Category Archive for Finance

How to move money offshore by Bowman Offshore Bank Transfers

Having an offshore bank account — or two… or three — is an important step in planting flags around the world. As we often discuss, the actual opening of an account is relatively easy, and you don’t need a lot of money.

In my guide, The Best Offshore Banks, we discuss 55 banks that will open offshore accounts for anyone with as little as $500 to deposit. In some cases, you won’t even have to leave your living room, as a number of Caribbean and even European banks allow for remote account opening.

However, the bigger challenge for offshore banking newbies is how to move money offshore; precisely, how to get your onshore funds into your new offshore account.

To make things clear, this article is NOT about how to hide money offshore. While the media loves to do gotcha pieces about how easy it is to move money overseas, the reality is that playing by the rules is a lot better way to go.

In the era of FATCA, mutual legal assistance policies among governments, and offshore bank account reporting requirements, you don’t want to play hide and seek. When used legally, offshore bank accounts are an excellent asset protection tool to protect you from bankrupt governments.

If you don’t have an offshore bank account yet, you can learn more about how to get one here. However, if you do have an account but are confused about how to move money into it, here are several strategies for funding your offshore bank account.

International wire transfer

The most common and straightforward method is to simply wire the money from your onshore account (or your existing offshore account) to the new offshore account. Wire transfers work well because there is often no limit to the amount you can send, making it the most practical option for large transfers.

In some countries, sending a wire transfer is extremely simple and affordable. My Hong Kong bank charges about $11 to send money almost anywhere. The only problem is when the transfer gets rejected for some reason by the receiving party and I’m charged a large return fee. This shouldn’t be an issue, however, if you’re wiring money to yourself.

The downside to sending a wire is that it could take a while to arrive in some smaller banking jurisdictions, like Belize, that involve “correspondent banks” that are often in the US or Germany.

In countries where bankers tend to freak out about international wire transfers (see: the United States), you may need to go into a branch to initiate the wire. I know people who have had their US bank accounts restricted for daring to send an international wire transfer to themselves, so be careful. Then again, isn’t that why you wanted to move money offshore to begin with?

Transferwise

If you want to transfer money online, but don’t want to send a wire transfer, new services like Transferwise can help. (For a full review of the different services, read our article on the best ways to transfer money internationally coming out in September 2016.)

Transferwise is based on a peer-to-peer system that cuts out middleman banks and allegedly reduces the fees of moving money overseas. I haven’t found this to be the case; the cost to send $5,000 to a foreign bank account was as much as $50; even crappy US banks charge less to send larger wires.

In reality, services like Transferwise are a better replacement for expensive money senders like Western Union or Moneygram, not for replacing wire transfers. However, Transferwise is easier to use than a wire if your domestic bank dislikes your moving money offshore, since you send the money domestically and their service handles the rest.

Take cash from an ATM

It sounds too easy, but among the easiest ways to move money offshore is merely to take it out offshore to begin with. Sometimes, the simplest solutions are the best.

In The Best Offshore Banks, we discuss a number of high quality banks that require $2,000, $1,000, or even less in their foreign currency equivalent to open. The only catch with some of these banks is that — unlike accounts that allow you to wire money in later — you need to deposit the money when you open the account.

These banks don’t allow remote account opening, but you can literally use their ATM to take out the amount of the minimum deposit. If you’re domestic bank ATM card imposes a limit on daily withdrawals (usually $400 or $500 for US banks), you may need to plan one day ahead so you can max out the limit on two different days in order to get enough cash.

Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin has been put forward as the possible “ultimate offshore bank account” due to its ability to store money securely in the cloud. Bitcoin guru Stephanie Murphy spoke extensively about the privacy benefits of using Bitcoin at two of my Passport to Freedom conferences.

However, Bitcoin can also be used as a mechanism to transfer funds offshore. If you own Bitcoin in your home country, you can access them in your destination country by using services like Local Bitcoins, or by using one of the growing numbers of platforms that connects directly to a bank account.

Coinapult, for instance, allows you to store Bitcoins and freeze their value to the value of a foreign currency, gold, or silver, reducing volatility until you want to move them into your foreign bank account. Coinbase and other services allow transfers to connected bank accounts, although many offshore jurisdictions are not yet supported.

Sell your gold and silver

If you own gold or silver offshore, such as in a vault here in Singapore, you can often sell those precious metals and have funds wired into your local bank account. Singapore is an excellent option for this as gold storage here is highly secure and Singapore bank accounts are also excellent.

