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Financial News from Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)

  • April 15 and Beyond: Take Control of Your Financial Future Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Apr 15, 2014 10:45 AM EDT
    April 15 and Beyond: Take Control of Your Financial Future

    According to the FINRA Investor Education Foundation's National Financial Capability Study, only 24 percent of U.S. adults surveyed reported being very satisfied with their current financial condition. In addition to potential tax benefits, there is an opportunity for your savings to compound over time. Consider using …

  • 5 Things to Expect When You Open a Brokerage Account Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Apr 8, 2014 4:41 PM EDT
    5 Things to Expect When You Open a Brokerage Account

    If you're reading this, you may be planning to open a brokerage account to start investing. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) require brokerage firms to ask for this information. If your broker is recommending investments to you, SEC and FINRA rules require …

  • Financial Literacy Month: Millennials, Now is the Time Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Apr 1, 2014 10:45 AM EDT
    Financial Literacy Month: Millennials, Now is the Time

    April is Financial Literacy Month. More than anything else, it's a time to hone healthy financial habits. And no generation needs to do this more than millennials (those age 18 to 34). According to results from the FINRA Investor Education Foundation's national Financial Capability Survey, only 24 percent of millennials …

  • What You Need to Know About Brokerage Account Transfers Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Mar 25, 2014 1:00 PM EDT
    What You Need to Know About Brokerage Account Transfers

    Here are answers to five questions that will help you better understand brokerage account transfers. Broker-dealers transfer customer accounts through the Automated Customer Account Transfer Service (ACATS), operated by the National Securities Clearing Corporation. Securities accounts that hold the most common assets, …

  • Millennials Face Financial Struggle Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Mar 18, 2014 3:00 PM EDT
    Millennials Face Financial Struggle

    If you're part of the millennial generation, your financial life is probably no walk down easy street. A new study by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation, The Financial Capability of Young Adults—A Generational View, reveals that millennials—those 18 to 34—show concern about their debt, engage in problematic financial …

  • Bitcoin: More than a Bit Risky Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Wed, Mar 12, 2014 9:30 AM EDT
    Bitcoin: More than a Bit Risky

    Bitcoin and other digital currencies have garnered considerable attention. In 2013 the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged a Texas man and his company with fraud involving an alleged Bitcoin Ponzi scheme. More recently, on February 19, 2014, the SEC suspended trading in the securities of Imogo Mobile Technologies …

  • Your Taxes—Cost-Basis Basics Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Mar 4, 2014 10:45 AM EST
    Your Taxes—Cost-Basis Basics

    To figure out whether you need to report a gain—or can claim a loss—after you sell, you must start with the cost basis for that investment. For stocks or bonds, the cost basis is generally the price you paid to purchase the securities plus any other costs such as the commission or other fees you may have paid to complete …

  • Make 2014 Your Year to Save Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Feb 25, 2014 10:45 AM EST
    Make 2014 Your Year to Save

    And it's the first crucial step toward achieving financial independence. America Saves Week, and its counterpart Military Saves Week for service members, are annual opportunities to take the Saver's Pledge, a personal commitment to save.

  • 5 tips for smart automatic 401(k) investing Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Feb 18, 2014 12:00 PM EST
    Retirement

    A tax-advantaged retirement savings account, like a 401(k), is a great way to boost savings and lower your tax bill. A growing number of companies automatically enroll employees in their 401(k) or similar retirement savings plan. But some do more than just enroll and get you started down a retirement savings path. The …

  • Common and Preferred Stocks: What’s the Difference? Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Feb 11, 2014 11:10 AM EST
    Common and Preferred Stocks: What’s the Difference?

    All publicly traded companies issue common stock. When you own common stock, you share in a company's success. When the company does well its stock price will likely grow higher than what you paid for it. You also can suffer from unfavorable company news that results in a lower stock price.

  • 5 dos and don’ts for greater financial security Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Feb 4, 2014 4:53 PM EST
    5 Dos and Don’ts for Greater Financial Security

    Here are five tips to help you manage daily financial challenges and build a brighter financial future in 2014.

