Smart Personal Finance Leads To Smart Business Finances

The financial world may be a mystery to us when we are children but we get a crash course in it as adults. When we venture out on our own, there is no one to help us create and maintain a budget or pay our bills. If we eventually tire of working for someone else and decide to start our own business, business-related finances supplement our personal finance dealings. Without some knowledge or guidance, the world can become very confusing.

One of the best ways to get a strong foundation regarding finances is to read. There are plenty of paper and eBooks dealing with business and personal finance. Entrepreneurs can also find prepackaged systems for starting an online business that includes tutorials regarding the financial aspect of a company. With this subject, it is much wiser to look before you leap, so read, read, read.

Whether they are offered online or at a local college, finance classes will also be helpful. Many cover the ins and outs of the global financial sector, while others have a personal or business focus. Learning how to manage personal finances will only help with managing those for the business. Many of the concepts are applicable to both areas of life so do not hesitate to take every class that can be found. When the courses are required for a new career, they are often deductable on income taxes, an added bonus.

Retaining a finance advisor is a smart move for anyone managing a substantial financial portfolio. The world of investing and money management is complex, so it helps to have professional assistance. This person may also be able to offer insight into business matters, providing twice the return on the investment. Some of the most well-known entrepreneurs credit their success to great advice regarding finances. Never hesitate to ask the advisor questions because that is the only way to learn.

A finance calculator is a tool used for financial matters in addition to basic mathematics. People use this device so they do not need to remember and perform complex calculations by hand. It saves them time and money when calculating present value, future value, payments, cash flows, and other terms for loans, mortgages, investments, and business endeavors. Business owners should keep one of these handy because it will be needed throughout the years.

Just as a financial advisor is a go-to resource regarding investments and other money matters, an entrepreneurial mentor can be invaluable for business matters. It helps to learn from the best, so business owners should seek out a successful entrepreneur with time to spare and learn everything there is to know about running a company.

Finance is as crucial an aspect in the business world as it is in our personal lives. By taking the time to educate ourselves, obtaining the proper tools, and consulting with the most knowledgeable people, we can successfully manage both work and personal finances. This will make our lives much easier, allowing us to focus on enhancing our quality of living.

Jan S. Moy has over 30 years experience in dealing with people in distress, pople in addictions, businesses in change and curhes needing help with employing new staff. He has developed treatment for drug addicts, trained people in communications skills, tought self improvement programs and has been used as public speaker. During the last couple of years, he has been involved in network marketing both traditionally and on the internet. This has lead to knowledge on how to start and run home based businesses.

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Tips to Teaching Personal Finance

The current economy has motivated many to begin to provide their children practical financial literacy lessons. Teaching personal finance and raising money smart kids will help keep America strong.

James Truslow Adams, the man that coined the phrase “American Dream” in his book Epic of America, is quoted: “The American Dream is that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement.”

Teaching personal finance and raising money smart kids give our children the ability to recognize and capitalize on opportunities which will help them in pursuit of their own personal American Dream. This “Dream” can be achieved with practical financial knowledge and through teaching personal finance our children’s future will be much brighter.

Our children face an almost certain future of higher taxes, less services, and the elimination of the current social security & Medicare system. Read the reports from the Government Accountability Office and you will find that the SSI system will be bankrupt in 2037.

Although it is true that our children will face bigger economic challenges than we had to go through; however by teaching personal finance and raising money smart kids they will be able to achieve their own personal American Dream.

What is available for us to begin teaching personal finance to our kids? Schools’ With all the requirements placed on testing (No Child Left Behind) and the disturbing fact that most schools aren’t given the budget they need – this probably is not where most of our children will receive their financial training.

Parents – Most youth do rely on their parents as the primary source of their money knowledge; however, as the statistics clearly show, most parents do not possess the knowledge necessary to effectively teach their kids about money. They want money smart kids but most were not trained on how to begin teaching personal finance to their children.

There are financial literacy courses that are designed to help you raise money smart kids. Recent home-study financial literacy courses are now on the market and are designed to educate & entertain youth while instilling practical financial lessons. Some even have partnered with sport stars & celebrities to create a powerful draw so your children want check out what their favorite celebrity is doing and picking up money lessons along the way.

