If you’re a first-time donator or a potential donator, it’s not always easy knowing which charities you should support. Here are a couple of tips that we feel can help you take that decision.
Consider the tax benefits. While the goal of giving to charity should lie in the satisfaction of knowing one has made the world a better place, there’s no reason why one shouldn’t also be rewarded. Check with your local and national governments to see what tax breaks are available for donators. This can also help you decide how much you should give, if, for example, an extra 20 puts you over a limit and into a lower tax bracket.
Look to people you admire for inspiration. Celebrities sometimes take a beating in the media for their charity work as some quite cynically view it as a way for a celebrity to raise his or her profile. However, they most certainly do raise awareness about specific issues and can be crucial to fighting poverty or saving the environment or whatever the cause. Boxer Amir Khan has recently put his profile to work for Penny Appeal, a UK-based charity that seeks to attract more Muslim donators. His actions are likely to prompt others to do the same.
Do your research. While most charities are reputable and do their best to make the world a better place, there are some dodgy ones. Chances are extremely high that you’ll be giving to a charity that does indeed help others, but make sure that you’re aware of the activities of a charity. If you’re sensitive to certain activities for religious or moral reasons you’ll certainly want to donate to an organisation that shares your beliefs and values.
Give to causes you care about. Charities and volunteer organisations run on passion. When people part with their money or donate their time to a certain cause they are doing it because they care about the topic. If you love animals more than humans, then you’ll probably want to give to charities that house and look after abandoned pets. If science is your thing, consider giving to the British Science Association. Be sure you’re parting with your money happily and not begrudgingly!
Don’t do it for the wrong reasons. If you’re only seeking to give money for the approbations and kudos of your friends, family and colleagues you’re probably in it for the wrong reason. While that won’t make any difference to the charity you donate to or the people or cause who benefit from your donations, you might start to resent the charity and at the risk of sounding like a hippie, charities should be places of positivity and optimism.
While there is no right or wrong way to donate to charity, following these steps might make it a little bit easier for the first time donator!
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This can form a very important part of an investment strategy. It can also present opportunities free from the restrictions of local investment. This is none the less an area fraught with pitfalls. A consultation with a Partner at StoneHouse Capital could be of great help to an investor considering offshore investment. One simply needs to look at their Monthly Market and Economic Reports to see that in-depth coverage is given to global markets. There are also advisors and Certified Financial Planners (CFPs) who specialise in investment advice on foreign markets.
Offshore investment has become accessible to more investors. Major factors promoting access to foreign markets are developments in Internet based technology and global communications. Information on foreign markets is thus more freely available. This makes it a lot easier because information on investment risk is more accessible. The speed with which investors can react is thus improved. Thus people can feel more in control of their offshore investments.
What is Offshore Investment
The term €offshore investment€ simply refers to investment beyond the borders of an investor’s own country. The first implication is that it is free from local restrictions and conditions which limit the markets in an investor’s own country. This could mean exposure to markets which are not locally available. However, this does not mean that limitless opportunity suddenly opens up. Every country has a different set of restrictions and pitfalls.
Advantages of Offshore Investment
For this reason investors often consider it as an important aspect of portfolio diversification. Offshore investment accounts can give an investor virtually unlimited access to international markets, and to all major exchanges. New opportunities can also open up, for example developing countries which privatise their state owned industries.
Offshore investment creates an opportunity to restructure ownership of assets. It provides a certain level of immunity against lawsuits, or lenders foreclosing on outstanding debts. This can be done through paper ownership transfers from individuals to corporations which are no longer susceptible to seizure.
According to the latest biannual Global Financial Centers Index, Bermuda remains in the top spot as the best place for offshore investing, one example of a company that offers offshore mutual funds in Bermuda is LOM
A general rule of thumb seems to be that one pays tax in a country in which one earns money. Some countries, like the USA, require that all income – local and foreign – be declared. It is also generally understood that one should not pay double tax on earnings. Currency earned on foreign shores has a beneficial impact on the economy of the investor’s home country, provided this is money which is brought into that country.
Some countries offer tax relief for foreign investors. They offer favourable tax rates in order to promote a healthy investment environment because it attracts outside wealth. Investment on behalf of a corporation can enjoy tax-exempt status. The USA is an example of this. However, it’s important to remain informed because legislative changes can create restrictive laws aimed at closing tax loopholes.
Many offshore jurisdictions constitute a certain level of secrecy. This means high profile investors can protect their wealth and interests by remaining anonymous. This anonymity also allows high profile investors to buy shares without smaller investors driving the prices up by following their example.
This does not mean that it is a license for criminals to operate freely. In most cases, like drug trafficking, money laundering or other illegal activities, offshore laws will allow for identity disclosure. Countries can have mutual agreements to facilitate this.