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How to File Bankruptcy for Low Income Individuals

According to the website, 936,795 Americans filed for bankruptcy in 2014. This represents a 12.5 percent drop from 2013, but many are still seeking relief from crushing loads of debt. Bankruptcy filings are particularly problematic for low-income individuals, as they have far fewer resources to pay, but there are ways to lower the cost.

Hiring a Lawyer

The first decision in a low-income bankruptcy is whether or not to use a lawyer. Depending on where you live, a non-profit legal aid association may be able to help. Special circumstances, such as being a veteran or dealing with a disability, may lessen the income requirements or make you more likely to qualify for assistance. Some lawyers also perform a certain amount of casework pro-bono. Your state bar association may have information on both of these programs. Some lawyers will allow you to complete some filing paperwork on your own, saving you money.


  • Do not charge the lawyer’s fee on a credit card. Credit card companies review charges in the time before bankruptcy carefully, and any charges in that time period may be excluded from the bankruptcy –and perhaps the entire balance on that card along with it.

Filing Fees

Bankruptcy requires a $300 fee just for filing the paperwork. However, you can ask the court for a waiver of that filing fee. To qualify for that waiver, you must have income of less than 150 percent of the federal poverty level, and be unable to pay the fee in installments. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, a family’s income must be less than $36,375 per year to qualify for the fee waiver. Even then, approval of the waiver is up to the judge.


  • Even if you do not qualify for a fee waiver, you can ask to pay the fee in installments. This can make a bankruptcy filing more affordable.

Chapter 7 or 13

Many people with low incomes qualify for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, because they cannot make installment payments that Chapter 13 requires. Because of this, low-income filers usually do not have to deal with the increased costs of a Chapter 13 bankruptcy. However, if you do file for a Chapter 13, you’ll pay monthly debt payments to the trustee to send to your creditors. The trustee keeps a percentage of these payments as a fee for handling the bankruptcy.

Pro Se Filing

A pro se filing means that you file for bankruptcy without a lawyer. You may choose to do this if your case is very simple. A paralegal may be able help you complete the forms and do the calculations needed for the filing for much less than a lawyer would charge.


  • Be careful when completing bankruptcy forms yourself. The complicated calculations make mistakes common, and with an error, you could have your bankruptcy dismissed.

How to Choose a Bankruptcy Attorney

Bankruptcy is a huge step and it’s probably going to have some effect on your life for years to come. It’s definitely not the kind of legal proceeding you might try to handle on your own. But if you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, you probably don’t have a lot of cash on hand to waste on the wrong lawyer. This makes finding the right one critical

An attorney and two prospective clients.

He Specializes in Bankruptcy

  • There’s an old saying that you wouldn’t hire a dentist to remove a brain tumor, and the same idea applies to different areas of the law. Some lawyers dabble in all sorts of cases, but true expertise usually requires specializing in a certain area. An attorney who works mainly — or only — in bankruptcy law will be familiar with your state’s laws; more importantly, he’ll have a track record with your area’s bankruptcy trustees. He’ll know their quirks and how they’re likely to react in certain situations, and this can be invaluable. An attorney who handles mostly Chapter 7 bankruptcies might not be the best choice if you want to file a far more complicated Chapter 13. Likewise, it makes no sense to pay a Chapter 13 lawyer — who will usually charge more — to handle a simple Chapter 7 proceeding.
    • As your bankruptcy case progresses, you’re going to have a lot of questions. Some attorneys are more available to their clients than others. It’s normal that you’ll probably spend a lot of time with your lawyer’s paralegal, but sometimes you’ll really need to speak with the attorney himself. When you call his office the first time, ask to speak with him so he can answer a question or two. You probably won’t be put through to him because if he’s as good as you need him to be, he’s most likely in court or with another client. The key is whether he calls you back, and, if so, how long it takes him to do so. The norm he exhibits with a potential new client speaks volumes about how accessible he’ll be after you’ve paid him and your case is underway.

    You’re Comfortable with Him

    • Filing for bankruptcy involves disclosing intimate, personal details of your life and finances. On top of that, you may be scared and stressed. If you’re the type who needs a lot of hand-holding, retaining a bankruptcy lawyer who is gruff and all business probably won’t suit your needs. Even if he’s the perfect choice in all other areas, your selection might turn an already difficult situation into an ordeal.

    Cheapest Isn’t Always Best

    • Because you’re already low on funds, the cost of hiring an attorney is of paramount importance. Here’s the good news — the bankruptcy laws in most states cap the amount a lawyer can charge you for bankruptcy proceedings. Be wary of super low fees — this might indicate that the lawyer has so little experience, he doesn’t realize he’s entitled to more. He may be desperate for a client — any client, in any area of the law. By the same token, if your bankruptcy is very simple and you have few assets to protect, you should expect a lawyer to charge you less than he would for a more complicated case. Bankruptcy attorneys usually charge a flat fee, but if a creditor objects to some aspect of your case and you end up in court, you’ll probably have to pay more for this service. It doesn’t happen in most run-of-the-mill bankruptcy proceedings, so it can’t be anticipated when the lawyer first quotes you a fee.

What Is the Job of a Currency Analyst?

A currency analyst performs basically the same jobs as a financial analyst. However, these individuals specialize in making predictions about the value of foreign currencies compared to the U.S. dollar

Currency analysts must work with many foreign currencies.


  • To be a competitive candidate for a currency analyst position, you must first possess a bachelor’s degree. Typically this degree should be in international markets, finance, statistics, business, accounting, economics or another relevant field. Other recommended areas of study include risk management, options pricing and bond valuation.


  • Currency analysts must be able to think analytically. Additionally, they must have thorough computer and problem-solving skills. These professionals need to be able to work well alone but also need to have strong communication skills and be confident making presentations to large groups. They must pay strong attention to detail, be interested in foreign economies and be research-driven.


  • Currency analysts often work with other financial officers to predict the prosperity of foreign markets and the value of foreign currencies compared to the dollar. This can help determine risk management for a company, potential investments or merely aid them in making business decisions that involve overseas production. Based on their research, currency analysts will typically make presentations about their findings and then make suggestions for action. Often they help lead these initiatives if the company or client takes their suggested plan of action.

Work Environment

  • Most currency analysts work in comfortable office settings. Typically they have access to information services and high-tech computer systems. At times they are required to travel to financial meetings to speak or simply attend. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor, people holding this position often work long weeks of 50 to 60 hours.


  • According to, the average currency analyst brings in between $44,120 and $63,100 per year. This equates to an hourly income that ranges between $12.21 and $36.32 per hour. As with all salary information, however, these figures can vary based on geographic location, employer and years of experience.



Rodeo Realty Welcomes Elaine Mallon to its Prestigious Brokerage, Establishes Presence in the Palos Verdes Peninsula / South Bay Area

PALOS VERDES, Calif., April 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Rodeo Realty Fine Estates is pleased to welcome Elaine Mallon to its prestigious brokerage.  Elaine, a Broker who specializes in the sale & acquisition of luxury real estate, will extend the company’s reach for its discerning clientele down into the Palos Verdes Peninsula & South Bay Beach Cities.
ELAINE MALLON, Broker Associate, Rodeo Realty - Fine Estates, Palos Verdes Peninsula / Beach Cities
“Elaine is a natural fit for Rodeo Realty and the clients we serve,” said Syd Leibovitch, Founder & CEO.  “She brings a high-level of expertise and a down-to-earth, personal touch to her work.  Her extraordinary professionalism and passion for the South Bay & Palos Verdes area, makes her the perfect bridge for us between two very affluent worlds, from Beverly Hills to the Palos Verdes Peninsula.”
Elaine is a Certified Residential Specialist – the highest designation awarded in residential real estate sales – which includes only 3% of all REALTORS® in the nation.  She’s also a Certified Negotiator; Certified Investor Agent Specialist; Certified Relocation Specialist; and Certified Palos Verdes Area Specialist.
Among her specialties:  Coastal luxury homes, vacation properties, and investment properties.  Discretion and expertise with high-profile clients, particularly those from the entertainment, music and sports industries.
Elaine was previously a top-producer for Sotheby’s International Realty, and for Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s Manhattan Beach and Palos Verdes / Beach Cities branch offices for over a decade.
Elaine began her career in entertainment publicity, where she was an award-winning publicist for MGM/UA TV, CBS and Fox Broadcasting.  She rose to Vice President, Media & Corporate Relations for 20th Century Fox Television and Twentieth Television.
Headquartered in Beverly Hills, Rodeo Realty is one of the most renowned independent real estate brokerages in the nation, and continues to dominate the California market as the #1 single-owned independent brokerage.  It is ranked #2 among all brokerages in L.A. County.  With annual sales exceeding $4.264 billion last year and a powerful global presence, Rodeo outperformed other companies like Berkshire Hathaway, Sotheby’s Int’l Realty, Re/Max Estate Properties, Hilton & Hyland, Partner’s Trust, Shorewood Realty and The Agency.  Yet, unlike the huge national firms, Rodeo Realty maintains the friendly, hands-on quality of a neighborhood Realtor.
Now serving:  Palos Verdes EstatesRancho Palos VerdesRolling HillsRolling Hills EstatesRedondo BeachHermosa Beach & Manhattan Beach. (CA BRE#01325954)

Charles Koch Wichita Business Journal Interview

Photo Credit: Kellen Jenkins of WBJ

So last Friday morning the Wichita Business Journal (the article is only unlocked for a week) in an effort to revamp their journal came out with a profile of Charles Koch. Koch is not known to give very many interviews. Although in the past few years he did one with Forbes andone with the Wichita Eagle. The story of how the interview came about is interesting (more on that later).

In the interview done in February 18, 2014. From the pictures Charles Koch looks very relaxed wearing an Oxford Polo Shirt (who would think a billionaire would wear Ralph Lauren-that isn’t Ralph Lauren). Koch talked about a number of different things like why Koch Industries is still in Wichita (I was even surprised he quoted Hayek on that). On innovation when asked why Charles Koch who is 78 years old and still shows up up to work everyday. According to Koch “I may be old, but I’m not dead yet”. Koch Industries is still trying to integrate Molex from their merger last year. I would imagine Molex employees are learning more about Market Based Management. Koch said that Molex has to “get an idea built and get it commercialized immediately”. Molex makes connectors that go into computer and electrical products (wait I thought Koch Industries was an oil giant). What is really interesting was Koch discussing products that can learn themselves. He discussed about building a computer into a glass mirror that could learn to adjust the temperature or the amount of light to come through the mirror all with the press of a button. Koch Industries has also made some interesting investments like into American Greetings (a card company). Essentially, Koch provided capital to American Greetings in order to take the company back. Charles Koch points out that it is hard to give a loved one the same message from a digital card as a hand delivered card. Koch said he liked the new technology in the drilling business (however he doesn’t want to get back into that industry).

Chase Koch is the son of Charles Koch and earned his BBA in Marketing from Texas A&M University and has been with the company since 2003. I talked about Chase Koch and possible estate planning here. Charles Koch even challenged if his son would be the best person for the job. I honestly believe that if Charles Koch didn’t believe his son was ready he would not have him on board with the company. Koch Industries has a large bench to pool from in terms of talent in the future if needed.

When talking about his political views Koch is really trying to save the country by promoting limited government and free markets. He talks about cronyism and the barriers to entry (taxi medallions or required schooling for hairdressers). Koch does correctly point out that make it harder for poor people to advance “for disadvantaged people trying to get started, its unconscionable in my view”. Honestly, it seems clear the Charles Koch does want to help poor people. Thomas Sowell once said that the difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats want to give the poor money while they are poor and Republicans want to help poor people stop being poor. Koch talks about long-term interest instead of short-term interests. Since Koch is private they don’t have to worry about analyst meetings or quarterly earnings. In this interview from 2007 Koch said “a public company has to cope with the extreme focus of the analysts and the equities market on quarterly earnings. Someone misses quarterly earnings projections by a penny, and their stock goes down 10 percent”. Most people actually incorrectly believe that companies are just into the bottom line for the short term. However, if you constantly make bad decisions in the short run you won’t be around for the long run. Koch points out that “people should only profit to the extent they make other peoples lives better. You should profit because you created a better restaurant and people enjoyed going to it. You didn’t force them to go, you don’t have a mandate that you have to go to my restaurant on Tuesdays or Wednesdays or you go to prison”. Gee, for some reason I have this feeling if I don’t purchase healthcare I get some time of penalty. When talking about political contributions and his interests it should be noted that Charles Koch, David Koch, and Koch Industries are subjected to death threats, cyberattacks (speaking of which a 24 year old Iowa man got busted for trying to launch a cyberattack on the Koch website). I saw someone from Young Turks explaining how it was nice that young people were realizing that Koch Industries was a bad an evil corporation and even liberals should feel a little proud when the company gets hacked.

It was interesting to see the Charles Koch Foundation is working with Michael Rowe from  “Dirty Jobs” in order to explain to people they don’t need to get a liberal arts degree and that some people who have certain talents can make very good money my satisfying needs and wants of people.

A nice feature of the article is when former Koch employees reflected on there time at Koch. Nearly all of them said it shaped how they thought and had a positive effect on who they become as business people. Former employee Patrick Ahern said that in one year he learned so much he would have paid to work at Koch Industries.

According to reports Koch Industries decided at the last minute not to allow video during the interview (probably for security reasons). It is pretty clear that Charles Koch and his brother David Koch unfortunately have to have armed guards 24/7 to protect them because people fundamentally don’t agree with their ideology. The ironic thing is that these people who complain are most likely using a Koch Industries product. If they use the toilet they most likely used Georgia Pacific toilet paper. If they dried their hands they used a paper towel from Georgia Pacific. After the purchase of Molex, if anyone has a iPhone it was created partly by Koch Industries. The list goes on and on of products that Koch creates that every day people use (probably without even realizing it). What is even more interesting is that Koch to my knowledge doesn’t explore for gas like actual companies (Chevron, ExxonMobil, and the rest).

How to Start an Insurance Premium Financing Company

Insurance premium financing is one of the newest offerings in the insurance market. Basically, this activity involves having a bank extend an individual a line of credit to pay for an insurance policy over the course of a certain amount of time. Generally, this option is only available to clients over the age of 65, and most will need to already have a good financial standing. If the policy is needed during the term, the loan is paid in full from the funds. If not, the client can either pay off the loan and keep the policy or sell the policy on the secondary insurance market. Now you can get involved in this profitable approach to insurance; here’s how.


