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Bond alternative
The bond book : everything investors need to know about treasuries, municipals, GNMAs, corporates, zeros, bond funds, money market funds, and more
Annette Thau.
New York : McGraw-Hill, c2011.
Everything on Treasuries, munis,bond funds, and more! The bond buyer's answer book--updated for the new economy "As in the first two editions, this third edition of The Bond Boo continues to be the idealreference for the individual investor. It has all the necessary details, well explained andillustrated without excessive mathematics. In addition to providing this essential content, itis extremely well written." --James B. Cloonan, Chairman, American Association of Individual Investors "Annette Thau makes the bond market interesting, approachable, and clear. As much asinvestors will continue to depend on fixed-income securities during their retirement years,they'll need an insightful guide that ensures they're appropriately educated and served. The Bond Book does just that." --Jeff Ttornejoh, Research Director, U.S. and Canada, Lipper, Thomson Reuters "Not only a practical and easy-to-understand guide for the novice, but also a comprehensivereference for professionals. Annette Thau provides the steps to climb to the top of the bondinvestment ladder. The Bond Book should be a permanent fixture in any investment library!" --Thomas J. Herzfeld, President, Thomas Herzfeld Advisors, Inc. "If the financial crisis of recent years has taught us anything, it's buyer beware. Fact is, bondscan be just as risky as stocks. That's why Annette Thau's new edition of The Bond Book isessential reading for investors who want to know exactly what's in their portfolios. It alsoserves as an excellent guide for those of us who are getting older and need to diversify intofixed income." --Jean Gruss, Southwest Florida Editor, Gulf Coast Business Review , andformer Managing Editor, Kiplinger's Retirement Report About the Book The financial crisis of 2008 causedmajor disruptions to every sector ofthe bond market and left even the savviestinvestors confused about the safety oftheir investments. To serve these investors andanyone looking to explore opportunities infixed-income investing, former bond analystAnnette Thau builds on the features and authoritythat made the first two editions bestsellersin the thoroughly revised, updated, andexpanded third edition of The Bond Book. This is a one-stop resource for both seasonedbond investors looking for the latest informationon the fixed-income market and equitiesinvestors planning to diversify their holdings.Writing in plain English, Thau presentscutting-edge strategies for making the bestbond-investing decisions, while explaininghow to assess risks and opportunities. She alsoincludes up-to-date listings of online resourceswith bond prices and other information.Look to this all-in-one guide for information onsuch critical topics as: Buying individual bonds or bond funds The ins and outs of open-end funds,closed-end funds, and exchangetradedfunds (ETFs) The new landscape for municipal bonds:the changed rating scales, the neardemise of bond insurance, andBuild America Bonds (BABs) The safest bond funds Junk bonds (and emerging market bonds) Buying Treasuries without payinga commission From how bonds work to how to buy and sellthem to what to expect from them, The BondBook , third edition, is a must-read for individualinvestors and financial advisers who wantto enhance the fixed-income allocation of theirportfolios.
     
Higher returns from safe investments : using bonds, stocks, and options to generate lifetime income
Marvin Appel.
Upper Saddle River, N.J. : FT Press, c2010.
Provides actionable strategies and master portfolios for riskaverse investors looking for good profits in a low-interest-rate environment. bull; bull;A complete investing program with specific portfolios that can be implemented without significant time or investment expertise. bull;Shows how to generate more cash from high-yield bond funds and income-producing equity strategies while systematically controlling their risks. bull;Wherever the author's strategies introduce added risk, he presents proven strategies for mitigating that risk. In today's market climate, many risk-averse investors face a major challenge: interest rates are so low that conventional, safe investments such as bank CDs, money market funds, and most bonds simply don't meet their income needs. In Higher Returns on Safe Investments, leading investment expert Dr. Marvin Appel shows how to earn more without exposing yourself to excessive risk or the costs of a highly-active trading strategy. Appel shows how to take advantage of high-yield bond funds and income-producing equity strategies... when to purchase individual bonds, when to use bond mutual funds, and which bond funds are best...how to make diversification and 'buy-and-hold' work for you the way it's always been promised to work. Wherever his strategies introduce added risk, he presents proven strategies for mitigating that risk. The end result is a complete program and master portfolio which can be implemented without significant time, capital, or investment expertise and which can generate attractive long-term returns more safely than you ever thought possible.  
     
