Secured VS Unsecured: The Showdown

Posted by on Oct 17, 2017 in Blog |

Borrowing money is a serious responsibility no matter what type of loan you choose. The days of walking into your neighborhood bank or credit union and quickly and easily getting a personal loan are pretty much over.

Since the financial meltdown began in late 2007, traditional lenders such as banks and credit unions have severely tightened their lending requirements making it much more difficult for many consumers to qualify for a loan. Homeowners have also seen the value of their homes greatly decrease since the housing market collapsed a few years ago- so much so that home equity loans are almost non-existent in today’s financial market.

However, people still have financial needs and loans are still available from places like If you have made the decision to apply for a loan, here are some basic facts which you should know.

There are two different types of loans generally offered to consumers: securedand unsecured. A secured loan is a loan which requires some form of collateral from the borrower. For example, this could be your home or your car. An unsecured loan does not require any type of collateral and therefore carries a greater risk for the lender.

Advantages and Disadvantages

Here are some advantages of secured loans:

  • Your interest rate (APR) will generally be lower and more affordable than with an unsecured loan.
  • Payments are normally spread out over a longer period of time giving you more flexibility with repayment of the loan.
  • You can usually borrow larger amounts of money compared to an unsecured loan.
  • You may be able to get a secured loan with a less-than-perfect credit history. Since you have to provide collateral for a secured loan, lenders will be assured that they will get their money back even if you default on the loan.

Some disadvantages of secured loans are:

  • You are required to pledge specific assets as collateral for the loan.
  • If you are unable to make the regular payments and/or default on the loan, the lender has the right to repossess your pledged assets to recover the money which is owed.
  • Repayment periods are generally longer than with an unsecured loan meaning you are in debt for a longer time.

The following are advantages of an unsecured loan:

  • You can normally qualify for an unsecured loan without having substantial assets.
  • Since there is no collateral required, you do not risk losing any personal property such as a home or car.
  • Unsecured loans are a better option for consumers who only need to borrow a small amount.

These are some disadvantages of an unsecured loan:

  • The repayment period is usually shorter than with a secured loan resulting in higher payment amounts.
  • Since there is no collateral required, lenders normally charge higher interest rates for unsecured loans.
  • Qualifying for an unsecured loan is generally more difficult.

Ultimately, it is your decision on what type of loan to choose. You should always give careful consideration to your personal circumstances when deciding to take on new debt and always borrow the least amount of money possible.

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How To Trade On Commodities Contracts

Posted by on Oct 17, 2017 in Blog |

The most common way to trade on commodities is through a futures contract, which is an agreement to buy or sell a specific amount of a commodity at a fixed sum at a pre-determined point in the future. With some commodities, like gold and silver, it’s possible to trade a daily cash market (Rolling Daily) or but for the bulk of tradeable commodities we are operating in the futures market.

On the ETX Capital TraderPro platform you will find a list of all the commodities you can trade on. Usually there are futures contracts for the next one or two months, with an expiry day (when the contract is settled).

Trading on commodities with is similar to trading on equities or indices in that you are choosing whether you think the price will rise or fall. The only difference for the majority of traders is the time element. Most traders of equities and indices trade the rolling daily price and simply rollover their position until they exit the trade.  commodities trading the futures contracts expire and so you need to beware being closed out of a contract before you intended.

Buyers and sellers can use commodity futures contracts to lock in the purchase of sale prices weeks, months or years in advance. For example, assume that a farmer is expecting to produce 1,000,000 bushels of soybeans in the next 12 months. Typically, soybean futures contracts include the quantity of 5,000 bushels. If the farmer’s break-even point on a bushel of soybeans is $10 per bushel and he sees that one-year futures contracts for soybeans are currently priced at $15 per bushel, it might be wise for him to lock in the $15 sales price per bushel by selling enough one-year soybean contracts to cover his harvest. In this example, that is (1,000,000 / 5,000 = 200 contracts).

One year later, regardless of price, the farmer delivers the 1,000,000 bushels and receives $15 x 200 x 5000, or $15,000,000. This price is locked in. But unless soybeans are priced at $15 per bushel in the spot market that day, the farmer has either received less than he could have or more. If soybean were priced at $13 per bushel, the farmer receives a $2 per bushel benefit from hedging, or $2,000,000. Likewise, if the beans were priced at $17 per bushels, the farmer misses out on an additional $2 per bushel profit.

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Top Immigration Tips

Posted by on Sep 22, 2017 in Blog |

We planned to write a blog about the revised travel ban Executive Order as soon as it came out. That the revised order was delayed for several weeks until March 6 highlights the uncertainty we face in 2017 with requiring immigration solicitors in London . Below we try to answer various questions we regularly receive about immigration issues. 

