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The 2:1 principle: for every 2 years spent working, you have to save for 1 year of retirement

Timeline

Most of us are guilty of making eleventh-hour decisions, especially those related to topics we are not comfortable with.  Only a few of us are planners in the true sense. Kudos to those of you who know a year in advance where you will be traveling for the holidays and where you will be celebrating Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Most of us are not made to function like that and don’t like to plan ahead.  I totally get it.  We like to live carefree lives and make spontaneous decisions.  That’s how I’m wired too.  I typically don’t even think about Christmas until after Thanksgiving. The problem is, that this does not work very well for retirement planning.  We all know that more and more employers are no longer providing pension benefits. Millennials and Gen Xers are left to fend for themselves. It’s highly unlikely that when we retire, we will get any paychecks from the Government (social security) or from our former employers in the form of pension.

This leaves us with two options –  either we work until we breathe our last or start investing early for retirement. If you start investing $5,000 dollars a year at the age of 21, you can accumulate close to $5.5 million by the age of 67 years and can then enjoy the fruit of planning ahead by being able to do whatever you’ve always wanted to do without having to worry about paying bills. Unless you plan to buy a plane or yacht (trust me when I say I’d love to have both), $5.5 million is enough to live a good retired life.

Retirement $5000            Retirement $12500

If you delay kicking off the retirement planning process by 10 years and start saving at the age of 31 years, you can only accumulate $2.3 million. Sounds like lot less cash, right? I hear you. If you want to come anywhere close to $5.5 million at this point, you have to contribute 2.5 times i.e. $12,500 a year to get to $5.5 million for retirement. A huge penalty for a late start!

After reading this, you may make a mental note – ‘Oh I will start looking into this tomorrow, or over the weekend or next month.’  Days, weeks, months or even years may go by before it hits you one day that it’s slightly too late and that you should have planned better and much sooner.

Luckily, technology has come to our rescue and an app like Plootus has made retirement planning very easy, even for those who are not financially savvy.  It is available literally at your fingertips for downloading from the Apple and Android app stores and tells you how much to save and where to invest for a happily ever after.  So the next time you pick up your phone to look at Facebook News Feed updates, it may be worth your time to download at Plootus, a ‘financial advisor’ at your disposal. The app will assist you with planning your retirement without having to sacrifice your weekends and weeknights today for a secure tomorrow. I will cover how to choose investments for your retirement planning in my next blog update. Don’t worry if you are not a finance professional or have not done that before!  We will take baby steps.

Until next time!

Author: Sunil Gangwani, Co-Founder, Plootus

 

http://www.Plootus.com: 10 minutes could add 50 thousand dollars or more to your retirement account!

Download on Apple Store: Plootus

Download on Android Store: Plootus

 

 

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Is Bitcoin on a slipperly slope?

Slippery slope Final

Today, the price of Bitcoin has jumped to $ 11,823, 14.47% increase in a day. Yesterday morning, the price went below the psychological $10k mark. The markets reacted to the news coming out of South Korea that their Government may ban cryptocurrency trading. China is also looking into fake blockchain platforms.

How do people participate in Bitcoin marketplace? It is not easy to wrap your head around all the aspects of Bitcoin trading, however, it is not much different from a product like Gold.

The simplest option is to buy & sell gold. When the price of gold is low, people buy in anticipation that the value will increase or to store wealth. People are buying & selling Bitcoins for the same purposes.  The other option is to get into mining or production of gold, similarly, companies create Bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies. The third option is to create a marketplace or an exchange to deal with the gold (Bitcoin) and earn fees without taking any risk in the underlying asset. As Bitcoin becomes more and more acceptable, it may be used as the medium of exchange just as dollars, but there is a long way to go.

Here is a summary of some positive and negative news about Bitcoin:

Bitcoin: Positive news

  1.  Japanese biggest bank and 4th largest in the world, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) is planning to launch cryptocurrency exchange. Why is it important? Japan accounts for 40% of cryptocurrency trade per some estimates. MUFG is launching exchange not for Bitcoin but for their cryptocurrency MUFG Coin. It’s also offering trust services to individuals to monitor transactions in their account and alert in the case out of ordinary account activities occur. MUFG, however, would not protect an investor against volatility in the cryptocurrencies.
  2. Various US states, 11 out of 50 in the US are considering legislation related to the blockchain, the underlying technology for Bitcoin. Nebraska, Florida, and Tennessee are the latest entrants to the growing list.  Arizona, Nevada, and Vermont adopted a blockchain law in 2017. Other states who are working on a bill or already passed a legislation are Maine, Hawaii, Illinois, North Dakota and California.
  3. As per Economic Research team Federal Reserve at St Louis, Bitcoin may have many interesting usages and it can become an important asset class by itself.

