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Fashion & Beauty

Used And Resold Wedding Gowns

Used And Resold Wedding Gowns

For a woman in her posture to be a bride what counts more is the outfit: the white wedding gown. Along the years this have…

The Beauty Of The Lace Wedding Dresses

The Beauty Of The Lace Wedding Dresses

The wedding dress is for a bride the most precious dress ever, for the guests and everyone present at the wedding an outstanding piece of…

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Disount Online Stock Brokers A Comparison

For the average investor, one of the great things about the Internet is the proliferation of online stock brokers. Most of these are also discount brokers, so an investor can get both accessibility and low prices on their stock trades. It’s a stark contrast to the days when your father had to make a call to his broker and pay huge fees to make a trade. One of the results of this whole situation is that there are far more investors in the stock market than ever before. It makes perfect sense. Any time the price of a product or service or service is lowered and the access to it is facilitated, the number of users will increase, providing there is a demand for the item in question.

The elimination of the NYSE’s fixed commission structure in May of 1975 opened the door for the discount brokerage. Prior to that day, stock brokers charged investors a fixed commission for every trade, and it was expensive. There was no freedom to negotiate either, as minimum trade commission prices were set by the SEC. It was a real old boys club, and most would-be investors were excluded. After the process was deregulated, discount brokers began to appear, one of the earliest and most famous being Charles Schwab.

Today there are many discount stock brokers, much to the benefit of all investors, weather they are hard core traders who make their living from investing, or the casual investor who may only make a few trades a year. With the ability to trade from home, and free from the requirement of having a broker involved in every trade, there are no longer barriers to those who would like to dip their toes into the stock trading waters before they take the plunge all the way. Those who like to trade consistently have things much easier as well.

The evolution of discount brokers effectively removed the last barrier to that group of investors. Now, with the price of trades ranging from as low as free to $20 a trade the cost of trading has been reduced to the point where it’s been effectively eliminated for most people.

The other huge advantage of the Internet and online brokerage for most people is that it’s now very easy to find information (not always true) on various investment choices. Weather an investor is looking for general information a particular market, company or even legislation, it’s all there for the browsing. Most online discount brokerages make available a complete set of tools for their customers. The array of tools available now to the amateur investor would actually be the envy of most professionals only a few years ago. Most even offer real time, streaming quotes. In the not too distant past, that would have been the province of the hard core professional investor or institution.

There a still full service brokers, and most of those have online and even discount style accounts. Many investors today don’t feel they need the level of service (and are unwilling to pay for it) offered by a full service brokerage houses. Who are the big players in the discount brokerage game, and what do they offer you? Well, here is a comparison of some of the most popular online discount brokers and what they offer you:

TD Ameritrade – No commission trades for the first 30 days, but you may want to keep trading for a bit beyond 30 days. After the initial 30 day period, you’ll pay $9.99 per trade with no maintenance fees. They offer 24/7 online and phone support. There is a $2,000 minimum required to open a non-IRA account and a $1,000 minimum for IRA accounts. Many investing tools are free, however real time news from Dow Jones will cost you about $30 a month.

E*Trade – E*Trade was the first online brokerage, dating to 1983, but at that time, they weren’t something anyone could just log on and use. Now they offer stock trades according to a graduated pricing plan. Those who make up to 29 trades a quarter and have less than $50,000 in their E*Trade account will pay $12.99 per trade. If you have a larger nest egg and/or make between 30 – 149 trades a quarter, you’ll pay $9.99 per trade. Options traders can tack on an additional .75 fee per trade. Broker assisted trades cost an additional $45. E*Trade has no required minimum for IRA accounts. Pink sheet stocks will require a $54.99 fee to trade. E*Trade has an annual $160 maintenance fee.

Zecco – Zecco offers free stock trades for those who make fewer than 10 trades a month and have more than $2,500 in their account. That makes them my choice for the occasional or semi-active investor. Those making more than 10 trades a month will pay only $4.50 per trade. If you prefer options, you’ll spend $4.50 + 50 cents per contract. Something else favoring beginning investors is that there are no minimums required to open a Zecco account. Find out more here.

Scottrade – Scottrade offers low, $7.00 online trades for stocks trading at over $1.00 per share. Pink sheet stocks will require a $27 fee to trade. If you need help from a real, live person to make a trade, broker assisted trades run $27 as well.(the same $27).If you’d like to walk in and talk to someone face to face on occasion, they have over 330 branch offices scattered throughout the country. Scottrade offers free, streaming, real time Dow Jones information.

