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Project Management Game online free, CEO simulation games for kids, students #grants #for #small

#online business games

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Project Manager Simulation Game Game Corp

Rating. 8.3 / 10 – 6053 votes

Game Corp is a highly interactive, entertaining and quirky business management simulation game for older kids, high school and college students, and grownups who enjoy online games that involve business themes and thinking strategy. In Game Corp, you take control of your very own awesome computer game development company! Starting from scratch, you have to hire good workers, manage projects, create new flash games, and gradually build your business up from a small-time, mini-game development outfit into a highly successful global corporation in the online game industry! Hire the brightest technical minds to produce fun games, choose the most popular genres, utilize fab modern technology, and have excited gamers from around the world flocking to try out your latest titles! If your games prove a success, you can sit back and watch the (virtual) money roll in!

This interesting and challenging tycoon game is a good fun activity for practicing and testing out essential real-life business skills such as good money management, shrewd decision making and strategy planning, the ability to successfully motivate employees, and general project management skills. Your masterful multi-tasking skills are called into play as you react to fluctuating game market trends, and concentrate on a number of different projects at once. While some knowledge of online flash game genres is helpful, complete beginners and tycoon game newbies should also enjoy the fast-paced, mouse-clicking action! Can your company create sufficient enchanting games to be considered for the prestigious end of year Game Developer Awards? Happy team building and game developing!

How to Play: Your goal is simply to become a profitable company by creating, developing, and publishing online games from your very own offices. You play the role of the CEO and project manager all in one, and have to hire and organize your different team members, assign them to each game project, build working facilities, choose game genres, and more. At the beginning of the game, your helpful ‘assistant’ guides you through the basic controls of the game. We recommend that you pay close attention to your assistant’s instructions, as there are numerous different aspects that you need to get to grips with.

Use your computer mouse or touchpad to perform all of the controls. At the beginning of the game, you have an office space – but no employees. Click on the empty desks / workstations, then click on the ‘Hire Worker’ button that appears. Here, you can choose from a variety of different technical game writers. Next, it’s time to get them working on creating a new game. Click on the ‘Project Manager’ button in the bottom left corner of the game screen (the blue folder icon), and then click ‘New Project’. Next, you have to choose the genre of your game (adventure, racing, shooter, simulation, strategy etc). At the beginning of the game, you don’t have enough workers to produce all of the different genres, but that changes as you hire more staff. After that, you assign your team to the different production tasks (code writing, graphics, sound etc). Each worker can only perform 2 production tasks at a time. Finally, you choose the technology ‘tool’ used to make the game.

Once your team complete the production of the game (this takes time on the clock in the top left corner), click on the ‘Project Summary’ button in the bottom left corner, then click ‘Publish’. You receive virtual income from the publication and playing of your games. At the beginning. your games are of low quality, and therefore do not generate a lot of income. However, as you progress and hire more skilled workers, your revenues should increase. Later on, you can also market your games, and choose all different types of genres. At the end of each ‘Game Year’, an award ceremony takes place. If your company wins any of these awards, you earn huge bonuses which can be used to purchase new employees, tools, and workstations. Good luck!

Hello! If you’ve already told some friends in school or on social media about this game or Learn4Good Games, thank you so much! If you are going to tell your best friends, thank you in advance! You & your playing friends help to make this game site possible! We add new games almost every day, and look forward to bringing you more top games very soon. Some helpful links to share include Top 100 Games. Top New Games & Latest Games. Enjoy!

Game Corp players also like to play these games on Learn4Good:

2003-2016 Learn4Good Ltd: Fun Online Games for Kids


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What s Next for Staples? Put Office Depot Out of Business #business #continuity #plan


#office depot business

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What’s Next for Staples? Put Office Depot Out of Business

Staples (SPLS ) is pretty angry the federal government blocked its deal to buy smaller rival Office Depot (ODP ) and will now take several actions to try and put its competitor in the dirt.

U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan blocked the merger between the two companies Tuesday evening, saying the combination would create anti-competitive forces. The decision effectively ends the second attempt by the two office supplies companies to merge in an attempt to thwart off competitors including Amazon (AMZN ) .