There have been several courses that are specifically designed to help parents to begin teaching personal finance. These courses walk parents through the basics of raising money smart kids and often the parents learn as much as the children.

Nonprofits – There are many nonprofits doing great work helping to spread the message of financial literacy and training our youth with practical money skills. Fortunately, financial literacy grant money and corporate sponsorship are empowering many nonprofits with the ability start teaching personal finance so the next generation the pickup the practical financial lessons we “learned the hard way”.

Private Companies – There are companies that thrive in every type of economic environment and in an environment where a lot of people are going through tough circumstances, financial education companies stand to profit while helping people improve their financial situation.

Right now the financial literacy movement is expanding faster than ever at the grassroots level. People want to begin teaching personal finance to their children because they want money smart kids. We commend you on reading this article and looking for ways to empower youth with the financial literacy skills they need in the ‘real world’

Through collaboration with parents, nonprofits, schools, teachers and business leaders – we can begin teaching personal finance and ensure we are raising money smart kids. Doing so will help these youth get the skills they need to live the American Dream.

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The Best Free Online Personal Finance Tools

Proper financial management – most coveted by millions and millions of consumers all over the globe. Faced with this tough economy, it is harder than ever to handle your finances well. But the great news is that establishing a solid financial plan for your future has become more affordable and attainable. There are a lot of online personal finance tools that are offered to individuals for free to help them manage their finances better. These are effective instruments to become financially stable while saving yourself from getting into debt trouble.

In today’s modern time, tracking every single detail is quite hard and even more difficult when money is the issue. Thus, getting help from online personal finance tools sounds very beneficial. In addition, these tools come free and very handy. Calculating your cash inflow and outflow can be easily done in the comfort of your home facing the computer.

Personal finance is a method of following your finances in a more streamlined manner. Since listing down on a paper every detail of your expenditures does not function well any longer, a personal finance device found online gives a far bigger and better assistance.

The following are some of the best online personal finance tools from budgeting to checking one’s credit score that are offered to individuals for free:

For Money Budgeting

1.) Mint.com

·Mint.com is one of the most popular and well-loved free online personal finance tools by the people. With over 8,000 financial company connections worldwide, this online means offers a wide variety of understandable and easy to use tools.

·Once you have registered an account, you get 100% access of your whole finances such as your credit cards, grocery bills, loans and other personal expenses.

·It offers a very detailed tracking program about everything that goes on with your finances from – the things you spend your money on, how much monthly savings you have as well as your investment’s performance.

·Automatic alerts are also given to you through a text message or an e-mail especially when you are on the brink of reaching your card’s credit limit or if you have too little money deposited in your bank account.

·In addition to these services, this online tool can also show you budgeting charts and spread sheets that teaches you how to budget in every expense category.

2.) Wesabe

·Wesabe.com is a website that provides strong financial management instruments while at the same time having that social networking appeal since it offers an active forum for clients who seek support and give encouragement to each other in order to reach their respective monetary goals.

·Since it is more hands-on website as compared to Mint, you have the choice of putting your bank or credit card statements on your own. Since this is not done automatically, you safeguard your identity as well as important details such as your account numbers and passwords better.

For Financial Planning

3.) Buxfer

·A more basic and less updated free online personal finance tool found in the web, it is best for people who are looking for fuss-free financial planning instruments.

·However, what makes it stand out among other online financial planning device is its user-friendly interface. Buxfer is equipped with a step-by-step how to guide, easy to understand instructions as well as fast account set up.

For Investment Tracking

4.) Social Picks

·SocialPicks.com is a business based online company that focuses more on tracking a person’s investments. It provides an independent service wherein you can easily gain access of your asset’s performance while at the same time allowing you to make comparisons with other investors. Financial advice is also provided to help you market your investment better.

For Credit Score Checking

5.) CreditKarma.com

·Functions just like your credit score bureau company, this website offers you an updated status of your credit score. Also, advice is given on how you can improve your rating as well as tips on how you can repair a rating with glitches.

·The only main difference is that you need not give out your credit card details. All you have to type in is your name, address and SSS (Social Security Number).

Online personal finance tools are great devices in keeping yourself up to date with your finances current status while at the same time giving you help to make financial planning more effective without the scare of getting scammed.

