Categories
Gold & Silver

What is Gold Bullion?

We will discuss what is gold bullion, the history of gold, gold price predictions and why having gold as a part of your investment portfolio may be considered wise.

What is Gold Bullion?

Bullion is gold and silver that is officially recognized as being at least 99.5% pure and is in the form of bars or ingots. Bullion is often kept as a reserve asset by governments and central banks. – Investopedia.com

Diving Deeper: What is Gold Bullion Used For?

Gold bullion or gold bars are created from gold that has been mined from the earth. Bullion is typically heavier and larger than a gold coin. Gold bars can vary in size from as small as one gram to larger than 25 lbs. For example, a 1 kilogram bar of gold weighs approximately 2.2 lbs and is about the size of your iPhone. One kilogram of gold is valued at approximately $65,000!

You may be still asking, what is gold bullion and its purpose? The purpose of creating gold bullion is for easy storage. The gold bullion bars are easily stackable and transportable. Specifically, banks and governments can store the bullion in secure vaults easily and safely.

History of Gold

The use of gold as a commodity and as money dates back at least 4,000-6,000 years. Approximately 4,500 years ago, the Mesopotamian artisans made jewelry from gold. However, it’s believed that gold was being used even prior to this era. For example, gold was used as a construction material to decorate walls, burial sites and masks of cultures such as the Egyptians, the Greeks and the Romans.

What is Gold Bullion Used For? Trading and Exchange

It is believed that around 1,500 B.C. in Egypt, gold was being used as the official currency of exchange for merchants and traders. Shortly thereafter, gold took its place as the primary trading currency throughout the world. Mining for gold became a major industry world-wide. Coins made of gold were produced and distributed throughout Europe and Asia.

Gold Standard Dollars

Fast forward to the year 1792. The United States passed the Coinage Act which dictates that silver and gold will be used as the standard for valuing currency. The Act defined the U.S. Dollar as equivalent to 24.75 grams of gold and 371.25 grams of silver. The paper currency printed in the United States was officially backed and redeemable in silver and gold.

While individuals use gold coins for exchange, governments have historically used gold bullion or gold bars as a reserve asset. Gold bullion stored in vaults was considered to be the anchor that gave paper currency it’s strength. In fact, paper gold certificates in the United States used to have “payable in gold” stamped on them. This let users know that they could potentially redeem the piece of paper currency for real money – gold. These paper gold certificates were considered equal to other currencies in value until 1933 when the US Government took the Dollar off of the gold standard.

gold certificate

$10,000 Gold Certificate by National Museum of American History – Image by Godot13, Public Domain, Courtesy of Wikipedia.com

Then in 1971, the U.S. Dollar was devalued in price and the program of conversion of dollars back to gold for foreign countries was discontinued. In other words, U.S. Dollars were no longer backed by gold. The gold price forecast has always been upward and it continues today.

The Beauty and Utility of Gold

Shiny gold coins and jewelry have been considered beautiful for centuries. Women and men have donned gold jewelry for as long as we have kept track of history. From a physical perspective, gold is malleable and easily altered to make jewelry, coins or even thin sheets. Scientifically, gold is non-reactive and non-corrosive, both of which are highly desirable characteristics. Gold is even safe to use in the human body. For example, dentists have used gold for years to repair teeth.

Gold Bullion Has a Limited Supply and Growing Demand

The Supply of Gold Bullion Is Finite; Demand for Gold Includes Industry, Jewelry and Money

There is a limited supply of gold on Earth. Moreover, gold miners throughout the world have a finite quantity of gold available for mining. At some point, the amount of gold removed from mines will diminish and become zero.

At the same time, gold bullion demand continues to grow. For instance, gold has many uses in technology, jewelry, medicine and money. Jewelry made of gold has been popular for millennia. In addition, gold continues to grow in demand and popularity, especially in Asia. In fact, 70-80% of gold mined today goes to create jewelry. All of these factors influence the gold price forecast.

Also, there are many industrial uses for gold including electronics, aerospace and medicine. For example, gold is a very efficient conductor of electricity. This property is utilized in many electronic components such as cell phones and computers. In addition, gold is a superior element to work with in dentistry. More important, gold is non-reactive, malleable and has anti-bacterial properties.

Finally, gold bullion and gold coins remain in demand all over the world. Coins made of gold have been used for hundreds or thousands of years. They are easily recognizable and highly desirable. More importantly, gold coins have withstood the test of time and continue to be sought after in the 21st century. Real money is sound money. Obviously, gold is real, sound money.

Five Reasons to Buy Gold Bullion:

  1. Gold is a store of value. National currencies (even the U.S. Dollar) come and go. But Gold has been around for thousands of years as real money. 
  2. It is a liquid asset. Gold bullion (and other metals) can be easily bought and sold in most large cities around the world. It can be exchanged for most currencies this way.
  3. Gold bullion is a tangible asset. You can hold gold coins and gold bullion in your hand or put them in your safe. No waiting for the bank to open to get them. No worrying about destruction by fire or a hacker.
  4. It is a hedge against inflation. Gold tends to thrive during a crisis. Investors tend to jump into gold when stocks go lower.
  5. Gold bullion is private. No other asset offers privacy like a gold coin. A transaction in gold between you and another person is truly a private affair.

What is Gold Bullion Doing in Your Portfolio?

It is common to hold anywhere from 5-10% of an investment portfolio in physical gold bullion. In fact, there are some very large international investment portfolios that hold as much as 30% of assets in gold.

Buy Gold as Physical Coins/Bars or Gold Stocks

Investing in gold has never been easier. Gold merchants and brokerage firms are competing for your business online. If you want to purchase physical gold, you can do this at your local coin shop.

