How To Maximize Your Credit Card Rewards?

For some, credit cards can be a trap, creating a never-ending spiral of debt and high-interest rates. For others, credit cards are a source of free airline miles, gift cards, and even extra cash. If you are a savvy consumer and always pay your bill in full, credit card rewards are the icing on the cake, giving you free perks just for spending on the stuff you already buy.

If you are financially responsible with a strong credit score, you can get in on these credit card bonuses and enjoy a steady flow of cashback, gift cards, airline miles, travel perks, and other offers. While you make sure to avoid the common credit card mistakes, read on some tips for making the most of your credit card bonuses too.

Book Some Quick Rewards with Signup Bonuses

Competition is stiff among credit card issuers, so much that banks will pay you to take their cards. If you watch the offers and choose your cards carefully, you could scoop up hundreds of dollars in sign-on bonuses just for using your new card.

Requirements differ, and you will need to read the fine print and make sure you satisfy all of the qualifications. Some bonus offers require a minimum amount of spending in a set period, while others ask that you maintain a bank account at the issuing bank. Be sure to follow up once the requirements have been met to make sure you get the points or cash you have coming.

Sign Up for Extra Points

From time to time, credit card issuers offer exclusive bonuses, like five times the points at restaurants or gas stations or extra cash back or points for shopping online. Be sure to sign up for email alerts, so you know which offers are active and how to take advantage of them.

Keep careful track of when these various special offers expire so you can adjust your card use accordingly. It may take some juggling, but these bonus offers can pay handsomely if you are willing to work at it.

Use the Right Cards in the Right Places

If you truly want to maximize your credit card rewards and take advantage of the best bonus offers, start by using the right card at the right time and place. If you have a card that gives you bonus points when eating out or buying groceries, pack that plastic before heading out to the store or local restaurant. If another card offers extra points for gasoline purchases, make sure you have it the next time you fill-up.

These bonus offers are subject to change, so make sure you keep abreast of the changes to maximize your rewards. And be sure to double-check your monthly statements to make sure you are getting all the base and bonus points you deserve.

Maximize Rewards with Discount Offers

Once you have earned the rewards, it is up to you to maximize them. Different rewards can have different monetary values, so look at your options carefully and choose what is best for you.

For instance, you may be able to turn your credit card points into cash, but a gift card could be an even better value. If you can get a $125 gift card to a favorite merchant instead of a $100 check or statement credit, that could give you the best bang for your credit card buck.

It is easy to get sucked into a spiral of credit card debt and high-interest charges. Still, there is another side to the financial equation. If you are highly disciplined with a solid budget in place, you may be able to beat the credit card companies at their own game, starting with the reward maximizing strategies listed above.

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Stocks Vs Index Funds: The Benefits of Trading Stock Indices

The world of trading has never been more accessible; anyone who wants to begin trading in stocks, shares, and other financial instruments can now do so with ease. However, before you begin trading, you need to know what you will be trading and how to trade it. In this article, we are going to take a look at two of the most prominent forms of trading – stocks and shares trading, and index fund trading.

Investing in Stocks

When you buy stocks and shares in a business, you essentially become a part-owner of that business. Each stock and share will represent a fraction of ownership. As you would expect, the amount of money you can make, either through the sale of stocks and shares or through dividend payments, is proportional to the portion of the business that you own. Conversely, should the business run into difficulties or fail completely, your financial liability will be proportional to the number of stocks and shares that you own.

Investors that trade in stocks and shares might be on the lookout for new businesses that show extraordinary promise, and can therefore produce extraordinary returns on relatively modest investments. However, they might also be looking out for already established businesses that represent a safer bet, albeit with a reduced potential for massive returns.

Trading in stocks and shares is relatively simple; the underlying principles are easy to understand even if you have no previous experience with investing. It is also easy to appreciate the risks and rewards involved in trading stocks and shares. While individual businesses are obviously impacted by wider market conditions, investors who are new to trading only need to get to grips with a relatively small range of data in order to assess whether a business is worth investing in or not.

Investing in Index Funds

An index fund is different from stocks and shares. It is essentially a collection of individual stocks that is designed to track a specific index. In the parlance of investors, stock indexes are usually referred to as a “basket of stocks.”

An interesting feature of stock indexes is that you don’t actually have to own any of the stocks within the basket in order to trade them. There are also stock indexes that are pegged to a specific category of stock. One of the best-known examples of this is the Nasdaq index, which is comprised entirely of non-financial companies.

The Benefits of Trading Indices

stocks

There are a number of reasons that many experienced investors prefer trading indices to trading individual stocks and shares. The most significant benefit of trading stock indexes over individual stocks is diversity. Because stock indexes incorporate a variety of different stocks, investors are somewhat shielded from the impacts of one business or market suffering losses.

Trading stock indexes that are based in different locations and markets enables traders to keep trading 24/7, which is beneficial to investors who want to conduct their trades at specific hours, such as part-time traders who are supplementing their main income with trading.

While trading in stocks and shares is the best place for a new investor to start, there are a number of good reasons to eventually graduate to trading stock indices. Regardless of what you trade or how, it is essential to research beforehand so you know exactly what you are getting into.

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