Three Factors that Affect Futures Trading

When prices fluctuate, it affects every area of the economy.  When this happens people want to shield investments from negative fallout.  This can make futures trading a tempting option for some investors. Futures can reduce volatility for both businesses and individuals alike.  Trading in futures contracts can help safeguard your money and protect gains.

Futures trading should be approached the same as any other investment.  Many investors fail to heed this warning.  It’s important to have a firm grasp over what these are and what affects them.

Here are three items to help you get started.

1: General Factors 

Like any sort of investment, the economy itself will affect the value of assets. For example, prices often increase during boom times.  When things are not going so well, prices may go down.  Spotting these patterns is important.  Knowing when to apply them is even more key.

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Blogger Tip: Install One Plugin Update At A Time

The other day, I had a slight outage here at Money Beagle.  Chances are you missed it, as it wasn’t down for very long.  It was only by sheer luck that I was able to get it fixed so quickly.  The experience taught me a valuable lesson: A plugin update problem can be fixed quickly if you update one at a time.

The Vast Expanse Of WordPress

I run my blog on WordPress, which is the platform for a huge number of blogs, due to the ease of use and flexibility to make each site unique.  The popularity of WordPress means that there are a lot of extras that you can add, and these are called ‘Plugins’.

For example, the little buttons that give you the ability to Tweet my post, or the checkmark that appears next to the comment box to weed out spammers are just a couple examples of plugins, and they are some of the ones that users can ‘see’.

There are some other plugins that run more back-end functionality, which don’t necessarily provide anything extra that the user can see, but can improve things like security, monitoring, speed and other performance.

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Can One Bad Decision Cost You $450,000?

Bad decisions are inevitable.  Nobody is perfect.  But can one bad decision cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars?  The recent season finale of the TV show Big Brother has me wondering.

Note: The post below contains spoilers for the recent season of Big Brother (USA version), which ended on September 21, 2016.  You have been warned.

Big Brother: My Guilty Pleasure

Reality TV is not at all my thing, with one notable guilty pleasure, and that is watching Big Brother.  My wife got me into it over 10 years ago, and it’s something we enjoy.

Some might be familiar with the show, but for those who aren’t, here’s a very quick run-down: 16 ‘houseguests’ start off living together, and one houseguest per week is voted out by the other contestants.  There are a few mental and physical competitions each week, with the winners having the opportunity to pick who is up for vote, and everybody else getting to decide.  After roughly thirteen weeks, there are only 3 people left going into the finale.  The winner gets $500,000, second place gets $50,000 and third place gets nothing.

The whole show is pretty trashy, but it’s a whole lot of fun.

Finale Time

We watched the show all summer and when it got down to the finale, the three people remaining were:

  • Paul – A pretty strong player who won a lot of competitions but who had a hand in voting a lot of people out
  • Nicole – Another strong player who laid low for most of the summer and then kicked it into gear at the end
  • James – A weak player who is a lot of fun, but who won pretty much nothing all summer long.

Now, the way the finale works is that, first, the three get whittled down to two.  This is done by:

  • Competition 1: All three players compete and there is one winner.  They get a break in the next face-off.
  • Competition 2: The two ‘losers’ of competition 1 square off
  • Competition 3: The winners of the first two competitions compete.
Image via Morguefiles courtesy of Alvimann
Image via Morguefiles courtesy of Alvimann

The winner of Competition 3 is assured at least $50,000 and they also get to determine, of the remaining two players, which one stays and which one goes.

How The Competitions Were Won

The way it worked this year is that Paul won Competition 1 and Nicole won Competition 2.  Neither of these surprised me as everybody pretty much knew that James was a weak player and probably wasn’t going to win.   And he didn’t.

Now, the dynamic above has played out before in seasons past, where you have two strong players and one weak player.  See, it’s not an accident that a weaker player makes it.  Why?  Simple.  The strong players want a weaker player sitting next to them as that increases their odds of winning.

So, when Competition 3 started, I assumed that when Paul or Nicole won, that either of them would take James along.  This means that a strong player ends up with nothing, but it’s one of the quirks of Big Brother.

Competition 3 is done live during the finale, and I think that just about everybody was as shocked as I was when he picked James to leave, meaning that he would be facing off against Nicole.  Another strong player.

Well, since you read this far and you saw the title, you probably already guessed what happened.  He lost.  The way that it works is that the 9 most recent houseguests that are evicted (including James) get to cast the final vote.  Nicole got 5 votes and Paul got 4.

Did Paul Cost Himself $450,000?

I’m convinced that had Paul done the smart thing and brought James along that he would have won $500,000.  Paul said and did some mean things in the house, and that tipped the scales against him when he was against another strong player who wasn’t as mean, but I think against a weaker player, his better play would have trumped that.

Now he won $50,000.  That’s not too bad for 3 months or so worth of work.  But, after he has time to reflect, I’m sure that knowing that he potentially left $450,000 on the table by making one poor decision is going to eat at him.

Wwhile a bad decision isn’t going to cost most people $450,000,any decision has the potential to be a ‘game changer’.

Readers, what do you think about Paul’s decision?  What would you have done in his shoes?  

Homemade Raisin Bran: Easy, Healthy, and Frugal

Cereal is one of my favorite breakfast foods, and I’ve always loved Raisin Bran.  Even as a kid, Raisin Bran was definitely in the rotation on the cereals I would look for in the cupboard, and my taste for it has stuck with me all throughout the years.

One thing that has changed, though, is my enjoyment of sugar.  Back when I was a kid, Golden Grahams was my allmb-2016-09-cereal time favorite and so I’d have that occasionally, until recently when I was eating it and realized that it was, well, absolutely disgusting to me now.  I love sugary treats, but for breakfast, it just doesn’t work for me anymore.

Even Raisin Bran, in it’s original form as packaged by cereal makers like Kellogg or Post, is too sweet for the simple reason that they put sugar on their raisins.  I guess they figure that people aren’t going to eat those pesky healthy raisins if they aren’t sweetened somehow.

But not for me.

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Now I Can Love Over 100 Libraries!

I’ve written in the past about how much I love our library and even though the post is a few years old, the love continues.  In fact, with two kids, our oldest who loves to read and our youngest who is getting interested in reading, we use it more and more!

So, imagine my delight when I spent a little time and investigated a link in my account to something called MeLCat.  I’ve seen it before and I knew a little about it, in that it was a tool that tied our library in with other libraries around the state.   Pretty cool concept, but I never really explored it further until recently.

All I can say is WOW!

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Tips to Make Money This Fall

If you want to change your life for the better and have a profitable fall season, you need to alter your attitude to life and the way you do certain things. The following tips will help you improve your financial situation in the coming season.  Here are some tips to make money this fall.

Quick Money Options

Sometimes you may find yourself in a tight corner with no obvious way out. However, don’t lose heart as you can get out of any difficult situation, including financial one. For instance, getting an easy loan is a great opportunity if you need fast money. You don’t have to experience any hassle or suffer from insecure service. You are welcome to try this option and fill your life with financial soundness.

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The Money Blahs And Blessings

I’ve had the money blahs where everything with money and finances seems just meh.  That probably explains why I haven’t posted too much.

There’s nothing in particular that’s bumming me out, but just sort of a collective theme that is part boredom and part feeling like I’m spinning my wheels.

Why The Money Blahs?

I’m all about making progress.  Moving forward and getting things done are great!  I love making lists.   I love setting and reaching goals.  Lately it just feels like with regards to money, things are not really moving or moving too slow to see.

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