  • The IRA Rollover: 10 Tips to Making a Sound Decision Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jan 28, 2014 11:40 AM EST
    The IRA Rollover: 10 Tips to Making a Sound Decision

    The largest source of IRA contributions comes from individuals who move their money from their employer-sponsored retirement plans such as 401(k) and 403(b) plans when they leave a job, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute. If you are considering rolling over money from an employer plan into an IRA—or if …

  • Stock Basics: What Happens When You Invest Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jan 21, 2014 11:45 AM EST
    Stock Basics: What Happens When You Invest

    All the key market indicators that measure stock performance posted handsome returns. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 26.5 percent in 2013, with the S&P 500 up nearly 30 percent and the NASDAQ index up 38 percent.

  • What You Need to Know about Mutual Fund Fees Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jan 14, 2014 1:00 PM EST
    What You Need to Know about Mutual Fund Fees

    The higher the fees you pay while owning a mutual fund, the lower the returns generated by your fund shares. Mutual funds are required to describe their fees in detail in their prospectus. They compensate the mutual fund's portfolio manager or investment advisor who directs the fund's stock or bond portfolio strategy …

  • The Lowdown on Mutual Fund Sales Loads Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jan 7, 2014 11:00 AM EST
    The Lowdown on Mutual Fund Sales Loads

    Investors put more money into U.S. stock mutual funds in 2013 than they took out. If you want your mutual fund investment to work for you, it pays to know about fund sales charges, also called loads. When you buy mutual fund shares from a stockbroker or other investment professional, you'll likely pay a sales charge or …

  • CDs Offer Safe, Predictable Returns Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Dec 31, 2013 11:20 AM EST
    CDs Offer Safe, Predictable Returns

    You've likely seen ads from financial institutions touting the interest rates of their certificates of deposits (CDs), all competing for your savings. CDs offer safe, predictable returns at higher interest rates than you can receive from a savings account. Like savings accounts, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation …

  • How to Spot the Red Flags of Financial Fraud Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Dec 24, 2013 12:00 PM EST
    How to Spot the Red Flags of Financial Fraud

    Red Flag Rule: Take time to think through the pitch. "Believe me, as a specialist in senior living and an executive at XYZ firm, I would never sell an investment that doesn't produce." Red Flag Rule: A seller may have a corner office, framed diplomas or certificates and wear a suit. Red Flag Rule: Does the pitch focus …

  • Money Market Accounts Combine Checking and Savings Features Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Dec 17, 2013 4:30 PM EST
    Money Market Accounts Combine Checking and Savings Features

    Money Market Accounts Combine Checking and Savings Features Wouldn’t it be great to have all that with a slightly higher interest rate and check-writing privileges? Money market accounts usually pay a better rate than traditional savings accounts. They are also insured at banks by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation …

  • FDIC Deposit Insurance—Are Your Accounts Protected? Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Dec 10, 2013 1:00 PM EST
    FDIC Deposit Insurance—Are Your Accounts Protected?

    More than 450 banks in the United States failed and were closed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) from the 2008 peak in financial crisis on through 2012. Yet, no one with FDIC-insured deposits in those banks lost money due to those failures. In fact, according to the FDIC, "no depositor has ever lost …

  • When Should I Reveal My Social Security Number? Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Dec 3, 2013 4:00 PM EST
    When Should I Reveal My Social Security Number?

    Identity theft is real, and many tips urge you to safeguard your Social Security number as an important way to prevent it from happening to you. While not every request for your Social Security number is an effort to steal your identity, not all such requests are mandatory. • Banks, credit card issuers or other lenders …

  • Savings Accounts Offer Safety and Convenience Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Nov 26, 2013 11:00 AM EST
    CDs Offer Safe, Predictable Returns

    A savings account at a bank or credit union is a safe, convenient way to meet a financial goal. A basic savings account is a tried and true way to save for a down payment on a house, or build an emergency fund to handle unexpected expenses. The money you put in a bank account is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance …

  • Don't Let Identity Thieves Steal Your Financial Stability Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Nov 19, 2013 3:45 PM EST
    Don't Let Identity Thieves Steal Your Financial Stability

    You took the time to improve your credit score, pay down debt and get on a stable financial track. But all that hard work can unravel if you become a victim of identity theft. Identity theft occurs when someone steals personal information, such as your Social Security number, birth date or mother's maiden name. 3. Ensure …

  • Plan for the Unexpected with an Emergency Fund Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Nov 12, 2013 2:05 PM EST
    Plan for the Unexpected with an Emergency Fund

    The best place for your emergency fund is in a liquid (easily accessible) account. To earn a slightly higher interest rate, some people choose a certificate of deposit, or CD, for their emergency fund, or a series of CDs of approximately equal value, with one maturing every six months or every year. But in a real emergency, …

