Absolute Digital Media: Should Press Releases Be Your Main Marketing Strategy?

Running a business can be a challenge, but growing the business could be even harder. With several companies using SEO and PPC strategies to boost their business, could making a move to PR be the right decision to put you ahead of your competitors. In this article, the team at Absolute Digital Media will be outlining why you should be using press releases within your marketing strategy.

Optimise Press Releases With Absolute Digital Media

When looking to do PR for your business no matter how big or small, you need to make sure that you are optimising every aspect. Whilst agencies such as Absolute Digital Media are working on your website, they can also aid in optimising your press releases to get the best possible outcome when it is published. By sending your press release to the right publication, you can direct traffic through to your landing page and benefit.  

Sending Pitches Can Build Relationships

Another benefit that can come from using PR within your marketing strategy is the relationships that you could gain from this. By making use of an online marketing agency with a PR division, you can send pitches to leading publications and others within the industry. This not only gets your name out there to larger audiences, but it can also allow you to build a portfolio of contacts from some of the country’s leading publications that you can use at a later date, this will benefit you in the long term.

Focus On Reaching Larger Targeted Audiences

Every marketing campaign aims to reach a much larger target audience but could PR be the secret to achieving the much larger target audiences with long term results. By implementing a PR strategy using an agency such as Absolute Digital Media, you are able to make use of their services and the contacts that they have to get your content on much larger publications. Though this can be achieved on your own, using an agency can speed up the process and allows for content to be created frequently and sent to several publications at the same time.

They Come At No Cost To Your Business  

The final reason why you should be implementing PR into your marketing strategy is that it comes to no extra cost for your business. By hiring a PR specialist in-house, you are able to generate and send off content to publications without spending a penny. This is a great way of building your relationships with publications and getting your name out there. Alternatively, you can pay a set monthly fee to an agency with these contacts and begin implementing this alongside an SEO strategy to grow your business and make sure you’re visible to your target audience.

Whether you are a smaller business looking to get the most out of marketing campaign or you are a larger business looking to reach a much larger audience, there are several ways that your business can benefit by implementing SEO in your marketing strategy.

RoFx – The Pioneer of Algorithmic Trading Is All Set For The IPO

Introduction 

We have seen the Forex market being extremely volatile in 2020 due to the uncertainties caused by the pandemic across the world. This caused a lot of Forex traders to show their interest in algorithmic trading. We all know that there are many significant advantages of algorithmic trading and dealing with high volatile markets is one of the best among many others. Many expert advisor services started to mushroom to take advantage of this increased interest but pioneers like RoFX continue to make profits for their clients even in these uncertain times.

In 2020, overall, RoFX made 74.08% of profits for their clients (Year-To-Date) and on its way to achieve 100% by the end of the year. This explains the sheer brilliance of their expert advisor especially after we witnessed a steep decline in the profits generated by other popular trading bots in the market. The good news is that RoFX is all set to go public in the upcoming year. Their Initial Public Offering is ready to go live in the first quarter of 2021. Before talking about their IPO let’s just have a quick overview of the RoFX company as a whole. 

The Inception

The company has been started by a couple of Machine Learning experts with a keen interest in Forex trading. They started to build a bot that understands the Forex market and executes trades like how humans do. In 2009, the RoFX bot was live but the founders wanted to backtest it for a while to test its capabilities. After one complete year of R&D, they decided to lend their services to the public in 2010. The most amusing part is that the RoFX Company was built by the profits generated by the bot by trading Forex during its R&D in 2009. At that point, little did the founders know that they were building a bot that would eventually dominate the Expert Advisor industry in the next complete decade!

What Makes RoFX Standout from Other EA’s In the Market?  

Customer Centric – Always

The RoFX Company always strives to provide the best service for their clients. Their Trust Pilot score of 4.1 explains the same. It is tough for any company that belongs to the EA industry to get this kind of score. Their support is just incredible as they work 24/7 across the year. They always tend to provide accurate solutions and are always relevant with their answers. Many of the reviews say the support team is extremely friendly as well. In addition to this, the withdrawals are completely free and there are zero complaints on delays during withdrawals. Also, transparency is one of the most notable aspects of RoFX. We have personally used RoFX for over a couple of months and there are no hidden fees whatsoever.      