“The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) met its burden of showing that there is a reasonable probability that the proposed merger will substantially impair competition in the sale and distribution of consumable office supplies to large business to business customers,” Sullivan wrote in a three-page order.

Obviously, execs at Office Depot and Staples saw it otherwise.

“While we are respectful of the court’s decision to grant the FTC’s request for a preliminary injunction to prevent our merger with Staples, we are disappointed by this outcome and strongly believe that a merger would have benefited all of our customers in the long term,” said Office Depot CEO Roland Smith in a statement. adding, “We do not intend to appeal the Court’s decision and the two companies plan to terminate the merger agreement effective May 16, 2016.”

Smith said the company will hold a conference call with investors on May 16 to discuss its future as a stand-alone company.

“We are extremely disappointed that the FTC’s request for preliminary injunction was granted despite the fact that it failed to define the relevant market correctly, and fell woefully short of proving its case,” said Staples Chairman and CEO Ron Sargent in a statement. Staples said it will pay Office Depot a $250 million breakup fee.

But Staples wasted no time outlining strategies that may help jump-start weak sales and profit in the wake of the merger saga ending, while at the same time stealing share from Office Depot. TheStreet takes a brief look at three things.

1. Here comes lower prices for some office supplies.

Staples said it will pursue market share gains in core categories such as office supplies, ink, toner and paper. To support this effort, the company will invest in lower prices and work to make its supply chain quicker.

2. Staples looking to divest European operations.

Staples plans to explore strategic alternatives for its struggling European operations, which is the main component of the company’s international operations. The company operates about 278 retail stores in Europe, with the largest concentration being in the United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands and Portugal.


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Coming Soon: New Instagram Business Tools – Instagram for Business #getting #a #small #business

#business profiles

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Welcome to the Instagram for Business blog. See how businesses of all sizes around the world are inspiring people with their stories, and get the latest news from Instagram HQ.

Instagram is a place where people can turn their passions into livelihoods. For instance, handmade accessory business JACKSON AND HYDE started an account a year and a half ago to raise awareness of its wares. Instagram has been critical for brand exposure, dialogue with new and potential customers and being discovered by partners and retailers, Genevieve Monroe, the CEO and co-Founder tells us. And other companies, like eCommerce business Caeden. are taking advantage of Instagram advertising to expand beyond their current following and find new customers.

With so many companies using Instagram, and many people on the platform interacting with them, there was a desire from our business community to do more. So we listened. And, after hundreds of interviews with businesses, three key needs became clear stand out, get insights and find new customers.

First, businesses want the ability to stand out on Instagram. Many companies, including a furniture store in San Francisco, shared that it would be easier for customers to email questions because comments are hard to track and take time to sift through. Second, businesses want a simple way to get insights. A retailer in Austin explained that many analytics are overwhelming and hard to apply to its marketing. And third, businesses want to reach even more customers. A do-it-yourself craft shop in New York City mentioned it s always looking for quick ways to fill seats in class.

With these insights in mind, we set out to make Instagram work even better for businesses. So today, we re excited to unveil our new Instagram Business Tools.

Business profiles are a free feature for accounts wanting to be recognized as a business on Instagram. With a business profile, businesses can choose how they want their customers to get in touch with them: call, text or email with a tap of the contact button as well as get directions. Business profiles also unlock access to insights and the ability to promote.

Insights on Instagram give businesses actionable information about who their followers are and which posts resonate better than others all from within the mobile app. By learning more about the behavior and demographics of your audience, you can create more relevant and timely content.

The ability to promote lets you turn well-performing posts into ads right within the app helping you connect with even more customers. Simply pick a post you ve already shared on Instagram and add a button encouraging people to take action. You can select a target audience or allow Instagram to suggest targeting for you. After that, your post will be promoted as an ad for any length of time you choose.

With these new business tools on Instagram, the furniture store in San Francisco can receive emails from customers saving valuable time responding. The retailer in Austin can better understand its audience, tailor its content and refine its marketing strategy even beyond digital. And the do-it-yourself craft shop in New York City can quickly fill a seat, move a product or get people into its store with ads on mobile.