If you already own gold and silver, there are ways to ship it overseas (again, Singapore is a good option) and later sell it for cash. Transporting gold on your person can be risky since customs forms are required in many cases. You should also make sure you follow all rules regarding sales of precious metals, capital gains taxes and other reporting requirements in your home country. Consult a tax professional for help.

If you’re wondering why “put money in a suitcase and show up in the Virgin Islands” isn’t on the list, it’s because almost everyone on earth — save those in Hong Kong and a few other countries — has to declare cash being taken out of the country.

While transporting any amount of cash is legal in most countries, most law-abiding citizens don’t carry large amounts of cash over borders. Those who do often make customs officials suspicious enough to go so far as to confiscate your cash. On top of the legal hassles, most banks don’t want huge piles of cash being deposited due to money laundering concerns; many banks now charge a cash deposit fee for the privilege.

The Hay Group Singapore on Pharma deals don’t have to threaten innovation

In pharma, the big story of the spring and summer has been M&A. The drama began in April with an asset swap between GSK and Novartis. The most recent headline grabbers have been inversion deals like AbbVie’s $54 billion acquisition of Shire.

All this deal activity is a potential threat to innovation. Why? During a deal, it’s easy to overlook the intangible drivers of development: people and culture.

Deal mania makes it easy to forget that people and the way they work together are the main drivers of innovation. Drug development is a team sport, and the way the players interact is a major factor in achieving success. Too often, deals break up environments that have made innovation possible.

M&A integrations also create atmospheres of anxiety within a company that dampen R&D productivity. When layoffs occur—or wind of them blows through an organization—people focus less on their jobs and more on job security. The threats to innovation don’t end there:

  • R&D budgets shrink, jobs are cut and research projects dry up.
  • Researchers have to adjust to a new team and a new work environment.
  • When two distinct research cultures merge, it can destroy delicate ‘ecosystems’ of climate and culture that support scientific discovery.

Integration doesn’t have to harm innovation. But you have to stay focused on people.

So with our most recent white paper “Keep your innovation from walking out the door” we want to share three key people strategies to keep innovation rolling.

Source: blog.haygroup.com/

Simple Investment Tips for Women

“A woman’s best protection is a little money of her own.” – Clare Boothe Luce

Majority of women are independent individuals; thus they take charge of their money and manage their own financial stress. However, if you’re having a hard time doing so, online financial blog prepared some simple and easy tips on how to handle investment and your personal finance.

Apparently, every woman in the world doesn’t want to get widowed or divorced; however, the possibility is there. You should always be prepared and learn to do everything yourself, especially handling your money. You should have a deeper understanding of financial investment because you don’t want to get into trouble with your personal finances, right? Everyone wants to reach her financial goals. It’ll be better to take charge of your money and make wise investment decisions at an early age. If you don’t have sufficient knowledge about personal finances, it’s only natural that you’ll fear investing money, plus the fact that you don’t want to make the wrong investment decisions.

If the economy is unstable, a lot of investors get worried about their financial funds. However, when it comes to money management, women are usually more emotional than men.

Studying each financial investment should be your first assignment. You should keep your worries and fears at bay. You can’t made the right financial decisions if you don’t understand the financial figures. In order to eradicate emotions from a decision and be more logical, it’s really important to understand your personal finances.

Your second assignment will be determining your financial growth and progress. Focus on how far you’ve come instead of taking a look at where you want to be. Each year, make your own 3 to 5 financial goals, and at the end of the year, check to see if you’re still taking charge of your money. Your financial goals may include a raise or job promotion; increase your 401k contribution by 1% or lower your budget and save more. Each financial success is worth celebrating, just do your best and trust yourself.

For your last assignment, identify where you would like to go financially. But first you should know how much money you have. Some women have no idea what they actually have for investments. A financial planner can be a huge help to you, and if you’re working with one, allow her to explain your investments until you understand them, regardless how long it takes. You need to understand what you’re paying for the investment; so always ask about the fees. If you do necessary research and understand them, you can manage your own investments very well. Research each fund on the web to make sure you’re choosing the best money management possible when you’re deciding your 401k allocation. Evaluating your time frame, financial need and investment risk tolerance are the basics of a solid financial plan.

Some women just need a little push to discover what they’re capable of. Remember that having negative thoughts will only consume that little light of hope in your heart. You just need to understand the facts, your goals, the time-schedule, and your risk tolerance. You can establish a better plan if you have a deeper understanding on those things, and you’ll be in a better shape than you think. Move forward and reach your financial goals using this knowledge.

Everyone is facing money stress, not just women. Financial disorder also makes even the experts wonder if their strategies are sustainable. Cope with the changes in the market and your new financial reality by developing a careful financial plan. This will put you ahead of the pack.