Another option for purchasing gold is buying online. Buying from a website has become more secure in recent years, but you must do diligent research to verify the buyer. Only buy from established suppliers that have been around for a long time and have positive feedback. Preferably you can get a recommendation from a friend.

Finally, buying gold stocks is just as easy as buying stock in GM or Amazon. Many online brokerage firms offer the ability to buy these shares for a reasonable fee. With the gold price forecast looking positive, now may be the best time to invest.

Future of Gold

Unemployment, Debt, 0% Interest and Fed Money Printing Drive Gold Prices Higher

We at Piggy Bank Coins believe that gold (and silver) has a bright future. Holding a real money asset such as gold will always be highly regarded by investors. In addition, having gold in your investment portfolio is considered by many to be a safe and secure option. It’s important to grow your wealth while minimizing risk. Specifically, gold is a real, tangible money that can be a store of wealth for a lifetime. If you are wondering what gold bullion is and whether it should be part of your portfolio, then read on.

We believe the gold price forecast indicates that demand will continue to grow and that investors should continue to hold gold and silver. With the political and economic instability created in the United States, gold prices will likely increase. For instance, investors will continue to move toward safe harbors. Make no mistake, gold is the safe harbor.

Second, since 1944 the US Dollar has operated as the world reserve currency. However, the US economy appears to be faltering with high unemployment, high national debt, near-zero percent interest rates and inflation from Federal Reserve money printing. As a result, investors will be looking for something safe to hold on to, and precious metals may be that rock.

The Gold Price Forecast Predictions

Four Gold Price Predictions: $2,300, $3,000-$8,000, $15,000 and $26,000.

Goldman Sachs raised its gold price forecast in July 2020. The investing firm believes that gold will hit $2,300 per ounce as investors flee other falling price investments such as real estate.

According to Jeff Clark, Senior Analyst at GoldSilver gold has a 95% likelihood of going higher in 2021. In addition, he is predicting $3,000-$8,000 gold in the next 5 years.

In an interview with Kitco News in mid-2020, Investor Jim Rickards predicts that gold will rise to $15,000 per ounce before 2025. He bases his prediction on inflationary forces.

In the same interview with Jim Rickards, Investor Peter Schiff predicted gold will rise as high as $26,000 per ounce. He bases his prediction on extrapolating DOW Jones trading values in relation to gold in 1932 and currently.

If you are still wondering what is gold bullion and should it be in my portfolio, then perhaps gold is not for you. However, many smart investors have used gold for centuries as a store of value and a hedge against inflation.

Wrap Up: What is Gold Bullion?

Hopefully we have answered the question of “What is gold bullion?” Furthermore, you may now better understand the history of gold, gold price predictions and why having gold as a part of your investment portfolio may be considered wise.

Learn More about Gold and Silver

Get a copy of the “Free Gold and Silver Buyer’s Guide” today. It’s free and has some great information in it about investing.

If you want to learn about the history of money, check out Mike Maloney’s free “Hidden Secrets of Money” video series. It’s a goldmine of information that can help you better understand money and where the world stands today financially. Highly recommended!

Read More:

Best Silver Coins to Buy

Best Gold Coins to Buy

The Cheapest Way to Buy Silver

Wealth Building Cornerstones

Best Investing Books of All Time

How to Become a Millionaire from Nothing

How Much Savings You Should Have at 40

Disclaimer:

It is important to note that Piggy Bank Coins does not provide financial advice. We don’t endorse or recommend any financial investments. Instead, we provide information for educational purposes to those seeking knowledge regarding personal finance. However, in the spirit of transparency, note that the author is an investor in cryptocurrencies, precious metals and some equities.

In addition, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that Piggy Bank Coins disclose to readers that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases. However, this does not impact our reviews and comparisons. Moreover, we try our best to keep things fair and balanced, in order to help you make the best choice for you.

Categories
Economy

Crack Up Boom

In this article we discuss the concept of a Crack Up Boom, inflation and hyperinflation. In addition, we talk about how the crack up boom applies to our current economy and provide some solutions regarding things you can do to fight back against inflation.

What is a Crack Up Boom?

One of the most famous economists of the 1920s, Ludwig von Mises, came up with the term. Mises witnessed the events that occurred in Weimar Germany in the early 20th century, including hyperinflation and the destruction of the economy. Mises was a member of the Austrian School of Economics.

A crack up boom is when an economy or government begins a financial melt down because of excessive money printing and rising prices. There are two key features of a crackup boom: excessive money printing by a government and continually rising prices that lead to inflation or hyperinflation. As prices of goods rise, people realize that the cash they hold is losing value quickly. The result is that citizens suffer the consequences of hyperinflation, being unable to buy normal items because of spiraling prices. As a result, hyperinflation in the crack up boom causes people to get rid of cash as quickly as possible. Furthermore, this feeds the hyperinflation cycle as people flee cash and seek out assets, which hold value.

Mises Institute: Crack Up Boom

“If once public opinion is convinced that the increase in the quantity of money will continue and never come to an end, and that consequently the prices of all commodities and services will not cease to rise, everybody becomes eager to buy as much as possible and to restrict his cash holding to a minimum size. For under these circumstances the regular costs incurred by holding cash are increased by the losses caused by the progressive fall in purchasing power. The advantages of holding cash must be paid for by sacrifices which are deemed unreasonably burdensome. This phenomenon was, in the great European inflations of the ‘twenties, called flight into real goods (Flucht in die Sachwerte) or crack-up boom (Katastrophenhausse).” – Hyperinflation, Money Demand and The Crack Up Boom, Mises Institute

What is inflation?