Bonds now! : making money in the new fixed income landscape
Marilyn Cohen and Chris Malburg.
Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley, c2010.
A money-making formula for navigating the bond market's new rules of fixed income investingThe credit meltdown has completely reshaped the market for government bonds, Treasury bonds, T-bills, and high yield bond funds. Investors are flocking to corporate bonds and municipal bonds. Tax advantaged bonds have become the safe haven of choice. But you have to know where to look. Bonds Now! shows you.Bonds Now! offers rare insight into safely investing in fixed income vehicles while maintaining necessary liquidity and meeting yield targets. It doesn't waste a lot of time on the elementary basics, but instead, jumps right in and shows you how to build a safe bond portfolio designed to weather turbulent economic downturns. Discusses how to quickly analyze a bond as well as buy and sell them Examines what it takes to build an impregnable fortress around your bond portfolio Reveals how to develop a sixth sense for trouble and sell your bond position while there's still timeThere is only one way to guarantee you're getting the right information-get it yourself. Bonds Now! shows you how and where, but even more importantly, this reliable resource clearly explains what to do with it once you have it. This is a knockout formula with proven results. It is the only way to guarantee the bond market won't steal your money.Today's explosive financial environment demands that investors find a safe haven for their money. Using Bonds Now! as your guide, the bond market is that place. Buy this book today and start your own journey to economic recovery.
     
The everything investing book : smart strategies to secure your financial future!
Michele Cagan.
Avon, Mass. : Adams Media ; c2009.
Michele Cagan, CPA(Baltimore, MD) has worked as a financial planner, accountant, and tax advisor, assisting both individuals and small business owners. She is the author of several personal finance and business books, includingHow to Legally Reduce Your Taxes Now, A Beginner’s Guide to Navigating Wall Street, The Everything Accounting Book, and coauthoredFinancial Words You Should Know.
     

Building your wealth by purchasing bonds is a way to increase your portfolioís value. A bond is a security that represents a debt on the part of the bondís issuer, (the borrower, or debtor) and a loan on the part of the bondís owner (the lender, or creditor.)

A bond is a promise to repay the purchasers the face value at a certain date in the future. The borrower promises to pay interest semiannually at the rate fixed by the coupon rate.

What are the factors that determine bond prices? They would include:

  • Level of prevailing interest rates
  • Creditworthliness of the issuer
  • Inflationary expectations
  • Stages of the business cycle

There are many types of bonds that carry various risks and rewards. The return on U.S. Treasury bonds may be less than corporate bonds, but are considered to be a safer investment.

Parents may start their children buying government bonds as a substitute for setting up a savings account, purchasing certificates of deposit, or various products sold by life insurance companies.

Unlike other securities, minors may own own U.S. Savings Bonds. An easy and safe way to save is to buy EE Bonds. They are reliable, low-risk government-backed savings product. Parents can use them as birthday and graduation gifts, and give them for other special events. EE Savings Bonds may be used to finance education or to supplement retirement income. There are different series of savings bonds.

What is the biggest difference between EE and I bonds?
The biggest difference is the rate. Rates for EE Bonds are calculated as 90% of 6-month averages of 5-year Treasury Securities market yields, while rates for I Bonds are calculated by combining fixed rates of return and semi-annual inflation rates based on the CPI-U.

Bond Comparison

In order to buy a savings bond, you need to have a Social Security Number (SSN) and / or taxpayer ID number (TIN). As well, the recipients full name and their TreasuryDirect account number. When the bond is delivered to the recipientís TreasuryDirect account, he or she will get an e-mail announcing your gift.

If you already have savings bonds, do not forget to check if they have matured. When they mature, they stop earning interest. Thus, it is time to cash them in, or reinvest them, and have your money start working for you again.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff