GMB #134: Crowdfunding Opportunities in Real Estate With Craig Cecilio

Historically, if you wanted to purchase a private investment, you had to qualify under the SEC’s standards as an accredited investor. After 2012, certain regulatory modifications made private investments accessible to non-accredited investors. This week our guest is Craig Cecilio – CEO and cofounder of DiversyFund Inc. DiversyFund is a crowdfunding platform that enables everyday investors to generate wealth by democratizing alternative asset investment.  

 

 

Show Notes

[03:36] Background – Craig explains what caused the regulatory changes that opened up private investments to non-accredited investors. 

[11:37] More Opportunities – Craig shares his thoughts on why opening up investments makes the most sense.  

[15:16] Craig’s Story – Craig describes how his real estate investing background led to the founding of DiversyFund, Inc.  

[27:28] Best Practices – Craig shares some important considerations when it comes holding or selling properties. 

[29:18] Communication Cycle – Craig describes what it’s like to report to 30,000 investors and how he considers their needs when making decisions. 

[35:29] Communication Transparency – Craig stresses the significance of transparent communication. 

[39:26] Process – Craig outlines the steps required to acquire his company’s services. 

[43:43] New Strategies – In addition to expanding geographically within the multifamily industry, Craig reveals his plans to offer new and alternative strategies.  

[46:19] Lifecycle of Funds – Craig shares when it makes sense to collect money from investors in relation to the lifecycle of the funds. 

[48:32] Challenges – Craig discusses the most challenging aspects of business expansion. 

 

Resources

June Market Commentary: Lions, Tigers, and Bears, Oh My!

May Recap and June Outlook

The Fed lion has found the courage to increase interest rates drastically, the inflation tiger is still ambushing the economy, and now the stock market is flirting with bears. The question for investors is: Are we still deep in the forest? Or is that the Emerald City on the horizon? To extend the metaphor – that wizard wasn’t much help, and the solution to the problem turned out to be a liquidation.

Just to be clear, they melted the witch. We’re not suggesting melting your portfolio.

Continue reading

GMB #132: From Tech Founder to Venture Capital & Real Estate Investor with Zain Jaffer

The world of real estate is full of opportunities for investors who strive to build wealth using innovative strategies. This week on Grow Money Business, we have a fascinating conversation with Zain Jaffer. Zain is a tech entrepreneur, a real estate investor, and the founder of Vungle, which was sold to Blackstone for $780 million in an all-cash transaction in 2019. Today, he invests in real estate and real estate technology businesses through both venture capital and private equity funds.

 

 

Show Notes

[02:15] Zain’s experience – Zain describes what he finds so appealing about real estate investing.

[09:58] Investment Opportunities – Zain shares what he looks for in new investment opportunities and how he assesses whether or not they are a suitable fit.

[16:54] Institutional Impacts on Real Estate – Zain and Grant discuss the argument that institutional interest in residential real estate is making it more challenging for individuals to purchase their own homes.

[22:15] PropTech Startups – Zain describes his future career goals and plans to continue investing in PropTech startups.

[26:33] More on Real Estate Investing – Zain shares some common themes he hears presented from startups seeking investments.

[34:09] Zain’s Journey – Zain outlines his professional journey, starting with the founding of Vungle, to his eventual $780 million exit.

[41:05] Cryptocurrency – Zain shares his thoughts on cryptocurrency.

 

Resources

GMB Ep #129: No, Index Investing Isn’t Bad For The Markets

 

With recent developments in the financial markets, we’re seeing quite a bit of people who are concerned about index investing and the effects it may have on the economy. We dedicated today’s episode of Grow Money Business to addressing some of these concerns. Throughout the episode, Grant shares his thoughts on four of the biggest arguments against index investing and some studies that question the legitimacy of each.

 

 

Show Notes

[03:18] Recent Developments – How the recent developments in the financial markets reignited the discussion against index funds.

[06:15] Competition – One of the major arguments against index investing is that it reduces competition within an industry. Grant shares his thoughts on why this notion is not valid.

[13:11] Corporate Governance Standards – Grant explains how index funds allocate their resources in a way that’s beneficial to shareholders and why index investing won’t create corporate governance issues.

[16:46] Price Discovery – Grant breaks down how the price discovery mechanism works and why index investing is unlikely to hurt price discovery.

[28:20] Income Inequality – Grant shares his take on the argument that index investing exacerbates income inequality.

