All posts by Mark Scott

About Mark Scott

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited. He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Parents are Now Using Loans and Credit Cards to Pay Childcare Costs

Parents in the UK, specifically Northern Ireland are spending more than £6,000 per child, per year in nursery fees today. The latest statistics show that childcare costs for children under five years stand at £117 and parents are being forced to work less or take loans to be able to cope with childcare costs. More than half of all Northern Ireland parents say they rely on other family members and grandparents to help them with childcare issues.

What’s more is the £6,000 annual childcare cost per child, which represents approximately 25% of the standard salary of a Northern Ireland worker, can increase drastically to more than £8,000 for many parents per part-time place. According to a recent Belfast Telegraph interview involving two mothers, Alison Bingham from Belfast and Jennifer Burns from Glengormley, exorbitant childcare costs have made it impossible for the two mothers to consider having more children considering they now spend approximately £10,000 and £15,500 each, respectively. Alison and Jennifer have two children each.

Killick & Co. Survey

The most recent Killick & Co. annual childcare cost survey showed that more than 42% of mothers surveyed in Northern Ireland indicated a significant rise in childcare costs over the last two years. The Killick & Co. Survey also showed that 50% of those polled had reduced their work-hours by a day every week in the past 5 years due to childcare costs and a further 25% have cut down working hours by two days every week.

Besides affecting working hours, hefty childcare fees (which now take up to 33% of the total household income) are influencing most parents’ position on having more children. According to Svenja Keller, Wealth Planing head at Killik and Co., the findings show how people’s lifestyles have been forced to change because of family. For instance, women are being forced to work less than men.

Also, more Northern Ireland parents (over 61%) now rely on extended family members to assist with childcare. According to Keller, grandparents now bare the biggest burden of helping with childcare tasks as parents cope with childcare costs and work-life balance. Data from the survey shows that Northern Ireland childcare costs stand at £6,084 annually, per child compared to £5,044 and £5,772 in Scotland and Wales respectively.

Aoife Hamilton, the Employers For Childcare Policy & Information manager agrees with Keller’s sentiments that childcare costs have become burden on families. According to Hamilton, the childcare bill has surpassed the rent, mortgage, food, and energy bill, a trend which is shocking and needs immediate attention especially when 25% of parents are turning to credit cards, borrowing from friends and family or even taking out payday loans to cater for childcare expenses.

According to Hamilton, the effect isn’t just financial. Employers For Childcare research shows that childcare costs are influencing working patterns causing many parents to leave work and limit their career opportunities which is, in turn, contributing to stress and the overall well-being of many families.

Employers For Childcare has a family benefit advice service for working parents (Free helpline: 0800 028 3008) who want to get work or those keen on maximising their income/managing childcare costs. In 2017, the benefit advice service conducted 6,542 personalised calculations.

Case study one: East Belfast Couple: 40-year old Alison Bingham and 38-year old Engineer husband

The couple has two children, Anna aged 4.5 years and Hayley aged 2.5 years.

Alison and Richard earn a combined £75,000 per year and spend £9,984 on childcare. According to Alison, the couple uses both formal and informal childcare services. Hayley attends formal childcare 3-full days a week while Anna is there three times every week on part time basis. Their grandparents help out 2 days every week. Alison and her husband can’t afford to cut back working days so they have to foot the childcare bill. Things are however better, according to Alison since the total childcare cost last year was £13,500 given both children were in nursery three days a week. Besides cost, the constant drop-offs and pick-ups are stressful. Having more children is not an option.

Case study two: Glengormley couple; Health service admin Jennifer Burns, 39 years and civil servant husband Christopher 35 years

The couple has two children, Alex aged 5 years and Jake aged 2. The couple has an annual combined salary of £38,000. £15,500 goes to yearly childcare costs. Alex is in nursery 5 days every week (part-time) while Jake is there 5 days a week full-time. According to Jennifer, the couple gets tax credits which cater for approximately 52% of their total childcare costs but the remaining £600 that must be paid every month is higher than the couple’s mortgage.

