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Finance Services Investments

Financial Investments For Low-Income Families

It may seem like an impossible task to invest on a low income, but the benefits far outweigh the sacrifices. Unlike savings, which serve short-term financial goals like buying a new car or establishing an emergency fund, investments are intended to meet your long-term financial goals, including providing for a child’s college education or your retirement.

Regardless of income, the money that you do have needs to be managed. The best investment products for you will be determined by your long-term financial goals. Discuss these with a financial advisor who may be able to assist you with finding investments that best serve your goals – even if they seem small or insignificant compared to the figures you read about or see on television.

Types of Investments

Retirement plans: 401(k) and IRAs Many people choose to invest through their employer, taking advantages of the matching funds and tax benefits that accompany many 401(k) plans and IRAs (Individual Retirement Arrangements). Contributing at least the amount your employer will match is one way to get a significant return on your investment. Because the employee typically decides the contribution, you can begin with a small amount each paycheck, gradually raising your contribution as your salary increases. If your employer does not provide a retirement plan, you can still set up an IRA as an individual, and reap the tax benefits.

 

Stocks, Bonds, and Mutual Funds When you purchase a stock, you are buying a share of ownership in a company. A bond is a loan of money to a company, or government, that promises to pay back the principal plus interest. Mutual funds pool money from many investors to buy a variety of stocks, bonds, or other securities. Investing through a mutual fund, rather than purchasing stocks and bonds on your own, provides several benefits, such as being able to choose from a variety of professionally managed funds tailored for different levels of risk and rates of return. Some mutual funds have an initial investment of as little as $50, making them an ideal place to begin investing on a tight budget.

Beginning Investing

Consider your long-term financial goals, and determine what type of investment combination, or portfolio, will best serve those goals. Then, begin investing. No matter what the initial investment is, the important thing is to start. A financial advisor may be able to help you find areas in your budget to cut back in order to increase your ability to invest, and direct your investments so they may best serve your long-term financial goals.

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Finance Services

8 Financial Blunders and Their Fixes

How to become better at managing money? The best way to start is to avoid making costly mistakes that will be pulling you down and taking months or even years to recover. Many financial blunders are easy enough to avoid once you know what to watch out for.

1. Decision Paralysis

Today there are so many choices, so many financial products and so many offers. It all bundled with financial jargons. It becomes really difficult for one to understand. Also there is plenty of information available on the web, on the media and on the neighbourhood. This makes decision making much more complex. All these things coupled with the fear of making a wrong financial decision lead us to the DECISION PARALYSIS. We don’t take any decision and start postponing it.

2. Ignoring Personal Finance

Most of us think that we need to work hard to make money and build wealth. I agree that you need to work hard but that is not enough. You work hard for money. How the hard earned money can be left idle? If you could focus on your personal finance, your money will start generating passive income with which you can achieve your financial goals with comparatively less effort.

 

3. Peer Pressure

Peer pressure plays a notorious role in taking wrong investment decision. One feels very safe when he takes the decision, which everyone around him/her has taken. But a product suitable for your colleague or your cousin need not be suitable for you.

4. Too early to plan retirement

You may be saying ‘who me? I am too young to be thinking about retirement”. It is not so! Rethink. You should have started thinking about it yesterday. Because time flies quickly. If you were smart, and planned for retirement when you are young, your retirement years will be really those “Golden years”. If not you need to compromise and you need to work longer and retire later than others.

5. Trying to make quick buck

Risk-Return Tradeoff Principle is a very basic and profound investment principle. Low level of risk is associated with low potential returns, whereas high level of risk is associated with high potential returns. So as to generate high returns one need to tolerate high risks. If you are comfortable only with low risks, you can expect only low returns. No one can defy this basic principle. A scheme cannot deliver high returns with low risk. There were no such schemes in the past. There are no such schemes in the present. There will not be such schemes in the future too. Finance company deposits which assured high interest rates have defaulted. One of the latest examples would be the ponzi scheme by Madoff. Whenever you hear about such schemes with low risks and high returns, you understand it is an illusion. It is better to ask more questions and get it clarified, instead of making assumptions.

