BUSN 380 All Discussions


BUSN 380 All Discussions
Incorporating time-value-of-money concepts and information from well-developed personal financial….


BUSN 380 All Discussions

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Discussions Week 1-7 All Student Posts 600 Pages


Time Value of Money and Opportunity Cost Discussions Week 1 All Posts 75 Pages

BUSN 380 All Discussions


Time Value of Money – 39 Pages


Incorporating time-value-of-money concepts and information from well-developed personal financial statements, identify your long-term financial goals and discuss the pertinent aspects for realizing these long-term financial goals. Explain the choices that you must make and how career planning will also fit into your plan…

In order to understand finance and personal financial planning it is imperative to understand the concept of time value of money.  I would like to start this class off by having everyone define in their own words what time value of money is.

Please define and discuss each of the following time value of money concepts:

  • Future value of a single amount
  • Future value of a series of deposits
  • Present value of a single amount
  • Present value of a series of deposits

What is the difference between economics and finance? Are they the same subject? Why or why not?

Here is a future value of an annuity question.  What amount would you have in a retirement account if you made annual deposits of $375 for 25 years earning 12%, compounded annually?…

Opportunity Cost – 36 Pages


Identify, quantify, and discuss the opportunity costs that arise from your decision to attend DeVry University. Using the concept of present value analysis, how would you justify your decision to acquire a college degree?…

Understanding the basis of this topic is essential to this course.  Please name the 6 steps in the financial planning process.  Then pick 1 step and discuss it with at least 2 classmates.

Please search various book lists on the internet, for example from Goodreads.com, to find an interesting finance book that you would like to read.  The book could be about any subtopic as long as it is connected to finance.  Bring back your findings and discuss it with at least 2 classmates.

Please find an interesting article of your choice from the websites that I have added in the Webliography that is related to financial planning or opportunity costs.  Bring back your findings and discuss it with at least 2 classmates.

Please name the eight components of a personal financial plan.  All of these components will be covered in varying degrees by the end of this class. Then pick 1 component and tell us what you would like to learn about it in this course.  Then discuss it with at least 2 classmates…

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Disposable Income and Alternative Savings Vehicles Discussions Week 2 All Students Posts 92 Pages


Disposable Income – 45 Pages


Identify and present all taxes you pay during the course of a typical year. Include taxes that are called fees (such fees are really taxes by another name). Some of the taxes you pay may have to be estimated (i.e., sales taxes). What is the percentage proportion of these taxes in relation to your income, and—with respect to your disposable income (that is, income after taxes)—what are the implications insofar as your spending behavior is concerned?…

Please name the three steps of computing taxable income and your tax liability.  Please list the three types of income.  Pick 1 of the three and research a little information about it on IRS.gov.

What would be the average tax rate for a person who paid taxes of $4,864.14 on a taxable income of $39,870?

“What percentage of taxes did you really pay?”  A person who paid taxes of $4,864.14 on a taxable income of $39,870 would have an average tax rate of 12.2% ($4,864.14 / $39,870).  In other words, the taxes they paid ($4,864.14) is 12.2% of their total taxable income.

What is adjustable gross income (AGI)? How do you calculate AGI? Reference at least one article from any website in the Webliography.

What is the difference between the standard deduction and itemized deductions?  Can you use both? Why or why not?…

Alternative Savings Vehicles – 47 Pages


Identify the savings (investment) instruments you use or have used in the past (if you haven’t used any, identify those that you are most likely to use). Now, identify a number of alternative savings (investment) instruments that you have not used (or are least likely to use). Compare your two lists. Analyze the trade-offs that emerge. Why have you selected certain instruments in the past? Why may you use specific savings (investment) instruments in the future? Why will you decide to not use certain instruments in the future?…

Name two types of financial institutions and elaborate on each.  Please provide an example of each one. This shall include a direct link to the financial institution’s website.

Pick two types of savings plans from the textbook and compare their benefits and drawbacks.  Tell us about an experience that you have had with one of these savings plan.

Can you name and elaborate on the various factors that effect the evaluation of savings plans?

With a 28% marginal tax rate, would a tax free yield of 7% or a taxable yield of 9.5% give you a better return on your savings?

What sources of assistance would you recommend for a friend who is asking questions about taxes?…

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Hazardous to Your Health! & Credit Card Balance Discussions Week 3 All Students Posts 96 Pages


Hazardous to Your Health! – 55 Pages


Using the Internet, locate a source that identifies the number of personal bankruptcies that have occurred in the United States during a relatively recent time period. Locate and report the results of Internet (or other) sources that assess the role played by credit card debt in relation to personal bankruptcies declared. What are the general conclusions regarding the effects of credit card debt upon bankruptcy filings? Do you believe that credit card debt is the only cause of bankruptcy? Are there any additional factors that can lead a consumer to make a personal bankruptcy decision?…

In your own words, tell us what role (if any) consumer credit had on the recent economic downturn.  Please cite at least 2 references from either the lecture, text, or the websites in the Webliography.