These business tools are just some of the ways we hope to make growing a business on Instagram that much easier. Business profiles, insights and the ability to promote will be rolling out in the US, Australia and New Zealand in the coming months, and will be available in all regions globally by the end of the year.

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Social Media for Business: 2016 Marketer’s Guide #small #business #cards


#business networking sites

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Social Media for Business: 2016 Marketer’s Guide

Credit: Gonzalo Aragon/Shutterstock

Social media networks are fantastic resources for businesses of all sizes looking to promote their brands online. The platforms themselves are free to use, and they also have paid advertising options specifically for brands that want to reach even more new audiences. But just because your business should be on social media, that doesn t mean your business should be on every network. It s important that you choose and nurture the social platforms that work best for your business so that you don t spread yourself too thin.

If you want to create a successful social strategy, you need to familiarize yourself with how each network runs, the kinds of audiences you can reach and how your business can best use each platform. We profiled the top social media platforms so you can learn more about them and market your business better.

Facebook

Facebook is the biggest social network on the Web, both in terms of name recognition and the total number of users. With more than 1.55 billion active users, Facebook is a great medium for connecting people from all over the world with your business. And Facebook is not only the biggest network, but it s arguably the most versatile one. In the 12 years since it launched, Facebook grew from a simple website where college students could keep in touch into a multifaceted Web and mobile social platform where anyone can connect with not just their friends and family, but also with celebrities, organizations, businesses and more, thanks to the Pages feature.

Considering that Facebook has a wealth of options for any type of organization, it s a great starting point for your business, regardless of your industry. You can use it to share photos, videos, important company updates and more. Additionally, Facebook can be more low-maintenance than other social networks whether you post several updates a day or only a few a week won t make much of a difference in terms of what your fans will think of you. To find out more about Facebook for business, check out our guide .

Editor s Note: Looking for information on social media marketing for your business? Use the questionnaire below, and our vendor partner will contact you to provide you with the information you need:

Twitter

Twitter is another social network where you can post mostly anything. With Twitter, you can share short (140 or fewer characters) text updates, along with videos, images, links, polls and more. You can also easily interact with other users by mentioning their usernames in your posts, so Twitter is a great way to quickly connect with people all around the world. (The platform has more than 320 million active users worldwide and is one of the top 10 websites in the United States.) Because of its wide reach, Twitter is not only a great way to market your business but also an effective channel for handling customer service. For example, if you maintain an active Twitter presence, customers who are also active on the platform will seek you out to express concerns or share their praise.

If you have interesting content, Twitter is also a great tool for quickly spreading the word. Retweeting and sharing other users content is incredibly simple, hashtags help boost posts, and if a user with a lot of followers retweets you, your content has the potential to go viral. But with Twitter, it s important to remember to find balance don t simply share your own links or media; make sure you are also sharing a lot of interesting, relevant content from other Twitter users and from around the Web so your audience doesn t think you only care about what your business is doing. Check out our guide to learn more about using Twitter for business .

Pinterest

This platform consists of digital bulletin boards where users can save and display content they like in the form of pins. Users create and organize their boards by category. So, for example, as a personal user, one might have a board dedicated to food, where they pin recipes; another board dedicated to photography they find interesting; and so on. Pinterest is very visually oriented (every post has to be an image or video), and like Facebook, it is also fairly low-maintenance in terms of post frequency. However, keeping your boards organized and search-friendly can be time-consuming.

Pinterest is also more of a niche network than Facebook or Twitter, so it may not work for everyone. Pinterest s users are primarily women, and popular categories on the site are DIY projects, fashion, exercise, beauty, photography and food. That s not to say that businesses outside of these categories can t succeed on the platform, but it does make it a great marketing tool for businesses that do work in those areas. If you can find ways to connect your content to Pinterest s audience, then go for it. The platform also has a series of special types of pins called Rich Pins, which brands can use to add special information to their pins, like product details and even location maps. There are plenty of cool ways to use this platform to your advantage, and you can read more about them in our Pinterest for Business Guide .