6. Investing in things you don’t understand

If you are choosing to invest in a scheme which you don’t understand then you will also not understand what type of returns to expect. Do you understand the Highest NAV Guaranteed Schemes? Who gives the guarantee and what is guaranteed? Do you understand Futures and options completely? Ultimately from where does money come if you are profiting and where does the money go if you lose?

7. Investing in what is hot

If you are investing in what is hot, then you are following the crowd. If you follow the crowd, you will get what others are getting. You will not get anything more. You need to be fearful when others are greedy and you need to be greedy when others are fearful. So don’t go by the market trend or the hot pick of the month. Think like a contrarian and follow value investing.

8. Too many cooks

If you have different agents or advisors for different investment products (insurance, mutual funds, stocks…….), then none of them will know your complete picture. Their advice will be very limited and biased towards their products only. Too many cooks spoil the soup.
How to fix these financial blunders?

  • Give priority to your personal finance and spend some quality time on that. We all work for money. So we need to efficiently manage our money to secure our future.
  • Set your financial goals like kid’s higher education, buying a home or retirement with more details. Work out a personalised comprehensive financial plan to achieve the goals. Then create an action plan for the year in sync with the comprehensive financial plan. Be committed to your financial plan.
  • Obtain assistance from a professional financial planner who has knowledge and access to all financial products in the market. Ask the right questions and understand the plan and products before proceeding on the same.
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Finance Services

The Financial Mayhem and Businesses

It is undeniable that the current mishap in the global financial markets, we have witnessed in recent years, has reached implications with the global economies facing sharp contractions although a slow recovery is possible. This would result in: tougher financial conditions, commodity prices falling, slower economic growth, pressure on government spending, reduced external surplus and lower inflation.

The global environment is changing fast and businesses are facing a new set of unprecedented challenges, such as pressures of globalization and the impact of the latest world financial crises on region economy. Due to this businesses are already experiencing new sets of challenges. The urgent need to identify and mitigate risks therefore could not be over emphasized, particularly in this region where there is absence of credible data to rely upon, skilled talents to carry out risk analysis and propose remedies, or the organization structure and processes to facilitate the procedures.

Despite the economic stimulus, coming from rising governments spending, the ever expanding private business sector is becoming the growth engine. Inspired by emerging economic reforms, both private and foreign investors are gradually increasing across all industrial sectors, most notably in utilities, manufacturing, telecoms, financial services, and the economic cities. If the pace of economic reform is maintained, the prospects for sustained private investment growth may prove to be promising.

 

The global credit crunch has already impacted the growth in many countries by reducing the level of investment, reducing the growth potential, delaying or canceling some major projects. The consequence of this has an affect of on all businesses small and large. Such impacts include:

(a) The availability and cost of private investment for regional and international companies operating in the region will be undermined,
(b) Business growth will slow as a result lower liquidity which reduces confidence and impede investment, and
(c) Appreciating some currencies combined with lower commodity prices will cause inflation to drop.

The demise of certain international companies with business interest or partnership in some part of the world could severely influence their partners. The severity would of course depend on the type of relationship and level of dependence.

As a consequence, businesses are expecting a sharp down turn in growth including lower profitability than realized over the last few years, bearing in mind some businesses may have seen their fund value significantly reduced as a result of wrong investment decisions. The current crisis is anticipated to be short-lived and businesses are expected to start recuperate and to see radical changes by early next year.

Higher costs of interest, combined with tightness of lending conditions, has significant knock on effect on the companies that need to raise finance. However, many companies and investors are still cash-rich and therefore in the position to meet short term funding requirements without the need for borrowing.

Prices have decreased significantly across a range of commodities, from industrial raw material to food products to precious metals. Prices of most petrochemical products have plummeted drastically. Collapsing prices and the increased cost of financing, combined with the falling demands have resulted in many infrastructure projects have been put on hold.

Export-oriented businesses, such as manufacturing, are more at risk from the credit crunch and its consequences. However, domestically-focused businesses such as retail and telecoms will be less affected, it is expected that telecoms businesses to be the fastest growing sector.

The industrial and service sectors within the region have been the main drivers of economic growth in recent years, as they have benefited from economic reforms and the recent investment boom. The outlook for such sectors has deteriorated due to reduced consumer confidence, fueled by reduced oil prices and the collapse in some regional stock markets.

