Increased economic instability. Brexit. Unemployment. Slow growth. These are all reasons to take steps to protect your family's future, says U.S. Money Reserve CEO Angela “Angie” Koch in Why It's Imperative to Protect Your Future. Featured on HuffingtonPost.com, Koch’s article speaks to the threat these current matters pose and provides tips for reducing your chances of being negatively affected. Read on as we summarize today’s pressing risk factors and highlight a few of Koch's most salient pieces of advice, then head over to The Huffington Post to read her full article.
Current risks that could derail your financial future—fast
Safeguarding your family's financial future is important not only because of the increase in economic, cultural, and political instability around the world, but because life itself could throw you an unexpected curveball at any moment. More than a third of Americans, 39 percent, say their personal financial situation causes them to lose sleep, and this number is 11 percentage points higher than last year, reports the Marketplace-Edison Research Poll. Before you lose sleep over how your family's financial future could spiral out of control, take steps to understand today's most pressing risks. Koch points to the following risk factors as being the most likely to negatively affect your financial future.
Escalating economic uncertainty on an international scale
When both the International Monetary Fund (IMF), a multinational organization that strives to promote global economic stability, and the World Economic Forum announce that the financial outlook for the world looks dim, experienced wealth holders pay attention. In April, the IMF warned of global threats to financial stability, including increased risk in advanced economies. In October, the global financial watchdog added that “mid-term risks continue to build,” and cyclical and structural challenges continue to hinder the progress of financial institutions, in addition to low growth, low interest rates, and weak profitably.
Koch notes too, that as early as January the World Economic Forum predicted the biggest threats to world stability in 2016, many of which have materialized over the past ten months. These threats include unemployment, interstate conflict, the collapse of fragile governments, and major, involuntary migrations.
Choppy waters between the U.S. and U.K.
In further support of her concern over global economic instability, Koch points to the fact that Britain has yet to figure out a way to leave the E.U. without sending the system into a downward spiral, despite it being more than 60 days after the Brexit vote was cast. Until the U.S.'s closest ally can sort through its own economic future, a segment of the U.S. economy could remain in limbo.
“It's hard to have a serious conversation about what the nature of a future US–UK trade relationship might look like,” says U.S. trade representative Michael Froman, and a hazy relationship between two of the world's most influential economies could lead to negative economic consequences on an international scale.
Unemployment and slowdown in key economic sectors at home
The U.S. economy added only 151,000 new jobs in August, notes Koch, and the monthly job report indicated a slowdown in key economic sectors that traditionally offered well-paying jobs.
What’s more, in September the U.S. unemployment rate increased to 5 percent, compared to 4.9 percent in the previous month and missing market expectations, reports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics via Trading Economics.
In sum, says Koch, these factors indicate that economic risk is high. “Essentially anyone with assets is at risk of being negatively affected by any and all of these factors,” she advises. So what's a diligent wealth holder to do? Prepare for the worst by taking the following protective, yet practical measures.
How to protect your wealth in light of today's risks
1. Make wise decisions with your financial portfolio
Like many experienced financial planners, Koch's first piece of advice is to make smart choices when it comes to building a “well-rounded portfolio of stocks, bonds, real estate, and precious metals to ensure you get the best long-term return for your money.” Look for assets whose returns have not historically moved in the same direction and to the same degree, reports Fidelity via Forbes, and ideally assets whose returns typically move in opposite directions. “This way, even if a portion of your portfolio is declining, the rest of your portfolio, hopefully, is growing.”
Koch encourages readers not to shy away from alternative means of diversification too, like fine art, gold coins, and usable precious metals to further protect their income from economic fluctuations. “Assets such as gold and gold and silver coins have long been referred to as ‘safe haven assets' because they maintain value even when paper currency might be in decline,” says Koch.
“Diversifying your financial portfolio is a wise decision in these uncertain economic times and finding the right information is crucial,” says Philip N. Diehl. Your first step to getting that information is a click away. Sign up to receive U.S. Money Reserve's Gold Information Kit today. It's free and includes everything you need to know before making your precious metals purchase.
2. Double check your insurance coverage
Koch's next piece of advice for protecting your family's future is to regularly review all of your insurance coverages, including your health, homeowner, auto, mortgage, and life insurance policies. In the event that the unthinkable happens or you fall ill and are no longer able to cover your monthly bills, a combination of the right insurance coverages could help ensure your family's home, financial future, and peace of mind stay protected.
3. Build your retirement fund
“A solid nest egg” is a “crucial source of future income,” says Koch. Like you should do with your insurance coverage, give your retirement fund a yearly review. Does your mix of stocks, funds, precious metals, and other financial holdings match your age and retirement goals? If not, take steps to readjust.
4. Prepare for the worst
While it's an uncomfortable topic to confront, planning for a time when you may no longer be around is an important step in protecting your future, notes Koch. Ensure your account beneficiaries are up to date, you've taken measures to plan for your estate, and that your will reflects your most current holdings and intentions.
While simple in nature, Koch's four tips are practical measures you could put into place to help ensure that nothing derails your family's financial future.
“Never make big financial moves without consulting the right experts first,” says Koch
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Read all of Angie Koch's articles, including Why It's Imperative to Protect Your Future, on The Huffington Post.