Instagram

Instagram, like Pinterest, is a visual social media platform based entirely on photo and video posts. The network, which Facebook owns, has more than 400 million active users, many of whom post about food, art, travel, fashion and similar subjects. Instagram is distinguished by its unique filters and photo and video editing options. This platform, unlike the others, is almost entirely mobile (there is a Web version, but you can t take photos or create new posts on it, and other functions are limited as well).

Instagram is another platform where more artistic niches excel, so again, it may not be the best fit for your business, depending on your industry. If you want to succeed with Instagram, it s important that the person running your account has a good eye for detail and has at least basic photography skills, so that the photos and videos posted to your account are high-quality. And don t be discouraged if your industry is underrepresented on Instagram; if you can find the right hashtags to latch onto and can post intriguing photos, you will most likely make it work. To find out more about using Instagram for business, read our guide.

Tumblr

Tumblr is arguably the most difficult social media platform to use as a business, but it s also one of the most interesting networks. Tumblr allows several different post formats including text posts, chat posts, quote posts, audio posts, photo posts and video posts so you re not limited as to what kind of content you can share. As with Twitter, reblogging (reposting other users content) is very quick and easy, so if a user with a lot of followers shares your content, it s possible to go viral fairly quickly. However, what sets Tumblr apart more than anything is its audience, which is less like a pool of users and more like one big tight-knit community full of smaller subcommunities.

Tumblr currently hosts more than 200 million blogs, and the majority of these blogs are run by young people (half of Tumblr s visitor base is under age 25). But this means that businesses that don t cater to young people s interests or aren t relatable to young people in some way are not poised for success on the network. The good news is, there s a subcommunity or fandom for almost every niche and interest you can think of, so a successful marketing campaign is possible if you use Tumblr correctly. You can learn more about the Tumblr community and how to use Tumblr for business in our guide.

Editor s Note: Looking for information on social media marketing for your business? Use the questionnaire below, and our vendor partner will contact you to provide you with the information you need:


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10 Alternative Social Networks for Business Professionals #business #lawyer


#business networking sites

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10 Alternative Social Networks for Business Professionals

BranchOut debuted in 2010 on Facebook as a free application for professional social networking and job searching. Today, it’s Facebook’s largest application dedicated to the cause, the company says.

Once you add the BranchOut app to your Facebook account, you fill out a professional profile with your specialties, a summary of your work, a photo and a list of your skills. You can also ask for “endorsements”—or recommendations—and add Facebook friends you want to connect with on a professional level. You can also search for jobs and people from within the app.

Spiceworks is a free website for IT professionals to learn about and get advice on technology directly from the vendors that provide it. With a user base of 2 million, members can ask questions in forums and connect, as well as take advantage of its network management and help desk applications.

Biznik brands itself as “an online networking community for independent business people to gather, share resources, referrals and support.” The site caters to independent businesses and entrepreneurs.

Biznik communities are based on location, and you can find members based on career category. Features include profiles, video, blogs, messaging, events and more. Biznik offers three tiers of memberships: Basic ($79/year), Pro ($14/month) and Pro VIP ($29/month).

GadBall says its mission is to “help you develop and enhance your career,” and it offers a number of unique features to help you achieve that: a profile writing wizard, profile review and score, proof reading, career videos, resume templates and more.

GadBall, which is free and has more than 600,000 members, also has a number of the more traditional social networking features, such as recommendations, profiles, job search and groups.

EFactor, which is free to join, is a social network for entrepreneurs, mentors and investors that has more than 1 million members, according to its site. The social network focuses on connecting entrepreneurs with experts, potential partners and clients, as well as finding employment and funding for startups.

PROskore is a free business network that measures your professional reputation based on your influence and experience in such areas as social media, your professional history and peer validation. PROskore then uses these scores to help you find new business opportunities and connect with other members in the network.

BeKnown is a professional networking app for Facebook developed by job search site Monster.com.

Once you download the app. you can invite Facebook connections to join, fill out your profile, ask for recommendations and search jobs. BeKnown also awards you badges based on your work history, education, size and composition of your network and other actions, which appear on your BeKnown profile.