According to the couple, working part-time isn’t an option. If it were not for tax credits, Jennifer admits she would be forced to work part-time. She agonises having to pay ninety pounds more than she earns per month so that someone else can look after her children when she is at work. Having more children is also unthinkable for this couple considering the increasing childcare costs and the fact that Jennifer hasn’t had a pay hike in 8 years.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Brave: What is it? Is it The Safest & Fastest Web Browser Today? Everything You Need to Know

Brief history: is arguably the safest, fastest and newest web browser available today. The browser has several developers the most notable being Brendan Eich, a renowned American technologist who happens to be the creator of JavaScript and co-founder of the Mozilla Corporation, Mozilla project, and Mozilla foundation. Brendan Eich is the Co-founder & CEO of Brave Software, the software company that developed Brave. Brave Software was founded on 28th May 2015 by Brendan and Brian Bondy.

Background: How did Brave come to be?

Eich initially announced Brave on 20th January 2016. The browser aimed to offer a safer and better web browser experience. Eich wanted to provide an alternative to the typical system of providing free content to web users supported by ad revenue generated by publishers and content creators on the internet. Eich saw an underlying threat arising from the growing conflict between internet users and advertisers i.e. advertisers have increasingly enjoyed incentives to collect as well as store detailed personal information about internet users for them to create more effective ads yet internet users have become increasingly averse to the collection/storage of their personal information as well as their activities online.

Brave claims to remove intrusive internet ads and block website trackers. The browser also claims to boost online privacy by restricting data sharing with advertising customers. These claims have been supported overwhelmingly by tech product review sites like CNet and TechWorld earning the browser the title of the best secure browser available today. There have also been a few sceptics such as technology News Company Ars Technica which doesn’t find Brave’s advertising policy favourable.

Publisher contributions

Brave publishers are rewarded via a system known as Brave payments. Brave uses this system to compensate for ad blocking/substitution. The system allows users to set a budget they are willing to donate (to the sites they visit). Brave then calculates a % assigned to each site via an algorithm and publishers receive a transfer in cryptocurrency if they choose to join the system. Ars Technica has been very critical of this policy although publishers are at will to participate and users make critical decisions on ad revenue.

Operating system/release information

The browser supports all the major operating systems i.e., Windows, Linux, iOS, Android, and macOS. Brave is written in three programming languages namely; C, C++, and JavaScript. Brave’s stable release on Windows, Linux, and macOS took place on 13th January 2018. The iOS and Android stable release took place on 13th and 14th December respectively.


Brave Software raised money from private investors, angel investors and leading venture capital companies. The most notable funding came from Pantera Capital, Propel Venture Partners, Foundation Capital, Digital Currency Group and FF Angel. Initial seed money amounted to $7 million ($2.5m from private investors and $4.5m from angel investors and leading venture capital firms).

Brave’s mission

Brave is branded as a web browser with users’ interests at heart. According to the founders, the web browser is on a brave mission to fix the internet by giving internet users a; safer, better and faster browsing experience, something which has been missing for decades.

Brave also offers a new and unique way of supporting content creators via an attention-based rewards ecosystem. Brave is also on a mission to change how people think about the internet. The browser is open source and built by tech professionals who are privacy-focused and performance-oriented.

Top benefits of using brave web browser

There are several incentives for switching to Brave; They include;

• Block ads and trackers: You have the power to block ads and trackers which have made it impossible to browse safely through the web. Brave protects your privacy online.

• Browse faster: Brave is 2-8 times faster than regular browsers on mobile, two times faster than regular browsers on desktop. Brave is able to offer faster speeds because of blocking ads/trackers.

• Save money: Brave promises as $23 per month saving in data charges incurred downloading ads and trackers.

• Save time: Brave’s speeds are bound to save the average internet users hundreds of hours of precious time every year. The browser goes as far as tracking the time users save which is approximately 5 seconds loading time per page on both desktop and mobile.

• Avoid infections: Brave blocks ads/trackers which reduces your chances of getting malware, spyware and ransomware attacks. Brave also has HTTPS upgrades which translate to more encrypted connections.

Brave is worth a try given the current security and privacy concerns online. In 2016 alone, malware, spyware and ransomware infections increased by a record 132%. Brave promises to deal with this problem and many others, once and for all. What’s more is the browser is by Brendan Eich a renowned technologist who also happens to be behind Mozilla, one of the most popular web browsers in use today.

