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Articles on Investing

What is Diversification?

Virtually every investment has some type of risk associated with it. The stock market rises and falls. An increase in interest rates can cause a decline in the bond market. No matter what you decide to invest in, risk is something you must consider. One key to...

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What is a Closed-End Fund?

Closed-end funds have been around since 1893, more than 30 years before the first mutual fund (also known as an open-end fund) was created in the United States. However, closed-end funds are much less common than open-end funds. There are fewer than 600 closed-end...

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What are the Different Classes of Assets?

When it comes to investing their money, many people are content to take a random approach. They may have received a hot tip for a particular investment and decided to plow a large amount of money into it with no regard to the overall balance of their portfolios....

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What is Asset Allocation?

Lewis Carroll, the author of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, once said, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.” This is certainly true when it comes to investing: If you don’t know where you’re headed financially, then it is not as vital...

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What Stock and Bond Investing Alternatives do I Have?

Many prudent investors may have at least some of their holdings in stocks, corporate bonds, or both. In fact, when most people think of “investing,” they think of Wall Street and the stock market. Many fail to realize that there are alternative ways to invest in...

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Difference Between a Fixed Annuity and a Variable Annuity

An annuity is a contract with an insurance company in which you make one or more payments in exchange for a future income stream in retirement. The funds in an annuity accumulate tax deferred, regardless of which type you select. Because you do not have to pay taxes...

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How Do Mutual Funds and Stocks Differ?

Whether you’re a first-time stock investor or a seasoned veteran, you should understand what differentiates single stock investments from mutual fund investing. Picture a collection of stocks, bonds, or other securities that are purchased by a group of investors and...

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What is a Stock Index?

In 1884, Charles Henry Dow averaged the closing prices of 11 stocks he considered representative of the strength of the U.S. economy in a paper that preceded The Wall Street Journal. By 1896, The Wall Street Journal was publishing this average on a regular basis, and...

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What Types of Bonds are Available?

Bonds are issued by federal, state, and local governments; agencies of the U.S. government; and corporations. There are three basic types of bonds: U.S. Treasury, municipal, and corporate. Treasury Securities Bonds, bills, and notes issued by the U.S. government are...

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What is a bond?

When you invest in bonds, you are investing in the debt of a government entity or a corporation. A bond is simply evidence of a debt and represents a long-term IOU. Bonds are issued by federal, state, and local governments; agencies of the U.S. government; and...

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What is an Annuity?

An annuity is a contract with an insurance company that is funded by the purchaser and designed to generate an income stream in retirement. It is a flexible financial vehicle that can help protect against the risk of living a long time because it provides an option...

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