StartupNation calls itself a “free service founded by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs.” The site is smaller in size compared to many social networking sites and has 120,000 members in the U.S.

Aside from its networking features, StartupNation offers step-by-step advice columns; small business and entrepreneur forums; local, interest and professional groups; expert blogs; podcasts; contests and more.

Free professional social network Ziggs has a host of features, including polls, chat, public and private groups, questions, people search, messaging, profiles and more. Ziggs also offers a service called “Search Alerts,” which lets you pinpoint where in the world your profile has been viewed, the search engine it was viewed from, keywords used to find you and at what time they viewed your profile.

Professional social network Ryze, which has 600,000 users, offers both free and paid memberships. Want to sign up? You’ll need to apply for a membership—it is currently approving one free and one “gold” membership a day.

Ryze’s features include profiles, messaging, groups related to your industry, interests and location. The gold membership, which costs $9.95/month, lets you perform advanced searches and contact distant potential connections directly.


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Printed Business Stationery for Swindon, Wiltshire #government #business #grants


#business stationary

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Stationery

In a competitive market place, every second your brand spends in the spotlight is crucial. Whenever you send a letter or invoice, make sure your business stationery works hard to create the right perception of your company.

Strong corporate identity plays a key role in business success – so consistent, quality business stationery is essential in building your reputation.

At Copy Color, we can provide branded notepads and folders for you to take to client meetings, headed paper for official letters and invoices, plus compliments slips to include with any outgoing mail.

With fast turnaround business card printing available too, you can have your full suite of business stationery delivered and ready to use as early as tomorrow.

The only printer you’ll need for all your business stationery

Across the board, we provide premium grade materials and cutting-edge digital print technology to ensure consistency in all your stationery. We are able to take care of your marketing campaigns, as well as your business stationery requirements.You’ll only ever need to deal with one printer.

Whether you’re an established firm that’s just re-branded, or you’re just starting out on a brand new business venture, trust Copy Color to get your professionalism down on paper.


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6 Top Professional Website Builders for Small Businesses #business #sales


#business website builder

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6 Top Professional Website Builders for Small Businesses

Building your website is a priority, but what if you can t afford to bring in an independent website designer? There are plenty of options you can find from a free builders list to take advantage of today.

To give you an insight into some of the options available, this guide is going to show you some of the top picks that you should consider. With 77 percent believing a poor website is a weakness. you need the right builder.

Which of these top professional website builders will you use for your small business website today?

1. Website Builder.

The Website Builder platform will help you to build a professional website in just three steps. Despite the simplicity of this platform, there are thousands of templates to choose from. And you don t have to stick with the templates available. Every template is freely open to editing, so you can do what you like with it and make a completely unique website.

There are both SEO and integration tools that come with it, so you can cover all the requirements of a modern website. You can also use the free domain name option, but in general it s always better to use a paid domain name so it s truly unique.

2. Wix.

Wix is one of the most well-known website platforms in the world. Other than WordPress, this is one of the best free website builders available. You can create practically anything using Wix, but it tends to work best with fashion and apparel websites.

What makes Wix stand out are the SEO link building tools that come with your free website. It s easy to rank high when you re using Wix. To get started all you need to do is begin embedding the various Wix templates as and when you please. Connect the media widgets and you instantly have a professional looking website at your disposal.

3. Weebly.

Weebly is another one of the more well-known website builders on this list. It s ideal for practically any type of business because there s a website template for practically any niche. Take advantage of the simple drag and drop system when creating your website and you can have something that even a professional designer would be proud of.

Weebly automatically comes with mobile friendly designs. along with compatibility with multiple browsers. One feature that you get with Weebly that you don t get with other website builders is a personalized domain name.

4. Sitey.

Sitey comes with the drag and drop system that makes building a website to your specifications so easy. Every template has mobile responsiveness built in, as well as being compatible to Google s best practices .

Primarily, this is a network that sticks to using plugins and extensions to make up the bulk of its functionality. The customer service available is another plus point for Sitey. It s available 24/7 and is well-known for being one of the most helpful customer service departments of all the options on this list.