  1. Get Licensing. Because you are going to be working in the insurance field, you’ll need to have a license to do so in every state in which you hope to offer your services. Be aware that many states have very different licensing requirements and some are fairly strict. Because this can be a time-consuming process, hand over the responsibility to your lawyer.
  2. Look into a captive financing company. When you start this type of business, financing is going to be a big part of your success. If you control the financing company, you get to make the important decisions, such as what interest rates to charge and what other lending terms to set in motion. You also profit from the deals, even when things don’t go well with the transaction. For example, normally, if the client had to sell the policy because he could not afford to pay off the loan you would end up taking a loss. If you own the financing company, that’s not going to be the case.
  3. Find clients. Even before you officially open the doors of your business, you should have your eye on potential clients. Hopefully, you already have a strong reputation in the insurance or financial planning market which will make lining up clients easier. If you are currently working in those fields, consider marketing yourself to existing clients if there would be no conflict of interest with your present employer. Another way to find new clients is to start hosting free seminars or by offering to do presentations for individual potential clients.
  4. Consider outsourcing management. One of the popular options available for premium financing companies is to outsource their management to services that can run them. The benefit is that you’ll be able to reap the benefits, but you won’t necessary suffer if you don’t have a lot of business acumen or if you want to continue working in your present field while also opening up this additional income stream.
  5. Build your capital. Because of the higher than average capital costs required to start one of these companies, you’ll need to either finance the business yourself or find some partners who will assist you. Remember that your expenses will be determined, in part, by how many policies you plan to extend. You may also not generate much profit right away either so you’ll need to have sufficient capital to cover the costs of hiring a management team and covering all of the financing fees, such as interest, associated with each of these loans.

Four Questions to Ask Bankruptcy Lawyers Before Choosing One

Filing for bankruptcy is a scary prospect, even if you do so voluntarily. There are several different chapters, each with different rules. Hiring qualified bankruptcy lawyers can make the process easier and protect you from your creditors. However, it can be difficult to choose the best attorney for your case. Ask these four questions to get answers that can help you decide.

Do you charge a flat-fee to represent me?

Hiring any attorney costs money. This is particularly troubling when you are considering filing for insolvency, as money is the cause of the problem in the first place. Some legal practitioners bill by the hour. The good news is that most bankruptcy lawyers charge a flat fee for the entire course of representation. Typically, this fee will include consulting with you and analyzing your circumstances, preparing and filing the necessary documents, and representing you during the insolvency proceedings. Sometimes, creditors challenge the bankruptcy. Other times, creditors can still come in and foreclose on a home. Often, the flat-fee does not cover these additional situations. Before choosing from several bankruptcy lawyers, make sure you understand each attorney’s fee arrangement.

Is bankruptcy your primary line of work?

Any licensed attorney can help you file the required paperwork. However, insolvency proceedings involve complex areas of law that do not apply anywhere else. Moreover, deciding what chapter to file involves a detailed analysis of your individual financial situation and expectations. Even a seasoned legal practitioner whose primary work is bringing tort claims or structuring commercial transactions will generally not have the knowledge and skills necessary to adequately protect you from your creditors. You need a legal practitioner who is devoted to handling insolvency cases.

What can I expect from you regarding communication?

It is important to find a legal practitioner whose practice is primarily devoted to handling insolvency cases, but it is equally important to find a legal practitioner who will devote individual attention to your case, because determining the best course of action requires a detailed analysis of your financial situation. You should know how long the legal practitioner will devote to reviewing your situation, how quickly your phone calls will be returned, how frequently the lawyer will update you on case progress, when you can expect pertinent documents to be drafted, and what efforts your advocate will make to cease the creditors’ collection efforts.

Will you have staff who assist you on my case?

Bankruptcy lawyers have a substantial number of clients and will not always be directly available to work on your case. There will be routine matters that will need attention, but do not necessarily require the personal attention of the attorney. It is important that the attorney have staff or junior lawyers available to work on the case when the primary legal practitioner is not directly available. However, you should also make sure that the attorney handling the case will personally review the work of junior lawyers and non-attorney staff members.

Asking these important questions will help you to choose from among the many bankruptcy lawyers in your area.

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What Can You Do With an MBA in Finance?

A master’s of business administration in finance provides a rigorous academic approach to business and finance disciplines. A finance degree can lead you to finance-oriented employment in investment banking or corporate finance. However, MBA programs typically have a broader focus with an emphasis on management and leadership potential. Additionally, MBA programs commonly include team-building coursework and real world project analysis. According to the book “Finding Your Way with an MBA: Insights From Those Landing Their Ideal Jobs,” typically MBA graduates enjoy higher compensation than graduates with college-level business degrees.

What is an MBA Degree?

  • The MBA in finance is a postgraduate degree in business studies with an emphasis in finance. Students wanting to earn an MBA study the theory and practical application of business and management principles. Coursework specifically covers the basic principles of managing a business and developing organizational leadership and business strategies.

Why Get an MBA Degree?

  • Increasing your career opportunities and salary potential are two primary reasons to consider getting an MBA in finance. Many companies require an MBA degree for executive and senior management positions. According to the book “Finding Your Way with an MBA: Insights From Those Landing Their Ideal Job,” more than 100,000 Americans graduate each year with an MBA degree, making the MBA the single most popular master’s degree program. Many employers recognize that an MBA degree in finance indicates a job applicant has a solid understanding of business practices and management techniques.


  • An MBA in finance teaches you skills you can apply to numerous fields. Besides coursework in finance, MBA finance programs require you to take courses in marketing, operations management, money management, human resources, business strategy, business leadership and business ethics. MBA programs with an emphasis in finance also require additional advanced coursework in financial planning, economics and accounting. An MBA in finance affords you the opportunity to choose from a number of careers upon graduation, and virtually work in any field or industry. MBA finance graduates enter many industries, including health care, government, engineering, music and retail.