Nothing suggests that the current set of challenges could dampen business leaders’ determination. Every downturn creates opportunities for strong businesses with healthy financial and the institutional capacity to act rapidly.

These are unusual times and leaders are bound to come up with a new game-plan to meet looming threats in such a changing and unpredictable world. In spite of the negative bearing of the current global financial crisis on businesses, a window of opportunity exists to reconsolidate, strategise and search for new opportunities for long-term sustained growth.

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Finance Services

Gold As a Reserve Asset and the Online Finance Service To Manage It

In many areas of everyday living, gold performs vital functions. Gold is actually a quality, high tech metal and very well demanded by the industry. Therefore, investors are content with the decision to pursue the best investment opportunity.

Even as gold is no longer the backbone for the brick and mortar international financial system, most banks still find it to be an important asset. More importantly, gold is the only reserved asset that is not held liable due to its face value. Meaning it is not held responsible or accountable for the trend of economic policies or disturbed inflation. It continues to retain value over many centuries.

As it appears, the current level of demand for gold outweighs the gold supply for the gold miner to produce. Throughout history, due to its beauty, warmth and spiritual connotation, it is now the most admired metal. The gold miner continues to produce gold at massive levels. The exported revenue is vital as it brings royalty and investment opportunity for low economic countries.

Gold can be repudiated and held as a safeguard against potential crisis because it is not any individual’s liability. More so, the gold bullion does not vulnerable to the political issue compare to major asset classes such as United States government bonds, or Treasury bills. Gold as a valuable investment is also excluded from the disadvantages of the economical and/or monetary polices of any government. Significantly, gold has developed into a revolutionary digital or electronic currency, or what we normally heard of as e-currency all over the world.

If you are keen to invest in gold, then the problem of purchasing, holding or keeping the physical gold can be your major drawback as it will cause you too much hassle, not only for you but also everybody else. Alternatively, you can purchase digital gold via online and keep it in the reliable and trustworthy internet payment processor system. This way, no storage space is needed and no worry.

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Finance Services

Wade Cook – Feds Finally Nail Financial Guru and His Wife on IRS Tax Evasion Charges

It came as absolutely no surprise to me that so-called financial guru Wade Cook and his wife Laura were recently convicted of income tax evasion and sentenced to jail, according to an Associated Press report.

Wade Cook became really annoying some years ago by seeking to peddle his financial advice on his theory and accompanying books, tapes, seminars and associated crap to me and a lot of other unsuspecting potential investors.

Crap is the right choice of word as his financial advice has proven worthless. I never bought his stuff but thousands of other investors did.

Cook was nothing more or less than a cab driver who decided to get rich by preying on people looking for an easy solution to becoming rich.

 

He wrote three get-rich-quick books on his “meter-drop” theory of investing: Wall Street Money Machine, Wealth 101 and Business by the Bible. Is it not amazing how hucksters always want God to endorse their business, products and shenanigans?

Cook conducted hundreds of seminars in the 1990s on asset protection, stock market investing, real estate acquisition and avoidance of income tax.

He was so good at the avoidance of income tax issue that he will now spend more than 7 years in prison for income tax evasion by defrauding the Internal Revenue Service.

U. S. District Judge Thomas Zilly of the federal court in Seattle ordered Cook to pay $3.75 million in back taxes on roughly $9.5 million of underreported income generated by sales of Cook’s financial advice books, tapes and seminars.

It is one thing to render a financial judgment and another to collect it. It was not reported whether Cook ponied up the $3.75 million.

I do not know if Cook is penniless today, filed for personal bankruptcy, buried what money he had, placed his stash in a Swiss bank account or has millions in a petty cash account to pay his $3.75 million judgment for tax evasion.

I do know that he and his wife are dishonest, not to be trusted, will knowingly lie, cheat and steal to get ahead in this world, and know little about any kind of investing worth talking about. I knew all of that in the early 1990s when they started.

They apparently made millions selling their story to unsuspecting buyers and then not paying taxes on some of their revenue. Some pundits estimated Cook’s net worth at more than $200 million when he was flying high.