5. IM Creator.

IM Creator uses something called Stripes, which are pre-customizable. This website builder is one of the easiest builders to use because you can have a professional website up and running in a matter of minutes.

All the templates provided by IM Creator are retina ready, which means they are programmed to be used immediately with a live audience. All these designs can be placed onto websites that utilize hundreds of pages.

With IM Creator you don t have to worry about hosting because you automatically gain access to guaranteed unlimited hosting and bandwidth.

6. Jimdo.

If you need an ecommerce builder, Jimdo is an option that you should seriously consider. Create an online shop without all the issues associated with making your shopping cart work by downloading one of the dedicated ecommerce themes presented by Jimdo.

It even caters to heavyweight ecommerce stores. You can check all the various options and features to make sure you have the functionality you need. While this is a free website builder, you do have a paid option available, which comes with a ton of additional features. However, the free version is more than capable of fulfilling your needs.

Finding the right website builder for you requires some thought. Consider what your site needs to thrive and the features you need to create the platform you want.

The right website builder for you is out there. You just need to search for it.


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Private health insurance for smaller businesses #start #your #own #business #ideas


#business health insurance

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Private health insurance

There is important information on this page that may be difficult to read on a small screen device. You may wish to switch to a larger display.

5 Star rated small business health insurance with one month free

Staying healthy is important, especially if you’re running your own small business. Our private health insurance product, Solutions. is great value for money if you have 2-99 employees and it s really easy to set up.

Our Defaqto 5 Star rated private health insurance product lets you choose which benefits you’d like to have along with:

  • Your first month free – As long as you haven t had a private healthcare policy with us in the last 12 months and you agree to hold the cover for a whole year, we ll give you 1 month free cover. This applies to the first year of your policy.

Our health insurance policy helps employees get back on their feet and back to work as soon as possible. Here is what our Solutions product can do for you:

  • Offer the right treatment, at the right time – You’ll get support from us that may help your employees get back to work faster. That means early diagnosis and prompt access to expert medical treatment at a time that suits them, anywhere in the UK at a hospital on your chosen hospital list. See which hospitals you can use (PDF 1.70MB)
  • BacktoBetter – Solutions includes our innovative musculoskeletal case management service as standard within core cover. Helping get employees back to work faster if they need to claim for pain in the back, neck, muscles or joints (musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions).
  • Access to the latest drugs and treatments – Solutions covers all the latest medicines and therapies, as long as there s medical evidence to show they can work. Our clinical experts keep us up to date, so you get the best possible treatment.
  • Dedicated cancer support – We can take care of everything, from the first phone call for a claim right through to sensitive, ongoing aftercare. Read more about our cancer pledge .
  • A 24-hour GP helpline – Your employees can call a fully qualified GP day or night, so they may not need time off work to get medical advice. They can also call about other family members, which is really useful if they have small children.
  • A 24-hour stress counselling helpline – As stress is a growing cause of absence we give all our Solutions customers access to a stress counselling helpline. Your employees can call any time day or night, and talk for as long as they wish to an experienced counsellor. This helpline is available to members aged 16 or over.
  • Pay for the benefits you want Solutions allows you to enhance or reduce your cover depending on the needs of the business.
  • Decide who gets which benefits – Choose different levels of cover for different groups of employees. You could increase benefits for yourself and senior staff, and include your family on the same policy too.
  • Aviva Advantages – Your employees will also be given access to Aviva Advantages, where they’ll find lots of rewards and money saving offers – not just on personal Aviva products (such as car or home insurance) but with 100s of our partners too.

For more private health insurance details please see what can this product cover or call us on 0800 158 5182 and talk to one of our friendly team. Calls to and from Aviva may be monitored and/or recorded.

1 month free cover

Contact us


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The Top Sites For The Latest Stock Market News #canadian #business


#stock market websites

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The Top Sites For The Latest Stock Market News

With computer aided ultra-short term high frequency, arbitrage and speculative trading becoming dominant over manual trading. profitable opportunities vanish within seconds (or even milliseconds). Traders struggle to find efficient ways to trade based on news, as news items are generally in multiple formats from various sources and timely availability remains a challenge.