MBA Degree in Finance

  • An MBA with a specialization in finance gives you many professional options, especially within the financial field. This degree will benefit individuals seeking employment in corporate finance, commercial banking, financial planning, investment banking and other business sectors. Specific job titles commonly held by graduates of MBA finance programs include financial officer, credit manager, finance manager, management consultant or senior financial analyst.


Types of Banking Jobs

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (, in 2006 the banking industry employed more than 1.8 million. Out of these job, 7 out of 10 were in commercial banks. The banking industry has a wide range of jobs and positions available. Tellers still make up a vast majority of the employees, but other bank positions take up a large sector in the job industry in general.

Types of Banking Jobs

ManagementWithin the Management field of bank jobs there are: financial managers, who oversee the bank branches and departments as well as maintain bank standards and resolve customer issues; loan officers, who go over loan applications and make recommendations on whether to approve or deny a loan; and trust officers, who handle pension funds, profit sharing and even school endowments. Occasionally, trust officers also act as the bank lawyer or accountant as well.

Dan Ionut Popescu |
Financial ServicesFinancial services is a sales orientated position that handles the selling of the bank’s services. The bank agents handle everything from deposit accounts and lines of credit to certificates of deposit and investment services. Financial service agents handle the marketing of the bank, especially when it comes to consumer credit cards and services. This has become a large part of the industry that sales agents dedicate much of their time to.

Tatjana Krstic |
AdministrationOffice and Administration jobs take up the largest portion of banking jobs available. These include tellers who handle account transactions and services for customers whether they come into the bank or go through the drive-through. Also included in this classification are customer service and new account clerks who answer customer questions and concerns and most thoroughly know the bank’s products and services. These positions are also in call centers, where the representatives are answering phone calls and responding to customers’ emails.

Vadim Kozlovsky |
OfficeOffice staff within a bank include many positions. These are general office jobs such as secretaries, data entry clerks and receptionists. There are also bookkeepers, accountants and audit clerks who process deposit slips and checks, enter data and maintain additional financial records and documents. Of course there are also supervisors and managers that oversee training and the day to day tasks of the office support.

Susan Leggett |
Miscellaneous SupportMiscellaneous support includes lawyers, accountants, auditors and computer specialists. This is the smallest portion of the employment within the banking sector, but it is vital to the running and operations of any bank. These positions ensure that the bank is compliant with all federal regulations and codes as well as maintaining the corporate financial records. The computer specialists positions maintain all computers and software, as well as computer upgrades and electronic banking technologies.

Raycan |

Read more :

Jobs for Finance Majors

If you are thinking about a degree in finance for your undergraduate degree major, you might be in for a rewarding and lucrative career. While it might be tempting to assume that a major in finance will lead only to a career of numbers-crunching, in reality, various careers in other aspects of finance and financial management are possible with a finance degree.

Financial Analyst
Financial analysts, like economists, analyze financial trends and how a business is performing so they can offer advice and guidance on major financial decisions. Financial analysts may make recommendations about investment strategies and long-term financial goals. These recommendations are typically based on how they perceive the financial data with which they are working. Financial analysts typically analyze various types of investments, such as mutual funds, stocks and bonds to evaluate their performance and potential for economic gain. Analysts work for corporations, banks, financial services firms and even for the government. In addition to obtaining a bachelor’s degree, financial analysts typically obtain licensing through the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), financial analysts made a median salary of $73,150 in May 2008.

Financial Manager
Financial managers are responsible for the long-term economic growth of their company or firm. They are responsible for planning and implementing plans that ensure this growth. Financial managers review and analyze financial reports produced by individuals, like financial analysts. They also utilize cash management strategies and help make investment decisions on behalf of a company. The BLS notes that financial managers’ job titles can vary by the function they perform. Some serve as cash managers, others as credit managers and yet others as branch managers for financial firms. The bachelor’s degree in finance can open up careers in this field, but the BLS notes that the master’s degree is becoming increasingly important for management positions. The median annual salary of financial managers was $99,330 in May 2008.

Stockbrokers and other financial services providers are individuals who work on behalf of clients to help them with both long- and short-term financial goals. A stockbroker is a financial services sales representative who may advise clients to buy stocks in certain companies or other securities like bonds and mutual funds. Some financial services representatives are referred to as financial advisers or financial planners. A degree in finance can provide suitable preparation for individuals wanting to work in this field. Like financial analysts, stockbrokers have to be licensed by passing an exam regulated by FINRA. The median annual salary for financial services representatives, according to the BLS, was $68,680 in May 2008.



How to Land an Entry-Level Financial Analyst Job

A financial analyst is a professional who gives investment advice to both individuals and businesses. Due to the high salaries earned in the profession, landing an entry-level financial analyst position can be challenging, as competition is fierce. However, by carefully mapping out your educational path and networking your way through the industry, you can give yourself a competitive edge for landing a position.