He was convicted in February 2007 for tax evasion, filing false returns and obstructing justice. The jury was deadlocked on all counts against his wife Laura who kept his books.

In May 2007 she pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice rather than face a new trial. She was sentenced to 1.5 years in prison. Laura Cook admitted that she created documents to evade taxes on income she and her husband received between 1998 and 2000.

The Associated Press reported that the Cooks said that they had loaned themselves money from a trust that was supposed to become a gift to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Government lawyers said that the couple never intended to repay the money, thus it was taxable income rather than loans.

Cook’s lawyers argued that they were unable to repay the loans mostly because of the stock market collapse in 2001. Cook was apparently such a brilliant financial guru that he lost his fortune in a stock market collapse.

So much for Wade Cook’s theories on investing for profit and becoming rich in the process.

Cook shut down his operations in February 2003, a month after his publicly traded company-Wade Cook Financial Corporation of Tukwila (WA)-sought Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Wade Cook and his wife Laura are only one of hundreds of hucksters who have traveled the country selling their crap (get-rich books, tapes and seminars) to unsuspecting investors.

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Finance Services

What Are the Most Common Financing Services

The most common financing service of banks in America is a home loan or mortgage.  Mortgage lenders and brokers may not always be clear on what they’ll do for you, so the best decision financially is to go to your bank and talk to an adjuster there. Most banks provide plenty of helpful information for people looking to buy a new home or refinance their existing mortgage.

A great idea would be to look at mortgage choices from a bank you trust in order to decide on one that fits your plans, one that’s right for you.  When you’re deciding to purchase your first home, it is beneficial to be qualified online ahead of time.  You can get custom rates and pricing, advice from experts to help complete your online application through a quick and simple online process.

Regardless of the kind of mortgage you’re looking for, the expert home buying advice provided by banks online will help you find the right mortgage in just a few quick and easy steps.  A fixed rate mortgage allows for a set interest rate that lasts throughout the term of the loan.  The advantage of having a fixed rate mortgage is that it provides a predictable housing cost for the life of the loan, which can last fifteen, thirty, or forty years.  The shorter the loan term, the less interest will be charged allowing equity to be built faster.  Monthly payments will be higher, however, for a shorter-term loan.

Interest only loans allow a preliminary time period during which only the interest payment is required. After the interest-only period of an adjustable rate interest only mortgage, the loan requires principal and interest payments.  A borrower would still owe the original amount that was borrowed, but the amount necessary to be paid will increase after the interest only period because the principal must be paid as well as the interest.  Making interest-only payments does not build home equity, which could make it quite difficult to refinance a mortgage or make money by selling or refinancing a home.

Adjustable rate mortgages offer lower initial rates, which can create a valuable financing choice depending on specific factors like the increase of income expectations and short-term ownership.  Because the interest rates and payments can increase, however, buyers of new homes should be financially ready for a possible hike in payments or rates.  An adjustable rate interest only mortgage starts out with an interest only period, just like you’ll find in a fixed rate interest only mortgage.  Once again, the loan will be converted to principal as well as interest payments after the termination of the interest only period.  The amount you need to pay will go up, and the payment will increase by even more.  A ‘reduced documentation’ or ‘stated income’ loan normally tends to have higher interest rates and additional costs when compared to other loans that might require you to authenticate your income and other assets.

Smart financing makes it easier to plan your long-term growth. Any bank offers you financing solutions designed to match your company’s needs, with flexible repayment plans tied to your profits and cash flow.

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Finance Services

The Relevance of the Finance Service BSC

Financial management is not as easy as it may seem. In fact, it is one of the tedious managerial processes you can ever come across with in the corporate world. Financial management actually requires much technical knowledge when it comes to the effective balancing as well as the application of principles so that efficient distribution of financial resources is ensured. Not only that, financial management also delves into the handling of these financial resources. Oftentimes, the people in charge of financial management have to go beyond the regular 8-hour stint a day just so computation and analysis of data can be completed. With all these comes the consistent need to monitor and regulate every single employee who is behind financial management, and this is where the finance service BSC or balanced scorecard enters the picture.