If you use credit cards online, apply for loans online such as payday loans or perform other sensitive transactions online, you need the safest web browser you can get.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Risk Management Basics for Successful Investing

Introduction to risk management

Risk management is important on a business and individual level. You need to assess the risks of getting into certain investments for you to be able to choose the best investments. Risk management can be defined as the process of reducing risk. The process begins with identifying possible risks before evaluating and using available resources to monitor as well as minimise those risks.

A risk arises from uncertainty. Accidents, natural disasters, death and similar eventualities are good examples of risks. Risk management is concerned with identifying dire risks and using appropriate tools to deal with those risks. A risk prioritization process is used to identify those risks capable of causing great loss or have a higher probability of occurrence. The likelihood of an occurrence and impact of risk are the two most important factors in risk management. For instance, extensive risk management is required when the impact of risk and likelihood of occurrence is high. The opposite is true. It’s also crucial to note that risk management is an ongoing process that starts with assessment then proceeds with evaluation, management and measurement of risk before repeating the process again.

Risk source

As the name suggests, risk source is simply, the source of a risk which can either be internal or external. External risk sources are sources beyond our control. Internal risk sources are risk sources which can be controlled or managed to a certain extent. A perfect example of an external risk source is bad weather or natural calamities. We don’t have any control over such risks. Risks such as fire are internal in nature since we have a certain level of control. For instance, you can fireproof your home or business to reduce losses in case of a fire. Once you identify possible risks in any given scenario, it is time to assess those risks to identify the likelihood of occurrence followed by a risk management plan and implementation characterised by security controls/mechanisms for controlling risk.

It is worth noting that there are risks that may be present but hard to identify. A good example is a perpetual inefficiency in a company’s production process that accumulates over time translating to operational risk. Managing risk for successful investingYou must invest to gain financial independence. However, it is impossible to eliminate investment risk. You can use some investment strategies to manage investment risk which stops many people from investing like they should.

There are two main types of investment risks namely systemic risks which are risks affecting the economy and non-systemic risks which are risks affecting a company or small part of an economy. Below are important strategies to consider when managing risk.

1. Prudent asset allocation

You should include different asset classes in your investment portfolio to protect yourself against risks affecting particular asset classes. Prudent asset allocation also increases your probability of getting satisfactory returns even if one or more asset classes /investments don’t yield any returns or drops in value. Ideally, you are supposed to invest in many different asset classes, i.e. bonds, stocks, real estate, etc. as opposed to concentrating on one asset class.

2. Diversification

Diversification is similar in some ways to prudent asset allocation. The main difference is you can diversify in one asset class. For instance, instead of buying one company stock, you can buy many stocks in different categories to reduce overexposure. A perfect example would be dividing up your money and buying energy stocks, agriculture stocks, technology stocks instead of buying one stock with the same amount of money.

3. Hedging

You can also hedge to reduce investment risks. Hedging involves buying a security for the sole purpose of offsetting potential losses arising from other investments. Taking insurance is a form of hedging. It is, however, worth noting that this risk management strategy adds to the overall cost of investing which can erode returns. Hedging is also speculative in nature so it’s essential to use this strategy with caution. Ideally, you need to do thorough research to use this risk management strategy effectively.

4. Rebalancing

This is another risk management strategy ideal when you are already investing. Rebalancing involves periodically selling investments that take up a significant portion of your portfolio. As mentioned above, risk management is an ongoing process. If you assess your investments over time and realise you are overexposed in a certain asset class, it is prudent to rebalance, i.e., sell off a portion of such investments and invest in underperforming assets. Rebalancing is about selling high and buying low. In a nutshell, investing is risky. Luckily there are ways to manage risk which involve understanding the source and nature of risk and taking the necessary steps to manage or reduce those risks.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Tired of Short Term Loans? Tax Incentives You Could Be Missing Out in The UK

Tax breaks can provide you with a few hundred pounds every year which is adequate for catering to emergency cash needs. To avoid taking short-term loans such as payday loans, you can turn your attention to the tax incentives you could be missing out now. Besides avoiding short-term loans, tax incentives can help you build your savings account. Many tax incentives are being left on the table by Britons. Here are some of them.