“Inflation is the decline of purchasing power of a given currency over time. A quantitative estimate of the rate at which the decline in purchasing power occurs can be reflected in the increase of an average price level of a basket of selected goods and services in an economy over some period of time. The rise in the general level of prices, often expressed as a percentage means that a unit of currency effectively buys less than it did in prior periods.” –Investopedia

Could a Crack Up Boom Happen in the US?

Well, hyperinflation has famously happened in other places in the world in the recent past. For example, hyperinflation famously struck Weimar Germany in the 1920s. Hyperinflation has also occurred in Zimbabwe, Argentina and Venezuela. Furthermore, hyperinflation has occurred quite a lot throughout history. As a result, all of the aforementioned places experienced a crack up boom.

You have probably heard famous stories of citizens pushing wheelbarrows full of cash to the bakery to buy a loaf of bread.

Hyperinflation in Argentina

Argentina is frequently studied as a case history for inflation problems. Since Argentina became an independent country in 1816, it has defaulted on its debt nine times over the years. Many of these defaults lead to hyperinflation and economic destruction for Argentinians. Furthermore, the debt defaults have caused currency devaluations (money becomes worth less). In addition, inflation in the country has reached levels as high as 5,000%!

Argentina was known as the Switzerland of South America throughout the 20th century. It is a large, independent country with significant natural resources, a delightful climate and strong historical economic growth. However, beginning in the 1980s, increased debt and import issues caused the country to see excessive inflation of the currency. Later, Argentina staked the Argentine Peso to the US Dollar in hopes of economic recovery. However, a recession led to a default on debt and inflation hit again.

As the currency in a country like Argentina loses buying power, more currency is required to pay for the same things. For example, one day groceries may cost $50; however, during hyperinflation, you might return to the grocery store the following day and spend $100 to buy the same groceries that cost only $50 the day before. This behavior ultimately led to a crack up boom in the Argentine economy.

What is Hyperinflation?

“Hyperinflation is a term to describe rapid, excessive, and out-of-control general price increases in an economy. While inflation is a measure of the pace of rising prices for goods and services, hyperinflation is rapidly rising inflation, typically measuring more than 50% per month.” –Investopedia

Currency Inflation

One thing that significantly affects inflation and purchasing power is money printing. When the US Treasury and the Federal Reserve Bank coordinate to print large amounts of money, it causes inflation. Inflation is simply an increase in the money supply. The bigger the money supply, the less the money in your wallet is worth. Moreover, inflation is a hidden tax. As a result, money you have in your bank account loses purchasing power when money is printed by the government.

On March 23, 2020, it was announced that the US Government would be giving out stimulus checks to Americans. In addition, they planned to give money and loans to businesses hurt by the COVID-19 epidemic. Almost overnight, approximately $2 Trillion in loans and grants were printed out of thin air. As a result, the internet went viral in creating money printing memes. One of those memes was the now infamous “money printer go brrrr” meme. Additionally, this could be the start of hyperinflation and a crack up boom in the United States.

Consumer Price Index

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the consumer price index has increased 1.3% in the past 12 months (before seasonal adjustment).

“The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is a measure of the average change over time in the prices paid by urban consumers for a market basket of consumer goods and services. Indexes are available for the U.S. and various geographic areas. Average price data for select utility, automotive fuel, and food items are also available.”

-The US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Definition of Consumer Price Index (CPI)

A consumer price index value of 1.3% seems reasonable for 2019-2020. If inflation or the CPI were only 1% per year, that means that in 100 years one US Dollar would lose about half its purchasing power. For example, $100 in 1920 would only purchase $50 worth of goods in 2020. However, real inflation for items we buy every day is much higher. In addition, we’ll soon see what the real inflation values are, and they are not pretty. As a result, this may be the beginning of hyperinflation in the United States.

The United States Federal Reserve Bank Aims For 2% Inflation

The Federal Reserve Bank believes that we must have inflation to promote stability and predictability in the economy. Their goal is to have 2% inflation each year.

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) judges that inflation of 2 percent over the longer run, as measured by the annual change in the price index for personal consumption expenditures, is most consistent with the Federal Reserve’s mandate for maximum employment and price stability. When households and businesses can reasonably expect inflation to remain low and stable, they are able to make sound decisions regarding saving, borrowing, and investment, which contributes to a well-functioning economy. – Federal Reserve Website

However, despite the inflation values touted by the Federal Reserve Bank, real inflation is likely much higher. Consumers are aware of the difference when buying groceries, paying for items or buying a car. Prices are clearly increasing significantly each year. But is this the start of hyperinflation and a crack up boom in the United States?

The Federal Reserve’s Tools of Inflation: Money Printing and Interest Rates

The Federal Reserve Bank’s most powerful tool for creating inflation is a two-pronged approach. First, they have the power to raise and lower interest rates. Increasing or decreasing interest rates has the effect of accelerating or decelerating the American economy. If they raise interest rates, people tend to borrow less and it becomes more expensive to do business. As a result, there is a chilling effect on the economy; however, if the Federal Reserve lowers interest rates, individuals (and businesses) find it easier to get capital to do business, and the economic machine is powered up, so to speak.

The other powerful tool that the Federal Reserve has is to print money. Typically, when they print more money, there is more money in the economy. The velocity of money increases and people tend to have more money. With more money in the system, the economy is stimulated. As a result, policies that involve greater and greater money printing can easily cause hyperinflation in the United States. As you can see, the scene is set for a crack up boom here in the United States.