Trading Results – Best In The Market 

There are hardly any trading bots in the market that keep multiplying their client funds for years together. RoFX has been profitable ever since 2010 and they still continue to do so. As of today (Oct, 2020), the gains generated by this bot is over 700% which is mesmerizing. One good example to prove this point are the monthly profits generated by this bot during the pandemic. There is one month where the gains have gone below 6.5% even during the catastrophic market performance. Therefore we can say that these results speak for themselves.  

Credibility – 100%

For any scam or average Expert Advisor, it is very hard to sustain in the market for more than a decade. That itself explains the credibility and reliability of this bot. Moreover, there are close to 50,000 satisfactory customers for RoFX right now, and gaining trust for that many people is not an easy task. Providing quality EA services constantly is the only way to gain this amount of credibility in the market. 

Consistency In Being Profitable

For any experienced/professional Forex trader, the ratio between the winning and losing trades would be somewhere around 7:3. That is, if 70% of all their trades are on the winning side, they are said to be successful. Concerning RoFX, 81% of all the trades taken by this bot brought gains to its clients. A minimum of 8% – 10% monthly profits and 0.4% of daily promised in promised to all of the RoFX clients irrespective of their account size. These numbers are pretty impressive we should say. Moreover, the performance fee charged by this client is just 5% in some of their premium plans.         

Safety & Security – Impeccable 

The unique selling proposition of RoFX is their client fund protection plan. That is, if RoFX bot incurs any losses on your account, the company covers those losses and they have a separate reserve fund just for this purpose. Pretty Impressive. Also, RoFX has been tied up with highly regulated brokers with stringent rules which increases the security of their client funds.       

Ease of Access     

With just $1000 you can sign up with RoFX and start your own stream of passive income. There is no requirement to download and install any software to get started. All you need to do is signup with them and the bot takes care of the rest. This makes the RoFX EA – the trading bot for anyone and everyone. There is no need for you to have any trading experience to get started with RoFX. 

The Most Anticipated IPO

With all of these features in place, without any doubt, RoFX can be considered the best EA Company in the market. Therefore, the IPO anticipation and interest among the existing clients is pretty high. The company also confirmed the pre-IPO investment round is already scheduled for their existing clients. 

Most of all, there is one market expert opinion that caused the increased interest in RoFX’s IPO. That is, Berkshire Hathaway – Warren Buffet’s multinational conglomerate is looking at owning a majority of RoFX stock in the upcoming IPO. If this holds true, we can say that this Fintech Company’s IPO is already a grand success. 

What Holiday Let Mortgages Mean for You

One of the dreams many of us have is to own a holiday property we can let out to earn an income when we aren’t occupying it. It could be a beach home or a property in one of the most appealing UK holiday locations. Even if it’s a second home you want to invest in, actualising this dream requires finances.

To realise this desire fast, holiday let mortgages can really help, which also has tax perks apart from increasing your income. Here’s what a holiday let type of mortgage can mean for you.

The mortgage facility

Understandably, a holiday property you can visit often or a holiday let cannot be funded sufficiently by a regular mortgage. Luckily, there are lenders who offer holiday let mortgages allowing people to own such a property. In essence, this type of loan is uniquely offered for the purchase of a home or property that can be let out to visitors or tourists.

Unlike others, the mortgage is only for investment reasons; if you intend to stay in the holiday home you’ll have to go for a second home mortgage. As such, it’s very important to remember that the holiday let mortgage criteria is very different from a second home mortgage.

Property suitability

Accessing holiday let loan facilities requires that the property meet certain criteria. For instance, to access certain holiday let mortgages the property will need to be available for accommodation purposes during holidays for a minimum of 210 days annually.

Also, once up and ready it must be advertised as fully furnished housing. The good thing is, even if you’ll need the property for your own use you can still access it, allowing you to invest both for leisure and business.

Holiday lets are taxed as businesses and may attract allowances and deductions. Considering the property is a business, the income accrued need to pay for the property and exceed the running costs and expected expenses.

Naturally, you have to ensure the holiday property is located in the right place. This requires doing a little due diligence before investing your money in it. From the onset, you might want to ensure a few details are clear, such as:

  • The asset’s location and popularity as a holiday destination.
  • Nearby amenities such as parks, shopping centre, eateries, beach among others.
  • Sufficiency of outdoor space.
  • How holiday makers and visitors will use the home and what needs to be done to meet the necessary requirements.