  1. Obtain the necessary education. You will need a bachelor’s degree at the very least, preferably in finance or a finance-related field such as statistics, accounting, international business or management. Some universities require good scores in high school mathematics for entry, while others are a little more relaxed about entry standards.
  2. Further your education by taking a postgraduate degree in finance. While some employers will accept a high-standard bachelor’s degree for an entry-level financial analyst position, many require a master’s degree. Thus, a master’s degree will only increase your chances for acceptance into a trainee program. If you have the financial resources, an MBA that specializes in the financial markets may help your chances even more.
  3. Begin preparation for the chartered financial analyst (CFA) certification, a necessary requirement for a career as a financial analyst. The designation is achieved after passing three examinations that require self-study. The whole process takes two to five years, and will overlap with the experience gained as an entry-level financial analyst.
  4. Network. The financial markets field is highly competitive, and thus becoming familiar with those who already work in the industry will give you an edge over other job candidates. This also applies for internship opportunities. When you eventually land an entry-level position, you will need at least four years of experience before you can obtain your CFA designation.


What Salary Does a Bankruptcy Lawyer Earn?

The career outlook for attorneys specializing in bankruptcy appears promising, particularly given the economic troubles encountered by so many in recent years. Bankruptcy lawyers provide protection from potential ruin for individuals and businesses in financial distress, and their services continue to be of great value to many as the nation slowly emerges from the economic struggles that began around 2007.

Bankruptcy lawyers speaking to each other in library

Location and Experience

  • The national median salary for bankruptcy lawyers in 2014 was $110,000, according to That figure is prone to fluctuation, of course, depending on the attorney’s experience and practice location. For instance, the average salary for a bankruptcy attorney in New York City is $129,000, while in Butte, Montana, that figure comes in at $88,000. Career prospects appear strong for lawyers practicing bankruptcy don’t appear likely to diminish anytime soon.

Job Outlook

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that opportunities for lawyers in general were expected to increase 10 percent from 2008 through 2018.

What Are the Primary Functions of Finance Companies?

A finance company seeks simply to finance the activities of other businesses and individuals. This means that the company is in charge of lending money to those interested in pursuing such funding. Finance companies focus solely on this lending aspect and do not accept deposits the way that banks do. This allows finance companies to respond more quickly to changes in interest rates, so they are often able to offer slightly better deals on the money they lend out.

Personal Loans

  • One of the most common functions for finance companies is the distribution of personal or individual loans. These are loans to individuals not affiliated with any business, and designated for personal uses. The most common type of individual loan is the home loan or mortgage, but smaller loans, such as auto loans, are also popular.

Business Loans

  • Business or commercial loans are granted to businesses for use in an enterprise. There are many types of business loans, and finance companies may handle any of them. Some businesses may want money to buy assets like property or equipment, while others want a loan for their first major supply purchase, or a bond payout they cannot currently afford. Business loans are often larger than individual loans and make the finance company more money on interest.

Funding Activities

  • Since finance companies do not receive their money from deposits the way that banks do, they need another way to come up with the money that they loan out. One of the main functions of a finance company is borrowing these funds from banks themselves, or acquiring the funds from money market activities.

Capital Financing

  • Capital financing is a special type of financing that is conducted by finance companies owned by parent companies that sell products or services. These finance companies work with the customers of the parent company, loaning them money so that they can purchase parent company goods. The parent company benefits from the decrease in inventory and the interest that the loan will generate.

What Finance Companies Look For

When applying for a loan, the likelihood of being approved for the loan depends on several factors that the lender evaluates. Knowing what the lender will look at in advance can help you increase your chances of getting approved. The lender may look at several variables, including your credit history and your income.


  • One of the most important variables for a lender is the applicant’s income. When you apply for a mortgage or any other type of financing, the lender will look at how much money you make. Not only is the amount that you make important, but the frequency and steadiness of the income is also critical. If you do not have a regular income that you can document, it can be difficult to qualify for any kind of financing.

Payment History

  • Another critical variable that a lender looks at is your payment history. This can be found in your credit history and it tells the finance company exactly how you have paid your bills in the past. For example, if you have a history of making late payments on any of your debts, this can hurt your credit score significantly. If you have never missed a payment, you will look very attractive to any financing company and you should have a solid chance of getting a loan.

Debt Level

  • When evaluating you for financing, a lender will also look at the amount of debt that you accumulate. The amount of debt that you have will be compared to the income that you bring in on a regular basis. This is done by using the debt-to-income ratio. If you have a high debt-to-income ratio, you look less attractive as a borrower.

Other Credit Factors

  • When evaluating you for financing, the lender will also look at several other variables. For example, the amount of time that you have had credit is an important factor. The financing company will also look at the different types of credit accounts that you have. Having a good mix of credit and handling it responsibly makes you look like an attractive borrower. The financing company may also pay attention to how many credit accounts you have opened to make sure that you are not at risk of overextending yourself.

How to Get Environmental Jobs

More and more people are interested in careers that reflect their personal commitment to preserving the environment, but finding the right environmental job can be difficult. Knowing where to start looking, having green experience and focusing your resume will all get you off to a good start on a green job search.