  1. Is domestic airplane travel OK? This may sound like a simple question for muslim lawyer companies, but recent events suggest more caution may be wise. For example, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents recently met a plane landing at JFK Airport in New York City, and asked everyone about their immigration status. The agents were looking for someone who had an old deportation order, but it is possible that anyone without evidence of status could have faced delays. This is a good time to remind ourselves that the law requires anyone who is not a U.S. citizen to carry evidence of status at all times and your Wandsworth based solicitors should confirm it. Try to make it easy for a government officer.
  2. Isn’t that overreacting based on one incident? Maybe, but the bigger picture is that immigration enforcement agents have more discretion and wider operating room than before. Two memos issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on February 20 allow for “expedited removal,” which is a fast track process that skips a hearing with an immigration judge. Expedited removal now can apply to anyone who entered the country within the past 2 years (used to be 2 weeks), and anywhere in the United States (used to be within 100 miles of the border). Expedited removal happens quickly, sometimes within a matter of days. Having a copy of a document showing status and that you have been in the United States more than two years could help avoid questioning and expedited removal.
  3. How about electronic devices? Can those be searched at the airport or border? The simple answer is “yes,” and this is happening more often. We recommend that private information, such as a doctor with patient information, should be encrypted. According to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) website, CBP officers may search laptops, cell phones, or other electronic devices. CBP may not select someone for a personal search or secondary inspection based on religion, race, national origin, gender, ethnicity, or political beliefs. U.S. citizens may also be questioned and have their devices seized for refusal to provide passwords or unlock devices, but cannot be prevented from entering the United States. Noncitizens may, however, be denied entry. Adding to the uncertainty about how this will play out is a section in one of the January Executive Orders that directs federal government agencies to make sure they “exclude persons who are not United States citizens or lawful permanent residents” from Privacy Act protections concerning personal information.
  4. What does this mean for people from the six countries covered by the new travel ban? Will the court battle still continue? The new order clarifies that green card holders and Iraqis are NOT affected by the visa ban, and that people who had visas revoked or cancelled by the first order may be able to get a travel letter to return. The new order takes effect March 16, 2017, and lasts for 90 days. People with valid visas stamps in their passports can still use them, but new visa stamps will not be issued with very limited discretionary exceptions. The Visa Interview Waiver program is suspended for all countries, and the order states that DHS may add countries to the list after further review. People who are citizens of the six countries can still face additional questioning when they enter the United States as part of a general pattern of enhanced vetting. Travel for citizens of the six countries remains a calculated risk.
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Cutting a Child Out

Posted by on Mar 8, 2017 in Blog |

In most cases after a death, children expect to take equal shares of their parent’s estate. It’s something that is known throughout life that whatever we have as parents we pass down to our children. There are occasions, however, when a parent decides to leave more of the estate to one child than the others or to disinherit one child completely. To some this may be something that is considered totally unfair and usually this feeling of unfairness comes from the disinherited child so obviously that feeling is valid but a common reaction. Unfortunately disinheritance of a child is not as rare as some may think, there are a lot of reasons for going through such a large and emotional step. A parent may exclude a child from the will because other children are more in need of assistance. For example, if the children have a difference in their jobs and are a brain surgeon, an undiscovered artist and a social worker, the parent leave everything to the social worker and the artist because the brain surgeon is able amply to provide for their own. While that doesn’t seem fair, because the child’s job shouldn’t mean they lose out on their inheritance, it does happen. This will seem extremely unfair to the child left out as it would feel like a punishment for doing well in life.

Companies like can walk you through the process of disinheritance and assist you from start to finish. A parent may have provided more assistance to one child than to other children during life, so if we use the example careers as above: if a parent put a brain surgeon through university and medical school and paid toward other training, the parents may feel that particular child has already received a huge chunk of the family wealth. This is a good reason to ensure that you either do that for each child or you disinherit later on. The best thing you can do is make sure that if you are going to disinherit one child or leave more to one than the others, you speak to them first while you’re alive. Don’t wait until they go to a reading of the will and discover this has happened as there will be no time to answer questions or help them through a difficult time.

A dependent parent may choose to leave all their belongings to the child who helped them through the worst times of their life. If in a family there are three children and two of the three haven’t bothered to visit or assist in any way, then the child who did in fact help out may end up inheriting everything as a sign of gratitude. If there has been a break in the family where one child is estranged from all the others, then this could also be a reason for disinheritance. While it is a difficult decision to make for the most part especially when grandchildren are involved, it is up to the person who writes the will to make that choice for the family. The other thing they need to ensure is that the child who is inheriting everything is protected from law suits and making sure the inheritance isn’t tied up in expensive litigation. The disinheritance of a child or children is not something to be taken lightly. It is an intensely emotional step on both sides and parents who make a will disinheriting a child may harbour feelings of guilt for many years, and even the rest of their lives.

