Thursday, March 31, 2011

Playing to Win

"Win as if you were used to it, lose as if you enjoyed it for a change."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

I have often said that a football game is a microcosm of life. There's an ebb and flow to every game, with each team experiencing its share of adversity. These adversities include such things as fumbles, interceptions, bad calls by the officials, injuries, and "shanked" punts.
In the National Football League, the teams are so evenly matched that the main determinant in separating the winners from the losers is how well players and coaches handle adversity. Responding positively to adversity is a sign of character, a term talked about incessantly by coaches, players, sportscasters, and fans alike.
The flip side of dealing effectively with adversity is how well players and coaches take advantage of opportunities. The great teams throughout history have had a knack for converting opponents' mistakes into scores, usually touchdowns.
But, most important of all, great teams play to win, while also-rans generally play not to lose. You can almost feel the fear of a team that doesn't really believe it can win in the clutch - when it has the lead and the clock is winding down.
The great coaches and quarterbacks throughout history have defied conventional wisdom, just as the most successful businesspeople defy conventional wisdom in the business world. Those who go against the grain of conventional wisdom demonstrate that they are playing to win rather than not to lose.
The legendary Johnny Unitas, thought by many to be the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL, once said that he didn't believe in the conventional wisdom that you have to establish the run in order to open up the passing game. He believed you should establish the passing game first, which, in turn, opens up the running game. Such a bold, aggressive approach to football is enough to cause a conservative coach to develop shingles.
As I said, football is a microcosm of life. If you approach the game of business - or the bigger game of life - with the mindset of just trying not to lose, you probably are going to lose. But if you play to win, the odds of your winning are greatly improved. You may not win every time out, but your track record will be much better.
What happens if you take a bold approach to life and still end up losing? You get hurt, of course. But, hey... that's life. If there were no risk involved, everyone would be bold. When you think big and bold, you're telling the world that you believe in yourself so much that you're not afraid to take risks.
And when you lose, there's a marvelous antidote that's been around for thousands of years: Simply pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and start over again. It's true in sports; it's true in business; and it's true in every aspect of life.
Robert Kiyosaki, author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad, put it well when he said, "Winners are not afraid of losing. But losers are. Failure is part of the process of success. People who avoid failure also avoid success."

The irony is that the more you play not to lose, the better your chances of losing. That's because playing not to lose - timidity - puts you on the defensive. Playing not to lose is not much different than playing to lose.
I recall seeing film producer David Brown on a talk show many years ago, after he had produced some of Hollywood's biggest blockbusters with partner Richard Zanuck. These included such films as The Sting, Jaws, Cocoon, The Verdict, Driving Miss Daisy, and The Sugarland Express.
But life wasn't always so good for Brown. He explained to the audience that he had been fired from his job at one of the studios when he was in his fifties, which left him at the bottom financially.
So what did he do? The day he was fired, he went home and put on his finest suit, neatly placed an expensive silk handkerchief in his breast pocket, then dined at one of Hollywood's power restaurants - with a beautiful woman, of course.
Brown's point was to emphasize how important it is to be bold and take the offensive when you're down. At the time of this particular television interview, he was 75 years old and had already begun three new careers - including producing his first Broadway play.
Finally, it's important to recognize that playing to win is the path to greatness, not love. On the contrary, being proactive and taking risks is guaranteed to make a lot of people dislike you. But, as the saying goes, if you want to be loved, get a dog.

Instant Money

Lee Lowell at The White Cap Research Group is on an incredible win streak... 26 out of his 27 picks recommended in 2010 were winners. And Lee says this year is shaping up to be even better.Click here for the Video:-

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Profit Jackpot

The Road to Millions Is Paved With Hard Work

"The difference between perseverance and obstinacy is that one comes from a strong will, and the other from a strong won't."
Henry Ward Beecher
The game show Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? is a suspenseful half-hour that offers contestants the opportunity to dramatically improve their financial picture. Answer a dozen or so questions correctly, with help on a few if necessary, and watch the bank account mushroom.
If it were really that simple, anyone could become wealthy overnight. But it doesn't work that way. Achieving financial success isn't a game - it's a way of life.
Some will object to the notion that making a lot of money is the same as achieving success. I understand that argument, and I agree that success comes in many ways besides just a bigger payday.
But I will submit that most of us expect our financial situation to improve as we become ever more successful at what we do. There is no shame in being rewarded appropriately for our hard work. Ambition combined with our best efforts should have positive results.
As Oprah Winfrey so eloquently put it, "Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment." If anyone would know what it takes to be a self-made millionaire (actually billionaire), Oprah is a very reliable source.
Here are some secrets shared by self-made millionaires:
  • Educate yourself about money. Even if you don't have your sights set on becoming the next Warren Buffett, a good understanding of finance will help you set priorities and make decisions about spending, investments, and savings. Knowledge is power.
  • Set some clear goals. You have to dream big if you want to succeed on a large scale. Don't be afraid of your ambitions. Start with a list of what you want to achieve this year, and then select the one goal that would have the greatest positive impact on your life, something you feel real passion for. Then get busy.
  • Serve other people. Structure your goals so they're not just about you. You'll earn support from the people whose help you need by showing them how your achievements will benefit them - and you'll feel better about yourself than you would if you concentrate only on what's in it for you.
  • Learn to sell yourself. Whatever you create, you have to sell to someone else. You'll need to understand sales and marketing no matter what industry you're in. But at the same time, you have to sell others on your abilities. Be honest and reliable so employers, customers, investors, or other important stakeholders know they can trust you to take care of them.
  • Think of yourself as your own CEO. Whether you work for a boss or for yourself, view your career and success as your own. That means taking full responsibility for what happens to you - your decisions, failures, and triumphs. Put all your energy into your goals. Motivational guru Brian Tracy advises taking the "40+" approach: You work 40 hours a week for survival. Every minute you devote past that 40 hours is devoted to your success.

