Globe Investor’s New Terrible Site Redesign and Why Is It Time to Switch to Google Finance Canada

Globe Investor by The Globe and Mail

Globe Investor’s Recent Terrible Revamped Website

First Published: ADawnJournal.com March 7, 2010

I know what you will say once see the title of this article: Globe Investor comes nowhere near comparing with Google Finance Canada and they are meant to be used for different purposes. And up to now, I have totally agreed with you. However, I have changed my mind once I actually experienced their new redesigned site last week.

It is hilarious to see these mega sites trying to put on a huge show through online advertisements and campaigns to announce their new revamped site design – and then come up with a site that is much worse and more user unfriendly than previous versions.

What don’t I like about the new Globe Investor? Basically everything. They tried to make it look like a high-tech website by putting too many nice pictures and big stock market chart; however, they forgot one main element – simplicity.

When you open globeinvestor.com, the first thing that you notice is that almost all of your screen is covered with a gigantic market summary chart and a couple of pictures. And then, if you keep scrolling down, you will be bombarded with about 15-20 sections/columns with big pictures representing each one of them. Let’s say, if you want to find your favourite sections, or any specific columns, there is no way you can find it in a snap. The front page takes about 5-6 page down to see the whole thing.

A simple test you can do right now to see how inefficient and cluttered Globe Investor is. How much time you would need to browse all sections and important highlights on mega sites like Google.ca/finance, Economist.com or IHT.com? I can do in about 20-30 seconds. How long it would take to do the same birds-eye-view scan of heavily cluttered Globe Investor home page? Give yourself an A+ if you can do it in 1 minute.

On a regular weekday, I usually browse Globe Investor 10-12 times and Google.ca/finance 2-3 times. However, starting now, I will flip it to Globe Investor 2-3 times and Google.ca/finance 10-12 times. Finding time is complicated enough and there is no point making it more complicated with the new revamped Globe Investor. Google Finance is may be miles away from Globe Investor in terms of offering features and customization, but I know it won’t take long for Google Finance Canada to catch up. After all, Google always seems to redesign and add features keeping simplicity and what readers want in mind – not the other way around.

A Brief History of India

India: A Brief History

First Published: ADawnJournal.com March 10, 2010

One of the oldest civilizations in the world is the civilization of India. Like China, it is one of the founding civilizations in human history, and it has had a profound impact on our lives for thousands of years. While it is not easy to sum up the history of a country going back thousands of years, this article will go through a brief history of this amazing land.

Pre-History of India

The first settlements in India began to appear about 9,000 years ago, and throughout the early part of the history of the country, it has been a mysterious land, but also a very spiritual one. Throughout pre-history, the country has been a strong civilization as well, even being the only civilization to beat back both the Mongols and Alexander the Great during its history.

It was during the third century BC that the country united under Asoka the Great, during a time that was called India’s Golden Age. It was during this time that India made great advances in mathematics, art, language, astronomy and religion. In fact, both Hinduism and Buddhism came from India around this time.

Europe Arrives

The country was able to keep itself an independent nation for a long period of time, but by the 16th century, the countries of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, France and Portugal began to establish themselves around India, greatly disrupting the country. By 1856, the entire country became part of the British East India Company, essentially making it part of the British Empire. From this point on, for almost 100 years, the country would be under the direct rule of the British Empire. The country tried to fight against Britain in India’s First War of Independence, but they were not successful.

Independence

The citizens of India would continually try and push Britain out of their land for the first part of the 20th century. However, it was not until the legendary figure of Mahatma Gandhi came along and led millions of India towards independence through non-violent civil disobedience. Through this action, India gained its independence on August 15, 1947, along with the region of Pakistan. In 1950, the country became a republic and created its own constitution.

The Growing Giant

While India gained its independence, it still had problems with its neighbours. It got into a dispute with China in 1962 that resulted in the Sino-India War, and the country has gone to war with Pakistan in 1947, 1965, 1971 and 1999. However, the country is also a member of the United Nations and it is also one of the few nuclear nations in the world. In addition, the country has transformed itself through economic reforms and is now becoming a superpower along with China. Currently, the country has one of the fastest growing economies on Earth and it is expected that India will be one of the major countries of the 21st century, along the lines of how Russia and the United States dominated the 20th century.

One thing is clear, this country, which has been around in one form or another for thousands of years, shows no signs of slowing down, or going away.

How To Get The Best Mortgage Deals

Killer Mortgage Deals and How to Get Them

First Published: ADawnJournal.com March 13, 2010

The best mortgage deals available on the market are often ones that go unnoticed by a majority of potential customers. With a mortgage market as wide as it is – even in the financial difficulties that have become a global issue at this point – there is not only an increased level of competition for the few customers who feel brave enough to go out and borrow to buy a house, but also a real sense of being spoiled for choice. Invariably, even those potential borrowers who see fit to shop around for the best deal will find themselves getting a kind of “variety fatigue” which leaves them wondering whether they shouldn’t just take the best of the several potential deals they have already seen – even if it means missing out on an unseen gem.

