In the last article, we went through the ETF ticker SPY, which tracks the S&P 500. Also, we discussed how the ETF world can benefit your portfolio by offering alternative investment options. Now we turn our focus to another ETF that is widely used, and that is the PowerShares product QQQ, which focuses on the NASDAQ. With a Morningstar rating of 5, this is a highly used tool to gain an index wide exposure. With an expense ratio of 0.20%, this may be a liquid alternative to a traditional mutual fund.

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Bitcoin continues to pop up in mainstream media and is sometimes referred to as a safe haven asset. A safe haven asset may be a stretch but the fact that Bitcoin remains through the scares of the market should speak volumes. Bitcoin is the face of the cryptocurrency world and continues to be as market explodes with attention and opportunity. Many who are unfamiliar with Bitcoin only know it for its explosive growth and speculative nature. There is more to Bitcoin than meets the eye, and here is the good, the bad, and the not so ugly aspects of Bitcoin.

 fundamentals finance   macroaxis

Exchange traded funds or ETF for short, have exploded in popularity in the last few years. They continue to grow and many people are implementing them in place of traditional mutual funds. An ETF is similar to a mutual fund, but the most noticeable difference is that it is traded on the stock exchanged, allowing investors and traders to enter and exit with ease. ETF products are created to follow a specific index, market sector, and even a commodity or currency. If there is a market you want exposure too, then you will likely find an exchanged traded fund.

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Apple continues to produce quality products and with their latest unveiling, many are anticipating the new Apple Watch and accessory AirPods to be a hit. Not only that, but the iPhone X will be ready for release around the holidays. Lastly, you can’t forget about Apple’s new home device that is aiming to compete against Amazon and Google. The competition in this space is high and companies such as Fossil are creating smart watches as well.

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Roku has their initial public offering today and everything seems to be going well, with the stock being up over 30% before noon. Roku produces streaming devices that are similar to the Amazon Fire TV Stick and Google Chromecast. Streaming has become a popular way to consume television as these products allow the user to access Netflix, Hulu, and a variety of other channels.

IPO's are difficult to judge because there is so much hype around certain companies and the data can skew as people are quick to buy and then sell, profiting for the quick movements. The potential is there for the company to succeed as they are operating in the right market and it will only continue to grow. Sling TV is a popular streaming service that allows for live television, and that can be accessed on a Roku device. Until there is something to disrupt the streaming industry, Roku may be worth watching.

 fundamentals services   macroaxis

There have been some waves surrounding the housing market, and specifically buyers. Buyers may begin facing a tougher time finding homes because the inventory is drying up and all that is left are the high-end expensive homes. With this happening, it could drive up home price simply on the basis of supply and demand. If there is a shortage of supply, the price of said supply will increase.

Renting is becoming a popular option for people entering the workforce and beginning their journey in life. The reason is renting takes away the distractions of property insurance, property tax, and the upkeep involved such as replacing a water heater or A/C unit. This tends to work itself out and can be cyclical, as many people postpone selling homes during the winter.

 fundamentals services   macroaxis

The CEO of Equifax has retired amid the turmoil that surrounds the company. From the different article and opinions, people are calling for criminal charges against individuals at the company. Certainly there is not much that can be done now, except to monitor the situation closely and try to contain the damage.

From an investing point of view, the CEO should have been removed but the fact he retired now could create more confusion in an already hectic environment. Leadership should have stayed and at the very least attempt to clean up the mess. Now, not only do this security issues have to be addressed, but the new leadership needs to be discussed now as well.

 fundamentals services   macroaxis

The third week of the NFL is concluding tonight and there have been many points of views expressed. From kneeling during the anthem from staying in the tunnel, the President is currently waging a Twitter battle against individuals and teams. Tying this to the markets, there is some hesitation with every word the President speaks because there is a decent threat of violence in North Korea and local protests.

Setting side individual opinion, the markets are beginning to listen closely to what is going on in the geopolitical space. The VIX is something you need to keep an eye on because it will gauge fear in the market. Going forward, there is tight rope being walked and hopefully this all subsides and the markets continue forward.

 fundamentals services   macroaxis

Trump has put into motion more sanctions against North Korea in an attempt to suffocate the country. However, the leader of North Korea has responded sternly and has threatened to test another large weapon of the coast. The markets continue to press on but this is always a driving force behind the emotions of the market.

The President continues to pressure North Korea into abandoning their nuclear program, but words no longer seem to be working. With that, many people are worried about conflict and the safety of the United States. Until something major happens, the markets should continue to move cautiously around any news.

 fundamentals services   macroaxis

Walmart has announced that they are going to pass on hiring seasonal help in exchange giving their current employees the extra hours and learning experience. This is different then what other companies in the same field have done, which could work out well for Walmart.

Thinking from an operations standpoint, there is no need to train new people, set them up for payroll, and have on the job training. Sure the tasks may not be the most difficult, but there still is some training involved. The company was also under pressure not too long ago for not paying their employees enough, so supporters of that will be enthused to learn about this.

 fundamentals services   macroaxis

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