitely not a variable to be ignored.

A table illustrating the claims rejection percentages of the top life insurance companies in 2009-10 is presented below:

Life Insurance Company
Claims rejection ratio (%)

LIC 1.21%
Aviva 9.75%
Bajaj Allianz 5.2%
Birla SunLife 10.62%
HDFC Life 4.67%
ICICI Prudential 3.27%
ING Vysya 4.26%
Kotak Mahindra 4.29%
Max New York Life 12.31%
MetLife 5.94%
Reliance Life 7.05%
SBI Life 14.75%
Tata AIG 12.3%

An important observation from the above table is that the claims rejection ratio of LIC is the lowest, thus implying that their record is the best as far as claims payment is concerned. At the same time, the very high percentage of claims rejection of SBI Life and Max New York Life surely comes in as a surprise.

It must however be noted once again that in Unit Linked products that life insurance companies promote aggressively (or at least was promoting till Sep 2010) , the returns earned on the fund is perhaps a more important variable than the claims payment (or rejection) ratio. However, for non life insurance companies, which offer pure protection/insurance products with no savings or investment component, claims payment is the crucial variable along with the speed of processing of claims.

Let us now look at the incurred claims ratios of the non life insurance companies:

Non Life Insurance Company
Incurred claims ratio

New India Assurance 89%
Oriental Insurance 99.69%
United India Insurance 78.62%
National Insurance 99.16%
Royal Sundaram 68.95%
Reliance General Insurance 77.3%
Iffco Tokio Insurance 83.44%
Tata AIG 60.54%
ICICI Lombard 85.35%
Bajaj Allianz 71.9%
HDFC Ergo 80.73%
Bharti Axa 104%%

One data point that stands out from above is that Tata AIG General Insurance seems to be sourcing the best quality business from the underwriting point of view, whereas the claims payment ratio of Bharti Axa seems to be quite high. Alo,the claims payment ratio of the public insurers, at an overall level, is higher than that of the private non life insurers.

Top Benefits Of Having Life Insurance

People today are trying to cut their costs and save as much money as they possibly can. Some people are even go so far as to cut off their life insurance policy. The problem with this money saving method is the fat that you never know what might happen during your lifetime. Having life insurance does hold a variety of benefits that you can easily enjoy immediately.

One of the biggest benefits that you will receive is the fact that you will be able to leave something behind to take care of your family for life. Those who get a policy will leave a sufficient amount of money behind so that family members can cover all funeral costs as well as their monthly living expenses over a period of time. This is a very good investment to have under your belt throughout your life.

Despite what you might think, life insurance is not going to be very expensive. Most people who have their own coverage plan, even with multiple beneficiaries named do not spend more than $150 on their insurance plans. If you do not have a lot to spend, try looking into your original insurance company and see if they have any life insurance options for you to add onto your plan.

Life insurance will be cheaper if you are younger. Those who buy insurance around the age of 30 years old will be able to save hundreds of dollars a year on their coverage plan. This means that you will get a lot of insurance that will grow as an investment that you will not need for at least another 35-40 years. Look into investing as early as you possibly can so that you are set.

If you are in a little bit of a financial situation and you need some extra cash, there are ways that you can take a loan against your life insurance policy. You will need to speak with your chosen insurance company to see what type of loans they offer as well as the interest rates that you will have to pay back as well. You can also simply stop your premium temporarily in order to get on top again.

Once you sign up for your prospective coverage, your rates will always be fixed. For as long as you are alive and well you will always have the same premium price each year. If you do get to buy at an early age, that you means you will save a lot more money in the long run.

If you can afford it right now then get online and start looking for the perfect life insurance policy for you. Choose your beneficiaries wisely and make sure that you have thought about every detail in advance. The sooner you buy your policy, the sooner you can save yourself as well as your entire family heaps of money!