    Consider the story of the couple who retired to a cottage with a lovely view of some rugged and rocky terrain. Early one morning the wife watched from her window as a young man dressed in work clothes walked down the lane nearby. He was carrying a shovel and a small case. He disappeared from view behind a grove of trees.
    The scene repeated itself daily for a week. Her curiosity got the best of her, and she persuaded her husband to follow him one morning to see what he was doing.
    So the couple took a walk early the next day. Just beyond the trees, they found a very long and deep trench, rough and uneven at one end but neat and straight at the other. The young man arrived during their inspection, and the couple peppered him with questions. "Why dig here, in this rocky ground? Why dig at all? And what is in that case?"
    The young man smiled and explained, "I'm digging a trench. I'm actually learning how to dig a good trench, because the job I'm being interviewed for later today says that experience in doing that is essential - so I'm getting the experience. And the case has my lunch in it."
    There's no secret to success. It's just ambition + hard work + dedication.
    Mackay's Moral: We do what we have to do so we can do what we want to do.

Monday, March 28, 2011

The "Sticky Business" Factor

"All achievements, all earned riches, have their beginning in an idea."
Napoleon Hill
Have you ever been involved in a "sticky" business? "Sticky" businesses trap you with endless tentacles, paperwork, overhead costs, and lots of government red tape. They are potential lawsuit magnets.
I avoid them like the plague.
Instead, I look for "non-sticky" businesses that are based on a hot rising trend. And the best one I've found lately is based on a hot rising trend called China.
The business focuses on Chinese products, commerce, and worldwide demand. I'll tell you about it in a minute.
But first, I'd like to tell you about three new developments in China right now - developments that leverage this business opportunity in a big way.
For openers, according to the Financial Times, China has opened the floodgate of cash reserves to get their "export machine" cranked up again. Apparently some Chinese (in powerful places) believe the financial crisis of the last two years is receding.
Money is now flowing to entrepreneurs and businesses like it did pre-2007.
That's a good thing for the "non-stick" business opportunity I found.
Another development has to do with China's currency.
It's a no-brainer that the Chinese want to control the value of their currency (the Yuan) against all other currencies. And import and export entrepreneurs have been wondering if they'll suffer a backlash over China's currency policy.
But China's currency has a couple of things going for it. For one thing, China's economy is relatively stable compared to the US and other countries. Plus, China has low government debt.
I'm not an economist... but I know that a sound economy and limited government debt typically increases the relative value of a currency.
In real world currency trading, China won't be able to "control" much of anything when they do business with other countries. But overall, the Chinese currency should play a major role in international commerce in a good way.
China does not have the resources to be self-sufficient. The country needs to make and export products to the world, as well as import and consume them. In other words, they need trading partners to survive.
That's another good thing for the "non-stick" business I found.

How to Outsmart The Market

In the market, we can find ourselves in weakened "mental states" for many reasons. Perhaps we had a string of losing trades and have lost a substantial amount of capital, which may make us not only vulnerable, but skittish, scared and desperate, all of which may cause us to make trading mistakes.
With all that is going on around the world and the increased volatility out there, the only place we can exercise calm and control is with ourselves.
To prevent trading mistakes, you must not only have a solid investment plan in place, but also make yourself aware of your "psychological capital." Denise Shull, a prominent trading psychologist and coach, contributed on this subject.
In the book, she notes:
Psychological capital includes your technical knowledge of the stock market, but 99% of it is the net account balance of how you feel -- energetic, clearheaded, and calmly confident. If that describes your state, you in effect have a psych cap account of a million dollars.
If you don't or haven't slept well, haven't eaten, or are angry at your teenager, your psych cap has been debited and your trading decisions will not be of the same quality that they could be.
In short, you can think of psych cap as the state of mind and body when you truly and completely feel good. To relate the idea to something you might be familiar with, a synonym might be frame of mind.
 Psych Cap Exercise No. 1: Getting Clear-Headed
Define your strategy -- that is, a written, one-paragraph plan with a list of specific pieces of information and market events you will look for in order to know when you want to enter the market. After you have that list, write out (again, in one paragraph) what you are going to do to enter the market and next, and more importantly, what signals or events will tell you to exit the market.
This exercise should be done on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon or a holiday. In other words, at some point when the markets are truly not open and you can't be looking at the charts! What is the reason for this? You want to know it by heart and it is easy to fool yourself if you try to do this while you are simultaneously looking at the market. Write out in detail the objective signals and parameters you are looking for (soup to nuts).
Now, let me point out (in case it isn't clear) that this exercise actually requires that you work hard. It isn't that easy. But think about it... if it were that easy then wouldn't everyone be able to do it? You want to do not only the work that others won't bother to do but also the kind of work that others don't even know to do.
After all, remember that they are focusing on analyzing the numbers while you are figuring out how to analyze the markets, other people's perceptions and your own semiconscious biases.
By getting the basic market stuff out of the way on the weekend, you can be focused on exploring all of your perceptions (explicit and conscious) while simultaneously remembering to put all of your decisions within the overt context of the foundation question:
What will other people be likely to perceive when I want out of my trade?
Remember, the key to being successful in the markets is not just knowing what "you believe" about the markets, but rather what the masses "perceive" is happening and how they will act.
Psych Cap Exercise No. 4: Get a Grip
Try to get a handle on these feelings outside of investing or trading; that will make them much easier to recognize when you are under the influence of the stimulation of moving markets. All you are looking for is the footprint in your body/psyche of an intuitive feeling versus an impulsive or compulsive "I have to do something" feeling.
The truth is that our psyches are actually very good at pattern recognition. Some would argue that in fact, pattern recognition defines intelligence. (Think about many of the problems in an IQ test; many are pattern matching.)
Likewise, we have a tendency to see patterns in market data where none exist. I suggest that tendency takes us back to our aversion to uncertainty and our need to feel as if we are in control, or the behavioral gang's "Illusion of Control."
Learning to differentiate the physical experience of intuition versus the physical experience of an impulsive (compulsive?) feeling gives you the objective you want to shoot for!
If you're thinking that this psychological action doesn't apply to investing and stock markets, think again. There are two primary -- and some might say primal -- emotions that drive markets: fear and greed. Being centered and calm, and having a well-formed plan are crucial to portfolio management.
Know your plan of attack and your strategy and write it down. If your strategy looks irrational on paper, it probably is! Go through the details of what you want out of an investment and what you believe the risks are. Remember that you DON'T have to make every trade.
Know yourself, your tendencies and the emotions that are present in your life. If you are making investment decisions because of other factors, you are probably making a mistake. You may get lucky and make money, but in a weak emotional state, you may not be prepared if things go wrong.