Charles Schwab – Thanks to a persistent ad campaign in the ‘80’s and ‘90’s, Chuck is who many people think of when they hear the term “discount broker”. They’ve been around since way before discount brokers went online. They charge $12.95 to trade for orders of less than 1,000 shares. If you exceed the 1,000 share limit, they’ll tack on a penny and a half per share fee, but no account maintenance fee. Charles Schwab also has real time Dow Jones info for free if you’re an account holder.


The Beauty Of The Lace Wedding Dresses

The wedding dress is for a bride the most precious dress ever, for the guests and everyone present at the wedding an outstanding piece of clothing. Of course that the bride’s beauty gives a boost to the dress but its creative side and how it is made makes the whole magic effect. But when choosing it, in the research for the perfect wedding dress, the bride thinks about the rational part as well: the budget is not an unlimited one and it is after all a waste to spend so much money on a dress that you wear it once.

At the same time you want and need not an ordinary or common image of your outfit. If you could only conciliate both parts and have the most beautiful dress but at an affordable price. But there is a wedding dress that fulfills both of your requests and needs: lace wedding dress.

To start with, lace wedding dresses are timeless; in a certain way they bring something about the vintage style but they compel as well the elegance of a modern dress. It all counts how is the pattern and in what way a bride chooses to embellish its wedding dress with some lace fabric.

Lace wedding dresses can be of two types: the total one made exclusively out of this material or just with some decorative extra items on it, with a part of it made out of lace- for example the skirt is chiffon and the top part has the shoulders covered with lace as short sleeves. No matter in what way a bride decides a thing is clear and sure: lace brings elegancy and a diaphanous look so that the dress made out of this fabric becomes representative for a formal event.

Why is that lace is such high rated? Lace gives ones the opportunity to create various styles and mostly without losing the feminine effect. In fact this is the strong point: in combination with another material it creates a refined appearance and when it is just and only about lace the sensual part replaces everything as description word for a dress. Not only this but in some cases it adds a sexy look too: imagine a dress backless, with a tight corset and a mermaid line of the dress; for the above part as not to be so uncovered and revealing you can add lace, but under it the skin is a sight so that the dualist aspect about lace comes with a combination of demure with slight tendency on daring showing but in a sublet way.

All things considered, lace wedding dresses are appropriate for any age, for any bride. Accessible, never obsolete, always on fashion. Even keeping your dress after the wedding for your daughter wedding day and still such a dress does not lose its charm in time, but it accentuates it

Debt Relief – Do Settlement Counseling Or Debt Relief Programs Really Work

Relief is on the minds of millions of people due to the credit industry problems and the huge levels of consumer debt in the U.S., but what do people really mean when they talk about debt relief? Are there programs that will simply get rid of your debt so you can start anew?

Actually yes, there are debt relief programs that can help you do that, but it’s not really that simple. After all, you don’t get something for nothing, although it could be argued that if you get a portion of your debt eliminated, you actually did.

There is some confusion among many debtors about the differences between the various debt relief programs. Are debt settlement, debt relief and debt counseling all synonymous? Actually no, they’re not. They actually mean different things, and if you choose to avail yourself of one of these options to handle your debt, the option you actually choose could have long lasting effects on your credit and future financial picture.

Debt settlement is a term that most often refers to the process of negotiating with creditors to only repay a portion of a debt. Although that may sound like a fantastic option to many creditors, remember the whole free lunch thing. Using debt settlement services will impact your credit in a negative way and affect your ability to secure future credit, and the interest rates you pay for years to come. There are a few basic ways that these programs work, and before you enter into any such program you absolutely must go over any agreement with a fine toothed comb, preferably with the advice of an attorney who’s well versed in such matters. It may seem like spending money to seek the advice of an attorney may just be compounding your debt problems, but a few hundred dollars up front may save you thousands of dollars and some financial migraines later.

Some debt settlement firms will simply charge you a flat fee for their services, but the more common scenario is for them to charge you either a percentage of the total outstanding debt or a portion of the savings they provide through the negotiated settlement. With most debt relief negotiations, the debt relief company will negotiate a settlement with each of your creditors that will represent between 40% – 50% of the original debt amount. They must negotiate independently with each credit card account. Debt relief companies can handle other types of debt as well, but credit cards are far and away the most common. Typically only unsecured debt is negotiated through this process, as unpaid secured debt will be satisfied by the creditor repossessing the security for the debt, such as a vehicle or land.

