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How To Pick A Charity that You Can Believe in

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How To Pick A Charity that You Can Believe in

With many charity organizations available, it is vital that you know how to pick the charity that you would support. In this article, Julie Jason gives us a guideline on how you can choose a charity. Read on to find out how to pick a charity.

How To Pick A Charity that You Can Believe in

Here are some questions to ask charities


Last week, we talked about the 9,048 charities rated by Charity Navigator. Those organizations “depend on support from individual contributors and foundations.” Others, such as those that provide services, are not rated.

Leaving ratings aside, let me share some additional thoughts on how to pick a charity that you can believe in and stand behind for a long time.

The quotes below are directly from Charity Navigator’s “Questions To Ask Charities Before Donating“.

My comments are based on my experiences on a few nonprofit boards over the years and a three-year volunteer stint as the state of Connecticut’s representative to the Taxpayer Advocacy Panel, “the federal advisory committee charged with providing taxpayer suggestions to improve IRS customer service.”

1. “What is your organization’s mission?

If a charity struggles in explaining its mission and its programs, it will probably struggle in delivering those programs. Healthy organizations know exactly who they are, what they do, and why they are needed.”

Very well said. This insight applies to any venture, including for-profit businesses.

2. “What are your organization’s goals?

Goals are a necessary tool to measure success. Without establishing clear goals, it’s challenging to measure success. If a charity cannot communicate its goals, both short and long term, it is difficult for a donor to know what the charity is working towards.”

Again, who can disagree? Occasionally, serendipity can lead to a successful outcome. But you can’t run an organization that routinely delivers good outcomes without goals and metrics. Once more, this rule applies to all ventures.

3. “What progress is your organization making toward its goals?

Ask your organization what it has done to make the issue it confronts better. Can the organization demonstrate how their actions have impacted their progress?”

Actions speak louder than words.

4. “What sources are available to increase my confidence in your work?

Our research has shown that [the] majority of charities are responsible, honest, and well-managed. Healthy charities demonstrate transparency. Documents such as the organization’s form 990 and audited financial statement should be readily available for donors to review.”

Good advice. It is essential for a donor to understand how the organization will use his or her funds.

While I’m not an expert on charities by any means, getting answers to some big-picture questions will certainly help identify whether you believe in the organization’s mission and how it intends to execute it with the help of your donation.

Before leaving the discussion of resources, let me give you one more: the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance (BBB WGA), found at www. give.org.
BBB WGA reports on 1,300 national charities. About half of the 112 Better Business Bureaus in the U.S. and Canada also report on about 10,000 local charities.

Give.org lists 20 standards in these categories: governance and oversight, measuring effectiveness, finances, and solicitations and informational materials.

Then the site concludes: “Meets Standards,” “Standards Not Met,” “Did Not Disclose,” “Unable to Verify” or “Review in Progress.”

An example is the American Red Cross, earning a “Meets Standards” on all 20 elements. The site also lists four “Complaints processed by the BBB in the last 36 months,” each of which is categorized by type and shown as “addressed.”

Finally, let me add a comment from a physician who chaired major gifts for almost three decades for a Connecticut hospital:

“Ask yourself if you are diluting your efforts by donating to multiple charities. Could you accomplish more by focusing on just a few?”

If you believe the latter is a better option, research of the type we’ve been discussing over the past two weeks will help you concentrate on causes you can support with confidence and passion.

A worthwhile consideration indeed.

* * *
Julie Jason, JD, LLM, a personal money manager (Jackson, Grant of Stamford, Conn.) and award-winning author, welcomes your questions/comments ([email protected]). To hear Julie speak, visit www.juliejason.com/events.

(c) 2017 Julie Jason.
Distributed by King Features Syndicate Inc.

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Business

Stocks Just Spiked to Record Highs After China Budged on a Key US Trade Demand

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According to a Fox Business report, China “issued a document to ‘effectively curb’ violations of intellectual property rights such as trademarks and copyrights.” This move is aimed at increasing the chances of a trade deal between the two largest economies. The S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average, and Nasdaq Composite Indexes reached all-time highs after China’s statement.

