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JPMorgan Chase May Be Expanding to Other States + How to Expand the State of Your Finances

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Restrictions and regulation can be a gift and a curse. On one end it can stop a company and/or people from growing to its full potential, but on the other hand, it can establish control to avoid taking advantage. Because of the financial crisis of 2008, a lot of financial institutions were being restricted in an effort to protect consumers. JPMorgan Chase was barred for years from expanding into new states because of its “missteps” during the financial crisis, says Bloomberg. The U.S. Office of the Comptroller privately blocked the bank’s plan to add new markets, while federal regulators hit the bank with a total of more than $30 billion in penalties for infractions related to everything from client Bernard Madoff and the London Whale trader, to the bank’s purchase of Bear Stearns and Washington Mutual, according to the report. Now here comes some good news for JPMorgan Chase as the restraints have since been lifted by the Trump administration, a sign of the loosening of banking regulations underway since 2012. Is loosening regulations a good thing? Only time will tell, but when it comes to your personal finances, it may be hurting your pockets.

The convenience of paying for things with the click of a button can come back to bite your budget in the behind. Once upon a time and not really long ago, paper dollars and cents were the major mediums of exchange? The paper check had its moment; then the debit card made its debut. Now we have Apple Pay, PayPass, PayPal, and online transactions; it feels like tangible money is slowly disappearing. We are getting so detached from currency that many people don’t even like accepting cash as a form of payment anymore—they would rather people use Cash App or Venmo to pay them. To be honest, the convenience of it all is awesome because it literally allows you to buy something with one click, fast and easy.

For purchasing things that you need, shopping while mobile can save you time and money. But if you are easy to succumb to impulse buying then shopping while mobile can be detrimental to your budget and financial freedom aspirations. As it relates to your personal finances, not using cash can lead to overspending and being unaware of how much you have in the bank. Apps that are attached to your debit or credit cards make it so easy to buy items on impulse that you can blow your budget in a matter of seconds. I once bought 10 “Majek #3 Hybrid Rescue Utility Red & Blue Golf Headcover Knit Pom Pom Retro Classic Vintage Head Cover” on Amazon because it was on sale (and I don’t even play golf.)

In an effort to save the world (and myself) from buying things we don’t need, I’ve crafted four methods for you to put to use.

Don’t Enable That 1-Click Ordering Option on Amazon.

That 1-Click ordering button is like that hot fudge sundae sitting in the fridge when you are on a diet or fasting. You should clear the kitchen of any weaknesses. The same goes for the 1-Click option. Having it enabled doesn’t give you an opportunity to think about your purchase.

Remove All Credit Card Info.

Besides security precautions, removing all credit card info from your phone, laptop, or tablet and manually entering in the details gives you at least three to five minutes to really consider your purchase.

Unsubscribe to Shopping Sites.

Say no to site sign-ups and subscriptions from your favorite shopping sites. You will wake up to an inbox full of must-haves and sales that you really don’t need.

Designate an Online Shopping Day.

Depending on your shopping habits, consider taking a day out of the week or month to conduct some cyber shopping. Commit to that day or date. One of the major issues is placing orders randomly; it may not seem like much, until you view your monthly statements.

What are some ways you can stop yourself from buying unneeded items? Please comment below.

Ash Exantus aka Ash Cash is one of the nation’s top personal finance experts. Dubbed as the Financial Motivator, he uses a culturally responsive approach in teaching financial literacy. He is the Head of Financial Education at BankMobile and Editor-in-Chief at Paradigm Money. The views and opinions expressed are those of Ash Cash and not the views of BankMobile and/or its affiliates.

The Daily Digm (News)

T-Mobile’s Dream of Telecommunications Domination Is Almost Complete + How to Create Mental Toughness While Pursuing Your Dreams

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T-Mobile received verbal approval from the Federal Communications Commission for its $26 billion deal to buy Sprint but still awaits the blessing of the Justice Department. FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai said he’ll back the merger based on concessions by the third- and fourth-largest U.S. telecommunications companies, which include pledges to invest in new wireless broadband service in rural areas and to sell Sprint’s prepaid cellphone brand. While the FCC is expected to make a formal announcement within weeks, the Justice Dept. has yet to weigh out antitrust concerns.

Dream chasing isn’t for the faint at heart. It can take years before one sees the financial payoff of what was once an idea. T-Mobile is probably patient on the outside, but internal it is jumping for joy. It took them a few years to get to this point, but I’m sure they will be relieved at the fruits of their patients.

When building a business, your goal has to be more than money, or you will ultimately fail. Your drive has to be based on principle, change, and something greater than yourself. Here is how to stay mentally tough while pursuing your dreams.

Personal Development. The road to success is paved with character and growth. Personal development is one of the key drivers that sustain you on the path of your dreams. Trustworthiness, keeping your word, and dependability are imperative to any industry. It doesn’t matter if you’re a musician or painter, lawyer or doctor, these traits and non-negotiable and forever transferable to success.