 

Resources

What’s Driving the Recent Volatility? A Quick Guide

The Federal Reserve has been very clear about its intentions to move more aggressively in fighting inflation. It currently defines “more aggressively” as a likely series of 50 basis point rate hikes, beginning with the May Federal Open Market Committee meeting. This will mark the first time in 22 years that the Fed has doubled the normal 25 basis point increase.

In remarks at a panel discussion at the IMF on April 21st, Chairman Powell reiterated that it is appropriate “to be moving a little more quickly” on rate hikes. He also indicated that he believes that financial markets are “acting appropriately generally,” meaning that they are adjusting to the expectations of higher rates.

Markets are forward-looking, so prices today reflect what markets think will happen in the future. A good example of this is mortgage rates: The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 5.29% as the last week of April opened. For contrast, in early March, it was 3.76%.

Markets are having trouble interpreting this information. The problem is that so far, we’ve heard the Fed’s intentions, but without corresponding data showing whether or not rate hikes are working, markets can’t assess the likely path. And that leads to volatility.

Continue reading

What’s the Fed Up To? Rates, Inversions, and Quantitative Tightening

The U.S. Treasury yield curve inverted last week. An inversion is when the shorter-term yield in a pair of U.S. Treasury maturities is higher than the longer-term yield, reversing or inverting the normal relationship. The significance of a yield curve inversion is that inversions have a history of predicting recessions.

The yield curve inverts because investors believe that the economy will slow in the future. The Fed attempts to control inflation by increasing interest rates, which makes business investment more expensive. Markets appear to think that the Fed will overshoot with rate increases, which will stifle rather than slow economic growth. The Fed will then have to begin decreasing rates again.

Continue reading

A Plan for Managing Stock Sales: 10b5-1s and SEC Rules

Corporate insiders at publicly traded companies are privy to information that can have a major impact on the share price, such as a Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approval or rejection of a new drug. As a result, corporate trading policies restrict the number of days corporate insiders can buy or sell shares. Often, these policies limit the number of open trading windows to less than 60 days per year.

Overall, insider trading restrictions include blackout periods and exposure to material, non-public information (MNPI).

These trading constraints hamper corporate executives’ ability to manage their holdings, posing a stock concentration risk within their overall investment portfolios.

There is a solution to this problem: Rule 10b5-1

Continue reading

Cash Flow Planning When You’re Thinking About Retirement

Pre-retirement planning is one of the most challenging stages of your financial journey. You’re still fully engaged in your career, but you’re also looking ahead to a not-distant future when your life and your source of income will radically change.

Retirement means you’ll be making choices about where you want to live, what your retired life will look like, if it will include work, travel, charity, a hobby – all the things you always wished you had time for will now be yours to choose from.

But you’re also going to need to ensure you have enough saved to fund the retirement you want, and that the income stream you’ll be able to generate from all your sources of income in retirement is tax-efficient.

Continue reading

Planning for 2022: The IRS Has Increased Several Key Deductions and Exemptions

The spike in inflation we’ve seen this year has impacts beyond having to pay more for goods and services. The IRS uses consumer price inflation (CPI) to determine certain increases to exemptions and deductions for federal tax purposes. These are automatic and calculated from the rise in CPI. That means that the increased inflation this year may actually end up saving you money. While the changes are for 2022 and you won’t be paying the associated taxes until 2023, it’s a good idea to be aware of the new limits.

You may be able to make changes as you go that can help you maximize the benefit. For example, the amounts for Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and the commuter benefit increased, so you may want to have more taken out of your paycheck. This saves you money by paying with pre-tax dollars.

Continue reading

The Federal Reserve vs. Inflation: Round One

Wednesday’s long-anticipated announcement by the Federal Reserve that the key Fed funds rate would increase by 25 basis points and the accompanying statement by Chairman Powell had the immediate impact of reassuring the markets. St. Patrick’s Day may not have brought pots of gold, but after thirteen no-good, very bad weeks for the S&P 500, we’ll take a push back into positive territory.

Will it last? Given the invasion of Ukraine, the impact of sanctions, the downstream effect on supply chains and food supply, and the geopolitical uncertainty unleashed by Russia’s aggression, the Fed’s job in fighting domestic inflation is much harder now.

We walk through the Fed’s move and Powell’s language, the impact of the rate increase, and what investors can do to prepare their portfolios and budgets.

Continue reading