The only three ways to grow your business

Thursday 24th March, Earls Court Conference Centre, London

Dear Subscriber, 

It makes sense... 

If you want to grow your business there are only three fundamental things you need to do. 

That's what internet marketer, Chris Cardell says. 

Or rather, IS saying. 

You see, he's on stage at the moment here at the Earls Court Conference Centre and I've dropped in on his Ultimate Marketing seminar to see what's going on. 

He's covering the basics at the moment but it's always good to hear someone else's take on the business we're in. 

For Chris, when it comes to growing your business, as I say, he reckons there are only three fundamental ways to grow your business. 

What are they? 

Well, first you can try and increase the number of potential customers you have. 

If you've got more people to sell your product or service to then chances are - if you've got the right sales processes in place - you'll generate more business. 

Of course, getting more potential customers is the first thing everyone thinks of when it comes to growing a business. But it's not the only way... 

You see, the second way you can grow your business is to increase the transactional value of each of your current customers. 

What's that mean in plain English? 

Well, let's not beat about the bush - it means charging more for your product or service. 

Again, it makes perfect sense and that's why I'd advise that as often as possible you test the price of your product or service. Obviously, you shouldn't be arbitrarily charging more if your product or service isn't actually worth more, but if you can make a bit extra on every sale you make... naturally, your profits will rise and your business will grow. 

OK, two down. What's number three? 

We've increased the number of customers and we've increased the price of the product or service we're selling... 

Next we want to increase the frequency of your sales. 

If you can sell more often then you'll sell more. Yeah, I know, that's obvious too. But that's just it... 

Must You Be Cutthroat to Succeed in Business?

By Michael Masterson

"I come from a poor family. I want to start a business and make money to help them. But when I see successful businesspeople depicted on TV and in the movies, it seems like lying and cheating and screwing people is the way to go. I'm worried. Is that what I'm going to have to do?"
This question was posed just after I had given a presentation on entrepreneurship to a group of MBA candidates at Florida Atlantic University. I was momentarily startled by the question. I was sure I hadn't said anything that suggested success in business required a cutthroat approach.
Still, the question was understandable. When Hollywood depicts business and businesspeople, it is more often than not in a negative light. And when Wall Street, the banking community, and the insurance industry screw their clients - as they've done so notoriously lately - how could any young person think any differently?
So I told the young people in my audience what I'm about to tell you today.
It is definitely not necessary to be bad to be good in business. But the path to business success - and this is especially true for small businesses - is booby-trapped with temptations to do the wrong thing.
I have been starting and growing businesses ever since I was a teenager, and was never tempted to violate my conscience until I went to work for a South-Florida direct-marketing company when I was in my early thirties.
During my time there, I accomplished a lot that I am still proud of. But I also got involved with a few marketing schemes that were misleading. These got me into regulatory trouble and cost me a lot of money.
Looking back at it now, I feel foolish to have allowed myself to act that way. The projects that made the most money in the long run were the good ones. The flim-flam stuff was only good for short-term money. I could have done better had I walked a narrower line.
Most of the successful businesspeople I know are honest men and women who treat their colleagues, vendors, and customers as they would like to be treated themselves. But there are a good number who do cut corners now and then. And there are a few who are bad - who seem to derive pleasure from causing others harm.
I've known direct-mail marketers who bargained with their printers and letter shops to provide service at below cost simply because they knew these guys needed to keep their staffs employed.
I've known owners of profitable businesses who paid lower-level employees minimum wage simply because they could get away with it.
I once worked with a man who refused to pay me my equity in a business when I wanted to get out simply because he knew I wouldn't sue him.
I once worked with a consultant who slandered my client on the Internet as a way to generate business for himself - then had the nerve to teach his dirty trick to people who bought his largely plagiarized marketing program.
The list is endless...
These rotten apples prove that you can become successful by being ruthless. But if you look at their lives, you can see that their path is not easier, faster, or emotionally satisfying in the end. When you grow your business by being devious, your character is tainted by your actions. You become jealous of your competitors, distrustful of your employees, and suspicious of almost everyone you deal with because you assume they think the way you think. As time goes by, you find yourself spending most of your time fighting to stay in business. It's a miserable way to get rich.
My experience tells me that ruthlessness is not an essential component of entrepreneurial success. Success is always a product of...
    • Hard work
    • Long hours
    • The ability to focus
    • Marketing know-how
    • The will to carry on when faced with any obstacle
Machiavellian business tactics are self-defeating. All those people you suckered will remember you. In their own quiet but powerful ways, they will do whatever they can to see you punished. That may mean anything from ignoring your next sales effort to denouncing you on the Internet to reporting you to the authorities - even to blowing your head off.
Wise businesspeople understand that the trust and loyalty they've earned will pave golden paths of opportunity. With each passing year, every dollar will come more easily because of all the relationships they have developed along the way.
The dozens of "good" businesspeople I work with these days are open and honest in their dealings, generous with their time and knowledge, and always willing to share in areas of mutual interest.
EP is a great example. We started working together about 15 years ago on some large-scale, residential real-estate projects.I knew nothing about that business at the time. He could have easily taken advantage of me in a hundred different ways. Instead, his deals were fair - even generous. He never made a nickel until I made one first. And when one of his deals went bad, he put in a big part of his personal savings to bail out me and the other investors.
When he calls me to say "I've got a project you might be interested in," I never hesitate to invest. I don't ask to see a business plan and prospectus. I just say "How much do you need?"
And I'm not the only one who has this level of trust in him. He has established relationships a group of wealthy investors who are all eager to work with him - even in today's difficult markets.
A few years ago, I loaned one of my Jiu Jitsu instructors $5,000. He was embarrassed when he asked for it, but he needed the money - and I really wanted to help him out. He paid me back every dollar, insisting on paying me interest too. So when he came to me recently and asked for advice on a business he wanted to start, I was happy to give it to him - and to invest a considerable amount of money in the business as well.
Donald Trump presents himself as a very tough businessman. And I'm sure he drives a hard bargain. But I don't think he's ruthless. I've heard from people who've worked with him that his deals are generally fair - and although he can be a bit pompous, his business demeanor is usually measured and respectful.
I have written about Bill Bonner before. Of all the clients I've had, he is one of the most impressive in terms of the way he treats people. In more than 14 years of working with him, I've never heard him say a bad word about anyone. And I've never heard anyone say a bad word about him.
Treating people fairly is like putting money in the bank and collecting compound interest. As the years go by, your account will grow gradually larger and then, suddenly, it will get huge. When that happens, you can enjoy continued success without working very hard because you will have banked so much good will.
One caveat: Treating people well and fairly works for 95% of those you come in contact with. As for the other 5% - well, there's not much you can do except try to avoid them in the first place.
So before you go into business with anyone (an employee, a colleague, a vendor - anyone), get to know him on a personal basis. Meet him. Ask questions. Ask for references. Check them. If you feel at all concerned that you might be dealing with one of the rotten few, take a pass.
Over the years, I've become a better businessman because I've been influenced by people of good character who were kind enough to give me lots of good advice. Among the things I've learned, I recommend the following "commandments" to you:
The Ten Commandments of Doing "Good" in Business
1. The customer is always right. Even when he is wrong.
2. Don't promise what you know you can't deliver.
3. Honor your verbal contracts with the same seriousness as you honor written agreements.
4. When negotiating, always aim for a deal that is as good for your partner as it is for you.
5. If a deal turns out badly for your partner but stays good for you, change it to be fair to him.
6. Always pay your employees as much as or more than they are worth - or, if that is impossible, as much as you can afford to pay them, with the promise of making it up to them later.
7. Share your business wisdom with everyone, including your competitors.
8. Never engage in gossip. Speak as if the person you are speaking about will find out what you are saying. (Because he will.)
9. Never take advantage of your vendors simply because you can. Your goal should be to compensate them fairly, even if it means paying them more than the market demands.
10. Never engage in recriminations and try to avoid litigation. In the long run, it is better to be thescrewee rather than the screwer.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Remove the Underperformers from your Portfolio!!!