This article lists the top websites, news portals and other sources which allow traders and investors about timely availability of news for stocks, forex. economy, etc.

News requirements based on trader’s profile :

News requirements vary based on trader’s profile. Long term investors usually don’t trade based on news items, as it has short term impact. It is mainly the short term traders and marketmakers who may need timely access to news for their selected stocks on which they bet money for quick profits.

Access to historical news items may be needed to backtest and study specific patterns, price changes and other effects based on news items.

How do news sites work ?

News sites usually have their own content creators, or they are authorized to source and redistribute news by partnering with other news sources. Most of the financial news providers go with a mixed approach. Here is the list of most popular news websites for stock markets. economy, finance and related business news:

· MarketWatch News Viewer. The dedicated News Viewer section on MarketWatch portal provides easy access to news items with timestamps. Its auto-streaming feature ensures instant availability of any new item getting updated automatically. Coverage includes global markets for stocks, commodities, forex and other asset classes, including fundamental analysis and reporting of macroeconomic data at country level. A dedicated tab for “RealTime Headlines” is also available for streaming data.

· Bloomberg Portal. One of the top market data providers, the news section on Bloomberg news portal offers news segregated into different categories. News can be selected from appropriate sections – asset class. region, industry and general financial. The available search feature by default shows all news items related to the particular stock queried for, and lists the news results tagged with date with all available history. For e.g. a search for “Alibaba” shows 2,213 news items. Historical information is quiet useful in correlating impacts of news items on stock performance.

· Reuters. Another top market data provider, Reuters too has vast coverage of stock specific, sector specific, market specific news on their web portal. Available content is similar to that of competitor Bloomberg. Similar search features resulting in historical news items, with added auto-complete feature for stock names are quite useful. The results page integrates existing price quotes with news items, giving a unified view to the user.

· Forbes. The news section on Forbes offers real-time news updates without any paid subscription or registration. Easy to navigate with powerful search feature resulting in historical news items, Forbes offers detailed coverage on stocks and markets.

· The Wall Street Journal. WSJ is one of the top publications to be followed across the globe for business news. Apart from the usual news and price quotes with related details, the WSJ provides easy access to email alerts based on available criteria.

· The Financial Times. Another top publication for business news, the FT too provides detailed financial news with global coverage and categorized view.

However, the challenge with both the WSJ and the FT is that one gets only the headlines for free. Detailed news items usually require a paid subscription, which will also enable access to expert comments, editorials and diversified content useful to desired traders.

· CNBC. The homepage of CNBC contains the up to date developments across the global markets. The dedicated news section has category wise listing which includes news grouped by industry types (for US stocks) and region wise for Asia and Europe.

· The news aggregating sites: Many sites work in a pure aggregator role i.e. collect news from multiple sources and published them in their news sections.

1. Google Finance. Backed by the robust search functionality, the results page integrates lots on information including news, price quotes, charts, related competitor companies, key ratios. earnings reports and links to important information. However, the news items available may be delayed by couple of minutes to few hours and is not necessarily real-time.

2. Yahoo Finance. This has a similar news aggregator role with similar features and coverage for finance related news

3. Seeking Alpha. Another commonly followed news aggregator site.

Most of the above mentioned portals allow free access to information. Creating a personal login on these portals is optional, but comes with added functionality of email news alerts to user mailbox, for the selected stocks.

· Official exchange websites :

Exchanges too keep a dedicated section for news items for each stock. However, the available news items there are usually based on information filed by the company and hence it may be delayed (depending on the regulations). For e.g. a company announces dividend at their AGM and that info is instantly covered by various independent news portals. The info on exchange site may be updated later as company may take time to file those details to exchange. All price action. due to the dividend payment news, gets into the market even before the exchange site may officially list it. Hence, exchange sites should be verified for their real-time coverage, before deciding to trade on exchange based news.

· Top websites having dedicated finance news sections :

Each news portal has a dedicated section for Business Economy news. Examples include CNN Money. USA Today. US News. etc. Care should be taken to check on timeliness of availability.