The balanced scorecard is, no doubt about it, a very important managerial tool that is used in just about any aspect of any existing industry in the field. But how can this be applied in financial management? And once this is applied, what then are the advantages that can be enjoyed here? The major advantage that can really start the wheel turning is actually the nature of the managerial tool itself. The balanced scorecard makes use of a balancing method when it comes to processing each and every aspect of the company, all in a coherent fashion. Coherence should be employed to ensure orderly operations in the company. All aspects should then be balanced out so as to foster cooperation all throughout. Maximum output can then be more easily had with just minimum input to begin with. The BSC is then the instrument used to consider the performance of the company as a whole. A bird’s eye view is then taken on when the BSC is used so that both the strengths and the weaknesses of the company are pointed out.

Moreover, with the BSC, the whole procedure of financial management is then made much easier and this is done without jeopardizing work quality at all. One of the BSC’s features is actually to set a guide that the evaluator would then use to conduct the whole evaluation process. These guides can then be used as bases to ensure effective performance of managerial duties, as well as the duties that may be required in the long run. In turn, lesser expenses would be incurred so this is really a win-win situation for everyone involved.

More importantly, it is a must to keep yourselves abreast when it comes to the latest trends in finance KPIs and metrics. It would not make sense to use a finance balanced scorecard if it would just contain KPIs and metrics that are outdated. In fact, this would defeat the very purpose of implementing the tool in the first place. Thus, it is a must to be aware of the latest trends when developing your finance service BSC. For the most part, the latest trends found today pertain to role-oriented KPI tools, integration, data specialization, and the like. Keeping yourself aware of the latest would surely make things easier when it comes to managing corporate finances.

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Finance Services

The Advantages Of Business Financing Services

If you own a small or a medium sized business, you are perhaps not new the fact that your payments often get delayed due to your customers. The delay can range from a period of 30 to 60 days and cause a lot of trouble in the day to day running of your business as well as pose a huge impediment on the path of its growth. You will have a large sum of money accumulated in the form of invoices but very little to show in your bank account. The lack of cash flow will stop you from fulfilling the orders that you get from your new clients. This is where the business financing services come in.

The business financing services, also known as accounts receivable factoring helps your small business to capitalize on the strength of the pending invoices. An invoice is nothing but a promise from your customer that you will be paid at a later point in time. These business financing services purchase the invoices from you and give you the ready cash in return. You can use the money to invest in the growth of your business and carry on the day to day functions while the business financing companies can play the waiting game.

Not all companies can avail of these services though. To qualify for factoring, your company must do business with commercial clients. Needless to say, business financing services have a profit motive and will definitely make sure that they are not taking a major risk. Therefore they will check to verify if you are a profit making concern or not. In case you belong to the former category, your profit margin should not be less than 20%.

The payment that you will receive from the invoice factoring company will be divided into two installments. The first one would consist of a sum that would cover about 60% to 90% of the gross value of the invoice. The second installment will be paid after the customer makes the payment and the factoring charges will be deducted from that amount.

If you are looking for reliable business financing services, Texas is where you will be able to find some of the best ones. Visit Mazon associates, Inc. for accounts receivable funding to enable the growth of your business. Apart from their services they also offer free consultation regarding the matter.

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Finance Services

Chalk Out Financial Capital and Go For Funding

So, you are planning to calculate your financial capital? Congratulations! So, you are ultimately planning to do a business? Welcome to the world of business. After you are sure you have understood your business, it’s time to chalk out your financial capital. You can do it yourself or with the assistance of a professional.

The biggest things in your business are the financial capital and the funding – the capital and the capitalist. Money and from where it would come to your way? These two are the most serious for your business. Often if your business is very small, you invest from your bank account; but if it is bigger than that? Getting financial capital and the funding for your startup company is no child’s play. Neither is it an impossible task. The first step is to calculate financial capital.

So, calculate your financial capital before you approach any organization for funding your business. Do not get disappointed to hear ‘no’ and ‘sorry’. Don’t rejoice to hear any sum of amount. Keep trying until you hear ‘sounds good’. It will be tougher if your financial capital is not convincing. Here are the organizations and people you can approach for funding your business:

Banks can supply you funding aligned with security, if they find your Financial capital convincing. Banks will make query about your financial capital and the kind of funding (or loan) you want to run this business (but don’t feel very timid if you have no moderate financial capital). They will also want to find out – your reliability, your permanent address, why you wish for that kind of funding or bank-loan and about your scheme to return it. Try to convince them about your secured financial capital and the kind of funding you think necessary. Show them that you have excellent plans for returning the funding provided by the bank.

