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5 Ways to Invest Outside the Stock Market

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Tumultuous Markets Start 2016. If you have money you’d like to invest, you may be looking to alternatives to the stock market. While recent years have shown tremendous gains in the market, 2016 has started off bumpy, to say the least. The markets have seen big downturns since the beginning of the new year, and much of this volatility is blamed on declining oil prices, along with global economic fears including a Chinese slowdown.

Investors are rightfully a bit wary of investing in the stock market, particularly as the Federal Reserve may ease its own flow of money into the market at any time.

So how do investors earn money on their savings if they’re not part of the stock exchange?


Real Estate

While the stock market may be on shaky ground, causing anxiety for many investors, 2016 is shaping up to be a good year to invest your money in real estate. Many markets around the country, including New York and San Francisco, are seeing growth that’s exceeding all records, and smaller markets are also showing strong housing prices and a reduction in available stock, all of which point to an investment opportunity. The rental market also remains high, so investors may consider purchasing properties to offer to renters.

CDs

Interest rates are historically low right now, so something like a CD isn’t going to show a tremendous return, but they are a favorite way to invest for people who are cautious about the potential risks that come with something like the stock market, or even real estate. CDs are a solid investment opportunity, and while returns are relatively small, over time they can become significant.


Peer-to-Peer Lending

Increasingly investors are looking for new opportunities, and one that’s emerging is peer-to-peer lending. Many of these peer lending platforms yield substantial returns, and according to CNBC, it’s ranged from about 5 percent to 9 percent for Lending Club and Prosper Marketplace, which are two of the largest peer-to-peer lending platforms.

Bonds

Bonds aren’t a new investing opportunity—in fact, they’re one of the more long-standing and relied upon ways to invest money, but they’re an excellent option, particularly in an environment of uncertainty. In addition to safer bonds, if you want to take a bit more of a risk you can also invest in emerging market bonds.

Precious Metals

Precious metals have been a long-time investment opportunity for people who wanted to avoid directly investing in the stock market. Their value does tend to go up and down, but they remain a relatively reliable place to put your money. As the rest of the economy may become tumultuous, the price of gold and other metals usually rises.

Finding a Safe Haven For Your Money

Smart investors work to diversify their investment strategies, particularly in the face of such massive ups and downs in the stock market as what we’ve seen in the past decade. With a little research and willingness to explore your options, you can avoid the stress that comes with being a market investor, and instead find creative new ways to grow your money and protect against inflation.

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Green Weddings Trend: Why 70% of Newlyweds Are Going Green

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A couple of months ago, my best friend got married to her new husband. They are both very eco-conscious people, so they decided to have a unique twist on their wedding. They asked for the following:

  • They arranged a carpool with their friends.
  • They didn’t have any balloons. Instead they used umbrellas.
  • They used plant materials instead of plastic confetti.
  • My friend insisted her husband not purchase a diamond. In addition to being ecologically conscious, she didn’t like the idea of having a stone that was used in conflict zones.

My friends aren’t the only ones making these changes. In fact, nearly a quarter of all newlyweds are organizing green weddings.


Green Weddings Are Becoming the Norm

People are more concerned about green living than ever before. They are trying to incorporate environmental protectionist ideas into every facet of their lives, even the most intimate, such as marriage. A growing number of people are trying to have green weddings, which can make a big difference in reducing their carbon footprint.

How much of a difference can this make? Here are some statistics to bear in mind:

There are a number ofreasons that green weddings are becoming more important. Here are a few.

People Are More Worried About Environmental Preservation than Ever Before


Green living in general is becoming a greater concern for most people. Even younger conservatives are breaking from their older counterparts by insisting on fighting climate change. According to a poll from Pew Research earlier this year, 75% of Americans say that they are very concerned about protecting the environment. Having green weddings is a good way to act on this concern.