Search for green jobs


  1. Check out job boards of leading environmental groups or websites. Green companies and organizations are especially likely to have helpful websites with opportunities listed.
  2. If you’re a student, visit your college or university career center for more information. Even if you’ve already graduated, many schools will still offer help for alumni, so call and find out what resources they have to offer.
  3. Begin your search locally and broaden from there. Look up local environmental service organizations to see what work is available in your community. You may need more experience for state or federal-level jobs.
  4. Focus your resume on your environmental experience. If you have enough green experience, divide up your experience section into “Environmental Experience” and “Additional Experience.” Environmental experience might also include environmental work you have done as part of another job or experience, so highlight the green aspects of all your work.
  5. If you don’t have a lot of experience in environmental service, look for ways to volunteer in your community to build up a base of experience. You’ll also meet people who can assist you in your job search.
  6. Ask for jobs or internships even if they aren’t explicitly offered. Many organizations, especially non-profits, will not post internships but will still be happy to set one up for you if you express interest.


Financial Adviser’s Job Description

Financial advisers, also known as financial planners, advise individuals, couples and organizations on financial matters, such as spending income, saving for retirement and making sound investments. Although most financial advisers practice as generalists, others specialize in investments, savings or insurance. Individuals looking to become financial advisers must have the relevant professional qualifications and be able to follow industry regulations. Top employers include investment firms, consultancies, insurance carriers and brokerage firms.

Financial advisers can meet with clients in their homes or offices.

Doing the Job

  • To study a client’s financial information, evaluate his financial goals and create a good investment portfolio, a financial adviser needs strong analytical skills. Math skills are also essential, because an effective adviser must convert currencies, determine percentages and derive financial ratios. Financial advisers also need strong speaking and active listening skills to interact and share information with clients effectively.

Advising Clients

  • Personal financial advisers help clients make sound financial decisions by providing all the relevant information. For example, when a client wants to buy education insurance for her children, the financial adviser analyzes the client’s financial position to ensure she can afford the policy, and researches the insurance market to identify the best providers and advises accordingly. These financial advisers also help clients improve credit ratings and secure bank loans.

Maintaining Contact

  • After helping clients implement financial plans, such as investing in securities, investment financial advisers often keep in touch with them to discuss the progress of the investment. When a client wants to change his investment options, the adviser furnishes him with new information on potential investment options. These financial advisers also liaise with financial services providers to ensure the interests of their clients are being met.

Maintaining Compliance

  • Financial advisers must update their knowledge on industry regulations. For example, investment advisers who manage $110 million or more in client assets keep tabs on the US Securities and Exchange Commission to monitor changes in relevant regulations. Other financial advisers or planners usually are regulated by state agencies, such as boards of accountancy.

Getting In

  • To become a financial adviser, you must earn at least a bachelor’s degree in economics, finance, mathematics or business. You also need to obtain a license or registration with a state regulator. Investment financial advisers running large firms must be registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission. To improve your ability to attract more clients, pursue a master’s degree in business administration or earn the certified financial planner certification from the Certified Planner Board of Standards.

Getting Compensated

  • In 2013, the mean annual wage for personal financial advisers was $99,920, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. In the same period financial advisers offering investment services was $117,460, while those working as resident advisers in companies made $92,700. Between 2012 and 2022, the bureau also estimates a job growth of 27 percent for personal financial advisers, greater than the estimated 11 percent average for all jobs.


Finance Job Skills

To find a job in finance, you will need to use your math, statistics, budgeting, bookkeeping and business skills. Finance jobs relate to managing money for different purposes. If you work at a car dealership, as the finance manager you would oversee the representatives who get customers approved for new and used vehicle loans.

Finance jobs require knowledge of financial principles.

Cash Flow

  • A finance job requires skill in tracking cash flow around a business. In some businesses, you collect and handle cash, prepare reports documenting cash receipts and make deposits to the bank. In other businesses, cash flow management begins with handling cash receipts or records, verifying revenues collected and posting revenues to the right accounts. The other side of cash flow involves disbursing cash from the right accounts to the right invoices, such as paying the company’s expenses.

Asset Management

  • Another skill set applies to managing the assets of a business. You might ensure that a company has enough assets to cover its financial commitments at any time. Your skills might apply to a career in corporate banking or finance, or you might consider investment consulting, helping businesses and consumers to grow their assets by investing and getting a higher financial yield than they would by depositing money in a bank savings account.

Quantitative Skills

  • You need educational preparation and strong skills in quantitative disciplines, including statistics, math, economics and computer modeling. These skills work well with analytical skills to help you understand financial problems from different angles. To work for a corporation, you will have to use quantitative skills to help your employer achieve goals and objectives. Number-crunching helps you to make financial recommendations to managers and executives.

Information and People Skills

  • Utilize your skills in problem-solving, information-gathering and customer service in a financial services career. You might find work in your own small business or in companies that provide services to consumers. People consume financial products, such as loans and investments, to use money for different goals. You might work in commercial or residential real estate lending, banking services or other financial services such as selling insurance policies and annuities.


What Is a Consumer Finance Company?