1. Marriage allowance

The latest government statistics show that over 2 million married couples in Britain miss out on a £600 each (£1200) yearly marriage tax break. The total unclaimed marriage tax breaks amount to approximately £1.3 billion according to a recent freedom of information request submitted to the UK government requesting information on the tax break. Britain has approximately 4.2 million married couples and 15,000 civil unions eligible for the tax incentive. However, only 1.8 million married couples have claimed.

The incentive dates back to 2005 and couples are allowed to back-claim £632.To claim this incentive, you need to be in a civil union or marriage. Cohabiting partners aren’t eligible. You also need to be a taxpayer. However, spouses who aren’t taxpayers but are married to individuals who pay tax are still illegible to the incentive. To benefit, the lower earner must earn £11,500 or less. The tax is still applicable to individuals receiving a pension as well as those living abroad provided they are getting a personal allowance.

2. Childcare costs tax credit

You may also be missing out on working tax credit which is a tax incentive that helps with childcare costs. Working Tax Credit takes care of partial costs of childcare. You may be eligible for an additional £122.50 tax break every week for a single child or an extra £210 every week if you have two or more children. To qualify for childcare tax incentives, your kid must be minded by an approved childcare provider. Visit to get more information on tax incentives relating to childcare costs in the UK.

3. Travel incentives for employees

The UK government also gives travel tax incentives to employees whose work requires traveling which disrupts the normal daily routine. Please, note this tax is not given for normal daily commutes. The incentive considers travel expenses like toll charges, parking fees, business call costs, airfare, mileage, taxi, bus and/or railway transport costs. If your work requires you to travel and make overnight stays, you may also be eligible for this tax incentive on accommodation expenses like food and drinks. Claiming this tax incentive is easy. You need to file a self-assessment tax return online or via post (print and post form P87). You can also claim by phone if you have claimed successfully before. You can get more information about this tax incentive here:

4. Food-related tax incentives

You can also claim some tax relief for food costs incurred outside your routine/pattern. Please note this tax isn’t applicable to food costs incurred when taking clients out for lunch. A person who works from home can, however, claim food costs incurred when attending a work conference. This tax applies to reasonable expenses. For instance, you can’t claim tax breaks on food expenses related to expensive wine. Visit: for more information.

5. Research and development tax credits

You could also be eligible for R&D tax credits if you are a business owner. This tax incentive has been in place in the UK for years. The government put this tax incentive in place to encourage companies to spend on research and development which is considered crucial for economic growth. The incentive was also put in place to encourage investment in innovation. Currently, over 170,000 research and development claims have been submitted in the UK since 2001 according to HMRC’s Tax credit statistics. Over £16.5 billion has been claimed already as tax relief. Small business owners are claiming this tax more and more every year. In 2015-2016 for instance, SME claims increased by 22% compared to year 2014-2015 (from 17,875 to 21,856).

If you own an SME, you have an opportunity to get some tax breaks. R&D tax applies to SMEs with less than 500 employees and a turnover not exceeding 100 million. The relief is extended to research and development initiatives like software development, combining existing technologies, ownership patents as well as employment of software engineers, scientist or developers. SummaryYou probably leave a lot of money on the table in the form of unclaimed tax incentives. The information above can help you save hundreds and sometimes more than a thousand pounds every year in the form of tax breaks. You can then channel this money into your savings or emergency account to avoid over-reliance on emergency loans like payday loans.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Summary Of All Benefits Available In The UK – What Do I Qualify For? 

There are numerous benefits available for UK Citizens. The benefits can be summarised as; benefits for families, career & disability benefits, child benefits, death benefits, heating and housing benefits, Job seekers allowance & low income benefits and tax credit benefits.

Below is a summary of those benefits. 

1. Benefits for families

UK families are entitled to numerous benefits that range from free school meals to support services for families of military and defence personnel. Free school meals are available to school going children in the UK. Information on this benefit can be found by checking your local authority’s website.

Other benefits for families include;

• Care to learn: Helps childcare expenses while you study. You must be under 20 years to qualify for this benefit.

• Carer’s Credit: This benefit is available to individuals who care for someone for 20 hours or more a week.

• Child Trust Fund: This benefit is simply a long-term tax-free saving account for children.

• Childcare Grant: This benefit is simply a grant for full-time higher education students under 15 years.