Tax relief

Unlike normal buy to let properties, holiday lets come with tax benefits. The property is seen by the taxman as a business, which means you can seek tax relief on the holiday let mortgage interest. While running the property let for vacationers, tourists or visitors as an investment, expenses can be deducted from the returns. Clearly, this lessens tax liability saving money that can be reinvested into the asset to develop it further.

Available to diverse entities

Unlike others, holiday let mortgages aren’t just available to individuals only. SPV companies, partnerships to limited trading companies and trusts can also access the loan facility. Even so, remember the property you’re looking at must be within the United Kingdom in a proper liveable condition and meet the different lender requirements regarding security.

With the right lender you can easily receive mortgage for multi-unit, single dwelling, converted holiday lets and other properties that don’t meet the conditions of mainstream financiers.

Funding terms

Most holiday-let mortgage lenders are very clear about the terms of the facility. Obviously, if the terms are suspect and unclear you might want to take a step back. However, do remember to look into such details as LTV (loan to value), deposit, loan term and size.

LTV refers to the maximum valuation or price the lender is ready to meet, which usually falls between 60% and 75%. The deposit usually begins from a minimum of 25%. For example, if the purchase price is £600,000 with maximum LTV of 75% the maximum mortgage amount would be £450,000 while the deposit would be £150,000 (essentially a 25% deposit).

Make sure you also know the minimum and maximum loan sizes. In most cases, lenders usually have a £40,000 minimum and a £1.5 million maximum for a minimum 5 years to 40 years maximum.  

While there might be other details worth noting, remember it’s possible to still get holiday let mortgages and raise the deposit from family or friends; you can also have the mortgage spread over a number of other properties you own in case you’re unable to raise the deposit right away.

Build a Marketing Campaign Using Freedom of Information

The Freedom of Information Act (2000) allows individuals to request information from public organisations and authorities.

Anyone can request information from public bodies or organisations such as the Police, Publicly owned companies, hospitals and schools requests are normally free, except in unusual circumstances, for example when some type of additional work or resources may be required to complete a request – for example for photocopying or accessing certain databases.

Although it is free for the person making the request, you will be using public money and resources when it comes to getting an individual to find and compile a report for your request. So please think carefully before submitting a request.

Statistics are fantastic for online marketing campaigns. Interesting and insightful campaigns that contain statistics are highly likely to generate links, which will, in turn, benefits your website’s rankings or Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

Can you provide authoritative insights? For example, if you are researching politics, or sports nutrition, for example, do you have an expert on politics or nutrition that could provide insightful comments? If not, could you find one?

Ideas for Freedom of Information Requests & Marketing Campaigns

  • Security Firms could develop campaigns based on statistics related to break-ins
  • A wellbeing or wellness company could request statistics related to stress-related-illnesses
  • A fitness business could request information about different Police & Military Fitness tests and use the data to compare and contrast the fitness requirements

Another good way to get ideas for data requests is to look at the complete list of government bodies. You can search using keywords or just scroll through, this is often to generate some campaign and data request ideas.

There is a fantastic website called What do They Know; that lets you search previous freedom of information requests. So it may be possible to build a marketing campaign around a request that somebody else has made. Just use the search box to enter a relevant term or keyword and then click ‘requests’.

How to Make a Freedom of Information Request

There are plenty of templates online. You will need to find the name and email address or postal address of the public authority that will likely have the data. Give your real name and your email address, so that they can back to you.

Make your request as specific as possible. There is a limit of £450 relating to the time taken collating the information you are requesting, so make it clear what you want.

Finding contact information can be a little tricky. It is normally best to go directly to the government body’s website and search for “FOI” or “Freedom of Information” on the homepage. If the body does not have its specific website, then you may have to go to the local council’s website instead.

You will usually get back and acknowledgement and a reference number within a few weeks. If you don’t, it can be worth following up again. It can take up to 20 working days for them to respond – normally they will use the full 20 days.

  • Keep the request as short as possible
  • If you have several questions/requests then number them
  • Include your full name
  • Include your email address

The website WhatDoTheyKnow.com has examples of many successful requests, for example, this one regarding healthcare.

Follow Up

If you do not receive a response within 20 working days (remember working-days, so weekends and bank holidays won’t count), then it might be a good idea to follow up. You have the right to follow up and ask them to do an internal review. This gives them another 20 working days to respond. Be aware that there are many exemptions to freedom of information request, for example, if the information may breach some kind of security protocol, then a request can be legitimately denied.