Michael gave us his criteria for weeding out the cheap companies from the true turnaround gems:
Turnaround Key #1: They Aren't Really Broken! They only appear that way because their stock price is low and they may be receiving negative press. I won't consider recommending a company that is not fundamentally and financially sound.
Turnaround Key #2: They Have a Major Dominant Advantage. The company must also possess a dominant advantage in its own industry sector. Maybe they have a patent. Or maybe a major contract. Or maybe they have a powerful brand that wipes out the competition.
Turnaround Key #3: Minor Flaw Caused 90% Plunge From Normal Price Levels. There is usually a minor flaw that sets off the selling. Could be too much short-term debt. Could be overextended operations. Could be the company missed their earnings target by a couple pennies. But it must be only a minor problem.
Turnaround Key #4: The Big Money Is Quietly Buying! Once the big firms start to realize that a company is financially sound and has upside potential, they jump back in very quickly. They pour big money into a stock, lifting it back to normal price levels

Freedom is the true reason we want wealth.

In retirement will you take your grandkids to McDonalds or will you be the one serving them the burgers there?

You see, depressions and recessions provide unparalleled opportunities to build vast sums of wealth. The both make and break individuals...

Heaters were first introduced to cars as were many other luxuries during the great depression- why?

Because the informed few were richer than ever and demand for luxuries soared.

You've been lied to.  And you don't need to remain in the dark for a second longer.

Have you ever met a wealthy skeptic?!

You see, ‘The Man’ wants you to be skeptical!

Think about it. If you believe in his illusion that you can’t be like him, you stay working for him. Remember, we can’t have everyone in luxury retirement or the system wouldn’t work.

Your life is irreplaceable. Do you really want to spend the largest part of it making someone else’s life better?!

People drift on, living from month to month, looking forward to the distant day when their mortgage is paid off and they can (hopefully!) collect a measly pension. People make themselves feel better temporarily by changing jobs, moving or even buying a new sofa, but they are only treading water. Yet they still have the illusion of progress.

Money is nothing on its own. Freedom is what money brings which in turn brings happiness. You’ll be surprised to learn you don’t need anywhere near a million dollars to be free!

Imagine. You wake up every day knowing everything is on your terms. No bosses or bankers telling you what to do, no restrictions on what you buy.

Let’s get angry about were born a free person! Who are employers, or anyone else for that matter, to tell you what to do?!

Would you rather complain about working or to take steps to ensure you never have to work again? Do you have the guts to ask "why" to ‘the system,’ or are you happy being a worker drone, taken advantage of your whole life?

I’m talking about the big picture here. All the money-making schemes in the world aren’t worth zip unless you understand the truth about what’s going on.
     You’ll just keep chasing your tail!

Fortunes are made by an introduction, a phone call, a nod from an insider, trade-marking a few words or an idea or the registration of a website name. That’s what we’re about- that’s what I do on a regular basis !!!
You have to be comfortable with making money andkeeping it.

Listen, you have to be ‘okay’ about acquiring wealth. Many people aren’t- at least unconsciously anyway. Much like human beings, money is automatically attracted to those who respect it, understand it and care about it.

I speak from experience when I tell you this phenomenon is very real. Money just seems to be attracted to you when you have this power. You become a money-magnet! But only if you’re ready to embrace money- if not, you’ll just find wealth ‘mysteriously’ eludes you...
Whether you’re an employee, self-employed or even on a fixed-income, you struggle through each week hand-to-mouth while the few live a life of abundant luxury.

It is for you to Decide.
Call me at 9432693922.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

At The Present How are Ulips better Than a Mutual Fund?

If the tenure is over 15 years and the investor is proactive in switching between debt and equity, Ulips can be a rewarding option. They offer insurance, investment and tax-free returns.

15 per cent is the tax payable on short-term gains from stocks. Short-term profits from debt funds are added to income and taxed at applicable rates. Ulip income is tax-free.

