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personal finance
Inch closer to your financial goals using online tools that aim to democratise investing in emerging asset classes. Pexels

Global events surrounding the new decade brought personal finance to the forefront for millions of households. The intent to earn, invest, and grow money is at an all-time high as easy access to financial knowledge and cutting-edge tools piqued investor interest.

Quantitative investment techniques, intuitive financial apps, emerging asset classes, and new avenues to earn money are driving people to build passive income streams and reevaluate their investment approach to navigate around financial pitfalls.


Choosing a secure and transparent crypto exchange is the first step in crypto investing. Roger Brown/Pexels

Cryptocurrency is currently riding through a market storm as the value of the leading coin, Bitcoin, tanked by a whopping 50 percent in mid-June compared to last year. While many asset managers and renowned successful investors say that the crypto bubble could burst any day every time Bitcoin nosedives, serious crypto investors have repeatedly proven them wrong by making exponential gains over the years.

Bitcoin investing is a classic case of value investing, which entails staying invested in assets poised to grow in the future for long-term gains rather than short-term gains revolving around market timing. Why is cryptocurrency an asset class with tons of potential for high returns in the future? The answer lies in the purpose of its existence: a public ledger beyond the restrictions of banks and authorities (decentralised), making it possible to track the flow of currency without compromising the details of users.

The blockchain-based currency has the potential to render the middleman obsolete and prevent corruption/money laundering on a global scale. Although cryptocurrencies have been volatile, serious investors who stayed invested over the last decade have earned more than any other asset in the same tenure.

These intrinsic factors have crushed barriers and speculations to attract the support and validation of a fast-growing base of investors worldwide. Generally, investing in crypto requires you to sign up on an exchange and store your holdings in an online wallet. The private keys will only be available to you and your crypto exchange. If you lose the keys to hackers or the exchange is compromised, chances are that your crypto assets will be gone forever.

As such, your choice of cryptocurrency exchange would be more important than worrying about the inevitable momentary value fluctuations, which apply to all known asset classes in these cyclical global markets. Founded in 2016, is an exchange trusted by over 50 million users. They offer an intuitive app protected by the highest possible security standards such as SOC2 Type 1 Compliance, PCI: DSS 3.2.1 Level 1 compliance, and even Singapore Data Protection Trust Mark.

The fast-growing app facilitates secure buying, selling, storage, and tracking of over 250 crypto coins and NFTs using 20 fiat currencies (USD, Euro, etc.) through bank transfers or credit/debit cards. They are one of the few exchanges that enable buying crypto at true cost and lightning-fast speeds of 50-microsecond core latency with high liquidity. Moreover, their metal Visa card opens the gateway to earn up to 5 percent cashback on all applicable purchases with the scope of earning up to 14.5 percent returns on your crypto holdings.

Create an account today.

2. Aikido Finance

Quantitative investing could statistically increase trading returns. Pexels

Over 90 percent of trades are executed using computers on a typical day. Moreover, 80 percent of hedge fund managers expect institutional investors to adopt quant strategies soon.

Quantitative investing involves data analysis using complex algorithms and mathematical modelling to study trends and statistically improve trading accuracy by reducing research time, market risks and increasing portfolio diversification. Although this space is gaining massive popularity, deploying and designing quant strategies is often restricted to leading financial institutions due to high capital entry and the need for financial data science experience and top programmers to code concepts into tangible strategies.

In 2018, four computer scientists came together to create Aikido Finance, an online platform that researches quantitative investing strategies. In an attempt to democratise this space, Aikido Finance allows you to integrate their quant strategies into your stock investing broker or cryptocurrency exchange for free. They are currently compatible with over 700 brokers/exchanges.

When you choose a strategy out of 17 long-term stock and crypto quant strategies, you may use it to create a portfolio with asset allocations based on your risk appetite and financial aspirations. Often, some assets in your portfolio can outperform the rest, and rebalancing is the process of buying and selling positions to stay within your pre-decided asset allocation. Each quant strategy has its rebalancing period, and you will be notified of trading actions to implement in whichever broker you are using. To date, thousands of investors have invested over $1.7 million using Aikido Finance's strategies.