If you are still no happy with the response that you receive, then you can contact the Information Commissioners Office. Their website is very comprehensive and easy to use, but you can use their live chat service if you get stuck.

Also, if you receive a reply, but then have further questions – you can submit a further request for information.

What to do with the Data

Can you turn your data into a story? Start with brainstorming potential headlines and take it from there.

Once you have a response from the public authority, it is often a good idea to present the data in a visual format, that is easy for people to interpret. 

The use of different charts and all major facts and figures amalgamated into an infographic can work well. If you don’t have a graphic designer inhouse, you can always look to create an in-depth blog post instead, making use of headers and bullet points to make the post more digestible – like this post by Moneypenny.

It can also help if you can get a comment and a quote of an MP, or a relevant person or group. For example, a leading local businessperson may be able to provide an insightful quote about how remote working may impact the economy moving into 2021 and beyond.

They Work For You

Another great website, run by MySociety, the same people What Do They Know, is TheyWorkForYou.com

It is a parliamentary monitoring website that makes it easier for UK citizens to see what is being discussed on their behalf at Westminster. 

You can also search for politicians discussing anything related to your campaign. You can get in touch with politicians via the website and even ask for statistics and data that you have gathered to be mention in parliament.

The Data is Not Exclusively Yours

As the name suggests, a freedom of information request relates to public data. The body that provides you with the information has the right to publish it on its platform.

There is not a lot that you can do about this, but you can still provide additional value if you reformat the data into graphics and gain insightful comments from relevant authoritative individuals.

Ideally, you will have an in-house PR team or a PR agency that will help you to promote your campaign. You can look to find journalists on Twitter. Search for individual journalists, follow them and keep an eye on what type of information they are looking for. You can also use platforms such as HARO to build relationships and outreach to journalists.

Antigua and Barbuda Ambassador Dario Item on the Investment Opportunities in the Country

A balance of the untouched splendor of mother nature and the right number of amenities for business productivity is what Antigua and Barbuda presents as a premier tourist destination both for travelers and savvy investors. 

Modern-day entrepreneurs looking to expand their options will be spoilt for choices with what Antigua and Barbuda offers. The majestic Caribbean destination takes nature, comfort, and hospitality into account in developing its tourist attractions. Dr. Dario Item, Antigua and Barbuda’s ambassador to Spain, Monaco, and Liechtenstein, particularly highlighted the marvel of the 365 beaches in the island: “Having this many beaches surrounding our country tells us that indeed Antigua and Barbuda is blessed and well-suited for both tourists and investors.”

H. E Dario Item, Ambassador of Antigua and Barbuda to Spain (right) with His Majesty Felipe VI, King of Spain during the presentation of credentials (left), Source: Embassy.ag

Citizenship by Investment Program (CIP)

The country’s programme to encourage investors through secondary citizenship is a great addition to what Antigua and Barbuda’s terrain brings to the international scene. The Citizenship by Investment Program (CIP) was launched in 2013. 

The tourism industry was officially launched in 2009. Ten years after the event, 2019 saw a glaring spike in the number of tourists that visited Antigua and Barbuda. In December of the same year, the Caribbean destination recorded its 300,000th visitor for the year. It is quite amazing getting to that number considering there are only roughly 90,000 inhabitants of the majestic islands.

The vast hotel options, culture of hospitality, as well as the world-class airport contribute to the tourism milestone of Antigua and Barbuda. Notable tourist spots like Dickenson Bay, Nelson’s Dockyard, and Long Island (also known as Jumby Bay) are some of its biggest tourist magnets.

Dr. Dario Item, the country’s Ambassador to Europe, fully supports the tourism industry and the citizenship programme it offers to the international community.

With the CIP, tourists who fell in love with the country and looking to establish businesses and invest in its economy could now do so with the programme, and help support the development of the Caribbean state.

A potential citizen has four different options. One is through the National Development Fund wherein a candidate is required to contribute $100,000, or $125,000 for families of five or more, to the fund managed by the Government.

The second option is the real estate investment where applicants may invest $400,000 in either of the 30 types of properties including magnificent beachfront and high-end hotels. Applicants may also avail this through joint ownership provided they contribute at a minimum of $200,000 each.

Next is the accommodation through commercial operations in a new market. An applicant can make an investment of $1.5m in an approved business.

