3 Alternative Investments to Diversify Your Portfolio

In the current climate it is important to hold a diversified portfolio of investments, and not place all of ones eggs into the same metaphorical basket.As inflation remains high the value of cash diminishes, and so investors seek to acquire assets where the value tracks or beats inflation.As interest rates are low, investors also require income from the portfolio to replace the lost ‘risk-free’ income from cash deposits.As markets are volatile, the savvy investor hopes to invest in assets that continue to grow in value steadily, and do not fall in value at the slightest whiff of bad political or economic news.Here are three types of alternative investments that do not depend on the performance of traditional assets like stocks and shares, bonds, cash or property, and display the characteristics mentioned above.Farmland InvestmentsThe price of agricultural land is directly related to earnings derived from the land itself. Agricultural real estate assets have been shown in studies of historical data to grow in value at 2% above the rate of inflation.Arable land also generates annual income from the cultivation and sale of crops, or from lease payments from tenant farmers, replacing lost income when dividends from other investments fall or interest rates are low.Farmland is in exceptionally high demand as the population grows and demands more food, but supplies of suitable land are actually shrinking due to urbanisation, land degradation and climate change. Returns form farmland investments then are driven by population growth and rising incomes/increased consumption, rather than financial markets, and as these are long-term fundamental trends, farmland generates very little volatility and is not affected by short term peaks and troughs.Smaller investors find it difficult to access direct farmland investments due to the amount of capital required and the expertise in selecting / managing properties. There are of course farmland investment funds to consider or other, more innovative structures allowing multiple investors a stake in a larger asset through a trust or a bond.Forestry InvestmentsInvesting in trees used to be a preoccupation of institutional investors like pension funds and hedge funds, but now there are lots of opportunities for smaller investors to participate in direct forestry investments, as well as regulated and unregulated forestry investment funds.Returns from forestry investments come from the cultivation and sales of timber. As trees continue to grow in size they also grow in value, so returns are driven by biological growth. This means forestry investments retain their value if other assets falter. If the stock market crashes tomorrow (again), trees are still getting bigger and more valuable.The rate of growth of trees outstrips the rate of inflation by some margin, making forestry investments one of the best performing assets classes for 30 years, avoiding the majority of market volatility that has occurred during that period. Smaller investors can participate in a forestry investment fund, or they can take ownership of managed plots within commercial forestry plantations growing a variety of different timber types in various global regions from Brazil to Australia.Renewable Energy InvestmentsOne of the most popular types of alternative investments available today in renewable energy investment. This could be investing in wind turbines, solar panels or biofuel plantations, not to mention a host of other innovative power production projects.For the most part, renewable energy investments generate returns from the production and sale of electricity from free and unlimited sources such as wind or the sun. This means that income from direct renewable energy investments is not dependent on the markets, and income track energy prices, which rise as demand increases and supplies of traditional fuels run out.So investing in renewable energy provides an inflation-linked income stream that is not market dependent, and where the source never runs out.There are of course many other types of alternative investments to consider and investors are encouraged to seek advice from professional advisors that are able to demonstrate and excellent level of knowledge and a verifiable track record.

1 Dollar Coin Products to Enhance Your Collection

Coin collecting has been a pastime since olden times. Some people collect them for their bullion value, while some people collect them because of their artistic value. Those people who have a good collection of antique, rare, and surplus coinage are proud of the unique effort that has built up their collection. To boost the effort of those collecting gold and silver dollars aims to market the widest collection of theme-based US coinage online. The coins on offer have been in circulation, yet, at present, are lying surplus in huge stocks. They offer coins that are modern, rare, world coins for collectors and investors who can add them as prize items in their collection.One dollar coin products include the U.S. Presidential series released in honor of US Presidents, available in chronological order. On display you will find the United States 2010 $1 American Eagle, which is made of silver, as part of the complete collection of silver coins of the 20th Century. Rare coins include the U.S. Peace Silver Dollar collection, which was released during 1922 to 1928.Coins available include those depicting eagles, buffalo, and other animals. Theme-based pieces are available for online purchase. The U.S. Kennedy Half Dollar coin, which was minted in 1970, depicts an eagle on the reverse and is worth collecting. Those who have the eye of a coin collector and the mind of an investor will surely find 1 dollar coin the best place to visit for increasing their collection.You have the widest choice of rare, antique, and current coins at discounted prices available. You will get coins in fine condition, such as the U.S. Morgan Silver Dollar with two-toned gold and silver metals brought to life with the encryptions highlighted, or an uncirculated U.S. Bicentennial Kennedy Half Dollar, which was minted in 1976.Some dollars are layered in bright and pure silver such as the Eisenhower Dollar with eagle motif was minted during the period 1971 to 1978. The collection of American Half Dollar coins introduced in 1964 was in memory of President JFK, rarely found in circulation, yet the design is still minted now. 1 dollar coin offers you a complete collection of these coins on an annual basis of issue.Minted in the United States, in 2012, is the 1 dollar coin, which has a baby themed design. This coin is perfect for a gift for a child at any occasion. On display are the most popular designs covering the history of the United States, which include the Black Diamond coin depicting a silver buffalo resembling the American bison, which is supposed to be a rare collection. The complete collection of the Black Diamond silver coins are available at various prices, depending upon the grade and year of production. Coins commemorating the Native Americans also comprise a precious collection, which is only available at 1 dollar coin in the full set. The set of Patriotic coin collection of gold-plated coins are among the products available at great discounts.I am Stanley Morgan, engaged in collecting rare and current dollar and half dollar coins since 1961. I have a collection of coins minted over the last few decades. I duly acknowledge the endeavor taken by 1 dollar coin without whom it would have been difficult to build up my collection.

