Friday, September 19, 2014

Bet on an IPO ?

Today's Alibaba IPO showed that good money can be made from buying into an IPO. I think it's nothing more than gambling. When a company goes public, there is only a limited amount of information available about its finances, historical records etc. So it's hard to establish if this is a good long term investment. I've invested in IPO's in the past -- Red Hat and Cobalt Systems. With one I quickly made some money, with the other my investment was a tax write-off. So I'm done with IPOs, and would rather patiently, actively search for good investments that throw off money for some time to come.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Protect your credit rating, protect your ssn

Identity theft is too easy, and all too common these days. Yet still many places have you fill out forms by hand or online where you have to provide your social security number. For instance, to volunteer coach a youth soccer team requires a back-ground check, which requires your social security number. Do you trust the club's web site ? Do you trust the office where you submit paper forms ? Here some ideas to help minimize exposure.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Sleep better with an emergency fund

It is a good idea to have some money set aside for emergencies like loss of a job. It may take a few months to find a new job, and you want to be able to cover your expenses without having to get into expensive debt (e.g. not paying off credit cards), or having to move to a cheaper house.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Screener: Dividend Yield

People favor certain stocks over others. We select stocks to make money, not to support a cause. We're not day traders, and do not want to spend hours every week chasing the latest growth story. Instead, we select stocks based on several criteria. Stocks are ranked based on their Active Passive Number, a score that combines the different criteria. One of the criteria is dividend yield. Since one of our goals is to generate passive income, we actively look for good dividend stocks.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Refinance after one year

Mortgage interest rates are still at very low levels. Does it makes sense to refinance now ?  What will rates do in the near term ? I plan to refinance within the next two months, here's why.