Lastly is the innovative option of the University of West Indies Fund. This represents the development of Antigua and Barbuda comprehensively, old and new, and across all sectors. An individual is required to make a $150,000 investment to avail of the programme.

Nomad Digital Residence Visa Programme

Nomad Digital Residence Visa Programme is designed for entrepreneurs looking to work remotely from the stunning beaches of Antigua and Barbuda / Source: Embassy.ag

The capability to work remotely has been emphasized during the past years, but it received a rapid growth in interest as a result of COVID-19. Due to health protocols and security measures, being able to work from home or at a distance has quickly become a need. 

The government of Antigua and Barbuda, through its special resident authorization allows for two years of residency for eligible applicants. This is a welcome opportunity for ultra-high-net-worth-individuals (UHNWI) to work in the safety of uncrowded and pristine beach resorts with great telecommunications infrastructure. Imagine being able to run your office while inhaling the comfortable breeze coming from the 365 beaches of a 95-mile coastline.  

These programmes, the CIP and the Nomad Digital Residence Visa Programme, are great opportunities for investors and entrepreneurs looking to invest in the country and support stimulating development efforts in Antigua and Barbuda. Dr. Dario Item, along with his colleagues in the European caucus, have been significant as they bring along with them a positive outlook and sound programmes on how Antigua and Barbuda will overcome the lasting effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Benefits of Using Magnetic GPS Trackers to Locate Cars in Real-time

Modern-day GPS technology has paved the way for advanced tracking devices that can increase the security of vehicles and optimise business operations by offering a tool for tracking the location of almost anything that moves.

There is a myriad of GPS tracking devices on the market that come in different shapes and are equipped with powerful features. With thousands of different devices to choose from, it can be hard to decide on a device that completely matches your specific needs. Choosing the right tracking device for the task is crucial. Because each device serves a different purpose, for individuals it’s keeping an eye on your car, for business owners it’s keeping track of field employees during work hours, and for families, it can even be for tracking the location of children or Alzheimer’s patients. Based on your specific requirement, there are different options; solar-powered, hardwired or battery-powered tracking devices.

For GPS tracking a car, it’s ideal to use a hardwired tracker. Because by hardwiring a tracking device to a car, you are able to provide it with power, and you will be able to get notifications on when the ignition is turned on or off. But if for example, you wish to track different cars each day and don’t want to purchase a dozen of tracking devices, you should use a battery-powered tracking device with a magnetic case that you can easily move between vehicles whenever necessary.

While it is extremely easy to attach one of these nifty gadgets to a vehicle or an asset, it is also important to keep the laws in mind. Whether it is your employee or one of your family members, it is illegal to install a GPS tracking device to track the location of a person or collect data about their movements without their consent.

How Do Magnetic GPS Trackers Work?

Battery-powered tracking devices are equipped with powerful magnets, or they can be put inside a magnetic case that is sold separately. Hardwired tracking devices require an external power source as they do not have batteries. But, magnetic GPS trackers can be installed anywhere on a vehicle or an asset as long as the device has a clear line of sight to receive GPS signals. A Magnetic GPS tracker continuously transmits GPS data and other essential information, such as vehicle speed and risky driver habits. Recharging a magnetic tracker is quite easy too, you can simply remove the device and reattach it once it is fully recharged.

Advantages over Hardwired GPS Trackers

Unlike hardwired tracking devices, placement options are limitless for these practical devices, and it is one of their main advantages. You can keep tracking the movements of your vehicles and assets in real-time, even if they are stolen or moved without your authorisation. One thing to look out for is thick metal surfaces and magnetic areas which can prevent the radio signals from reaching your tracking device.  This may cause your tracker to miscalculate the position of your vehicle or completely stop the tracker from broadcasting its location. There is no compatibility issue for magnetic GPS trackers; they can be attached to all types of vehicles, trucks or assets without any technical knowledge as long as there is a suitable metal surface. The location of a GPS tracker is crucial for transmitting the recorded data; you don’t want your tracker to stop broadcasting its position or feeding you essential data due to interference.

Tracking Assets

Magnetic GPS trackers are one the best tracking solutions when it comes to keeping tabs on valuable assets, expensive machinery and containers. There are a lot of business industries that can benefit from these convenient devices. Construction companies, transport and logistics enterprises and utility businesses can have their entire vehicle fleet, and portable assets fitted with a magnetic tracking device in no time and start tracking them without having to go through a painful and lengthy installation process. Asset theft is a serious issue around the globe, but these efficient devices can prevent the loss of valuable equipment and machinery with powerful tools such as anti-tamper alerts and motion sensors.