Inflation Calculator

The US Dollar Has Declined in Purchasing Power Since 1913; The Stated CPI Does Not Reflect Real Price Increases

In addition, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics provides a handy Inflation Calculator. Using their calculator, you can estimate what purchasing power (based upon inflation) is today compared with years past. For example, $10 in 1960 is equal to $88.71 today. That means that in the 60 years prior to 2020, the dollar has suffered 887% inflation over time.

Since the Federal Reserve Bank was formed in 1913, the dollar has been in steady decline. The dollar’s purchasing power has decreased dramatically since 1913. Using the US Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI calculator, the US Dollar has lost approximately 96% of its purchasing power since 1913. This is an alarming statistic that may be a harbinger of hyperinflation in the United States.

How Inflation is Measured by You

Sometimes when we think about inflation, we think of what can be purchased directly with our national currency. For example, we might notice that last week fuel cost only $3/gallon, whereas, this week a gallon of fuel increased to $3.50. This is how consumers most often notice inflation. However, don’t get too caught up in measuring inflation by just using currency.

How to Survive a Crack Up Boom in the United States

Seek Shelter in Deflationary Assets Such as Gold, Silver, Bitcoin and Real Estate.

There are some investments and things that you can own that hedge against inflation and hyperinflation in the United States. For example, for hundreds of years, owning gold and silver has been a method for how to survive inflation. Gold and silver both have a long history of maintaining their value when currencies became inflated.

Gold and Silver: Assets That Hedge Against Inflation

Real money assets are resistant to inflationary forces and maintain a value that is based on demand. First, silver and gold have a long history of maintaining their value against the currency of the day. No matter what the value of a dollar is, a one-ounce silver coin is always equal in value to one ounce of silver. In addition, silver and gold maintain a special balance with the value of gold, which fluctuates.

Silver and gold are real money, which is tangible and is backed by something of value. Moreover, you can hold it in your hand. Silver and gold cannot be taken from your bank account, like cash. In addition, hackers cannot steal silver from your computer, like Bitcoin. Finally, silver and gold can be kept safely and privately in a secure location. In many cases, real assets are a true defense against a crack up boom.

Bitcoin

Another alternative to gold and silver that many consider inflation-proof is Bitcoin. In the past few years, many have begun to use bitcoin like gold – a store of value. In fact, Bitcoin has many of the positive properties that gold has. It is a store of value, it can be a medium of exchange, it can be a unit of account, there’s a limited supply, it is uniform, acceptable, divisible and portable, etc. As a result, Bitcoin may be a great way for how to survive inflation.

Both Bitcoin and gold have a finite, limited supply. As a result, this means that they cannot be subject to inflation. If there is only so much gold, silver and bitcoin, it is by definition, deflationary. Being deflationary means that as the supply of the commodity dwindles, the value and demand for each increase. This is not true of currencies like the US Dollar.

Real Estate

Even something like real estate can have a deflationary affect when compared to US Dollars. Real estate has a long history of maintaining its value over time as compared to the Dollar. However, choose wisely; many believe that there is currently a bubble in the United States real estate market. Prices for real estate in many cities today are considered to be over-priced and inflated. Owning real estate is a great way for how to survive inflation. Furthermore, it can be a source of passive income for you.

Equities Market

This may be counterintuitive, but owning equities such as stocks can be a way on how to survive inflation. With the current trend in the United States of printing money and handing it out to individuals through stimulus checks, obviously inflation is rising. Many people are spending the stimulus money quickly. Furthermore, some people are taking their money and buying stocks or trading equities. As a result, the stock market has been trending higher. However, note that the rising stock market trend cannot last forever. In addition, when the market reverses, it may be ugly. At this point, a smart investor will move their money out of the stock market and into safer assets that can weather the storm.

Other Assets

There are many other examples of assets that can be a method for how to survive inflation. For example, owning art, vintage cars, collectibles, and high demand items that serve a purpose can all be hedges against inflation. When buying assets, stick to what you know. Furthermore, if you know a lot about vintage baseball cards, then buy those with currency. In addition, try to own assets that have liquidity, meaning you can buy and sell them on the market easily. An example of an illiquid asset would be buying a Picasso painting. A Picasso may be a good store of value over time, but you may have to wait for years until you can sell it in a special auction.

Final Thoughts on Inflation and a Crack Up Boom in the United States

As you can see, inflation and hyperinflation are real phenomenon that can affect your personal finances. Additionally, the seeds have been sewn for a potential crack up boom. Currently, inflation is quietly stealing money from your savings. In addition, if hyperinflation occurs, significant destruction of the economy can occur. As a result, it is important to have a plan to address inflation and a place to invest to fight back against the types of inflation.

Read More:

How Much Was a Dollar Worth in 1960?

Is It a Good Time to Buy Stocks?

10 Things to Know Before Starting a Budget

Best Investing Books of All Time

How to Become a Millionaire from Nothing

Questions to Ask a Financial Advisor

Why Saving Money is Important

The Best Budget App

US Dollar History: How the Dollar Became the World Reserve Currency

How Much Savings You Should Have at 40

Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget

Best Budget Planner

Disclaimer:

It is important to note that Piggy Bank Coins does not provide financial advice. We don’t endorse or recommend any financial investments. Instead, we provide information for educational purposes to those seeking knowledge regarding personal finance. However, in the spirit of transparency, note that the author is an investor in cryptocurrencies, precious metals and some equities.

In addition, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that Piggy Bank Coins disclose to readers that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases. However, this does not impact our reviews and comparisons. Moreover, we try our best to keep things fair and balanced, to help you make the best choice for you.

Categories
Money

Why Money Is Important

In this article we will discuss why money is important. In addition, we will talk about how to save money, how to budget and how to build wealth.

Many people in America are drowning in debt, have no savings and no investments. We will show you why money is important and how to begin paying off debt quicker, save money faster and learn about investing. We will also touch on investing subjects such as commodities, stocks and real estate.

The good news is that you can begin growing your wealth immediately once you understand why money is important. Learning to be disciplined and make small sacrifices today can mean more financial security for the future.

The primary reason why money is important is that money gives you options. For example, if you have ever felt powerless or hopeless, it was probably related to a lack of money. Some people are quick to criticize those who seek their fortunes; however, having money provides you with options. Having extra money not only gives you options, but it provides you the power to save money on purchases by not using credit, which is why money is important.

Budgeting

The first and perhaps most important tool in your finance tool box is budgeting. The point of budgeting is to gain control of your money. You want to keep more money and pay less to others. That’s how you win at the game of money and budgeting is a powerful “hammer” in your tools on finance.

While creating your budget and assessing your financial situation, it is likely that paying down debt will be critical to your success. You must begin understanding what has brought you to this point in life. Begin to look in detail at how you spend money and create a budget. You will also start making plans and setting goals. Finally, you will learn discipline and begin using proven methods for keeping more money.

Create a Budget Now

One of the best tools on finance is learning to budget. That is, it’s important to keep track of your money. A budget can help you track and control your money. This is one of the reasons why money is important. Having a balanced budget means spending less of your paycheck. Preferably, you will have some money left over to pay off debt and save for the future. In short, everyone should budget, whether you are a large corporation or just one person.

Eliminate Unnecessary Expenses: Designer Clothing, Eating Out, Overdraft Fees and Shopping Sprees

In many cases, one of the tools on finance is through frugal living. This simply means spending less than you make. Moreover, creating a simple monthly budget can assist you in determining whether you are meeting your goal. In addition, learning to be frugal can help you steer clear of debt in the future. For example, when you eliminate extra expenses that are unnecessary, you will have more disposable income available for saving. As a result, saving money from disposable income can help you better understand why money is important.

It is helpful to make a list of what expenses are needs and wants. For example, paying for electricity is needed; having a spa membership is a want.

In addition, you will also want to figure out ways to cut spending. This will help you save more money quickly. Ideas for Budget Items to Cut:

  • Memberships (Spa, Gym, Entertainment, etc.)
  • Subscriptions (Magazines, news, etc.)
  • Eating Out
  • Cable
  • New credit card spending
  • Traveling/vacations

Stop Using Credit Cards

Another one of the tools on finance is discipline. If you are starting a budget, you probably have credit card debt. The problem with credit card debt is not the debt, it’s the interest. First, every day that you maintain a balance on your credit card, interest compounds. Compounding interest works against you when you’re trying to pay off debt. Getting rid of credit card debt requires discipline to spend less and save more. In addition, it will help you better understand why money is important.

How Budgeting Helps You:

  • Improve your credit score
  • Save for emergencies
  • Save and invest for retirement
  • Stop wasting money and curb bad habits
  • Promote a healthy, meaningful lifestyle
  • Buy a new home or upgrade your existing home
  • Obtain financial freedom

Creating a Budget: Step by Step

Determine Your Income, Expenses and Calculate Disposable Income

Having a balanced budget means spending less of your paycheck. Preferably, you will have a significant amount of money left over to pay off debt and save for investing. In short, everyone should budget, whether you are a large family or just one person.

One of the best tools on finance that we will be describing is a monthly budget. Many people pay bills once per month and may get paid once or twice per month. In a simple example budget, you can create a column for expenses and a column for income. At the bottom of the page, you can total each column and the difference in the totals is either how much money you have left over or how much money you are short at the end of each month.

Step 1: Determine Your Income

Figuring out what your income is for the month is usually pretty simple. If you get paid every two weeks, then your income is the amount that gets deposited into your bank account. This is the amount that is left over after taxes are taken out. Make sure to account for each time you get paid in the month. If you don’t know what you get paid, you can look at your W-2 Tax form. Knowing what your income is and where it goes can help you better understand why money is important.

Step 2: Determine Your Expenses

Determining what your expenses are will take more time. There are several ways to determine how much you are spending each month. One way is to keep receipts and use bank statements to figure out what was spent each month. The second way to determine what you spend is to begin writing down each expense as it comes along during the month.

Step 3: Put all the Budget Pieces Together

Now that we know what our expenses and our income are, we can add up everything to determine if we are over or under budget. The goal of having a balanced budget is so that our expenses are less than our income. For example, if your income is $2,000 per month and your expenses are $1,500 per month, then you have $500 leftover each month ($2,000-$1,500 = $500).

Cut Expenses and Control Spending

Budget Not Balanced? Remove Expenses (Wants) from Your Budget: Memberships, Subscriptions, Etc.

If you are having trouble finding extra money in your budget, it may be time to cut expenses that are considered “wants.” No matter what kind of budget you have, it’s vitally important that you cut expenses. First, start by finding areas in your life where you can make cuts. It is helpful to make a list of what expenses are wants and needs. For example, paying for electricity is required; having a spa membership is not.

Learn to Live Below Your Means

Reduce Bad Habits like Eating Out, New cars and Designer Clothing

It’s critical that you form good money habits as you learn why money is important. In many cases, frugal living is the cornerstone of wealth creation and building wealth. This simply means spending less than you make. A simple monthly budget can assist you in determining whether you are meeting your goal. And these good habits can carry forward for a lifetime.

Unfortunately, living frugally is not popular in the 21st century. Popular culture dictates what “normal” consumer behavior looks like. And it’s considered normal to go out and spend money at restaurants, on vacation, etc. In addition, it’s “normal” to buy a big house and drive a new car. Creating the best budget planner will help with this.