 

Another alternative is to find a venture capitalist. Though they don’t provide neutral funding, but you certainly find funding if they are asked for partnership business. They are entrepreneurs whose trade is to give funding and get extra financial capitals or profits out of those funding.

Do you think you can go about it? Great! Get going. That’s the way the world goes. Remember, don’t be too rigid with your chalked out financial capital. As you actually proceed in business, you have to accommodate many funding capital sources to get fund. The calculation of financial capitals is there to help you, not to prevent you.

Calculating financial capital specifically helps in price setting for your product. You must consider your competitors’ prices, understand what price the buyers do not mind forking out, whether the price is profitable for everyone in the chain, which involves the manufacturer (if you are the manufacturer), wholesaler, and retailer. So, understand the minute details of your financial capital as required. And best of luck. Your next step is to get funding. So, look positive and be ready to dig up the bucks!

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Finance Services

Financial Crisis and Threat to Asian Developing Countries (Ex Japan)

The most important thing to business in the developing countries is to source for buyers amid this global inflation and financial breakdown. Although outsourcing was much talked about and practiced among US and European and other developed countries, the trend becomes more important given the more competitive landscape amid financial breakdown and global inflation. The countries, which feel the pinch, are developing countries, which are competing each other for foreign direct investments, particularly in Asian Pacific Region ex-Japan.

Among the famous outsourcing destinations are Bangalore in India and Dalian in China, which cater to US and Japan companies respectively. Since the upgrading of these countries’ design and development capabilities, many high end value chain process have been shifted to these destinations with the hope that the low cost of production will enhance competitiveness. The activities range from software design, call centers, financial analysis, technology development and other proprietary ownerships which are now designed and produced in these destinations. The positive side is, that these activities could help create and promote strong industrial linkages and upgrade the local’s capability.

The apparent benefits to the host countries have much caused the efforts by individual countries to attract investments from overseas, through government protection, tax rebates and other benefits. These efforts intensified in the recent months in view of the slow down of demand from US and other developed countries.

 

One of the concerns among developing countries in Asian Pacific is that they are not able to compete with China and India and now emerging countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia, which are mainly attractive because of their low labor cost. The high number of local graduates churned out by Universities in China and India pose another challenge to the countries. Further, the small market base and low and less sophisticated purchasing power, barrier of entry caused by protectionist approach, low industrial support caused by absence of linkages and most worrisome to the countries is lack of technology savvy labor force.

These factors have mainly responsible for the slow upgrading of local producers to high value chain production, and entrapped them at the lower production chain which emphasizes on low cost and speed of production. In other words, the proprietary ownership and design and development activities are low in these countries, and there fore, eroded further the competitive edge, if there are any.

To overcome this, and to continue to attract investments, these countries survive on constant government’s projects. Although the trend we see is that many local capable producers start to spread their wings to other countries, the areas of involvement are mainly construction (mainly residential or office blocks), piping and highway construction. The most important sectors, namely the technology know how, aviation, network and other electronic industry are left to foreign investors, who will invest only when there is strong local support. Thus, the recent worry is the hollowing out of these existing industries to other countries.

When the world economy is growing healthily, the decision to relocate is less urgent, as the considerations are more diverse; normally time zone, cost, infrastructure, labor skill, protection, industrial linkages and supporting industries. However, world flagship companies do not have these luxuries anymore; amid financial crisis and world economy’s slowdown, the main concerns are margin, accessibility and strong local industrial support. This caused much concern to the Governments in the region; policies over policies are churned out recently to prove and attract investments.

The “deindustrialization” does not only happen in developed countries, it is also a trend in the globalized world, particularly to Asian developing countries and countries which could not upgrade their industrial base will be left out indefinitely. In other words, if a country is detached from the global network, it will be uphill task to bring oneself back to the landscape.