Battery Life and Durability

Battery life is generally seen as a disadvantage for magnetic GPS tracking devices but, on the contrary, these trackers can last for months, sometimes, years on a single charge. Depending on the tracker type and data transmission intervals, you can find battery-powered tracking devices that have extremely long standby duration. Business managers can plan their field operations or send their employees on work orders without having to worry about recharging the tracking device on a regular basis.

Conclusion

Having a GPS tracker that can be hidden away anywhere on a vehicle or an asset has countless advantages. Fleet managers can transfer a magnetic GPS tracker to another vehicle within minutes, or they can track the movements of their assets without any installation. If you lack the technical knowledge to install a tracking device, battery-powered magnetic trackers are ideal for keeping track of your vehicles and assets.

Magnetic GPS trackers offer a wide range of placement options, unlike their hardwired counterparts. They can be placed inside or on the exterior of any vehicle, asset or equipment as long as they have a flat metal surface. With their long battery life, powerful features and durability; magnetic tracking devices offer an alternative solution for business managers and car owners who are looking for an easier way to benefit from the GPS technology. Magnetic GPS trackers are a user-friendly and convenient alternative to other tracking devices on the market, and as long as they are properly installed, you can start tracking the location of your loved ones, vehicles and assets immediately.

5 Ways to Finance a Business Acquisition

Starting a business comes with its challenges but one of the major things that determine the success of the project is the finance aspect. The same applies to purchase a business, as getting adequate finance to buy a business can prove difficult in most cases. However, there are different ways you can cover the operational costs and make things turn out smoothly for your business acquisition.

1. Personal or Company Funds

This is often the most common way to purchase a business, especially if you have enough funds stacked up personally or in your company. This could help you save and also reduce the risk of accruing debts. Your funds could include your savings, investments, retirement accounts, and home equity while your company funds could be how much you have saved over time. Whether you are buying this business personally or as a company, your already stashed money can come in handy.

2. Bank Loan

Bank loans seem like an easier way out but they could also be difficult to get, as banks would rather lend funds against existing assets. However, in this case, you are about to purchase a business and probably only have business plans. To get bank loans to help finance the business you intend to buy, you will need existing personal assets and a good credit card to help you stand a chance. 

3. SBA Loans

SBA loans are loans provided to small businesses and might just be a better option to bank loans. The SBA does not directly loan small businesses but rather works with lenders, including banks, to provide loans to small businesses while working with set guidelines. The SBA has their minimum requirements and despite the long checklist that you have to tick off, it is a straightforward process that makes acquiring loans easier for you. The perks of this are that you have flexible overhead requirements, lower down payments, and no collateral required for some loans.

4. Third-Party Financing

There are several lenders out there who will gladly help fund your new business but on their terms. It could be non-traditional financial firms, which are private equity firms that will provide you with profits to run the business while acquiring some of the equity in the firm. This will help you not only to have access to loans to run your new business but will also help you network with other industry professionals. 

5. Seller Financing

This is a method that allows the seller of the business to provide you with a loan indirectly. You could pay a fraction and make plans to pay the rest over some time from the revenues gotten from the business. This especially works when the seller is ready to exit and is flexible with the payment plan.

Conclusion

Buying a business does not necessarily have to look impossible, as you can try different methods to finance it and make your dreams come through. Either of these five different ways can help you get going but it will depend on the business and the amount required.

What is Arbitrage in Currency Trading?

One of the forex strategies attracting interest among retail traders is currency arbitrage, mainly because it is assumed to be “risk-free”. Although that’s not the case (as we’re about to see in the following paragraphs), this is an effective method to take advantage of discrepancies between exchange rates from different market makers. If you are interested in arbitrage and you are looking to find some of the common strategies, this article will provide some of the basics.

Understanding currency arbitrage

When it comes to currency arbitrage, this is a strategy used by traders to take advantage of different spreads offered by different providers for any given currency pair. The disparity between the bid and ask is what makes this strategy viable, but it is important to note from the start that there are some risks involved, as well.

