Month: January 2009

Financial Planning: Stick to the Basics

Is it just we or did 2008 just whiz us by? It seems like just the other day that the Market was at the 20000 level. Wasn’t it just recently that the price of oil at around $150 had us staring down the barrel of high inflation? And today, most economists are predicting near zero inflation by June. Interest rates that were threatening to sky rocket to the high double digits have softened significantly. And the world economies that seemed to be generally thriving are into a recession! All in the space of one year. If you think about it, there is a vital lesson in the unfolding of these events that nothing is permanent, you shouldn’t take anything for granted. Which in turn means that even the current tumultuous environment is transient, this cycle too will change. In the meanwhile, as an investor you would do well to ignore the ambient noise and stick to a goal based financial plan. Towards this end, today’s column offers readers the basic building blocks of sound financial profile. Though each individual’s life situation is different, the following principles of financial planning are universally applicable. Medical insurance Medical insurance is a non-compromisable especially in a country like ours where the state does not cover medical costs. Everyone, young or old, male or female, salaried or a business person, without exception should get...

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Slum Dog Millionaire

Fascinating film fraternity – Indian tinsel town is singing praises of A R Rahman, who has got a nod for the Oscars. And the movie ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ with world-class music, an Indian cast and based on an Indian theme, doing exceptionally well in the international circuit, it’s time more Indian films to get the recognition they deserve. We are way ahead of Hollywood in the numbers game, with more that 800 movies being churned out each year in...

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Aishwarya Rai Awarded the Padma Shree

Since Aishwarya has become the face of India for the world, and has bagged numerous best actress awards, it was a matter of time before she received this high honour. Aishwarya is looking forward to the India release of her first Hollywood project Pink Panther 2. As of now, she is busy shooting for Mani Ratnam’s Raavana alongside hubby Abhishek Bachchan. She received the popular choice best actress award at the Screen Awards held in Mumbai recently, for her role in Jodhaa Akbar. The other Bollywood recipient of the prestigious Padma Shree is none other than the legendary Helen. The lady who immortalised the twist in Bollywood and became well-known as the essential item girl has got this award after she has retired from the industry, save a film or two every few...

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Heath Ledger’s 10 Million Dollar Life Insurance

A lawsuit involving late actor Heath Ledger’s 10 million dollar life insurance policy has been settled. ReliaStar Life Insurance initially had refused to pay out on Ledger’s 10 million dollars life policy over pending investigation into whether the actor committed suicide. But, the lawyer representing the actor’s daughter Matilda’s trust, William Shernoff, said that the insurance company has agreed to settle the case. Shernoff had threatened to sue ReliaStar for “tens of millions of dollars” in punitive damages for emotional distress caused to Ledger’s loved ones, reports News.com.au. However, Shernoff said: “A confidential settlement has been reached. The parties are pleased we have been able to settle it amicably.” Shernoff would not reveal how much Matilda would receive, citing the settlement’s confidentiality clause. Ledger took out the 10 million dollars life insurance plan in June, 2007, and made Matilda the beneficiary....

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Women Happy to Dress Skimpily for Promotion

A third of women are prepared to dress provocatively in the workplace in order to climb the career ladder, says a report in Britain. More than 27 percent admitted they would happily wear a slightly skimpy outfit to work if it won them a bonus or promotion. One in 20 of them even owned up to wearing revealing outfits to work on a regular basis, said the poll of 3,000 workers conducted by the fashion forum website theragtrader. The research revealed that 78 percent of women believe the way they dress affects their day at work. And over half – 54 percent – believe dressing up helps them perform better in the office. A spokesman for theragtrader.com study said: “The research proves that what you wear to work can really affect your success rate. This relates to both accomplishing more during 9-5 and even climbing the career ladder quicker too. “Even when working from home, it’s incredible how clothing can influence your productivity. If your clothing is too relaxed in style, it’s harder to get into work mode and all too easy to waste the day.” The survey also revealed two thirds of women feel more in control if they are smartly dressed, while 61 percent think it gains them more respect from their colleagues. Women were also more competitive in the office fashion stakes with 48 percent of...

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