You can try out Aikido Basic for free to choose from basic investing strategies and manually implement them into your portfolio. Conversely, you may opt for their premium membership for $9.99 a month to benefit from their automated investing and portfolio creation feature with impact add-ons.

Get started today.

3. Blackbull Markets

stock broker
Invest in over 23,000 market instruments using this award-winning stock broker. George Morina/Pexels

When choosing a broker for investing in stocks or commodities, it is essential to conduct your due diligence, primarily around security standards, trading and account management fees, access to trading markets, intuitiveness of the platform, and customer support.

An award-winning New Zealand-based true ECN (Electronic Communication Network) broker called Blackbull Markets offers access to over 23,000 tradable instruments encompassing shares, indices, forex, commodities, contract for differences (CFDs), and even the energy sector to over tens of thousands of traders across 180 countries.

They stand out with their proprietary aggregation system software integrated with their ECN system and straight through processing (STP) protocol to help lower fees, prevent failed executions, offer a depth of market with up to 100 lot trades per click and introduce high speed and reliability through multiple Equinix servers dedicated for operation and backup to bridge any possible gaps between traders and global markets.

You can sign up for their commission-free Standard account using their website or app and begin trading on one of their Meta Trader 4 (MT4) platforms with a minimum deposit of $50 following account verification. MT4 is a world-renowned online electronic trading platform preferred by retail foreign exchange traders. Moreover, this emerging broker has a dedicated support team and account managers who offer a seamless resolution to queries in multiple languages 24/6 through email, live chat, and even phone calls.

Check out trading account features here.

4. HardAsset Alliance

gold investing
Gold prices surge during recessions that could offset stock market losses. Michael Steinberg/Pexels

Precious metals, such as gold, have consistently delivered returns on investment through market ups and downs for ages. Its limited quantity and our natural affinity toward gold have created a universal demand that leads to value appreciation over time. While gold offers a hedge against rising inflation, its value has been recorded to surge during market upheavals that reduces portfolio volatility and the stress involved in stock market trading.

Global acceptance of gold as a means to conduct business or transactions beyond the limitations of banking systems also makes it a highly exchangeable asset. It has soared during major recessions in the last century, outperforming stocks and bonds.

HardAsset Alliance (HAA), a New York-based company, offers 24/7 online access to buy insured precious metals such as gold, silver, and platinum. You may store them in secure vaults or get them shipped to your doorstep upon request. They have a global network of storage facilities in New York, Zurich, London, and Singapore operated by global leaders in security, including Brinks, Malca-Amit, and Loomis. All of the holdings are under 24-hour surveillance and frequently inspected by auditors.

Investing in gold through HAA incurs a transaction fee based on the value of the order, which goes towards facilitating seamless online transactions, insuring assets in transport, and administrative costs. A Storage fee is applicable to cover for storage insurance, security, and audits. Fees start from 0.7 percent per year for assets worth up to $100,000 and go down to 0.5 percent for investments above $1 million.

HAA is managing over $2.5 billion in assets of over 30,000 investors. You can open a standard account just like any brokerage account using a driver's licence or other national ID and proceed to fund your account to experience secure buying and selling of precious metals.

Create a protective buffer for your investment portfolio today.

5. Swagbucks

rewards platform
Earn money by voicing your opinion. Andrea Piacquadio/Pexels

In this digital age, leading brands partner with market research platforms to reach consumers for feedback on future products and services. You may sign up on these platforms and give your online feedback on products and services by participating in surveys, playing games, and trying out apps or browser extensions.

In addition to these tasks, Swagbucks, one of the most popular rewards platforms, allows you to shop online for cashback at over 7,000 stores. Each task can take from 30 seconds to 20 mins to complete, and you will earn Swagbucks SB points accordingly. Swagbucks claims that 100 SB points amount to $1 that you may redeem through PayPal or gift cards.

Since 2008, Swagbucks has paid tens of millions of dollars to its users and is a 4.3-rated platform on TrustPilot based on over 27,000 reviews. While the earnings from this platform might not replace side gigs and freelance opportunities, it can be a fun and productive experience in your free time to keep money flowing while you shape future products.

Sign up on Swagbucks today.