Take Breaks. To get there, you must rest one mile at a time. The grind is overrated. Reflecting on how far you’ve come energizes you for the road ahead. Burnout is a danger to your accomplishments and leads to a failure by default.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. Steve Jobs popularized this quote from an ad in The Whole Earth Catalog. It read Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. We come to a point when we are happy with a level of progress and think we’ve learned everything. Accepting the truth that we never stop growing, and there is no limit to our success gives us the ability to keep going. To continue, you must never settle. You must always seek new ways of fixing things and solving problems. Discover new opportunities and be open to learning more.

Faith. Steve Jobs also mentioned faith throughout his journey. Believing so deeply in an idea that you make it come to life. Belief takes ideas and materializes them; and when you realize you can actually make something come to life, the sky becomes your launching pad, not the limit.

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The Daily Digm (News)

Retail Wars Are Getting Real Competitive + How to Stay Competitive in the Marketplace

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Walmart has announced plans to offer next-day delivery on about 220,000 of its “most frequently purchased” online items, after rival Amazon promised free one-day delivery for Prime members. The retail giant says the offering, which applies to orders over $35, will reach about 75% of the U.S. by the end of the year. The more limited inventory makes Walmart’s offer more of a competitor to Target’s Restock than Amazon, says TechCrunch. But retailers need to get a better handle on their inventory and demand for fast delivery before making such moves, execs and analysts told The Wall Street Journal.

Competition is fierce no matter what the genre is and as it relates to these entrepreneurial streets, you have to make sure that you are staying ahead of the competition so you won’t get Walmart’d by your Amazon… So what can you do? Luckily, Marketing Donut has come up with Ten ways to keep ahead of the competition:

  1. Know the competition. Find out who your competitors are, what they are offering, and what their unique selling point (USP) is. This will identify the areas you need to compete in, as well as giving you a platform for differentiating yourself.
  2. Know your customers. Customer expectations can change dramatically when economic conditions are unstable. Find out what matters to your customers now – is it lower prices, more flexible or premium service, the latest products? Revise your sales and marketing strategy accordingly.
  3. Differentiate. It’s essential to give your customers good reasons to come to you rather than a rival. Your USP should tap into what customers want, and it should be clear and obvious – no-one should have to ask what makes you different.
  4. Step up your marketing. Improve your market positioning statement. Make more effort to tell people who you are, what you sell, and why they should buy from you. It doesn’t have to be expensive; marketing can range from posters in your window and leaflet drops through to viral campaigns on social media.
  5. Update your image. Simple steps such as painting the front of your premises can make your business look more modern and inviting. But also look at business cards, social media presences, your website, branded packaging, clothing and so on. Does your image reflect your USP?
  6. Look after your existing customers. They will be your competitors’ target market. Provide better customer service by being more responsive to their needs and expectations. If feasible, consider offering low-cost extras such as improved credit terms, discounts or loyalty schemes – remember, it’s cheaper and easier to keep customers than to find new ones.
  7. Target new markets. Selling into a greater number of markets can increase your customer base and spread your risk. Consider whether you can sell online or overseas, for example. Are there groups you’ve never targeted before who might be interested in your offer? Remember the benefits of market segmentation and don’t waste time marketing to people who won’t be interested.
  8. Expand your offer. What related products or services might your customers be interested in? You might even consider diversifying into another area – many bars and restaurants have successfully offered business networking events, for example.
  9. Be the best employer. Skilled, motivated staff underpin vibrant, growing businesses. But attracting them means more than paying a competitive wage – people are often more impressed by a good working atmosphere and benefits such as flexible working and structured career development.
  10. Look to the future. Businesses that plan for growth are more successful than those that are happy to stay still. Keep up with developments in your sector, follow consumer trends, invest in new technology and – crucially – have a clear idea of where you want to be in one, three and five years’ time.
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The Daily Digm (News)

Negotiating Better Pay May Be Getting Easier + How to Easily Stay Ahead of the Game

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Salaries were once a taboo thing to discuss. Yet, with unemployment at a five-decade low and the gig economy requiring people to compare salaries, attitudes are shifting in the conversation, according to The New York Times. Keeping salary information secret favors managers who want to pay people less, say experts. More information about salaries may benefit workers, giving them wider room to negotiate better pay.

This is great news for those who in the past have been cheated out of a fair wage because they didn’t understand how to play the negotiation game. But it doesn’t only take negotiation to get top dollar; there are other tricks to the trade. Here are four ways anyone could use to get ahead of the career game:

  1. Know Your Strengths and Capitalize off of Them. Don’t try to be something you’re not or learn new tricks overnight. Stay in your lane and become stronger. The stronger you become, the more value you will have in the workforce.
  2. It’s Never Too Late to Intern or Volunteer. As adults, these can be such humbling terms, but it can still get your foot in the door. Just look at Chris Gardner. Not only did he become wealthy, but his rise to riches also led to a movie based starring Will Smith & Jayden Smith
  3. Building Your Connections. Who you know is just as if not more important than what you learn. Being authentically connected to others in your field of interest can open up a world of opportunities. One rule of thumb is never settled or compromise for relationships but do, however, seek to build solid ones.
  4. Create Your Own Platform. Don’t underestimate your ability to build an empire. Many successful entrepreneurs and professionals created their own jobs. Combine all of the above and consider investing them in your own enterprise.
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