Other benefits for families include;

guardian’s allowance, healthy start, maternity allowance, maternity pay & leave, parent’s learning allowance and sure start maternity grant. Military service men and women also get benefits if they are injured in service. Their families also qualify for special benefits.

2. Carers and disability benefits

There are numerous carers and disability benefits available in the UK. They include the access to work grant which pays for practical support for individuals with disability or health/mental conditions. Other benefits include; the bereavement support payment, ESA (Employment & support allowance), Jobseeker’s allowance and universal credit just to mention a few benefits. Carer and disability benefits are for individuals with disabilities as well as their carers.

3. Child benefit

This special benefit is given to individuals responsible for a child or children under 16 years or a child under 20 years if they are receiving approved education/training.

4. Death-related benefits

UK citizens also have access to death-related benefits such as widowed parent’s allowance, bereavement payment, funeral payment, war widow(er) pension and guardian’s allowance. These benefits are accorded to families to help them cope when a family member dies.

5. Heating and housing benefits

These benefits include winter fuel payment, cold weather payment, and the warm home discount. The benefits are passed over to UK households to help them cater for their heating and housing payments i.e. pay home heating bills during winter. UK households can also benefit from tax reductions, lower rent, etc. through heating and housing benefits. These benefits are usually accorded to low-income households as well as individuals who are unemployed in the UK.

6. Jobseeker’s allowance & low income benefits

As the name suggests, these benefits are given to individuals who are either seeking employment or in the low-income segment. Jobseeker’s allowance & low-income benefits include but aren’t limited to; constant attendance allowance, employment & support allowance, income support, In work credit, reduced earnings allowance, SMI (Support for Mortgage Interest) and pension credit.

7. Tax credits

UK citizens also get a variety of tax credits such as; child tax credit and working tax credit. Child tax credit is given to individuals responsible for children who are 16 years or less, under 20 if the children in question are in eligible education/training. Working tax credit is offered to individuals aged between 16 and 24 years who have a child. Individuals who are aged 25 and above can also qualify for a working tax credit with/without children. You must, however, fall below a certain income level and work for a specified number of hours weekly.

For more information on the benefits available in the UK as well as the criteria/requirements for enjoying those benefits,


Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

4 Shocking Truths about Paying For Financial Advice

Before you spend your hard-earned money on anything, especially financial advice, it’s important to understand what you are getting in return. It’s tough trying to invest or make informed financial decisions on your own. Some people don’t have enough knowledge. Others lack the time and passion. That’s where financial advisors come in handy. However, you must know some truths before you pay for financial advice. Here are four shocking truths about paying for financial advice.

1. There is serious conflict of interest

Most people don’t know this, but there are massive conflict of interest issues in the financial advice industry. The reason behind this is simple. Financial advisors receive financial incentives for recommending certain financial products and services. For this reason, the recommendations you receive may not necessarily be the best for you. The conflict of interest factor is huge in the financial advice industry since you (the client) are trying to make money off your money and financial advisors are trying to do the same. Furthermore, you are more attractive (as a client) if you have a higher net worth (more money to invest).However, this shouldn’t be mistaken to mean that all financial advisors care about themselves more than their clients. Some advisors want to see you get the best returns. Unfortunately, most will give you advice based on the amount of commission/s they will earn from you. It is therefore important to understand what’s in it for an advisor before paying and acting on advice. For instance, you should find out if your preferred financial advisor has any affiliations with the financial products/services. In a nutshell, you must be certain you won’t receive biased advice because your advisor will earn a commission or other perks, directly or indirectly.

2. Financial professionals can never substitute personal financial education

Many people who seek financial advice are guilty of relying too much on the advice they get. This shouldn’t be the case. You need to have a basic understanding of what your advisor is doing/telling you to do with your money. Educating yourself constantly also allows you to ask tough questions. You are in a better position to compare returns, analyse risk, identify conflict of interest issues, question advice, etc. if you have basic knowledge and you are open to learning. Unscrupulous financial advisors love clients who have no knowledge or interest in learning about investments. Your chances of getting advice to buy a financial product or service you don’t need are very high if your financial advisor notices you don’t know anything or know very little about investing and you aren’t interested in learning. Financial advisors work best if you are equipped with basic financial knowledge and a genuine learning interest so you still need to learn even if you are paying for financial advice.