  • Your Credit Score Affects Your Financial Health Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Nov 5, 2013 2:30 PM EST
    Your Credit Score Affects Your Financial Health

    Your credit score is a rating that helps lenders decide whether to give you loans such as a mortgage, car loan or credit card. Your credit score also helps determine the interest rate you'll pay. The higher your credit score, the better the credit terms you will receive. A score above 720 can give you some of the best …

  • Closed-End Funds: What You Need to Know Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Oct 29, 2013 1:15 PM EDT
    Closed-End Funds: What You Need to Know

    Closed-end funds are a type of pooled investment. They have become popular because some offer high distribution rates—as high as 6 percent or more. While closed-end funds might seem like mutual funds, ...

  • Beware of "Risk-Free" Investments Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Oct 22, 2013 12:00 PM EDT
    Beware of "Risk-Free" Investments

    There's no such thing as a risk-free investment. If someone tries to sell you an investment they claim is risk free, you should walk away. If you don't, you could be exposing yourself to fraud. That's ...

  • Stock Up on Information Before Buying Stock Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Oct 15, 2013 12:00 AM EDT
    Stock Up on Information Before Buying Stock

    One of the most important consumer tips is know what you are buying . This maxim certainly applies to investing in stocks. There are well over 20,000 companies whose shares trade either on a U.S. exchange ...

  • Use Caution Before Chasing Return Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Oct 8, 2013 2:40 PM EDT
    Use Caution Before Chasing Return

    In today's nearly zero-yield environment, investors who seek predictable income find it hard to meet their goals. Some turn to complex or alternative investments and take risks they either do not understand ...

  • Even Professional Investors Might Not Spot a Fraud Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Oct 1, 2013 11:00 AM EDT
    Even Professional Investors Might Not Spot a Fraud

    Even experienced professional investors can find it difficult to avoid investment fraud. Steve Sampler knew a thing or two about finance when he first heard about an opportunity to invest in an oil well. ...

  • "Phantom Riches" Cost Real Estate Investor $82,000 Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Sep 24, 2013 10:00 AM EDT
    "Phantom Riches" Cost Real Estate Investor $82,000

    Phantoms lurk in every investment scam. Sometimes they take the form of big payoffs; other times they are the security of "guaranteed" returns. Fraud experts call them "phantom riches." ...

  • Private Placements—Evaluate the Risks before Placing Them in Your Portfolio Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Sep 17, 2013 2:25 PM EDT
    Private Placements—Evaluate the Risks before Placing Them in Your Portfolio

    Each year, companies raise billions of dollars selling securities in non-public offerings of securities that are exempt from registration under the federal securities laws. These offerings, known as private ...

  • Many of Us Are Exposed to Financial Scams Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Fri, Sep 13, 2013 2:00 PM EDT
    Many of Us Are Exposed to Financial Scams

    The FINRA Investor Education Foundation issued a new research report, Financial Fraud and Fraud Susceptibility in the United States , based on a survey of nearly 2,400 U.S. adults age 40 and older. The ...

  • Before You Invest, Calculate Cash Flow Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Sep 10, 2013 12:30 PM EDT
    Before You Invest, Calculate Cash Flow

    Before you invest for the long term, know where you stand today. An important step is to calculate your monthly cash flow to see if you have funds to invest. Start by getting a handle on your monthly net ...

  • When Investing, Look Beyond the Seller's Name Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Sep 3, 2013 3:35 PM EDT
    When Investing, Look Beyond the Seller's Name

    Even if a person selling you an investment has a good reputation in your community, you still need to check out the seller and the investment for yourself. If you don’t, you may be putting yourself at ...

  • 6 Tips for Taking Control of Your Financial Future Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Aug 27, 2013 3:45 PM EDT
    6 Tips for Taking Control of Your Financial Future

    Only a quarter of U.S. adults are satisfied with their current financial situation, according to a U.S. Financial Capability Survey released by the FINRA Investor Education Foundation. Here are six tips ...

  • FINRA Warns Investors of Marijuana Stock Scams Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Aug 20, 2013 12:15 PM EDT

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a new Investor Alert to warn investors about potential scams associated with marijuana-related stocks. Medical marijuana is legal in almost 20 ...