3 years is the lock-in period for equitylinked savings schemes from mutual funds. 
Ulip investors are free to switch their corpus from one option to another.
Proactive Ulip investors can take calculated bets on the stock market without incurring any tax liability. An investor could have switched out of the equity option when the Nifty crossed 3,100 in early January and then re-entered when the markets fell in early March, only to switch out once again in mid-April.
In a mutual fund, the investor would have had to pay tax every time he made a short-term capital gain from switching in and out of an option. Switching from one option to another in a Ulip is not only tax-efficient, but also incurs no charge for four-six switches in a year. The procedure is very simple. Just deposit a signed transaction slip to the insurance company for effecting the switch. Most insurance companies also offer policyholders the option to manage their accounts online.

Ulips also provide life insurance cover to investors. An investor in his 30s can get a life cover of 40-50 times the annual premium. 
However, Ulips are not such a great option for people above 50 years because the life insurance cover offered is only 5-10 times the annual premium.

ICICI Prulife Rocks!!!

Do Call us if you are interested at 9432693922

Multiple benefits of ICICI Pru LifeLink Wealth SP :
Single Premium ULIP:
Pay premium only once and stay
invested for the long term
Flexible life cover:
Choose between 125%* or 500% of the premium as life cover to suit your protection needs
Dynamic P/E fund option:
A fund option that helps you maximise your returns by distributing your money between equity & debt depending on market conditions
Loyalty Additions:
Up to 2.5% of Fund Value at the end of every 5th year, starting from the 10th policy year for premium payments of Rs 50,000 or above
Trigger Portfolio Strategy:
A unique portfolio strategy to protect the profits you earn from market volatility
Tax benefits:
On Premium paid and benefits received under the policy , as per the prevailing Income Tax laws

Market Commentary: Where Do We Go From Here?

"Never make predictions, especially about the future."
Casey Stengel
Is the biggest question on your mind "Are we in a bubble?" or "When will the ride come to an end?"
We recently passed the two-year anniversary of the market hitting Great Recession lows.
The Dow is up 84%. The S&P is 92% higher. And the NASDAQ has climbed a remarkable 113% since March 2009.
Hopefully, you have taken part in the rally. You may have even made up for your losses from the market collapse of late 2007 through early 2009.
But asking if we are in a bubble... or if the market will crash soon... is a little foolish.
Here's why:
No one knows.
It is as simple as that.
We don't know if we're in a bubble until it pops.
And we don't know if the market will correct until it happens.
Look at the current rally.
Doubters have been lining up pretty much since it started.
In August of 2009, a short five months into the rally, Colin Barr said (on "... it may have pumped up another bubble, this time in stocks."
Barr quoted noted economist David Rosenberg of Gluskin Sheff as saying, "This is the most speculative momentum-driven equity market since the early 1930s." And Barr went on to say that, according to Rosenberg, "the risk of a market collapse later this year is high."
In October of 2009, a New York Times article titled "A New Dow Bubble" referenced, saying, "long-term measures suggest it is now in a new bubble."
In January 2010, legendary investor Jeremy Grantham said that a mix of cheap money and rising prices can lead to a speculative and painful bubble. He said the rally up to that point was "a false rally," and the S&P 500 was worth "850 or so; thus any advance from here will make it once again seriously overpriced."
And late last year, Richard Russell said, "Everything tradeable, stocks, bonds, gold, silver, commodities in general, are rising. I call it an all-around mega-bubble."
I point out these comments not to discredit the individuals behind them. I can only hope one day to know as much as David Rosenberg or Jeremy Grantham.
I point them out to show that even the smartest minds in the investing world can't predict bubbles or time the markets.

So let's not try to guess what this market is doing.
There are some encouraging signs that the rally could continue. Just take them with a grain of salt. Experts can be as wrong about bull markets as they are about bubbles.
According to Bill Stone, chief investment strategist at PNC Asset Management Group, since 1928 bull markets have lasted an average of five years and gained 164%.
This bull market is at two years and a 99% gain. So by historical standards, there is room to run.
Laszlo Birinyi agrees. He is the founder and president of Birinyi Associates in Westport, Connecticut.
He recently said, "This bull market has the strongest start of any in history. When you have a very sharp rise in the first part of the bull market, those tend to be prolonged bull markets."
The S&P 500 is trading for 17.4 times earnings. During the "dot-com" bubble, the multiple was 30.6.
And Joe Davis, chief economist at Vanguard, says, "Corporate balance sheets haven't been in better shape over the last 200 years, period."
Could the rally continue for another 12 months? Sure.
Could it end tomorrow? Absolutely.
We just don't know.
The idea is to be in the markets making money when there is money to be made. I recently read a comment on a financial website that said something along the lines of "Not making money is just as damaging as losing money." I agree.
Look, you don't have to convince me that things are a mess out there. The federal deficit is ballooning. Food prices are soaring. Home prices are still falling. The dollar is weakening. But the market keeps rising. Even if you have to hold your nose while investing, at least make some money for yourself.
Just have your exit strategy planned out ahead of time.
We strongly believe in the use of trailing stops. These allow you to cut your losses and let your winners run.
We prefer a 25% stop-loss point. In other words, you automatically sell once you hit a loss percentage of 25%. This is based on the high the stock reaches, not the purchase price.
As an example, if you bought a stock at $100 and it shot up to $150, your 25% trailing stop would be triggered if the stock fell back below $112.50.
The bull market will come to an end at some point. You won't know by listening to the talking heads on TV. But the market will tell you if you use your trailing stops.
Another comment I read recently sums it up best: "The difference between you and the fool is that you know this will end soon and are sitting near the exit. [The fool] is in the middle seat watching a movie with earphones and popcorn thinking this ride will work out fine."

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

"I believe that being successful means having a balance of success stories across the many areas of your life. You can't truly be considered successful in your business life if your home life is in shambles."