Basic currency arbitrage

The basic arbitrage involves buying contracts on a currency pair from broker A and selling it with broker B, considering the exchange rate is higher with the latter, due to spread differences or liquidity conditions. All seems to be easy so far, but any beginner’s guide to forex will tell you there are always risks when trading currencies, even though arbitrage means buying and selling during a short time frame.

One of the main risks comes from trade execution. Although traders can spot the difference among spreads, until they open and close both trades the market rate can change, erasing the profit. It is important to note that the spread differential is generally very small (1-2 pips maximum) and because of that, arbitrage traders are vulnerable to sudden price variations.

Triangular Forex arbitrage

Previously we’ve talked about the basic currency arbitrage strategy, but it is also possible to conduct triangular arbitrage. In this case, traders need to be specialized in cross currency pairs. Opportunities arise when the market-driven cross rate temporarily deviates from the exchange rate for each component currency versus the US dollar, Euro, or other major currency (because these currency pairs are the most liquid and spreads are tighter). This strategy takes advantage of the fact that the exchange rate for a cross currency is related to that of the two other currency pairs.

triangular forex arbitrage explained

How to choose the right arbitrage strategy?

Aside from the two strategies mentioned above, traders also get involved in statistical arbitrage or currency futures arbitrage. Each has its particularities and can perform well within certain market conditions. It is important to note that the risk is small when markets are not volatile. Usually, arbitrage traders are active when trading sessions are close to the end or during the night.

Also, technological advancement had enabled the development of arbitrage trading software. Keep in mind that this does not mean it is possible to simply install software and let the profits take care of themselves. Market developments must be constantly monitored, as well as the performance of the arbitrage strategy over any given time

Bhanu Choudhrie Weighs in on COVID-19 and the Aviation Industry

Bhanu Choudhrie, founder of Alpha Aviation Group (AAG), stresses the importance of innovation in business in general but more specifically, the aviation industry. Referring to the current COVID-19 pandemic, Choudhrie says, “At a time of crisis, it is very important to take calculated risks. There are opportunities, create them. Take what steps you need to take.” Responsible risk-taking is also the key to AAG’s success during this period.

Training for Budget Airlines

Choudhrie founded AAG in 2006 to train pilots for budget airlines, which often struggle with this issue. While major carriers typically have their own well-established training programs, benefitting from economies of scale, many smaller regional carriers do not have these programs at all. AAG specifically designs its programs to be comprehensive yet still cost-effective, making it an ideal training solution for smaller airlines. This business model has succeeded largely because the aviation industry often overlooks this market segment.

Choudhrie has extensive experience of the budget airline industry even before COVID-19 and has remained critical of governments willing to support large carriers while allowing the smaller ones to go out of business. He states, “It cannot be the largest get saved and the smallest are left to die. That is not the right approach. I think, if there is a program, the program should be extended to everybody.”

Reduced Flight Hours

Serving budget airlines required AAG to find a way to provide complete training for its cadets while reducing their flight hours, which is one of the most expensive parts of pilot training. The way to achieve this goal without compromising safety was to increase the use of simulators. AAG currently has a total of 11 simulators in the Philippines and United Arab Emirates (UAE) among other countries. Its most recent acquisition as of July 2020 is an Airbus A320 2.0 simulator at the training center in the Philippines.

The increased use of simulators allowed AAG to reduce the flight time of its cadets from the 230 hours of a traditional training program to 70 hours. This change greatly reduced both the cost and time needed for training. A traditional program requires at least five years to train a cadet who knows nothing about planes into a fully licensed commercial pilot, while AAG’s program is able to do so within two years. AAG cadets still complete all the steps required for complete training but do it in less time due to the reduced flight time and restructured coursework.

Technologically Advanced Airplanes

The traditional five-year program for training commercial pilots hasn’t changed much since the post-WWII era. Such a program generally involves pilots starting with small planes before moving up to cargo planes and eventually flying passenger planes. This approach was effective at the time, but it fails to expose pilots to the latest technology until very late in their training.

A simulator-heavy program is particularly beneficial for cadets who will be flying modern planes because they immediately begin gaining experience with current avionics. They will have already spent many hours in a simulator with exactly the same equipment they’ll use on their first commercial flight.