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Keeping And Spending Money: Wise Personal Finance Ideas

You should have learned how to manage money when you were a kid. If you were not educated on handling your personal finances or if you want to better your skills, have faith. It is possible to increase your financial education whenever you want to. Following is some essential personal finance advice.

When working on personal finances, patience can help you save a lot. Many people buy just-released electronic devices without thinking about the cost. If you wait, you could see their prices drop sharply, though. You can apply the savings to other purchases.

Avoiding debt to begin with is the best advice for good personal finances. Taking a loan for a car or a house is acceptable, as long as you can afford it. But, in your everyday life, you should avoid paying with credit at all costs.

If you are contacted by a debt collector, express willingness to negotiate. Your debt was probably purchased for a small amount of money. So, even if you can only pay them a small piece of what you originally owed, they will probably still make a profit. Get rid of your debt for much less using this in your favor.

It’s never too late to take charge of your personal finances. You will still benefit from the investment no matter what age you start than if you never did. The earlier that you start, the better, but it is never too late to begin.

Although you may have an intricate plan, over the years you may still run into financial issues. It is always a smart idea to learn when your late fees start, as well as how many days past the due date you are allowed. Be aware of the terms prior to signing a one year lease.

You should go over your portfolio every year. Reevaluation helps you manage your risk and match your investments to your goals. Rebalancing also reminds a person to sell high and buy low.

Stabilize your finances by opening a savings account and regularly depositing a set amount. If you do this, you won’t need a loan in an emergency, and you will be able to handle any crisis that occurs. Even if you can’t afford to put too much money in there every month, save as much as you can.

Savings ought to be a priority in your personal finances. Make saving money a top priority. Make a routine of putting aside some of each paycheck toward your savings, just like you do for your bills. By paying yourself first, you will gradually accrue a financial safety net.

No credit repair company can guarantee 100% success in repairing your history. Often, companies will make sweeping promises about what they can do to help you with your credit. There is no fix that will work for every situation, and these companies are not being honest with you. To guarantee success would be a fraud and no one should make this promise.

The important basis of all your personal finance goals is a budget that is put in a spreadsheet or written on paper. To write a personal budget, at the beginning of the month, write a list of every expense. Don’t forget about any of your daily living costs, no matter how trivial they may seem. This includes everything from rent and groceries to utility bills and fuel for your car. You should also include any projected expenditures. Fill in the amount to be paid, and do not spend more than earned.

If you are living paycheck to paycheck, find a way to cut back on items that are not needed for daily living. If you try to cut an enjoyable activity, such as dining out, out of your budget entirely, you’ll probably give up on your budget after just a few months. However, if you just cut back half the dinners out every month, you can save money and still enjoy dining out.

Avoid investment opportunities that have high fees attached. Brokers that invest long term tend to charge fees for making use of their services. Your total return will be greatly affected by these fees. Steer clear of brokers who charge exorbitant commissions for their services or pile on lots of account management charges.

If you use online banking, then consider signing up for the alert features that may be available. Banks utilize modern technologies, like e-mail and text messages, to keep you updated about your account. Having alerts in place for low balance and large purchases can prevent you from suffering overdraft fees, and let you identify fraud quickly.

Being reasonable with your money is absolutely essential. This isn’t some sort of talent; it’s a learnable skill. Anyone, from your 14 year-old kid to your 80 year-old grandfather, can become good at managing money. The advice in this article can help you to significantly increase your proficiency in monetary matters.

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The Basics of Accounting and Personal Finance

In today’s financial climate, personal fiscal responsibility is more important than ever. Knowing how much money you have, the liquidity of your assets and being able to successfully manage you assets is essential. However, it seems that these are not skills that our educational institutions place much value upon. While math and science courses are staples and graduation requirements in our high school curricula, arguably more applicable personal finance courses are not. Perhaps that is why many students are feeling increasingly unprepared to make the crucial financial decisions that they face upon graduation. A key aspect of understanding personal finance is comprehending the basics of accounting. Therefore, it is my opinion that at least one basic accounting course should be a requirement for all high school students. Below I will briefly outline several basic concepts that should help give interested readers an overview of accounting.