A Business That Supports Your Life

Would you take your family, jump into the middle of the ocean, and then try to build a boat around everyone? Of course not. But that is the logic many people use when building a business.
When I began seeking out and interviewing people I considered to be successful, I learned something huge right away. My definition of success was wrong.
As a 20-something who had grown up financially lacking, I assumed that the primary measure of success was money. The more you had, the better your chances at a great life. Sure, you could be happy without money (we were a happy family) - but REAL success started with cash.
The successful people on my original list of interview targets had a net worth of at least $1,000,000, and most of them made more than that every year. It took a while, but when I began to get access to them, I jumped in with both feet to discover their secrets. What was it that gave them such an amazing and full life? And could I create the same for myself?
After the first five interviews, I had an uneasy feeling but couldn't identify the source. Once I had 10 interviews under my belt, the source of my discomfort glared in my face. Some of these people were miserable!
They were men and women, executives, entrepreneurs, and world-class salespeople. They were also hollow, spiritually bankrupt, often chemically dependent, and without any healthy relationships. All they had was money! Their entire focus was on beating someone else, on being the best! Not their best, mind you. The only thing that mattered was that they were on top.
There were also those who genuinely and sincerely wanted a great life for themselves and their families, but couldn't seem to make it happen. They were locked into their businesses and making money to the point where they had deferred the rest of their lives until "some day." I had been taught to admire these people because they were willing to delay gratification for the sake of hard work. But being close to them and looking in their eyes made me feel something other than admiration. I pitied them.
I had wanted to interview them because I coveted their lives and lifestyles. I saw them as having the missing pieces that always eluded me, and assumed that those secrets would change it all for me. They did... but not in the way I expected.
Fortunately, some of those people were more than I thought they would be. Financially prosperous, physically healthy, enjoying great relationships, spiritually growing, and pillars of their communities. Watching them reshaped my entire concept of success.

Talking with this truly successful group gave me a sense of wholeness and power. Their lives weren't picture perfect, but their approach and responses to life were considerably different than anything I had ever witnessed. For them, it wasn't "money first and all other things will follow." They loved life before and during their ascent to financial freedom. And that had a lot to do with their attitude toward their chosen professions. Especially the entrepreneurs.
Let me explain...
Those of us who have the itch to start our own businesses are very susceptible to a myriad of influences. But our reasons for starting a business are pretty consistent across the board:
  • Personal freedom.
  • Unlimited growth.
  • The chance to earn more money.
  • We can't stand being bossed.
  • We want to make our own schedule.
  • We want a lifestyle change.
  • We want to make a living via something we're passionate about.
Ultimately, we want more control.
Part of the entrepreneurial condition, though, is that we see how much work a business requires and feel compelled to rise to the challenge. Tell me it takes 16-hour days and I'll put in 18. Tell me it takes sacrifice, and you won't believe how much I'll give up!
We dig in and start building like crazy, because when our business is up and running, we'll have all the things we started the business for. But then, one day, we look up and see that the business we dreamed of owns us. There's no room for the life we wanted because the business consumes all of our resources.
This is what gave rise to the myth that we need to separate our business and personal lives.
It's a myth because, as an entrepreneur, you don't have a business life and a personal life... you have a life. So instead of building a business that will hopefully give you the life you want, you need to determine the kind of life you want and build a business to support it. That's what the truly successful people I interviewed had done.
What do you want your life to look like?
Without that question answered, you are operating in a vacuum. There is no sense of direction to base decisions on. Everything is given over to chance. If you plow forward without determining where you want to go, how will you know when you get there? Life becomes a series of reactions and longing for something different. "Some day" never comes.
So take the time today to answer the question: What do I want my life to look like?
Then evaluate your chosen career path and see what does and doesn't line up. I'm not suggesting that you make immediate changes (unless they fit), but do begin to make decisions that will put you on the path to the life you want.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How Breakout Stocks can Transform your Portfolio

By Hilary Kramer
Breakout stocks can come in all kinds of shapes and sizes, but the ones on my buy list all share three things: 1) They are low-priced (mainly under $5); 2) undervalued; and 3) have specific catalysts in the near future that put them on the threshold of breaking out to much higher prices. When they do, the snowball effect kicks in as institutions climb on board and drive the price even higher. That’s when we make a lot of money – potentially a whole lot of money.
Investing in undervalued stocks can be risky if you don’t know what you’re doing. After all, some stocks get beaten down for good reason. The key, of course, is to figure out if a stock is truly a breakout stock or merely a broken stock.

Big Breakout Winners

As I mentioned, breakout stocks come in many shapes and sizes, but I’ve enjoyed some of my biggest profits investing in stocks that fell into two categories: a little-known company with a great new product, or a company that has fallen on hard times but is righting the ship.
Dendreon (DNDN), for example, was on Wall Street’s garbage heap (where I’ve found more than one opportunity) because it had burned money managers once before. The company makes a potentially revolutionary new cancer treatment – a vaccine made from the patient’s own immune cells. The company was confident it would receive FDA approval for its drug, but that approval was unexpectedly denied in 2007. Wall Street, feeling spurned, dumped the stock and walked away. DNDN plummeted from $19.40 to just over $2.60 by May 2009.
That’s when I got interested. After extensive research and checking with my contacts who really understood the drug’s revolutionary potential and likely approval in the future, I jumped in and bought. Less than a year later, in April 2010, Dendreon did indeed receive full approval, and the stock more than doubled in a mere four months. As for me, I had a ten-bagger on my hands. I purchased the stock on March 12, 2009 at $3.42 and locked in those gains on April 30, 2010 at $54.43 for a profit of 1,491%!
The other big category of breakout stocks is those that have been beaten down but are spring-loaded and ready to pop back up. Stocks often take a pounding when a company takes its eye off the ball, becomes too unruly to control, grows recklessly or strays from its core competency.
Many of them are permanently damaged and should be avoided. But certain companies have what it takes to climb out of the deep abyss – innovation, fortitude, skilled management – and those are the stocks that can break out.
Citigroup (C) is a perfect example of a once great highflyer that fell on extremely hard times. What had once been one of the premier global banks, known for its quality management and strict risk controls, found itself transformed into a mediocre financial supermarket – which was then in the eye of a historically severe credit crisis.
As we know, this was disastrous for Citi. Eventually, the stock dove from $55 down under $1! It may have been overvalued at $55, but I knew there was no way it was a $1 stock. The government wouldn’t and couldn’t let Citi fail, and there were still very strong and lucrative areas of the bank to drive profitability in the future. I bought the stock on February 23, 2009, for $1.49, and sold on August 24, 2009, at $5.23, a nice 251% return in just two months.
I have found similarly great opportunities when an entire sector is left for dead by identifying the best companies and riding them up. These might be broken stocks but not broken companies, and that disconnect won’t last. My favorite example here is (PCLN).
When the tech bubble burst, it took down a lot of garbage that deserved to be thrown away, like However, there were a handful of legitimate businesses with phenomenal potential that were also taken out to the woodshed just because they were companies. Priceline went from $279 on June 2, 2000, to under $8 by the end of the year. Ouch!
The stock was left for dead, but I knew Priceline was a solid company with an innovative business model that could actually work. While on the road analyzing companies, I would notice that Priceline was becoming a standard and acceptable means of booking travel at a discount. Wall Street missed the boat, but then again, much of Wall Street was out of touch about online travel.
I knew online booking wasn’t going to disappear and, eventually, the market would consolidate around a winner. I bought PCLN on February 3, 2003, at $7.50 per share. I have sold some of my shares over the years to lock in profits, but I still have a position in the stock and have enjoyed an upward run of more than 2,000%.