Adam Phillips, director of portfolio strategy for EP Wealth Advisors, said “I don’t think we would be seeing these types of deals if the outlook for markets and the economy weren’t favorable. This is one additional piece we can look at to see the outlook for markets is a positive one.”

Bloomberg reported that equities climbed across Asia, “led by those in Hong Kong, where local elections brought a landslide victory to pro-democracy candidates. The dollar gained versus the euro and yen.”

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21 Stocks Everyone Should be Watching in 2020

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Best Stocks in 2019

Interested in what stocks to look out for this year? Then you’ll love this list of the best stocks to watch in 2020.

But before we get started, remember the most important advice when it comes to investing in stocks: the wisest way to invest is to use a stock index fund.

These funds purchase multiple stocks and spread risk appropriately across the top companies. This is the advice of Warren Buffett, who once said,

“By periodically investing in an index fund, for example, the know-nothing investor can actually outperform most investment professionals.”

If you’re looking for a stock index fund, check out Vanguard’s 500 Index Fund.

With that aside, here are the most promising stocks going in to 2020:

1. Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle is an international chain of restaurants specializing in tacos, burritos, and other Mexican style cuisines. They have establishments all over the world from the United States to Germany and France.

This beloved food joint performed very well in the first two quarters of 2020 and are expected to continue to grow.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 87.81

2. Constellation Brands, Inc.

Constellation is an international beer and wine producer. They are the largest importer of beer in the United States and command 7.4% of the market share.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 17.00

3. Lululemon Athletica

Lululemon Athletica creates athletic apparel such as performance shirts, shorts, and pants, as well as yoga accessories. They’ve built a brand over the years that millions recognize and love.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 47.51

4. Coty Inc.

Coty Incorporated is a multinational company that specializes in beauty products and services such as cosmetics, fragrances, skincare, and nail care.

Coty owns over 70 brands, such as CoverGirl, Clairol, and Bourjois. In 2018, the company’s revenue was over $9.4 billion.

As of August 2019, Coty Inc. stock is valued at 10.42 USD. Their P/E ratio is not yet available.

5. Anadarko Petroleum Corporation

Anadarko is in the natural gas and petroleum industry. This entails everything from gathering resources to treating and transporting gas. The company is also in the hard mineral business.

In early 2019, Anadarko had an estimated 1.47 billion barrels of oil in reserve, making it one of the biggest players in the industry.

As of August 2019, Anadarko’s stock is valued at 73.48 USD. Their P/E ratio is not available yet.

6. Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P.

Brookfield Infrastructure Partners acquires and manages infrastructure assets all over the world. They specialize in utilities, energy, and transportation infrastructure.

The company invests in ports, toll roads, pipelines, and telecommunication lines. In other words, things that people will always need and use.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 75.27

7. ONEOK Inc.

ONEOK (pronounced “one – oak”) Incorporated is in the natural gas industry and is a key leader in the gathering, storing, processing, and transporting natural gas in the United States.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 22.62
TerraForm Power Inc.
TerraForm Power specializes in renewable energy, particularly solar and wind power. There is an ever-growing trend that demands less damage to the environment.

As the world values green innovations, companies like TerraForm are expected to be favored in the coming years.

P/E ratio as of August 2020: 227.44

8. Netflix

Netflix is a service provider and production company with their main product being a subscription-based streaming service.

Streaming TV and movies have largely replaced traditional television. With no commercials and instant access to thousands of products, Netflix is suspected to continue to grow.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 120.23

9. iRobot

iRobot is an advanced technology company that specializes in military and domestic robots. They designed the Roomba, which is an autonomous vacuum cleaner.

The U.S. military has purchased and uses thousands of robots from iRobot and are contracted to make more.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 22.24

10. Amazon

Amazon is a multinational company that specializes in e-commerce and cloud computing. It’s considered one of the big four technology companies along with Apple, Google (Alphabet, Inc.), and Facebook.