3. Most financial advisors fail at helping their clients

This is also shocking but true. The fact is; the people who help you the most and make a lasting difference in your life are those who genuinely care about you. We’ve already talked about conflict of interest above, so it’s easy to determine if most financial advisors really care about their clients. What’s more is; financial advice is just a small part of the equation. Most financial advisors fail because their help stops after giving advice yet many factors come into play after a person has received financial advice. For instance, you need to act which is rather obvious but commonly overlooked. Many financial advisors give their clients direction but fail to give them the passion to act and other important tools like goals. However, let’s not forget the fact that financial advisors aren’t obligated to follow up. Furthermore, they don’t gain much by doing this unless they are working with high net worth individuals. Now you know why high net worth individuals tend to get the best financial advisory services.

4. You don’t need to pay for financial advice

Since you still need to know about personal finance and be open to learning even if you have a financial advisor, do you need to pay for advice? Well, No! You don’t have to pay for financial advice. You can learn everything yourself and be able to make informed financial decisions. The internet is packed with free and useful financial information and resources. Don’t get me wrong though. A financial advisor will save you a lot of time you would have otherwise spent learning about investing, analysing opportunities, etc. Nevertheless, you must be financially literate to become rich!

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

4 Money Lessons You Must Teach Your Kids

We all have money regrets. You’ve probably made a financial decision you regret to date. It could be anything really from a missed investment opportunity to bad spending habits. Such decisions may have had a major implication on your life to the extent you wish you had known better and wouldn’t imagine your kids repeating those mistakes. Given the importance of financial literacy in life and the fact that schools don’t teach kids about money, it’s your duty as a parent to pass this important knowledge. In case you are wondering which money lessons are the most important for your kid, you are in the right place.

Here are four money lessons you must teach your kids.

1. Saving is cool, It takes money to make money!

Your kids must understand this first for them to know the importance of saving. You can start by getting your kids piggy banks, if you haven’t already, to encourage them to become avid savers. You can also incentivize saving using monetary rewards when your kids reach certain milestones. You should encourage your kid to save pocket money as well as monetary gifts they get from relatives. Saving is a crucial money lesson that should be taught from an early age since you need to accumulate money to invest if you don’t want to take out loans. Furthermore, you need assets to secure loans so you must have some savings first to start your financial journey.

2. You need to wait sometimes to buy what you want

This is a difficult money lesson for most kids, yet it is one of the most important for financial success. A person’s ability to delay gratification plays a crucial role in their future success. Kids who are able to resist from buying things or asking for things they want immediately have an easier time succeeding financially given most important money lessons like saving are a form of delayed gratification. Most parents have a problem teaching this lesson because they want the best for their kids. Parents love giving their children things they desire like toys and gadgets. However, you should make your kid wait sometimes before they get what they want. This lesson will encourage your kid to manage their money better when they grow older. It will also help them appreciate the fact that money is scarce and you need to make smart choices like waiting before you spend.

3. Income counts

Your kids also need to appreciate the importance of having an income. To teach this lesson effectively, encourage your kids to earn income doing jobs like; selling lemonade, pet walking and raking leaves. Making your kids work for money is important because it teaches a valuable lesson money’s scarcity. When you teach this lesson effectively, it will be easier to teach other lessons like savings and spending money wisely since your kids will already appreciate the effort it takes to get money. Unless you are already wealthy and planning to leave your kids a fortune, it’s crucial for them to understand it takes a job to earn money.

4. Sharing is good

Kids should also learn to share from a young age. They should learn that money isn’t just for fulfilling one’s needs but also helping people who are in need. This money lesson is important for teaching responsibility and compassion for others. It’s also important for eliminating bad habits like materialism and selfishness. It’s unfortunate that kids don’t learn much about money in school yet it is a very crucial subject. Teaching your kids the above money lessons is a great way to prepare them for future success. The above lessons equip kids with important traits like self-control which are crucial for financial success in the future. Kids who learn how to save, earn and delay gratification at an early age are less likely to get into financial problems in the future according to numerous research studies. One such study done by researchers led by psychologist Terrie Moffitt from Duke University links self-control with debt problems. According to the study (which tracked 1000 kids in New Zealand from birth to 32 years), kids who had high self-control are more likely to succeed in life. In a nutshell, instilling financial self-control using the above lessons will help your kid avoid financial problems like debt in the future.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.