So, What’s a Breakout Stock?

When I’m looking for a true breakout stock under $5, I need to see the potential for at least 50% upside and preferably more. I would say 50% to 200% in the coming six to 24 months is a good general expectation, but some will certainly move higher and faster than others.
Finding these stocks takes hours of research, investigation and analysis, and to be honest with you, I love it. I get to be a detective, a business scholar, an investment analyst, a trader and a secretive hedge fund manager. I talk to people in the field, travel around the globe to see a company’s operations and outthink the herd mentality on Wall Street that seduces you into buying high and selling low.
That’s especially true when it comes to low-priced stocks. Here’s the catch: As a stock’s price falls, the downward spiral becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy because Wall Street’s analysts won’t cover low-priced stocks. Then, to make matters even worse, nearly all large institutions shy away from buying stocks under $10 and certainly under $5.
This is where opportunity and danger meet, and it’s why for any stock to pass muster, I must have immense conviction that the company has what it takes to dig itself up and out of the "under $5" category. And when it does, that’s when the excitement really kicks in. Then, anupward spiral becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy as institutions start to both cover the stock and invest in it, which accelerates the breakout.
I hope that gives you a sense of the kinds of opportunities breakout stocks have to offer. The pickins’ are rich right now, so let’s get right to the stocks I want you to start with.

3 Breakout Stocks to Buy Now

If I asked you to pick THE one sector that has been beaten down the worst, what would be the first answer to come to mind? I suspect most of you would say "financials," and you would be right. After all, the whole system darned near collapsed. We’ve come a long way since the days of Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers disappearing, but the landscape of the entire industry has been forever changed, and the dust is still settling two years later.
Some of the best opportunities out there are buried in this dust, including the first stock I want you to buy now.

Breakout Stock #1:

Cowen: A New and Improved Seasoned Veteran

Cowen Group(COWN) is an investment bank that has actually been around over 90 years, so it is a real veteran of up and down cycles – and it has strong upside potential coming out of the recent down cycle.
I’ve recorded a special video to tell you more about why I think this stock is such a good opportunity, Let me also summarize for you the reasons to own COWN now:
·         The business is a natural beneficiary of the economic turnaround, which is leading to more institutional trading, corporate debt and equity issuance, and M&A activity.
·         Strong markets also mean higher asset prices, which translate into higher fees. Cowen’s Ramius funds earn significant money for COWN’s bottom line by taking a percentage of assets under management, as well as performance fees.
·         Cowen has an impressive balance sheet, with cash and equivalents accounting for a significant part of total assets. This is not a Lehman Brothers or Bear Stearns saddled with overvalued liquid assets!
·         The stock is clearly undervalued and is trading at only around 85% of book value because of all that has happened in the financial sector.
·         One intangible I always look for is management, and Cowen has real strength here. The firm is led by veteran banker Peter Cohen (former CEO of Shearson), who has a reputation as a real dealmaker, a huge asset in the relationship-driven world of investment banking.
·         If another economic downturn should hit, Cowen is well-positioned with long-term minded clients and top bankers that know how to weather any storm on Wall Street.
I recommend you buy COWN under $5 for a target of $10

Breakout Stock #2

Zale: Setting Up for Sparkling Returns

You’re probably familiar with Zale Corporation (ZLC). It’s the second-largest jewelry chain in the U.S. with 1,900 stores throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, as well as online. Its various brands are also well known: Zales Jewelers, Zales Outlet, Gordon's Jewelers, Peoples Jewellers, Mappins Jewellers and Piercing Pagoda.
My Breakout Stocks Under $5 readers got into the stock last November, just in time to profit from the holiday shopping season. We’re up a “sparkling” 50% so far, but I think the stock could double from current prices. I think this is a great time to buy ZLC, not just because consumers spent more last shopping season, but for many more significant and sustainable reasons.
Now, if you’d asked me about Zale a couple of years ago, I would have told you to stay as far away from the stock as possible. In fact, I shorted it at one point because its very survival was in question. The company came perilously close to going under during the worst of the credit crisis as people quit spending money on jewelry.
On March 9, 2009, the same day that the S&P 500 hit its intraday low of 666, ZLC closed at $0.92. Six months earlier, in the days preceding Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy, it was trading at more than $30 a share.
Broken or Breakout?
That’s always the question, and in this case, it’s a little bit of both. Zale is one of those companies that stumbled but is righting the ship. I’m convinced Zale would have gone bankrupt in early 2009 if it weren’t for a few seasoned investors who believed this industry leader was worth saving and pumped money into the company.
Breeden Capital, run by former SEC chairman Richard Breeden, amassed a 25% stake in Zale. And John Keeley of Keeley Asset management, a boutique value manager, raised his investment in Zale to the point where it became the second-biggest holding in his Keeley Small Cap Value Fund.
Then, a couple of events last year sealed the change in direction: Golden Gate Capital agreed to lend the company $150 million, which helped alleviate a cash crunch that was so severe Zale couldn’t pay its vendors on time the Christmas before. And then the company shored up a fresh deal for a $650 million credit line led by Bank of America along with a deal for a Canadian store-brand credit card financed by TD Financing Services.
Potential Doubler
Zale was too close to the brink to make it a smart investment at its bottom, but the tides are turning, and I see this stock a potential doubler for a couple of reasons:
First, the improved economy and consumer confidence gave the company a huge boost over the recent holiday shopping season that execs are looking to build on. ZLC jumped 40% – in one day! – after reporting that same-store sales increased 8.5% in the combined November/December period.
These numbers were dramatically different from the year before when sales fell 12%. CEO Theo Killon has attributed the strong sales increases to investments in their field teams, a clear marketing strategy and back-to-basics merchandising. He’s even talked about “a return to profitability,” which would definitely get the attention of investors.
The other big catalyst would be the possible sale of Piercing Pagoda, Zale’s kiosk chain. This has been part of the buzz on this stock. A prominent private equity firm, Apollo Group, was rumored to be interested, but a recent media report cited sources saying the deal was off – at least temporarily. Nothing has been confirmed, but Zale and Apollo have been in on-and-off talks for a while, so I wouldn’t be at all surprised if talks resume at some point. Even rumors of talks would likely boost the stock. Given Zale’s $573 million enterprise value, proceeds from the sale, estimated to be $100 million to $150 million, would be significant for the company.
Investors are noticing the company’s turnaround, but there’s still time to get on board. ZLC hit its 2010 low of $1.35 in early July and actually got close to $6 in early January – a 300%+ run. It has since pulled back under $5, where I think it’s a great buy. A return to profitability could be around the corner, and investors are viewing the company in a different light. Instead of sitting on death’s doorstep, the patient is now sitting up in bed, eating solid foods and growing stronger. A clean bill of health could easily lead to a double from here.