Amazon is well known for distributing goods through technological innovation and on a massive scale. Some estimate that Amazon commands 50% of all goods sold online.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 73.65

11. Apple Inc.

Apple is a multinational tech company that develops and sells computer software, electronics, and online services. They designed some of the world’s greatest tech products including the iPhone and Apple Watch.

Being a leader in tech devices, many analysts believe Apple is one of the most promising stocks to invest in.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 16.61

12. Alphabet Inc.

Alphabet Inc. is a multinational conglomerate founded in 2015. It’s the parent company of Google, which is the dominating search engine on the internet.

Google performs 90% of all searches on the internet. Alphabet has additional subsidiaries such as Calico, Capital G, and Deep Mind.

These subsidiaries have their hands in industries such as autonomous cars, biotechnology, video game software, and internet tech.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 23.87

13. Facebook Inc.

Facebook is the popular American social media site founded by Mark Zuckerberg. In 2018, Facebook had a net income of $22.11 billion and its total assets were $97.33 billion.

Facebook has subsidiaries such as Instagram and WhatsApp, which are also very popular social media outlets.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 31.00

14. MarketAxess Holdings Inc.

MarketAxess is an international company that specializes in financial technology, also known as fintech.

They operate an electronic trading platform for various credit markets such as corporate bonds and income products.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 70.82

15. AT&T Inc.

AT&T is a multinational conglomerate holding company and is the world’s largest company in telecommunications.

AT&T is the parent company of Warren Media, which makes it the largest entertainment company in the world in terms of revenue.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 14.17

16. Verizon Communications Inc.

Verizon is a multinational telecommunications conglomerate. They are well known for their subsidiary Verizon Wireless, which is its mobile network.

Together with AT&T, these two companies dominate the mobile and landline market. Since our needs for communications will develop, these two stocks are poised to grow.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 14.49

17. Axon Enterprise Inc.

Axon Enterprise Inc. is a U.S.-based company that develops weapon products and technology for civilians and law enforcement. This company developed the Taser, a line of electric shock weapons.

Since then, Axon developed other technologies including body cameras and a cloud-based management system that empowers police departments to manage and review evidence.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 129.55

18. Intuitive Surgical Inc.

Intuitive Surgical Inc. develops and manufactures surgical equipment to make surgeries less invasive. As of 2017, they had 4,271 bases worldwide.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 48.51

19. Ford Motor Company

Despite the localized recession in Detroit, the automotive giant is doing very well.

The market continues to demand their SUVs and commercial vehicles, not to mention their luxury vehicles, which are usually created under their Lincoln brand.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 16.90

20. General Motors Company

General Motors is a multinational manufacturer of vehicles and own automotive brands like Buick, GMC, Cadillac, and Chevrolet. They have nearly 400 facilities on six different continents.

P/E ratio as of August 2019: 6.19

Conclusion

Let’s point out two trends from this list:

  • Tech and software companies are dominating
  • Utility-related companies are tried and true

About half of the world still doesn’t have internet access. And a large portion still doesn’t have access to common devices like cell phones and laptops. That means these industries are set up to grow significantly for years to come.

Of course, that doesn’t mean other industries will simply disappear. As you’ve seen in the list, there are still key industries that our society relies on, such as energy and infrastructure companies.

Some of the most promising stocks are in tech and software, such as Apple, Facebook, Google, and Amazon.

Nevertheless, the wisest investment is still a stock index fund, which bets on the collective market rather than individual companies.

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Netflix Releases Third-Quarter 2019 Financial Results

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Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX) has released its third-quarter 2019 financial results today.

You can visit the company’s investor relations website at http://netflixinvestor.com to view the Q3’19 financial results and letter to shareholders.

A video interview with Netflix Chief Executive Officer Reed Hastings, Chief Financial Officer Spence Neumann, Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos, Chief Product Officer Greg Peters and VP, IR & Corporate Development Spencer Wang will be available at 3:00 p.m. Pacific Time at youtube.com/netflixir.

The interview will be conducted by Michael Morris, Guggenheim Securities. Questions that investors would like to see asked should be sent to [email protected].

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