Reaching for the best available deal on the market means really looking for one that satisfies all your needs, one for which you will not find it problematic to meet payments on a monthly basis, and ideally one that moves to take account of changing realities so that you do not become tied to a deal which looked good three or four weeks ago, but will leave you out of pocket in three of four years. There are various ways of going about this. Some people would say that you shouldn’t spend too long looking – just find a deal that you are happy with, which looks strong today and will maintain that strength, and not worry too much about whether you’ve missed a better deal. Others disagree.

The message from the latter group is that you owe it to yourself to get the best deal possible. Sure, a good mortgage deal will be beneficial for you, but a great one will continue to benefit you, will benefit your family and will continue to serve you well for the life of the account. You may well find at the end of it that you are able to pay it off in full earlier than you had expected. How do you find such a deal, though, if you do not know what it is or where to find it? How do you look for something which you don’t even know exists?

The first port of call is to check mortgage calculators and comparison sites. The Internet has seen a rapid rise in both of these over the course of recent years. The Internet is truly a consumer paradise in many ways because of the vast range that it covers. If you look closely enough in enough places, there is virtually no financial deal that is not covered on the World Wide Web. Trawling a number of comparison sites – ideally two or three, or even more – will give you an appreciation of what kind of deals are being offered. If all of the deals you see are from banks you are fully aware of, however, it may also be worth hitting the streets to see what is on offer from the smaller, more independent banks. With greater freedom to set their own rates, they may just throw up the great deal you were looking for.

Australia Travel Blog: Sydney City Tour

Sydney Travel Blog: Part 4

2-Day Combo: Sydney City Tour + Sydney Harbour Lunch Cruise and Blue Mountains Day Trip

Sydney Travel Blog: Part 3 | Sydney Downtown

The best part staying of in Devere hotel was that it was in the heart of downtown Sydney and steps from the Kings Cross station. I was expected to be picked up in front of the hotel at 7:25 by the Grey Line tour bus.

I took a combo tour that was a two-day tours. On my first day, I would visit the highlights of Sydney and then a harbour cruise. The second day of the tour would take me outside of Sydney to visit the Blue Mountains.

The big tour bus came exactly on time. I sat in the front section because the bus was still not full. We would still pick up more customers at some other locations.

The bus drove through some of Sydney’s most cultural and historic spots with narrated commentaries. Our first stop was at The Rocks. This was the historic place where Sydney was founded.

Next to the Sydney Harbour Bridge, this is where European settlers first landed in 1788. I wandered through the cobbled laneways and open quarters where the convicts, soldiers, and sailors used to live and sleep. It’s like open-air, outdoor quarters made of stones.

The Rocks is also famous for hosting Sydney’s oldest pubs, upscale restaurants with harbour views, the Museum of Contemporary Art, open markets, food stalls, and much more.

The Rocks is a vibrant, historic waterfront district where present and past collide. It is one of the must-see attractions to visit in Sydney to understand the city’s past and present.   

We were given a guided tour in The Rocks and then some free time to wander around. I took this opportunity to capture my Rocks visit with my camera.

How to Build an Investment Portfolio

How to Create an Investment Portfolio

First Published: ADawnJournal.com March 14, 2010

What Is An Investment Portfolio?

An investment portfolio is nothing but your collection of investments. You can hold a wide range of investments such as stocks, bonds, money market instruments, and so on in your portfolio. The objective of building a portfolio is to minimize risks and maximize return by diversify it among variety of investments. Diversification can be made within same asset class or across different asset classes. Research has shown that a diversified portfolio spreading across different classes always is the key to build a successful portfolio.

What I Need To Consider Before Building A Portfolio?

There are various factors you should consider before start building a portfolio. These factors are:

– Your time horizon
– Your risk Tolerance
– Your investment objects etc
I discussed about these in another article. Please follow this link to read it – What Is Asset Allocation?

Are There Any General Rules of Thumb Building An Investment Portfolio?

There are too many, actually. I would have to say, the most common rule is the 100 – age rule. This is simply getting the percentage of stocks and bonds you should hold by subtracting your age from 100. For example, if you are 30, you should hold (100 – 30) 70 per cent stocks and 30 per cent bonds. As you grow older, you should be reducing your stock portion according to this rule. When you are 60, you should be holding 40 per cent stocks and 60 per cent bonds.

Another simple portfolio building approach is the Neutral Allocation – which is holding 60 per cent stocks and 40 per cent bonds. Two other portfolios worth mentioning are Lazy man or couch potato portfolios by Scott Burns and The Permanent Portfolio by Harry Browne.

To find many other portfolio ideas, do a search by entering these keyword phrases: “investment portfolio mix,” “portfolio asset allocations tools,” “model investment portfolio,”etc.

Do You Have Your Own Investment Model Portfolio?

Yes, to make investing simple and worry-free, I have been invented a model portfolio called “A Dawn Portfolio” or simply ADP. You can read more about ADP here – (I am still working on this project and will add a link once done)

To find many other online asset allocation calculators, do a search by entering these keyword phrases: “asset allocation calculators,” “portfolio asset allocations tools,” etc

Last Word

Of course, you need to decide if the recommended allocations match with your personal risk tolerance and market views. Investments must be considered in context

If you are at all interested in asset allocation strategies, I strongly recommend that you read about the science. Don’t just follow conventional thinking and rules of thumb.