Debt Collection Solutions – Collecting and Minimizing Costs

Best Debt Collections StrategiesThere is a growing army of debt collectors pursuing an increasing number of debtors who owe a growing amount of dollars. Complaints about debt collection practices and debt collection agencies are expected to rise perhaps by as much as 20 to 40%. The attitude toward debt collectors is often surly and political pressure may enforce ethical approaches to debt recovery. If you have debts to collect, you’ll need better collections strategies than have been used formerly.Aggressive collection agencies which get paid on commission might use any collections tactic and means available to them. They may not be concerned about your long term relationship with your customer. They may alienate you from your customer. Since customer loyalty is a priority, you need to work with a debt collection agency that has a more gentle approach to collections.Debt collection is a huge industry and serves a vital component of ensuring business cash flow is maintained. Often debtors will sway from their responsibility to pay on time and debt collectors make contact to get payments coming in. Although we like to think consumers and businesses alike will pay the debts on time, in fact they will pay those bills that are most pressing. That means those companies who don’t manage their bill collections will find their customers getting too far behind in payments.When bills go unpaid for a long time, it can cause the lender/seller some financial discomfort. That company’s bills may begin to be unpaid and a vicious cycle of non-payment or delinquency is set into play. Before your accounts receivable reach specific milestone dates, you want to make contact with the non-payer. There a variety of ways you can approach the person or company owing the funds. A tried and tested approach that gets bills paid without causing conflicts is perhaps your best option. If other companies have found that this approach works, you may avoid your own trial by fire methods, or the aggressive tactics used by many collection agencies.Collection Agencies – Experience CountsCollection agencies have found that certain overdue dates are very important. Typically beyond 180 days, collections gets a lot tougher. It is better to deal with debts effectively before 180 days and before other key lengths of time.Collections Letters and Dedicated CollectorsThere are typically 2 different ways to collect debts. One is to phone the person or company owing you payments. If this doesn’t work, you can hire a collections service. When a company or person learns that a third party collection agency is now involved, they are typically more interested in paying. They know their credit rating might be affected and their debt has now reached an embarrassing situation. Having a collection agency call on you is a humiliating experience and that sense of humility can get them to start paying the debt.While recovery of the debt owed is the end goal, you may need to collect in partial payments. The point of doing it this way is because once the indebted person starts paying, they become more conscientious about paying it off. They’ll be relieved when they do. You want these normal psychological forces in play to help you recover your money.Some agencies or service will offer flat fee collections services. That means you pay one low fee for collecting on an account or to collect a number of outstanding receivable accounts. This is a great way to save money. These services offer information on how to collect and provide effective collections letters to help you collect debts.If the gentle approach doesn’t get the results you need, then you can hire dedicated debt collectors. These are actual trained professionals who work on tough accounts that require human intervention. The debt collector will work more closely with the company or person to get action. Just because your account has gotten to this stage doesn’t mean you’ve lost this company as a customer. It simply means they are going to work harder with them to get payments coming.If the collection agency can collect on 50% of the debt, that may be far preferable to collecting nothing. If an agency charges 20% to 50% of the collected amount, it may be worth it in today’s difficult times. Bankruptcies are at alarming rates. That’s why it’s smart to get active on your overdue accounts and not let them get too far. Unfortunately, it is inevitable that you will have lots of these delinquent accounts. It may be wise to use a collections service to ensure you get your payments before that person pays their other dates. It’s your hard earned money so put your needs first.