One of the biggest changes people are making is using recycled products for their green weddings. This is explained by the research from Pew:

“Overall, 32% of U.S. adults say they are bothered a lot by people throwing away things that could be recycled. Roughly six-in-ten Americans (61%) who say they always try to live in ways that protect the environment say it bothers them “a lot” when others throw away things that could be recycled. Among those who are less focused on environmental protection, only a quarter say it bothers them a lot when others don’t recycle. People who are environmentally conscious are also twice as likely as others to say that seeing someone incorrectly putting trash in recycling bins bothers them a lot (42% vs. 21%).”

Indifferent Politicians Are Driving them to Take More Initiative

Many politicians in power have been very hesitant to take action on climate change. Many of them have openly stated that it is a hoax. These politicians are forcing people to do what they can in their own lives to make a difference. Making small changes, such as hosting green weddings, is a great way to improve the environment without waiting for political momentum.

Cost and Simplicity

A couple of the biggest reasons that people want to host green weddings have nothing to do with their concern for the environment. Running green weddings is simply cheaper and simpler than having a massive, traditional one. One of the biggest changes is that they are buying green engagement rings from the best brands.

Green Weddings Are the Future

Green weddings have become very popular over the past few years. They will probably account for close to 90% of all marriages by 2025. People that are planning to get married should look into the benefits and plan accordingly.

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Green Tech Start-Ups: Are they the Future?

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Endless innovations are occurring in green companies, reinventing the industries they belong to. Gradually, they are beginning to amass more success and popularity. Consequently, these factors serve as a good indicator for green technology businesses, and their development must begin somewhere.

Green tech start-ups boast a wide array of opportunities for the economy and environment, while boosting recruitment openings with valuable services. While the technology industry is littered with high revenues and competition, the green tech start-ups are the clear sign of a cleaner future.


Fulfilling a Genuine Need

Many tech companies will market themselves as the ultimate tech giants to shift stock and make profit. As they all vie for attention through warped corporate rhetoric, there is only one ethical winner; the start-up green tech company.

Some argue that mainstream tech businesses have grown far too big, branching out into other industries and standing between the consumer and practically everything they do. However, green tech start-ups go beyond the shallow ambitions of a company, answering a call to sincerely help the customer and climate in any way they can. Of course, this is an attractive business model, putting customers at ease as they contribute to a humanitarian cause that is genuine through and through.

After all, empathy is a striking trait to have in business, and green tech start-ups maintain this composure by their very nature and purpose.

Creating Opportunities

Despite the pursuits for clean energy still needing more awareness, green tech is an area that is ripe for contribution and expansion. There’s no need to copy another company or be a business of cheap knockoffs; green tech start-ups can add a new voice to the economy by being fresh, fearless and entrepreneurial.


Technology is at its most useful when it breaks new ground, an awe that eco-friendly innovations have by default in their operations. Of course, green tech start-ups have the chance to build on this foundation and create harmony instead of climate crisis. Ultimately, the tech advancements are what revolutionise clean energy as more than an activist niche, putting theory into practice.

Despite the US gradually becoming more disengaged with green technology, others such as China and Canada recognise the potential in green technology for creating jobs and growth in their respective economies. The slack of others spurs them on, which creates a constant influx of prospects for the green tech sector. Put simply, their services are always required, able to thrive from country to country.

A Fundamental Foresight

Mainstream technology can seem repetitive and dull, tinkering with what has come before rather than turning tech on its head. Since 2011, technology has been accused of stagnation, something which the internet and petty app services seem to disguise in short reaching ideas of creativity.

However, green tech start-ups aren’t just winging it, and operate with a roadmap of climate change in the years ahead to strategize accordingly. In other words, they aren’t simply looking to make a quick profit by sticking to a trend, but have the long-term future in mind. Consequently, the green tech start-up will be there from the very start, building up from the foundational level to only grow as more and more people inevitably go green.

They can additionally forecast their finances too, with the ability to access online platforms despite the differing levels of experience, keeping them in the loop. Consequently, with an eye for the future, green tech startups are the ones who will eventually usher in the new era.

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