It’s a question we’ve all asked ourselves of late: Why not just put all of our investments in cash, 100 percent, just until things calm down? Those who are close to leaving the work force may be prepared enough financially to leave stocks behind for now. But investors with a time horizon beyond a few years may be doing real damage to their long-term finances by fleeing for the comfort of the safe and insured. This section is aimed at helping you find the investments that best match your personal strategy and tolerance for risk.
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Liquid investments are investments that could be turned into cash relatively easily and assume various forms, such as savings accounts, Certificates of Deposit, Money Market Accounts, and other interest-bearing accounts offered by banks. Normally, these types of investments are FDIC-insured and although they offer low rates of return, they are relatively less risky.
Under the broad umbrella of bonds, we cover both savings bonds (Treasury Bonds) offered by the US government and corporate bonds issued by private corporations. The US Treasury is the largest issuer of savings bonds and normally these are very secure investment vehicles, given that they are backed by the United States Government — Uncle Sam. These savings bonds are easily sold at most banks and can also be directly purchased from the Treasury Department online. As investments, the savings bonds are safe and stand by their promise of providing fixed interest rates.
What does that mean for you? It means Nielsen will pay you $50 a year to keep their app on your favorite internet browsing device. The app itself collects statistics on your internet usage anonymously, so you never have to worry about any data being linked to you. And the best part is, the app takes up barely any space and doesn’t slow down your phone or tablet at all!
Ask for a raise. If you’re unhappy with your compensation at your 9-5 job, asking for a raise is one way to beef up your bank account. Most employers offer an annual review of your work – which could be the perfect time to negotiate a higher salary or ask for better perks. If your employer doesn’t offer such an opportunity, it might be time to initiate a review yourself.
Take it seriously. Yes, you’re applying for an online job. Yes, you can do the work in your underwear, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a “real job”. You must treat it as such or they aren’t going to treat you as a serious candidate. You aren’t the only one who wants to work in their underwear. In fact, the competition online is likely higher than it is in your local area.
Freelancing is the next best thing to being paid more for your full-time work, because professional work always pays more than unskilled. To find opportunities, let former colleagues or other personal connections that you’re available for freelance gigs. (Here are some ideas on how LinkedIn could be useful for that.) Or, post on marketplaces particular to your field. For instance, Mediabistro, a journalism site, allows freelancers to post profiles of their experience and services. Though these are more up to chance, designers can bid on jobs at 99Designs.com or submit a design at Threadless, to see if it will be crowdfunded. Elance-Odesk also lists many freelance opportunities, and you can also post your own services on Fiverr, although some freelancers say these services create a race to the bottom on fees and so are not very lucrative. If you're new to freelancing, here's how to set your rates, and here's how to negotiate raises with clients.
If you wish you had a little more money in your pocket, you’re not alone. Fortunately, you have a variety of options when it comes to making money. Doing odd jobs is a quick and easy way to earn money. Similarly, reselling items or selling items you make can earn you extra cash. As another option, earn money online by writing a blog, freelancing, or doing online surveys.