Financially successful people don’t ascribe to normal behaviors. Those who attain financial success only purchase what is needed. They don’t buy new cars or fancy things. As a result, the extra money saved from this frugal behavior is put to work in investments.

Beware of Credit Cards and Debt

Credit Cards Can Create Painful Financial Lessons for You by Overspending and Interest

One dangerous lesson to learn is overspending on credit cards. In the modern era, gaining access to credit is far too easy.

Having a credit card can be a double-edged sword for anyone. First, using a credit card can be a learning tool about how debt works. In addition, you can learn about paying bills each month. However, there’s a risk that comes with credit: overspending. When you spend more money than is allowed on the credit card, or spend more than can be paid back, it can be a painful lesson in finance. But, sometimes difficult lessons can be valuable and last a lifetime.

If you make a mistake with a credit card, or overdraft an account, it can become a learning tool. Use the situation as an opportunity to learn from the mistake and implement better budgeting habits. Everyone learns the lesson of debt and compounding interest when we have to pay back what was borrowed, plus interest.

Saving Money

Most Americans Don’t Save Enough Money; Saving Requires Sacrifice

According to Business Insider, the average American Family has approximately $40,000 put aside in savings and investments. While this may sound like a lot of money, it’s not. Think of your monthly expenses and then consider for how long you could live on $40,000. Finally, the answer is you need much more money than you have now.

Saving money can be difficult. In many cases, saving requires that you make sacrifices in your life. For example, you might have to continue driving an older car instead of buying a new one, or do home repairs yourself instead of calling a professional for help. Obviously, no one enjoys making sacrifices. However, saving money can help you better understand why money is important.

Create the Habit of Saving Money

Saving is a habit that can be learned over time and simply requires discipline. Become determined to reach your financial goal. Your personal determination to learn how to master the tools on finance will help you keep more money.

In addition, develop good habits of saving money. In the classic personal finance book, “The Richest Man in Babylon” by George Clason, the author implores the reader to set aside at least 10% of your earnings. This is a great rule of thumb for saving and investing because removing only a fraction of your income each month will likely not even be noticed or missed. Yet, this small amount of money is the seed needed to grow wealth.

Set Goals: Learn to Save Money Every Paycheck

Put Aside 10-15% of Your Regular Income for Investment

One of the habits that are important related to tools on finance is learning to save some of each paycheck. Make it a personal goal to save 10-15% your paycheck each month. After a short time, you will realize that you don’t even miss the money.

Make saving 10-15% of each paycheck easy by setting up an automatic money transfer to their savings account. For example, each time their paycheck is deposited into the checking account, have an automatic transfer set up that moves money into the savings account. Some people find it helpful to have a savings account that is in a different bank. This reduces the temptation to spend savings.

Saving a small portion of your regular earnings is far from a new concept. Financially successful people have been doing it for hundreds or thousands of years. Saving can be a great tool when it comes to money management for you. Read the Richest Man in Babylon to learn more.

Investing Process

Establish Goals, Assess Personal Finances, Determine Risk, Develop Timeline and Begin Funding Your Investments

Learning about the investing process can be challenging if you are new to investing. In the old days, investing was simple: stocks, bonds and real estate. Today, investing has become much more complicated with hundreds of choices that may be very complicated to understand.

The good news is that your investment portfolio can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. In addition, you don’t have to be rich to begin investing. In this article we will lay out a clear, 5-step approach to the Investing Process you can use to organize how you invest and master the tools on finance.

Summary of Investment Process

  1.  Establish Goals
  2.  Assess Personal Finances
  3.  Determine Risk Tolerance
  4.  Develop Investing Timeline
  5.  Begin Allocating Funds for Investment

Step 1: Establish Goals

The first step in the Investing Process should be to determine what your financial goals are and what you wish to accomplish. Where do you see yourself in 10, 25 or even 50 years? The average life expectancy for Americans is around 78 years. However, you may have family members that live to be in their 90s and beyond. If you retire at 65 and live to be 95, will you have enough money invested to last through your retirement years? Clearly, investing for your retirement can be a critical part of why money is important.

Write Down Your Goals

If you want to retire at 65 and move to Portugal, then included this as part of your written goals. Begin by creating a journal, a spreadsheet or plan where you list exactly what you have planned for the future. This serves two purposes. First, writing down your goals makes what you want explicitly clear. It gives you a starting point and also provides you with the details that you will need to determine how you will reach your goals.

Second, the purpose of planning out your financial goals on paper (or electronically) is that you are signaling to yourself and others what you want. History has proven that the psychology of desire and intention is a powerful tool in accomplishing goals. Many wealthy investors credit their personal wealth and success to the philosophy outlined in the book, “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill.

Step 2: Assess Personal Finances

Learn to Budget, Save, Pay Off Debt and Live Below Your Means

Budgeting is one of the critical steps that can help you take control of your life and control personal finances. In addition, preparing a budget allows you to not only know where your money goes, but also allows you to plan where your money will go in the future. Finally, it’s important that your money works for you, not against you in your investments.

Step 3: Determine Risk Tolerance

What is Your Level of Risk?

Active Versus Passive Investing; Aggressive Versus Conservative Investing

Determining your risk tolerance is an important part of the tools on finance. To start, you must determine what style of investor that you are. First, the major categories of investment include active management or passive management. For example, a portfolio manager can determine what investments are in your fund and make decision for you using passive management; however, active management means that you reserve more control of your investments and perhaps you even use online services to trade individual stocks on a daily basis.