A child who doesn’t know about being disinherited until after the parent’s death may be devastated to learn of the parent’s rejection and feel like they no longer can gain the answers to it. A will doesn’t become effective until the testator dies and many things can take place during the interim period. It won’t matter if a parent reconciles with their child if they haven’t put their new wishes down on paper. Always, always speak to a solicitor.

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Tips to Avoid Being Scammed During Tax Season

Posted by on Jan 16, 2017 in Blog |

There are three main tax scams in the US that are very popular. You are able to protect yourself of course, everyone is wary when it comes to others asking for money! But what do you do when it comes to the IRS calling you and telling you that you owe them money? No one wants to owe the IRS and with sorting taxes being such a minefield and complicated to handle as it is, why wouldn’t you panic a little?

If you think you have been a victim of identity fraud, you need to immediately report it to the police and the IRS. Make sure you have contacted a reputable Los Angeles Tax Attornies by your side to support you through it. Having people pose as your bank or the IRS to steal your identity if terrifying and it can be really hard to handle that alone. There are three tax scams that you should be fully aware of: Identity Theft, Phone Scams, and Phishing Scams.

  • Phone scams are generally aimed toward the elderly. Not many people have a house phone anymore, and most scams are registered to landline numbers as they can trick people better. Phone scams require the thieves to call you, fraudulently posing from the IRS or other organisation with the intent to steal money from you. These scammers are very convincing, knowing exactly what to say to get under your skin and frighten you into paying money you don’t need to pay out. Never provide anyone your card details over the phone unless you have physically phoned them to pay a bill.
  • Having your identity stolen can feel like a violation. This can happen by cloning bank cards, having thieves raid your bin for postal rubbish to obtain your address and date of birth, and being physically mugged. By obtaining your personal information, thieves can then further obtain things by fraudulent transactions on your card, file tax returns in your name to claim refunds from the IRS and if very successful, can even get a passport in your name.
  • Finally, a phishing scam is email and website based by thieves who know exactly what to do and what to send to get you to pay up. The websites are very convincing and make you believe that the tax office and other organisations are contacting you directly. It’s important to remember that government organisations and most other companies never, ever contact via email to claim money. The IRS only ever phone you or send letters via post to inform you that you have a debt. They won’t ever ask you to click through a link on a website so that you can pay them online. The trouble is that the scammers know that older people tend not to understand how this works and therefore they are the targets.

Sometimes, thieves and scammers falsely promise large refunds or pension payouts that you can access early: none of these are real. You can protect yourself by calling organisations you receive false emails and calls from directly and checking with them if it’s real. Informing fraud companies who monitor these things is also the best thing you can do.

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The benefits of discount cars and pcp on cars

Posted by on Dec 7, 2016 in Blog |

Don’t you just wish you could stop riding in public transport? Where you can be the driver and go wherever your heart desires? Then you should get a car! Don’t worry about prices and how you can pay for them because now there are discount cars and pcp on cars. With this you driving dreams will come true and you can say goodbye to public transport because you get to be the captain of your car. You might not know it, but there are benefits to having those type of cars and here some benefits that you should know.

  • Cheaper price

You don’t want to spend a lot of money right? Cars after all cost hundreds and thousands but now you can get them cheaper because there are cars that are discounted, which is a good thing for you. With a cheap car, you can finally stop using the bus and start driving your car. You wouldn’t have to worry yourself about the bills because the price of the car is discounted which means it is going to be a low price.

  • No struggle in paying

With the pcp, you don’t need to pay full on your car but rather in sets so that you wouldn’t have to have a hard time paying for the car. This way as well, though you may be paying monthly or on other ways at least you can now start driving because though you haven’t paid full yet you can now be the owner of a car.

  • You can have the car

Normally you would need to pay the car in full for you to use it but with the pcp you can pay the car every month or how you negotiate, and with that you can now own the car. It may be uncommon for you paying every month for the car, but at least the good thing is that you can keep the car and use it.

  • No need to pay in full

If you want to have the car immediately, you can with the help of the pcp, but you still need to pay the company through every month. At least this way your money wouldn’t be used up in buying the car because you can now pay in installments. Your life savings would still be safe, and you can go on with your life, but this time with your car.

Now you know what the benefits of having cars that are discounted and those who cares that is pcp because who doesn’t want to have their car and pay for it in a cheap monthly amount rather than in full all at once? With this way, you can finally say goodbye to public transportation and having to wait for the bus to arrive and also getting wet from the rain because now you are safe and comfortable and dry thanks to your car, and you were able to have it with a discounted price or on installment.

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