The most fundamental tenet of accounting is the concept of debits and credits. Every company (or individual) tracks their flow of assets and liabilities through the use of debits and credits. When cash is involved in a transaction, a basic rule of thumb applies. If the amount of cash on hand is increasing, then the cash account is “debited.” Likewise, if the amount of cash on hand is decreasing, the cash account is “credited.” It is that simple. The concept of a “journal entry,” is also essential in understanding the mechanics of debits and credits. Simply put, whenever a transaction takes place, a corresponding journal entry, or written record of the transaction must be completed. Journal entries spell out in prose which account is being debited and which is being credited. To further illustrate this concept, consider the following example:

A business (Company D), purchases 20 tickets to a local sporting event at $10 each for a grand total of $200. Therefore Company D has spent $200 of its cash on hand. Company D’s “Cash” account would be credited for $200. Likewise, one of Company Ds “Expense” accounts would be debited for $200. A corresponding journal entry would be written to notate this. While this example has been greatly simplified, the conceptual aspect is sound.

Keeping track of your personal finances may only require a few entries per month, depending on the number of significant financial transactions you perform. However, businesses are in a much different scenario. Due to the scope of their operations and the sheer number of different accounts they maintain, it is vital they organize their transactions in an easy-to-view format. The format of choice is a “T-account.” A t-account looks just as its name may indicate – a “T.” The name of the account serves as a header while debits occupy the left side of the “T” and credits occupy the right. This allows auditors as well as company accountants to quickly find transactions and follow the flow of money throughout the company. For every account that a company maintains, a corresponding t-account is created.

These t-accounts are then grouped into three major categories; “assets,” “liabilities,” and “stock holders’ equity.” These categories make up a fundamental equation that all accountants must know; ASSETS = LIABILITIES + STOCK HOLDERS’ EQUITY. Accounts that are grouped under the “assets” label include cash, accounts receivable and equipment. Accounts payable, accrued expenses and wages payable are some of the “liability” accounts, while retained earnings and capital stock are the main “equity” accounts.

The final piece of the accounting puzzle for a company is the preparation of financial statements. These statements are made up of every account and calculation that has been previously mentioned. A balance sheet is specifically comprised of the “assets = liabilities + equity” equation. An income statement contains information regarding the revenues and expenses of a company. In short, every financial statement builds on the data contained in the previous one, just like accounts and journal entries are derived from each other. If you are looking for visual examples of these statements, I highly recommend searching for them with “Google Images.” While perhaps an obvious answer, a visual aid is often crucial in truly comprehending a subject.

In closing, I am hopeful that this overview has given you a basic understanding of some of the building blocks of accounting. As I have demonstrated above, a basic grasp of accounting is essential, not only to understanding the functions of modern day businesses, but to understand personal finance as well. Finally, if this piece has inspired any of you to seek out further education in the accounting field then I have fulfilled my purpose.

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The Unintended Consequences of Globalism

Globalism might be good for the world economy as a whole, but does not necessarily mean it has been good for the American worker. Whether intentional or unintended, the American worker has suffered through the philosophy of free trade. Do not miss quote me, Globalism has a lot of positives. Now more than ever the people of earth are connected through the internet and can communicate information faster than any other time in history. People are exposed to different cultures and ideas, and the free flow of information is exponentially evolving our society. “Free trade” plays a big part in globalism, which is why there has been a “backlash” from non-college educated workers in wealthy countries in direct response to the effects of free trade policies. When wealthy counties openly trade with developing countries it can overvalue the wealthy countries currency, which in turn makes imports cheaper while exports become more expensive. However, according to the Economic Policy Institute, the real culprit is not the valuation of the dollar and the increasing trade deficit. (Bivens, Economic Policy Institute)

The USA has increasingly shifted its economy from manufacturing to services like banking and investing. It is cheaper to import products of manufacturing from a country that has extremely cheap labor than it is to employ American workers in the United States. This in turn means there now is a premium on college educated Americans who are filling job openings within the service industry. On the other side of the coin, manufacturing jobs are leaving the country and lowering wages of workers without a college degree. This fact coupled with increasing technology that replaces workers and a trade policy that out prices “expensive” American workers is leading to decreased wages. As the US trades more with developing countries as a percentage of GDP, the wages of unskilled workers continue to decrease. (Slaughter and Swagle, International Monetary Fund)