Breakout Stock #3

Fast-Track FDA Approval = Fast Profits

In Breakout Stocks Under $5, we set our sights on lower-priced stocks that are poised to break out to much higher prices. Sometimes we have to wait a little longer while a trend plays out; other times there is a specific event around the corner that is likely to make a stock pop. I spend my days in search of these companies.
There is such a stock on our current buy list that does indeed have a specific catalyst in the not-too-distant future that I expect will drive the stock higher: a date with the FDA for a potential new drug.
Milestones in a drug’s development cycle can send a small, little-known biotech company’s stock soaring. We talked earlier about Dendreon (DNDN). There was actually a day – yes, a DAY – in which it rocketed 200% on successful Phase 3 trials. Investors also pocketed 155% in ONE day when the FDA approved Orexigen Therapeutics’ obesity drug.
Timing is everything when buying biotechs, and the months right before a new drug wins FDA approval can be a major profit opportunity. That’s the case with the third breakout stock I want to tell you about in this report. It is on the cusp of winning that coveted approval.
In fact, the FDA just recently accepted the company’s application for the drug’s approval. Also important, the agency agreed to a six-month Priority Review and set a date of May 30 as the goal by which a decision will be given.
Why the urgency? Because this potential new drug treats the #1 infection acquired by patients in hospitals, and it is a very, very dangerous infection. Also prevalent in nursing homes and hospital nurseries, it affects 3 million people and kills up to 30,000 each year.
It’s difficult to cure and easy to spread. And there is growing alarm over signs of drug resistance and increasingly virulent strains that are causing higher numbers of deaths.
Data from the late-stage clinical trials were very positive. This new drug is proving to be superior in curing and reducing the high recurrence rate by 50% more than competitive drugs already on the market.
The fast-track status is something the FDA only gives to potential new drugs that address life-threatening conditions and have shown potential to address unmet needs.
You MUST get on board now BEFORE the drug is approved in the next few months! 

Breakout Stocks = Opportunity

I have spent most of my life uncovering and investing in these kinds of stocks – starting back in high school when I began to invest and for the last 25 years as a professional money manager. I can tell you from firsthand experience that lower-priced stocks are a great way to build your wealth quickly.
It’s simply easier for a $5 stock to go to $10 than a $50 stock to go to $100. And if that $50 stock does make it to $100, it will likely take a whole lot longer.
I know heightened volatility in the market may have you a little concerned, and that’s understandable. Lower-priced stocks in particular are more volatile by nature. A 50-cent move on a $5 stock is a lot different from a 50-cent move on a $20, $30 or $50 stock. That’s why buy limits are so important in these stocks. I put a lot of thought and analysis into identifying good entry points, and I urge you to adhere to the prices I recommend.
Of course, the flipside of this is what gives us our opportunity. Lower-priced stocks don’t have to move as much on a price basis to generate a big percentage gain.
Breakout Stocks Deliver Standout Profits
·         Hovnanian Enterprises +125%
in 2 months
·         Crocs, Inc +363% in 6 months
·         Developers Diversified Realty Corp. +253 % in 6 months
·         Cabela’s Incorporated +192% in just under a year
·         Industrial Services of America +480% in 13 months

Breakout Brief: Zale Corporation (ZLC) 
Buy Under: 
Target Price: 
Breakout Factors
• Improving consumer confidence will drive sales higher 
• CEO Theo Killon talking about “a return to profitability”
• Possible sale of Piercing Pagoda chain could boost the stock

Breakout Brief: Cowen Group (COWN)
Buy Under: $5
Target Price: $10.00
Breakout Factors:
• Key business units are strengthening
• Legendary CEO with a great reputation
• Potential takeover candidate at a substantial premium
One Person’s Trash Is Another’s Treasure
70% profits from a scrap metal recycler that has already started to break out… with more to come. It’s rare to find one company that has so many triggers for immediate growth…
·         Exploding demand from China and emerging markets. Massive infrastructure build-out and rising standard of living mean big demand for cars, appliances, steel for buildings and bridges, etc. And in large part because of that…
·         Growth has TRIPLED in the domestic steel industry—this company’s #1 customer.
·         The biggest breakthrough technology the steel industry has seen in decades—electric arc furnace (EAF) technology, which uses scrap metal to make steel. EAF use has already jumped 25% and is set to explode thanks to the lower costs and faster production it offers.
·         Pricing power—the price of ferrous scrap metal (our company’s bread and butter) is up 225% and shows no signs of stopping on growing demand and limited supply.
It’s the perfect takeover candidate. The company will likely put itself up for sale and be snatched up by a mega-cap