Second, you must determine if you are an aggressive or a conservative investor. Aggressive investing is utilized by those who want to take more risk and capture greater returns. This type of investing is considered acceptable for younger investors and for savvy investors who want to dedicate a small portion of their portfolio to higher risk. Conservative investing is a lower risk style of investing. Returns tend to be lower than the aggressive style, but come with lower risk. This style is best for those that desire lower risk and those who are getting closer to retirement age.

Step 4: Develop Investing Timeline

Estimate Retirement Age and How Much Money You Need to Retire

How old will you be when you retire? This is one of the questions that you want to answer during the Investing Process so that you can gauge your progress toward retirement. In addition, you can set goals for how much money you need when you reach the milestones of 30, 40, 50 and 60 years old and so forth.

Determine How Much Money You Need to Live on

You Will Need 70-80% of Your Current Salary for Retirement Expenses

While thinking about budgeting, take a closer look at how much money you need to live on each month. For example, what basic amount of money do you need each month to cover expenses? You need enough money to pay for a place to stay, food, electricity, etc. Don’t include things like vacations, luxury items or entertainment. Once you determine how much you need to live on, you can then start to figure out what retirement expenses look like.

Another common rule of thumb for estimating how much money you need when you retire is the 70-80% Rule. In other words, many experts believe that you will need at least 70-80% of your current income to make ends meet. For example, if you bring home $3,000 each month, then you will likely need approximately $2,100-2400 each month in retirement. This is a realistic way of estimating what you need to retire if you don’t want to do complicated calculations or spend a lot of time on the topic.

Step 5: Begin Allocating Funds for Investment

This step is the final step in the investment process. First, you will begin depositing money into your investments. The easiest way to start is to allocate a percentage of your earnings each month. You will then review your investment portfolio each year with your investment advisor to determine whether it requires changes. Your investment advisor can help you through the process of investment and help you better understand why money is important.

Ideally, your investments will be divided into groups, with a certain percentage of your total investment allocation going to each group. For example, you may have chosen to invest in stocks, real estate, precious metals and cryptocurrency. You may be investing 50% in stocks, 25% in real estate, 20% in precious metals and 5% in cryptocurrency. Obviously, the percentage allocated to each group you choose will be determined based upon your risk tolerance.

Dollar-Cost Averaging

Many wise investors use “dollar-cost averaging” as a part of their Investing Process. Dollar-cost averaging is simply dividing up the amount of money you have to invest over a longer time frame. For example, let’s say you have $1,200 to invest in the year 2021. Then each month, you will invest $100 ($1,200/12 months = $100/mo.). Your $1,200 investment would then be dollar-cost averaged over a one-year period.

This investment methodology means that you invest the same amount of money each week or month, no matter if the market goes higher or lower. Dollar-cost averaging takes the emotion out of the Investing Process and simplified investing. It also prevents investors from making bad decisions.

If you don’t know how much to invest, then start out with a simple plan. Each month, divert 10-15% of your earnings to investment(s). An example would be investing in a 401(k), Investment Retirement Account (IRA) and/or real estate. Year after year, your money will grow and work for you during the Investing Process to create wealth. Seeing your wealth grow year after year will help you realize the power of compounding interest and realize why money is important.

Diversify Investments

No one can predict the future to know what investments will do well and which ones will fail. As a result, we can improve our odds of success in investing my diversifying our investments. Diversification of investments means spreading your money over different investment sectors. For example, you may want to have some stocks, bonds, real estate and precious metals in your investment portfolio.

Find a Good Financial Advisor

Many of the topics discussed regarding personal finance and investment complicated and you probably need the assistance of a financial advisor. A financial advisor can help you make better informed decisions about how to best invest your money. Be careful to select an advisor who is knowledgeable in their industry and who has a proven track record regarding investment.

Unfortunately, many “financial advisors” are simply sales people who know very little about investment and are simply trying to earn a commission by locking in your business. Do your research to find the best candidate. In some cases, good financial advisors charge an upfront fee for consultation because they do not earn a commission from helping you with investing.

Real Estate Investing

Many experts are predicting the real estate market in 2021 will be in decline. However, after the COVID-19 lock down in the United States in 2020, things seemed to calm down. At the beginning of 2021, the Wall Street stock market prices were higher, real estate prices were going up in many places and things seemed to be improving.

Americans are Moving from States Like New York and California in Large Numbers

It’s important to understand that real estate prices are going down in some areas and up in others. However, there will be winners and losers in the housing market crash 2021. For example, it appears that in the short term, a divided real estate market may present itself.

Current data being reported in the media shows people leaving larger coastal cities and going to smaller inland cities. For example, Californians have been moving out of California to places like Washington, Arizona and Texas in record numbers. This is not a new phenomenon and the trend appears to be gaining speed.

Real Estate Investing Step by Step

On a positive note, 2021 and 2022 may be an opportunity to begin investing in real estate. In addition, never before has investing in real estate been easier. Investing in real estate can be a great piece of your tools on finance. Today, anyone can purchase investment houses for generating passive income. In addition, you can use the “BRRRR” method to leverage multiple properties so that larger passive incomes are generated from your investment houses. BRRRR stand for buy, rehab, rent, refinance and repeat.

Step 1: Buy Investment Property

Buy Undervalued Properties and Calculate Profitability Before Jumping In

Once you have narrowed down the kind of property you want to specialize in, such as apartments, duplexes or single-family homes, it’s time to buy. First, you will want to search for investment houses that are undervalued or significantly discounted. Many investors credit their profit margins to buying investment houses at prices that are significantly below the potential market value.

Step 2: Rehab Investment Property

The next step in the BRRRR process is to begin repairing and renovating (rehabbing) the investment property. The object of the rehab is to quickly conduct repairs that will make the home appealing, safe and add value to the property. In addition, you want to rehab the property as quickly as possible. Furthermore, the quicker the process of rehab is complete, the quicker you can begin earning money from rental income.