Both free and paid access to business news is available for interested traders on online portals. However, trading on news is not for everyone – timely availability and quick action is needed to capitalize on the profit potential as markets are efficient. Along with available online sources, active traders pay close attention to other media – like live TV coverage of a company AGM for stocks they are trading on – to benefit from news based trading.


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Top 5 Health Insurance Options for Small Groups in 2016 #small #business #resources


#business health insurance

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For many employers and brokers, the Affordable Care Act can feel like a moving target. However, for small groups with fewer than 50 employees who are not mandated to provide health insurance, the options for small group health insurance are clearer.

In 2016, small groups have five main options for health insurance:

Individual Health Insurance (with or without a defined contribution allowance)

Private Small Group Plan

1) Individual Health Insurance (with or without a defined contribution allowance)

The first option is a relatively simple approach, yet it achieves results: allow employees to purchase individual health insurance coverage, either through the public Marketplace or through a broker. Employees may select from any carrier and plan available, and eligible employees may access discounts on their premiums via the individual health insurance tax credits.

If the small group would like to contribute to employee’s premium expenses, they can use defined contribution allowances to reimburse employees for the non-subsidized portion of their premium. (This is still allowed as long as the employer goes about it the right way .)

Additionally, defined contribution allowances can be allocated by job criteria (e.g. $300/month to managers and $200/month to entry-level). For many small groups, this is the most cost-effective solution because the small group can contribute any amount and, on average, individual policies cost less than small group plans.

Brokers are generally involved to facilitate the setup of the defined contribution allowances (usually, via an online software provider), sell the individual policies to employees, and be a consultant for the small group. The ideal business for this solution is a small group who is priced out of group health insurance, not eligible for group health insurance, wants to start offering health benefits for the first time, or who doesn’t have the administrative capacity to administer a group health insurance plan.

2) SHOP Marketplace

The SHOP Marketplaces are public state- or federally-run exchanges which sell small group health insurance policies. The SHOP Marketplace could be a good coverage option for employers with 50 or fewer employees if they can meet certain requirements. For example, in Massachusetts employers participating in the SHOP must contribute at least 50 percent of the premium amount, employers with 1-5 employees must have 100 percent of the employees enrolled, and employers with 6-50 employees must have at least 75 percent enrolled.

For eligible small groups, the SHOP Marketplace gives access to the small business tax credits which are generally only available through the SHOP. Brokers registered with the Marketplace can help small groups select and purchase the plan, just as brokers would with private small group plans.

3) Private Health Exchange

Like defined contribution, the term “private exchange” is one of the biggest buzzwords of the past few years. With a private exchange the small group gives employees a set contribution to use towards a menu of plan options. The plan options can be individual- or group-based. Private exchanges are a type of a defined contribution strategy.

Brokers can offer a private exchange option to small groups by working with a defined contribution or private exchange provider. Numerous entities ranging from startups to new divisions of leading insurance companies have been created to offer new private health exchanges and companies like Walgreens are adopting this approach. If you’re a broker, see: How to Offer a Private Health Exchange in 3 Steps .

4) Co-Op

Joining a co-op for health insurance is a more traditional approach for small groups. The idea is the co-op increases buying power and spreads the risk to a larger group. Each co-op is structured differently, and whether the co-op offers better insurance rates than the small group could get on the open market or SHOP depends on regional insurance underwriting laws and the co-op itself.

5) Private Small Group Plan

Purchasing a private small group plan is also still an option for small groups. Small groups may find more options and carriers to choose from on the private market as compared to the SHOP, where some states only have one or two plans to choose from. Read more small business health insurance trends here.

The Future of Small Group Health Insurance?

Every day I hear from small business owners and their brokers about the challenges of a traditional small group health insurance plan – with the primary challenge being cost. As such, it is not surprising to hear that only half (54 percent ) of small and medium sized businesses do not offer traditional insurance today.

Which is why I’d argue that #1 (individual health insurance with defined contribution allowances) and #2 (private exchanges paired with individual health insurance) are the best health insurance options for small groups in 2016.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in November 2013 under the title, “Top 5 Health Insurance Options for Small Groups in 2014.”

Do you agree or disagree? What questions do you have? Leave a comment below.


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