As the debtor, you will be required to set up a debt repayment plan for the agreed upon amount with each open account. This will include the payment to the debt relief company, the creditor, and the time frame for the repayment plan. You will then make payments either into an account set up by you, or an escrow account set up by the debt relief company. Once you have accumulated the requisite amount your debt will be satisfied. The process repeats with each debt until all your debts are paid at the individually agreed upon amount.

This is one of the places where things can go wrong for you as the creditor. Stories abound of less than scrupulous debt settlement companies simply keeping all the funds you’ve already paid should you miss a payment. This does happen, and needless to say that could cost you a bundle. If you feel that you realistically will not have the money to maintain such a settlement plan, you may want to consider another option, but even more important is to thoroughly evaluate any such agreement before you enter into it.

This highlights the importance of having a qualified, independent party look over the contract before you sign it. If you sign a contract that permits the firm to keep any funds paid to date should you miss a single payment, it’s really your fault for such a debacle. If you feel such a clause is worth it in order to secure a substantial reduction in the amount of your debt, that’s a decision only you can make. Remember that you will have your debt reduced a substantial amount, but there is also the debt company’s fee to consider when calculating your total savings. In total, the savings may not be as large as you think.

The process lasts from 1 – 4 years in the majority of cases. It is exceedingly rare for the debt relief company to offer any sort of guarantee for their services. The key is that you should be using this technique as a way to avoid bankruptcy.

Acquisition for Talent – The Death of Innovation?

Acquisitions of startups for their talent has become commonplace over the last few years.

Often, the consequences of a startup’s acquisition for talent is that the founding vision or concept is hijacked, altered to fit the goals of the acquirer or abandoned all together.

In the past, the acquisition market had been focused on buying startups for their underlying technology, business or customer base. Over the last few years, we have seen a shift in the acquisition market and a rising demand for hard working, talented engineers, especially at cash rich technology companies like Twitter and Facebook.

As the trend to acquire startups for talent continues, it is important to raise the question, does this hurt innovation?

When a company is acquired for talent, their technology, product or service is probably going to be killed or somehow integrated by their acquirers.

Let’s look at the recent acquisitions by Twitter to gain additional insight into the impact of acquisitions for talent on new and innovative technology.

With $1.16 billion in funding to date, Twitter has been on a buying spree for the last few years. Their acquisitions in 2012 already include Summify, Dasient and Posterous. Over the last few years they have also acquired Summize, Mixer Labs, Cloudhopper, Dabble DB, TweetDeck, AdGrock, BackType, and others.

To better understand the impact of being acquired for talent, let’s examine what happened to a few of these startups.

Posterous is one of Twitter’s latest talent acquisitions. At the time of acquisition, Posterous was in its fifth year of operation and had just raised $10.1 million in funding.

Posterous’s Sachin Agarawal said when asked about the acquisition by Twitter,

According to the company, Posterous Spaces will continue to be available, but instructions have been made available to move to other services. From reviewing the publications from Posterous, it appears that they are urging people to move to another service.

When TweetDeck was acquired in 2011 many people feared the Twitter client would be shut down. There were calls within the TweetDeck development community to stop using their API in anticipation of Twitter’s take over.

Despite the acquisition, TweetDeck is still available. The team has continued to release updated versions of the Twitter client and still serves an impressive number of Twitter’s power users.

When Summify was acquired in early 2012 Twitter ended up relegating the product to be shut down. In an update to their community of users they announced their acquisition, Summify said,

After the acquisition was announced, Summify closed registrations and suggested that users move their accounts to another service in preparation for the termination of Summify’s service.

When you look at the consequences of acquisitions for talent by social media leader Twitter, it is clear that acquisitions are altering the course of innovative new startups. Unfortunately, most of the time, the acquired company shuts down its service or product, and shifts focus to helping support their acquirer’s growth by concentrating on their area of expertise. Another common outcome is that a service or product is shut down but integrated into the acquirer’s existing offering.

When considering the impact of the trend for startups to be acquired for talent, it is important to consider the implications that has on innovation as well as disruptive ideas.

Would innovation increase and more disruptive technologies become available if less startups were acquired for talent?

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November 2022

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