Step 3: Rent Investment Property

After completion of the property rehab, it’s time to find a tenant for your property. A good tenant will consistently provide income (in the form of rent) for your investment. Furthermore, a good renter will take care of your property and not allow it to be damaged. Carefully determine what the market rental rate is for your area. In turn, this will ensure that you quickly find a renter and the property doesn’t sit vacant for months. In addition, you will want to properly vet potential tenants to make sure you find renters who are the best fit.

Step 4: Refinance Investment Property

Challenges of Working with Lenders, Obtaining Financing and Economic Cycles

The third “R” in the BRRRR process is refinance. After rehabbing the property and finding a renter, you can begin to look for a lender. The refinancing process means you will be working with a bank to borrow money based upon the remaining equity in the property. Essentially, you will have the property you purchase appraised and approach a bank to begin refinancing the property. You can later use some of the money from your refinance to purchase a new investment property.

Step 5: Repeat the Process

If everything lines up correctly, the BRRRR method will be a success. You will find an undervalued property, buy the property, rehab and rent it and then obtain financing that you can use to buy the next property. You can then repeat the process of acquiring investment houses. If the BRRRR method is successful, you will be generating a net profit each month.

Focus on One Type of Real Estate, Such as Single-Family Homes, Duplexes, Apartments, Etc.

One of the recommendations made by real estate guru Ken McElroy is to narrow down the kind of rental property you want to buy. Many investors get caught up in trying to find the perfect property. However, they can get bogged down in the minutiae and complications of searching through so many different kinds of properties. This can lead to mistakes or errors, which means lost money.

Instead, McElroy recommends focusing on one particular kind of property for investment, such as only buying apartments or only investing in duplex properties. Narrowing down your focus on one type of property will allow you to become a true expert in that property type. In addition, you will automatically narrow down the list of properties that are for sale to a manageable number.

Gold

Many Investors Believe that Gold and Gold Mining Stocks Will Perform Well in the Future

The gold mining industry has been overlooked for many years. Moreover, precious metals have been unpopular and considered irrelevant. Since the 1990s, investors have been advising others to invest in stocks for pensions and 401(k) investments. In short, this advice was largely correct. As a result, Wall Street has hit all-time price levels in the past 20+ years. However, things may have shifted in 2020. Consequently, could this be the time to invest in goldmine stocks?

Gold Has a Limited Supply and Growing Demand

The Supply of Gold Is Finite; Demand for Gold Includes Industry, Jewelry and Money

There is a limited supply of gold on Earth. Moreover, gold miners throughout the world have a finite quantity of gold available for mining. At some point, the amount of gold removed from mines will diminish and become zero.

At the same time, gold demand continues to grow. For instance, gold has many uses in technology, jewelry, medicine and money. Jewelry made of gold has been popular for millennia. In addition, gold continues to grow in demand and popularity, especially in Asia. In fact, 70-80% of gold mined today goes to create jewelry. All of these factors influence the gold price forecast.

Also, there are many industrial uses for gold including electronics, aerospace and medicine. For example, gold is a very efficient conductor of electricity. This property is utilized in many electronic components such as cell phones and computers. In addition, gold is a superior element to work with in dentistry. More important, gold is non-reactive, malleable and has anti-bacterial properties.

Gold in Your Portfolio

It is common to hold anywhere from 5-10% of an investment portfolio in gold. In fact, there are some very large international investment portfolios that hold as much as 30% of assets in gold.

Buy Gold as Physical Coins/Bars or Goldmine Stocks

Investing in gold has never been easier. Gold merchants and brokerage firms are competing for your business online. If you want to purchase physical gold, you can do this at your local coin shop.

Another option for purchasing gold is buying online. Buying from a website has become more secure in recent years, but you must do diligent research to verify the buyer. Only buy from established suppliers that have been around for a long time and have positive feedback. Preferably you can get a recommendation from a friend.

Finally, buying gold stocks is just as easy as buying stock in GM or Amazon. Many online brokerage firms offer the ability to buy these shares for a reasonable fee.

Plan of Action

Wrap Up on Why Money is Important

Many successful investors have realized why money is important and have made it a priority to get more money. Learning what has worked for other successful people is the easiest and most secure strategy for success with money. Moreover, successful people get up early each morning and focus on their goals. Saving and investing money is a priority to them and their focus is on earning and business. Many successful people make time for self-development activities, such as exercise and meditation. And they make these habits part of their daily ritual.

Never forget that perseverance is the key to success. When you develop discipline around saving and investing, you will be successful at understanding why money is important. However, success doesn’t happen overnight. Be consistent and persevere in your quest to harness the tools on finance.

Want to learn more about saving and investing?

Read More:

Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget

10 Things to Know Before Starting a Budget

The Best Budget App

How to Make $200 Fast

Best Budget Planner

Home Buying Power

Financial Planning Services

Value Investing Books

Wealth Building Cornerstones

Best Investing Books of All Time

How to Become a Millionaire from Nothing

How Much Savings You Should Have at 40

Why Saving Money is Important

Debt Elimination

Disclaimer:

It is important to note that Piggy Bank Coins does not provide financial advice. We don’t endorse or recommend any financial investments. Instead, we provide information for educational purposes to those seeking knowledge regarding personal finance. However, in the spirit of transparency, note that the author is an investor in cryptocurrencies, precious metals and some equities.

In addition, The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that Piggy Bank Coins disclose to readers that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases. However, this does not impact our reviews and comparisons. Moreover, we try our best to keep things fair and balanced, to help you make the best choice for you.