Blockchain Technology and Why It Is Here to Stay

Beginner guide to blockchain

Blockchain can be described as an incorruptible digital ledger or record of transactions programmed to record financial transactions as well as everything of value. The brainchild behind this technology is bitcoin founder Satoshi Nakamoto. Blockchain, however, goes beyond bitcoin or any cryptocurrency for that matter. Blockchain technology has become transformational because of the mere fact that it allows digital information to be distributed as opposed to being copied. Cryptocurrencies are not the only invention using blockchain today which makes it important to understand the basics of the technology. Like the internet, you just need to understand the basics of blockchain to use it/see its value.

Let’s get started.

Blockchain as a distributed database

Blockchain technology works like a distributed database which regularly updates itself, i.e., like a spreadsheet which duplicates itself multiple times across a network and updates itself frequently. Google docs is a great example of blockchain technology where you can update a document you have shared with many people simultaneously. The blockchain database isn’t stored in one location which simply means that records are truly public and easy to verify. Information held on the database is shared and continuously reconciled which offers obvious benefits. For instance, there is no specific center of information that can be corrupt or hacked. The data is also accessible to everyone online.

Before Google docs, people used to send word documents or spreadsheets to one another via mail to make revisions. The problem with this scenario is the back and forth transferring of documents as well as the difficulty in tracking changes. Blockchain has solved this problem introducing two major benefits. First and foremost, blockchain can’t be controlled by one single person or entity. Blockchain also eliminates risks associated with having a single point of failure since blocks of information are identical across the network. Blockchain robustness has been tested and proven. Since the invention of Bitcoin back in 2009, the Bitcoin blockchain has remained operational without any significant disruption.

Blockchain technology properties:

Transparent and incorruptible

The blockchain network has been built to check itself every ten minutes automatically. The network conducts a self-audit reconciling all transactions happening in 10-minute intervals. Every group of transactions occurring in this interval is known as a block. This makes blockchain unmatched in regards to transparency since data is embedded as a whole in the network and it is public. Also, data can’t be corrupted. In theory, the blockchain network can be corrupt by overriding the entire network using a high amount of computing power. In practice, this is impossible. Attempting to take control of a blockchain system such as the Bitcoin blockchain would destroy the value of Bitcoins removing any incentive for such an undertaking. Blockchain technology has solved fundamental problems like manipulation. Fiat currencies are subject to manipulation from central banks and governments. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies which utilise blockchain can’t be manipulated by individuals or entities. This is what makes cryptocurrencies so attractive. Many people today have little trust in large corporations and entities because they have betrayed people’s trust in the past.


Blockchain is decentralised by design. Whatever happens in a blockchain network is a function of the entire network. Blockchain creates a new way of verifying transactions which could render transactional aspects of conventional commerce unnecessary. Stock market trades could soon be in blockchain making them available to all. Blockchain could also be implemented in public record keeping such as land registries. Decentralisation has become a reality and blockchain leading the way.

Enhanced security

By storing data in multiple locations, blockchain has eliminated risks associated with holding data centrally. Blockchain networks don’t have centralised vulnerable points which computer hackers can target. Since internet security is a huge problem today, the world is expected to turn to blockchain technology for solutions. We already have usernames and passwords for protecting our identity as well as assets online. Blockchain uses encryption technology. In cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, for instance, users have public keys which are randomly generated numbers acting as user addresses on the blockchain. You also need a private key which works like a password to get access and send Bitcoins. Blockchain technology utilises private keys to offer access/use of digital assets. However, the private key must be kept safe preferably offline for safekeeping.

Other advantages of blockchain technology

Besides enhancing security and enhancing transparency, blockchain is also cheaper compared to traditional accounting systems. The technology has eliminated the need for middlemen such as banks resulting in lower fees in the case of cryptocurrencies. Blockchain has also reduced transaction time as well as transactional errors. In a nutshell, blockchain technology may be relatively new and complex; however, the technology is here to stay and be applied on all areas that require decentralisation and related benefits.

Is the Company Director of Swift Money Limited.
He oversees all day to day operations of the company and actively participates in providing information regarding the payday/short term loan industry.