Bitcoin: Negative news

  1. Regulators across the world are concerned as there is no centralized authority to control the Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. The volume and valuation have increased considerably over last one year. Significant movement in the cryptocurrency may spillover the Wall Street and the Main Street. Mostly all the players in the cryptocurrency food chain are private players. Everyone seems to have a vested interest in the increase in price and it’s hard to know if the views expressed are driven by fundamentals or personal interest.
  2. The price of Bitcoin in South Korea trades at 30% above the other markets. There is an elevated level of interest among the younger technology-savvy population creating a pent-up demand for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. In order to control the activity, South Korea may ban the trading of cryptocurrencies.
  3. China is investigating 3000 plus fake blockchain exchanges. In any market, there are both good and bad actors. Time will only tell how widespread is the problem. Are 3000 fake exchanges just the tip of the iceberg?

Significant activities and divergent views about Bitcoin confuses an average investor. The problem is more stressful if your hard earned money is invested in a new asset class that changes faster than your pulse. Be aware of the volatility, if you are thinking to move your retirement money into Bitcoin.

Until next time!

Author: Sunil Gangwani, Co-Founder, Plootus

Screenshot (80) - Copy

http://www.Plootus.com: 10 minutes could add 50 thousand dollars or more to your retirement account!

Download on Apple Store: Plootus

Download on Android Store: Plootus

Image Courtesy: https://commons.wikimedia.org, pixabay.com

Disclaimer: The investor should perform their own due diligence and risk assessment before investing through in Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies Plootus.com is no circumstances will be responsible for any losses or damages, directly or indirectly, caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article

 

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Bitcoin: Should you invest your retirement money in Bitcoins?

Bitcoin IRA

Image courtesy: U.S. News, Robert Berger, the sun.co.uk

2017 was undoubtedly the year of Bitcoin. The price of bitcoin rose from less than $1,000 to 14,822 as of Dec 28, 2017, resulting in 15 times plus return in just one year.  Bitcoin is the brainchild of Satoshi Nakamoto, the top cryptocurrency in the world and dominates the cryptocurrency trade per CoinMarketCap. There is significant interest from Asian countries, especially neighbors of the famous Rocket Man – Japan, South Korea and Vietnam, accounted for 80% trading of Bitcoin in Nov 2017. The market cap of all cryptocurrency was $576B as of January 16, 2018, and Winklevoss twins of Facebook fame became first bitcoin billionaires by investing a portion of their Facebook settlement in Bitcoin. The price of Bitcoin remains volatile and may go up and down 20% in a matter of hours. There are many success stories of Bitcoin millionaires and billionaires and now everyone wants to have a piece of the action.

 Bitcoin in 2018

Before investing your hard earned retirement money, you should understand the risks involved. Bitcoin is probably the most volatile asset of all. According to Warren Buffet, cryptocurrencies will come to a bad ending. Therefore there is an equal probability of downside risk, as there is an upside. In the first two weeks of 2018, the Bitcoin price has lost significant value. Some argue it’s a short-term phenomenon as every asset class goes through ups, downs, and corrections. To put things in perspective, as of Jan 16, 2018, Bitcoin’s price was down 15% compared to S&P 500 Index which is up 4.89%.

Bitcoin IRA offerings

The good news is, in addition to the usual asset classes like Stocks, Bonds, Mutual Funds, ETFs, Annuities, CDs, Real assets you can invest in Bitcoin through your IRA account.   However, cryptocurrency based IRA is a relatively new phenomenon and no industry leaders like Vanguard, Fidelity, Blackrock, American Funds, T Rowe Price and others are offering this product.

You may set up a self-directed IRA and invest in Bitcoin, however, the procedure involves a lot of paperwork and needs to meet IRS compliance requirements. The second option is Bitcoin IRA, a company founded in 2017 that allows people to invest IRA money into Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin IRA offers 4 different investment strategies:

  • The Popular option invests 70% in Bitcoins (BTC) and 30% in Ethereum (ETH).
  • The Balanced allocates 20% each to Bitcoins (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Ripple (XRP), Litecoin (LTC) and Bitcoin Cash (BCH).
  • In case of 3rd option and 4th option, you can create your own allocation among various offerings before or after going through the enrollment process.

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Keep in mind there is 15% upfront fee as reported by various investors compared to less than 1% charged for other IRA accounts. So you will lose 15% value at the start and need to wait for the Bitcoin to rally to recover the fees and then show you some gains in your Bitcoin IRA account.

Bitcoin IRA enrollment process

The enrollment process is bit long and requires a copy of driving license, social security, a copy of retirement account statement for last 60 days, beneficiary details, Social security and birth details. It takes some time and patience to go through the steps and ensure that you provide all the necessary documentation.

Conclusion

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies have a potential to become an alternative medium of exchange to major world currencies. The underlying Blockchain technology may be used to make the current processes and products more efficient in Banking and other industries. As an investment option, Bitcoin is very volatile and operating in an ever-changing regulatory landscape.  Therefore, before investing, do your own due diligence and understand the downside risks.

Disclaimer: Plootus.com or any of affiliates does not endorse BitcoinIRA. The investor should perform their own due diligence and risk assessment before investing through BitcoinIRA Plootus.com is no circumstances will be responsible for any losses or damages, directly or indirectly, caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

Author: Sunil Gangwani, Co-Founder, Plootus

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http://www.Plootus.com: 10 minutes could add 50 thousand dollars or more to your retirement account!

Download on Apple Store: Plootus

Download on Android Store: Plootus