  • Know Your Net Worth Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Wed, Aug 14, 2013 11:00 AM EDT
    Know Your Net Worth

    An important first step in controlling your financial future is calculating your net worth . It's not hard: add up what you own and subtract what you owe. Creating a net worth statement, and updating it ...

  • Cold Calls from Brokerage Firm Imposters—Beware of Old-Fashioned Phishing Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Aug 6, 2013 5:00 PM EDT
    Cold Calls from Brokerage Firm Imposters—Beware of Old-Fashioned Phishing

    The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has received reports that scamsters are posing as employees of at least one well-known brokerage firm to obtain personal information. In a new twist ...

  • 6 Tips for Working with Your Investment Professional Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jul 30, 2013 1:00 PM EDT
    6 Tips for Working with Your Investment Professional

    Few relationships are as important as the one you cultivate with your investment professional . These tips can help ensure it's a productive one. 1. Check licenses. Use FINRA BrokerCheck to verify if an ...

  • 8 Tips to Keep Track of Your Investments Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jul 23, 2013 1:30 PM EDT
    8 Tips to Keep Track of Your Investments

    Whether you work with an investment professional or trade on your own, you should always monitor your investments. Keeping track of them can help prevent minor mistakes from turning into big problems. ...

  • How Social Pressure Cost One Family $30,000 Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Fri, Jul 19, 2013 3:45 PM EDT
    How Social Pressure Cost One Family $30,000

    It's often hard to resist an investment tip from someone in your social circle. There's nothing wrong with getting investment ideas from friends and acquaintances, but you should do more research. Before ...

  • What You Need to Know About Brokered CDs Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jul 16, 2013 3:40 PM EDT

    Not all certificates of deposit have fixed interest rates, and not all are FDIC insured. A case in point: brokered CDs. You may be offered a brokered CD by a stockbroker or other investment professional ...

  • Take Financial Control: Track Your Spending Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jul 9, 2013 12:00 PM EDT
    Take Financial Control: Track Your Spending

    The first step to getting your finances under control is to know where your money is going. But that isn't always obvious. Even if you have a good handle on your monthly bills, you may be surprised by ...

  • Giving Cold Callers the Cold Shoulder Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jul 2, 2013 1:30 PM EDT
    Giving Cold Callers the Cold Shoulder

    We live in the Internet age, but the investment cold call is alive and well. Here's what you need to know about unsolicited sales calls, and how to avoid getting stuck with a bad investment. Common Sales ...

  • For Retirees, Investment Fraud Can Have a Friendly Face Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jun 25, 2013 1:00 PM EDT
    For Retirees, Investment Fraud Can Have a Friendly Face

    It's possible that someone you trust and socialize with could defraud you. That's what happened to Ruth and Len Mitchell. They were victims of an $11 million Ponzi scheme run by their neighbor and friend, ...

  • How to Spot an Investment Scam in 6 Steps Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jun 18, 2013 5:50 PM EDT
    Stock Up on Information Before Buying Stock

    Financial fraudsters use sophisticated and effective tactics to get people to part with their money. Here are six steps you can take to help you spot an investment scam. 1. Verify credentials. Don't fall ...

  • Inbox Alert—Don’t Trade on Pump-And-Dump Stock Emails Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Wed, Jun 12, 2013 2:15 PM EDT
    Inbox Alert—Don’t Trade on Pump-And-Dump Stock Emails

    Email stock spamming is back in high gear. The latest McAfee Threats Report confirms a steep rise in spam email linked to bogus "pump-and-dump" stock schemes designed to trick unsuspecting investors. ...

  • Alternative Funds Are Not Your Typical Mutual Funds Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jun 11, 2013 4:15 PM EDT

    Alternative or "alt" mutual funds are publicly offered, SEC-registered funds that use investment strategies that differ from the buy-and-hold strategy typical in the mutual fund industry. Compared ...

  • 10 Tips for Buying Muni Bonds Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Tue, Jun 4, 2013 5:15 PM EDT

    Follow these 10 tips to avoid some of the most common pitfalls of municipal bond investing. 1. Consider your investment objectives and the level of risk you're willing to accept. Understand that bonds ...

  • Are You as Financially Literate as You Think? Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) - Fri, May 31, 2013 12:30 PM EDT
    Are You as Financially Literate as You Think?

    More than three-quarters of U.S. adults think they’re good at managing their finances, but only 14 percent aced a 5-question quiz on basic financial concepts like interest rates, mortgages and inflation. ...

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