Regulatory Compliance During COVID-19

AAG has continued to innovate its programs in response to COVID-19, especially with respect to remote learning solutions. These changes require AAG to work closely with government regulators to ensure these solutions comply with legal requirements. Choudhrie notes that remote training in aviation is only a short-term response to the current pandemic and doesn’t yet represent a permanent shift in the aviation industry. He says, “I think regulators will see the merit of it and allow training providers like ourselves to continue this long term, which would greatly benefit the industry.”

The aviation industry is often slow to adapt to change, but COVID-19 could accelerate innovation on training. AAG will undoubtedly remain at the forefront of this trend as it occurs.

Collaboration

Bhanu Choudhrie makes it clear that collaboration with budget airlines is an essential part of AAG’s success. Training pilots for these airlines requires an effective partnership with them, which AAG will continue to develop and maintain. Choudhrie believes the collaboration between governments and airlines need to increase, especially during the current pandemic. He adds that these organizations have often worked towards opposite goals in the past.

Summary

Choudhrie has provided clear suggestions for how governments and the aviation industry should handle the COVID-19 pandemic, especially with respect to pilot training. AAG’s latest programs also demonstrate how they can continue to create new solutions after the current health crises passes. However, Choudhrie also cautions that aviation should never rush innovation at the expense of safety.

How Are UK Planning Laws Changing?

Coming into effect this September, the UK has seen changes to its planning laws. These changes are designed to revitalise housing and planning post Covid.

Thanks to these new changes, full planning applications will not be required to demolish and rebuild unused buildings. This means that unused buildings can more quickly become homes and commercial and retail properties, repurposing old buildings to revive high streets and town centres.

Property investor Rex Ekaireb Commented on these changes: “UK planning laws are in many cases quite outdated, having been designed for different times. It is therefore reassuring to see the sector moving with the times on this with changes.”

Rex Ekaireb continued saying: “With the UK high street changing for millions of people across the country, planning law changes may well open up opportunities for living as well as additional construction jobs in and around UK high streets which could be a well-times boost to the sector.”

These changes to planning laws are designed to support the UK high street in adapting to consumers’ and businesses’ new needs. Lockdown meant even more of us turned to shopping online, this change has meant an acceleration in the decay of the UK high street.

Many of us are now only visiting our local high street for services; things we can’t get online like haircuts or cafes, rather than for retail purposes. In order to adapt to the new needs of consumers, the government planning laws are designed to support new businesses and support existing businesses in adapting what they can offer.

Homeowners will also be able to add up to 2 additional storeys to their home to create new homes in some circumstances; more living space or room for remote working. A fast track approval process is allowing these changes to happen even more quickly than before, although homeowners are required to carefully consider the impact on neighbours and the appearance of the extension.

Rex Ekaireb said of these changes: “Although this won’t necessarily apply to all areas across the country, for the right areas, and designs allowing, adding additional storeys could be a huge help with regards to the UK’s housing shortage.”

Ekaireb continued: “So long as the properties that are subject to these changes are able to structurally support the additional storeys, these planning changes for many, will feel like a breath of fresh air, injecting much-needed impetus to the sector at a critical time.”

The government is also expected to set out plans to reform England’s 7-decade old planning system to deliver more high-quality, well-designed homes, and beautiful and greener communities for people to live in. The aim is to protect high standards while cutting out bureaucracy, to encourage renovation and adaptation for housing and commercial properties in the UK. Developers will still need to adhere to building regulations.

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick MP said: “We are reforming the planning system and cutting out unnecessary bureaucracy to give small business owners the freedom they need to adapt and evolve, and to renew our town centres with new enterprises and more housing.”

These new planning rules have also come amid some controversy after a speech made by Boris Johnson. The PM seemed to be baiting green activists and conservationists, when he said the reason the UK was slower to build than other countries was that “time is money, and the newt-counting delays in our system are a massive drag on the productivity and the prosperity of this country.”

However, this statement seems to have detracted from what is a very important and exciting development in UK planning laws. Allowing changes and developments to be made more easily to buildings in the UK is not only likely to boost our economy, but will allow the UK to adapt to life out of lockdown.

Interestingly, these changes also help change the dynamic in some cases with regards to the properties people own. For example, in cases where people may have resorted to equity release (more information about equity release), being able to add additional storeys to this extent may allow them to convert an additional storey to rent out for the income they may otherwise have acquired from equity release. Whether you’re a homeowner looking to extend your property, considering a new space for remote working or a small business owner looking to adapt to a changing economy, these changes in the UK planning law will make renovation and adaptation easier for everyone.