Though Globalism has a net increase in GDP and employment for countries involved, most of the gains from free trade is disproportionately received by the top 1% of Americans. Policies that protect corporations and their interest at the expense of the American worker exacerbate the problem. Trade policies like NAFTA and others have little protections for workers and heavily favor the multinational corporations that seek to benefit from free trade. This only adds fuel to income inequality, which for poor countries can increase economic growth while having a negative effect on rich countries. Rich countries are also at higher risk of financial crisis when they have high levels of income inequality. (Malinen, Huffington Post)

Globalism and free trade are linked very close together, which is why there is a stigma attributed to the word. There has been growing resentment within the US and other wealthy nations of globalism as a whole. They do not just condemn free trade, but openly blame minorities and marginalized groups for their decrease in wages and “eroding” their cultural dominance that they claim dominion over. This is a deadly cycle, as income inequality only feeds this type of behavior. In a country that is not adequately educating its people, more of the workers within its country will become more ignorant. With free trade putting a premium on college educated workers and decreasing wages of unskilled labor, we are now almost at a tipping point, socially and economically.

Globalism has many unintended consequences that inadvertently caused huge social and economic problems within the US. The problems that globalism is causing is not a hard fix. Reducing the income inequality will eradicate more of the negative effects of globalism. Universal Education, Universal healthcare, and a rewrite of our tax code are just a few ways to reduce income inequality. All of these possibilities are well within our means. We have to take care of these problems swiftly, before globalism becomes an integral part of our own decline. (Mason, Post-Gazette)

Bivens, Josh. “Using Standard Models to Benchmark the Costs of Globalization for American Workers without a College Degree.” Economic Policy Institute. N.p., 22 Mar. 2016. Web. 25 Apr. 2017.

Malinen, Tuomas. “The Economic Consequences of Income Inequality.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 17 Dec. 2015. Web. 25 Apr. 2017.

Mason, Bob. “Single-payer Health Care Would Help to Treat Three Separate Threats.” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. N.p., 26 Oct. 2014. Web. 25 Apr. 2017.

Slaughter, Matthew, and Phillip Swagel. “Economic Issues 11–Does Globalization Lower Wages and Export Jobs?” International Monetary Fund. Imf.org, Sept. 1997. Web. 25 Apr. 2017.

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Global Trends in the Cosmetic Industry

Cosmetic dyes and colours: Explained

Cosmetic colours are also known as cosmetic lakes. These colours are produced by taking the help of absorption of dyes that are water-soluble onto a substrate. It makes the colour insoluble in water. Cosmetic lake colours are made by making use of unique technology. The technology helps in attaining extremely fine particles. These particles help in achieving shade consistency. In comparison water soluble colours, cosmetic lakes are much more stable & safe. They also generate vivacious and brighter colours. It has been seen that cosmetic pigments and lakes are more suitable for food products that contain fats and oils. They are also suitable for those products that do not contain enough moisture for dissolving colours.

Cosmetic dyes, on the other hand are used for making cosmetic colours & products. These dyes are widely used by the cosmetic manufacturing industries and businesses all over the world. They are primarily used for manufacturing hair dyes, lipsticks, nail polishes, shampoo as well as other personal care products. It has been seen that generally water soluble & food dyes are very easy and safe to use. These dyes are mostly used for a wide variety of applications. They include cleaning chemicals, soaps, medicine, cosmetic products etc.

Know which ones are safe for use

Be it the use of any type of cosmetic dyes or cosmetic colorants safety of use is a primary consideration. Cosmetic colours and cosmetic dyes often make use of a wide range of synthetic colours. These are often referred to as FD&C colours. They are mainly extracted through coal tar and are basically a by-product of petroleum. Research shows that some particular coal tar based dyes lead to different types of cancer. This is why the FDA regulates them. They also determine the arsenic or lead amount they contain. Thus there are many restrictions in the use of such colours.

Some global trends in Cosmetic dyes and cosmetic colours

Worldwide it is seen that North America, followed by Europe, has the largest market for colour cosmetics. This is due to innovations in colour cosmetics. Other factors also include high consumer disposable income and frequent new product launches in colour cosmetic market in the region. However Asia too is expected to show high growth rate in the colour cosmetics market in next few years. This is on account of the increasing consumer incomes and rising in awareness about personal care products in the region.