Consumer finance companies provide an alternative to banks for individuals who need to borrow money. Unlike a bank or credit union, a consumer finance company doesn’t offer savings or other deposit accounts. Typically, finance companies will make loans to consumers with weak credit who don’t qualify for a bank loan.

Consumer Finance Company Features

  • Consumer finance companies are licensed by states to lend money to consumers for both business and personal reasons. The lender category of consumer finance companies doesn’t include title loan businesses or pawnshops. Some consumer finance companies make auto loans with the vehicle as collateral or offer secured and unsecured credit card accounts. State laws regulate how much consumers can borrow and set limits on interest rates. For example, in Florida a consumer finance company can lend a person up to $25,000. Florida caps interest rates on consumer finance company loans at 30 percent for the first $3,000 owed. The interest rate on the next $1,000 owed is limited to 24 percent. If the principal balance exceeds $4,000, the maximum rate on the excess can’t be more than 18 percent. Since each state sets its own rules, the limits on consumer finance company loans may be different where you live.

Job Description of Investment Bankers

Investment banks arrange financing for private companies. Investment bankers are responsible for matching businesses that require financing with investors who are willing to provide capital in exchange for bonds or stock. Generally all investment bankers pursue advanced education and receive specialized training in the field. There is stiff competition for investment banking jobs, but those who are successful tend to enjoy high salaries and comprehensive benefits.

Investment bankers connect companies that need financing with investors.


  • Depending on the client’s situation, an investment banker’s duties vary. They sometimes act as sales agents for their clients. They advise companies on their financing options, such as issuing stock or bonds, and find buyers for the securities. When clients wish to arrange large financial transactions, such as a merger, acquisition or sale of a subsidy, an investment banker may negotiate the deal. Investment bankers also consult when companies are experiencing financial difficulties, and attempt to find solutions. If clients decide to offer new stock, investment bankers may arrange for their bank to underwrite the stock, so the client will not have to assume financial liability. In addition, investment bankers may oversee their clients’ investments.


  • Most investment bankers earn a master’s degree in business administration (MBA). Those who enter the field without an MBA generally have a bachelor’s degree in finance, business, economics or accounting, and begin as analysts with an investment bank. They receive training on the job, during which they have limited interaction with clients and instead focus their efforts on creating information books that are used to sell products to clients. Training also includes instruction in the specific products and services that the bank offers, effective sales techniques and securities analysis. Most analysts work toward an MBA while employed if they plan to stay in the field. After several years, analysts either receive a promotion to associate or are let go. Candidates who already have MBAs usually begin as associates.

Working Conditions

  • Most investment bankers work in comfortable offices, though the environment is often quite stressful. They usually work long hours, including nights and weekends, and face extreme pressure as they try to negotiate mergers, acquisitions and corporate financing. Many investment banks have a large number of international clients, so investment bankers are often required to travel around the world. Bankers at the junior level usually face the greatest pressure as the job tends to become more manageable with experience.


  • According to the Pay Scale, a salary information website, the median salary for associate investment bankers with less than a year of experience ranged from $47,778 to $96,102 as of May 2010. Those with one to four years of experience were paid between $57,617 and $96,682, while those with five to nine years earned between $69,855 and $101,636. Associate investment bankers with 10 to 19 years of experience earned as much as $106,283.

Employment Outlook

  • The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that employment for securities, commodities and financial services sales agents, including investment bankers, will increase by nine percent between 2008 and 2018, which is the same rate as the average for all occupations.Recent global financial problems coupled with industry consolidation will be the most significant factors in limiting job growth. Investment bankers may face sharp competition as jobs dwindle, so those with MBAs will enjoy the best prospects.



How to Evaluate Financial Investment Companies

Evaluating a financial investment company is important before using that company for personal finance needs. A company should only be used when the evaluation of the company shows that the company is the best possible financial investment company and there are no possible complaints that a client can have regarding the company. There are key points to look for in a financial investment company before giving the company money.


  1. Find out the company philosophy. The company managers should be able to provide proof that shows how they invest, which risks they take and how they minimize the risks of investments. The philosophy of the company should be acceptable before considering any other factors about the company. The public disclosure of any investment company can be obtained from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Investment Adviser Public Disclosure, or IAPD, website.
  2. Look at the company process of investing. The process that the company uses should match up with what it claims for a philosophy. If company managers claim that they invest in environmental friendly investments and then turn around and invest client money in stocks or companies that are known to harm the environment, the company is not a good company.
  3. Ask questions of the people working for the company, especially the individuals who are handling client money. Questions should include asking about their methods and understanding of the company processes and philosophy, whether they work individually or as a team, who they work under and how they make investment decisions. It is very important that the people in the company that handle client money are considered before hiring a company.
  4. Find out about the company’s background. Check on the company through the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority’s website, under the broker check section. FINRA’s search will give information about the company including whether the company has committed crimes in the last ten years or if it has filed for bankruptcy.
  5. Find out how the company charges clients. Some financial companies charge very specific fees and rates while other companies, especially hedge funds, will charge a specific percentage of the investment gains instead. This should be clarified to determine if the fees and charges are acceptable.