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Economic Turmoil and the Future of Brazil

For many years, Brazil has been an emerging economic hub, attracting investors from all over the world. The Brazilian economy saw an 368% increase in Gross Domestic Product growth from 2003 to 2011. In addition, Brazil took in almost half of Foreign Direct Investment flowing into South America during 2015. This doesn’t come as a surprise since it reigns as one of the major emerging national economies. However, Brazil has seen a recent economic downturn with increasing unemployment and a contracting GDP. In fact, the Brazilian government cut 2017 GDP expectations from 1.6% to 1% growth. Having been one the most lucrative foreign investments for governments to individual investors, what happened to the so-called “Country of the Future” and can Brazil regain its momentum?

Back in 2015, recession hit Brazil hard and the country is still struggling to get back on track. According to the CIA World Factbook, the economy contracted 32% from its peak in 2011 and unemployment reached a new high at 12.6% in 2016. Being based mostly on services, agriculture and oil, Brazil’s economy has a direct correlation with global demand. With global recession looming, Brazil is feeling the effects of a slow world economy.

Brazil is a top tourist destination offering beautiful beaches, a diverse culture and exciting festivals. However, with the world economy slowing down, people are less likely to travel abroad. Since the majority of the country’s GDP derives from the service industry, Brazil will not be able to rebound any time soon unless there is a major boost in consumer confidence.

The demand for Brazilian exports was slashed when its largest trading partner, China, entered into an economic slowdown of their own. The decrease in exports caused massive layoffs throughout the nation. The notorious economic downward spiral began by wary consumer spending as unemployment rose. Companies that tried to gain capital by borrowing in U.S. dollars found it difficult to pay back those loans as the Brazilian Real crashed 25% in the span of a year in 2015.

One of the major hits came from low oil prices and the corruption of Petrobras, a large oil company and Brazil’s largest source of investment. Brazil is major producer of oil, exporting $11.8 billion worth in 2015, according to the Observatory for Economic Complexity. OPEC delivered a major blow when the cartel decided not to cut oil production, causing oil futures prices to plunge. In order to cope with heavy losses, Petrobras was forced to sell off assets and halt future research and expansion plans.

As if things weren’t going poorly, Petrobras was also caught in a scandal with former Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff and other high office executives. From 2004 to 2012, the company had spent over $2 billion on bribes to politicians whom would allow the company to charge inflated prices for construction contracts. Now that the scandal has unfolded, Petrobras executives face jail time and the company as a whole is forced to pay billions in fines.

So what does the future hold for Brazil?

Although at the moment the future looks dim, there are still signs of hope Brazil can turn itself around. The Real has seemed to stabilize in 2016 and heads into 2017 with an upward trend. Moreover, experts’ GDP projections for 2018 through 2020 show promising figures that Brazil can restore pre-recession level growth.

Even more promising, U.S. companies are still showing faith in Brazil’s future. American Airlines plans to invest $100 million in an aircraft maintenance center in Sao Paulo. Brazilian Investment Partnership Minister Wellington Moreira Franco and many countries like the United States, United Kingdom, France and Japan agree there are still reasons to invest in Brazil. This should be seen as a sign of confidence that the Brazilian market will grow soundly with the support of both national and international investment.

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The Effects Of The Global Trade Agreement

We live in a world that is increasingly getting connected. In such a world, trade agreements are bound to expand internationally, and to think and act otherwise would be downright stupid.

These global trade agreements, as such, are either bilateral or multilateral understanding between two or multiple countries and govern the trade policies between them. These agreements have a massive impact on worldwide trade and investments and are one of the major causes responsible for shaping business relationships across the globe. And while such agreements might not affect directly affect the place where you live or operate, being aware of the current trade agreements can definitely uncover numerous opportunities.

Forming up opinions is up to you; we do not intend to initiate an argument over how good or how bad these global trade agreements are. This article aims to get you familiarized with such agreements and tell if your supply chain could be affected or not.

While a few countries have settled upon free trade agreements and are in the process of widening them, a number of other nations have formed common markets and unions; this form of development can a have a thorough effect on small-scale businesses.

Two of the most common agreements are the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) between Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Canada, Brunei, Peru, Mexico, Chile, Malaysia and Japan, and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between Canada, United States and Mexico.

Now, how such agreements impact your local business’s supply chain depends on a simple fact; whether your business is an importer, exporter or neither.

Scenario 1: You neither import nor export

It’s fairly easy to decide whether you are an importer or not, right? I understand that you do not directly source products from a foreign supplier, and technically speaking, that doesn’t make you an importer. However, trade agreements can still impact you. Your suppliers are directly affected by such regulations, and this vulnerability can affect your supply chain.

Keep the distinction in mind.

Scenario 2: You identify yourself as an importer

Owing to the low cost manufacturing in some countries, many small scale suppliers are able to compete with global giants.

With a trade agreement between two countries, most of the times, the country with lower labour costs benefits when the trade tariffs are lowered or eliminated. With trade agreements, importers usually get to source low-cost goods and it allows for the unrestricted movement of such low-cost goods through higher cost partner nation.

In case, such an agreement is dissolved, an importer would inevitably face a higher cost of goods and thus look for cheaper sourcing options, decrease their operational costs, and ultimately increase the prices, which would be borne by the customers, of course.

Scenario 3: You are an exporter

This even counts if you sell products that another firm exports because at some point or other, taxes would be levied on your sold goods. So how does it affect you? Your customers end up paying higher amounts for your products.

With a trade agreement in place between the country where the product originates and the receiving country, the very same products would move through the receiving nation freely. In such cases, you’d definitely want to keep such an agreement intact and leverage this competitive advantage you have in this particular country bound by trade regulations.

As a small or a medium sized business, it is therefore important for you to identify where your business lies with respect to global trade agreements.

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The Paramounted Importance of Critical Analysis in International Trade Policies

International trade is largely based on the constant fluctuations in the world-wide economy, this resulting in constant changes with regards to tariffs, trade subsidies and unending amendments of regulations with regards to international trade. “Trade policy and economic Growth”, a paper by Keith Maskus, PhD, focuses on the relationship between trade policies and the growth of the economy or lack thereof, the main point of interest of the paper was to establish whether the variance of trade policies will affect the economic growth of any country. The conclusion reached was that open economies tend to grow faster than closed economies, ceteris paribus. therefore concluding that open competition is good in the sense that it improves resource distribution and the country gains in Investment and innovation.

An organisation that is involved in international trade has to pay special attention to such information. There might not be any countries with closed economies however there are countries that have low imports to the point that they are regarded as closed economies for instance Brazil. In 2011 Brazil recorded 13% as its import percentage which was quite low for a country of its stature. Is it not then imperative to constantly be up to date with changes in the trade policies of countries one is interested in pursuing trade relations with? since there is a proven positive relationship between the openness of an economy to competition (thus meaning the country is greatly involved in trade) and the growth of that country`s economy, this serves as an indication of how lucrative and profitable a business venture would be under such circumstances. The Critical analysis aspect then comes into play by determining how much gain or loss would result from substantial changes to the policies, which are measures and instruments that can influence export and imports, the objective being the policies influence the trade sector to the result of profit for the business venture. one might feel a degree in commercial management is then needed in order to fully understand all the kinks and edges of the international business, and they would be right, but the eventuality is that it will always boil down to intelligence and efficiency in the analysis of trends, calculation of potential profit/loss, predictions of future stability or fluctuations in the world economy prompting changes to prices in the trade sector.

There is one other important factor that can alter potential business plans, and that is the politics of the country in question, policies are easily influenced by the politics of the nation, and it is thus advisable that critical analysis be also engaged, this results in better understanding of the country and its stability thus reducing the chances of incurring a bad business eventuality. Nations are not governed by robots, unfortunately, but are governed by people with interests and human nature desires to differ from individual to individual making it difficult to maintain a constant effective system. if politicians are elected they tend to focus on altering policies for their own benefit, and the benefit of those they promised (if there are still honest politician available) from that point it is important that international business consider such factors before pursuing business. Prime examples being, whenever there are strikes in South Africa investors tend to shy away, and most of the strikes are birthed from political influence, thus deeming South Africa an Unstable nation to invest in, or Zimbabwe a nation sanctioned, due to political infringements, making the country undesirable for investment irregardless of the profitability of the business idea. It is thus an excellent idea to firstly research in-depth to the politics of the country before hand and invest with,much-needed information, guiding the innovative decision made.

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