Please name several ways that you can protect yourself against credit card fraud.  Discuss this issue with at least 2 classmates.

Name the five C’s of Credit Management and tell us about how each relates to your current creditworthiness.  Assume that you are a bank manager and are reviewing your application for a $100,000 refinance loan.  Name four steps that you should do if your identity is stolen and tell us your thoughts about each one.  Then find an interesting article about identity theft and integrate it with your post.

Calculating the amount for a home equity loan.  A few years ago, Michael Tucker purchased a home for $100,000.  Today the home is worth $150,000.  His remaining mortgage balance is $50,000. Assuming Michael can borrow up to 80 percent of the market value of his home, what is the maximum amount he can borrow?

Present market value of Michael’s home = $150,000. Michael can borrow up to 80 percent of the market value…

Credit Card Balances – 41 Pages


As a proportion of your personal net worth (total assets minus total liabilities), identify the proportion of credit card debt you currently have outstanding (or have had outstanding at some point in your life). Identify the expenditures that have given rise to your credit card debt. Which expenditures were discretionary and which were not? Discuss the implications. Are there any strategies that you can implement in order to better manage and reduce credit card debt? What strategies have you used? What are the most frequent reasons for indebtedness?…

What are the most frequent reasons for indebtedness?

What are the common danger signals of potential debt problems? Elaborate on one of them. Respond to at least 2 classmates.

The 16 Danger Signals of Potential Debt Problems

  1. Paying only the minimum balance each month on credit card bills
  2. Increasing the total balance due each month on credit accounts
  3. Missing payments, paying late, or paying some bills this month and others next month
  4. Intentionally using the overdraft or automatic loan features on checking accounts or taking frequent cash advances on credit cards
  5. Using savings to pay normal bills such as groceries or utilities
  6. Receiving second or third notices from creditors
  7. Not talking to your spouse about money or talking onlyabout money

What is the Consumer Credit Counseling Services (CCCS)?  Find out some interesting information about this topic from the internet and tell your class about it…

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Portfolio Diversification and Portfolio Risk Discussions Week 4 All Students Posts 83 Pages


Portfolio Diversification – 38 Pages


Identify any long-term investment instruments you use or have used in the past (if you haven’t used any, identify those that you are most likely to use). Include any retirement funds established at work and pension/retirement contributions made by your employer. Assess whether or not your overall investment portfolio is efficiently diversified. Why is there a lack of diversification? What steps can you take to modify this? If you plan to invest long term, what steps will you take towards diversification?…

Define in your own words the term “portfolio diversification.”  Find an article about it from a quality business website.  Bring back your findings and discuss it with at least 2 classmates.

Calculating the Amount for an Emergency Fund. Beth and Bob Martin have a total take-home pay of $3,200 a month. Their monthly expenses total $2,800. Calculate the amount the couple needs to establish an emergency fund. How did you calculate this amount?

Determining Interest and Approximate Bond Value. Assume that three years ago, you purchased a corporate bond that pays 9.5 percent. The purchase price was $1,000. Also assume that three years after your bond investment, comparable bonds are paying 8 percent.

  1. What is the annual dollar amount of interest that you will receive from your bond investment?
  2. Assuming that comparable bonds are paying 8 percent, what is the approximate dollar price for which you could sell your bond?
  3. In your own words, explain why your bond increased or decreased in value.

Calculating Rate of Return. Assume that at the beginning of the year, you purchase an investment for $6,000 that pays $80 annual income. Also assume the investment’s value has increased to $6,900 by the end of the year.

  1. What is the rate of return for this investment?
  2. Is the rate of return a positive or negative number?

Portfolio Risk – 45 Pages


Using the investment portfolio you identified for this week’s first discussion question, informally identify the beta for each of the asset components of this portfolio. Include your reasoning for the betas you have identified. (If you have not formally invested in a portfolio yet, find 3–5 asset components that you would want to invest in as a portfolio, and informally identify the beta for these asset components). Now, identify the overall beta of your investment portfolio and explain how you arrived at this result. What implications can you draw from this exercise? How does each component beta differ from the portfolio beta, and why?…

Define in your own words the term “portfolio risk.”  Find an article about it from a quality business website. Bring back your findings and discuss it with at least 2 classmates.  In your own words, describe the risk-return tradeoff. What are the five components of the risk factor? Describe and provide an example of each. Use the Webliography.

Please take the time to determine the level of investment risk that is acceptable for you and your family. Find a quality website that will allow you to take an investment risk test to see how risky you are. Tell us about your results and conclusions.

Do you think fundamental analysis, technical analysis, or the efficient market hypothesis best describes price movements for the stock market? Why?  Provide an example of a person who supports any one of these theories and state their case…

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Payment Obligation and Subsistence Spending Discussions Week 5 All Students Posts 90 Pages


Payment Obligation – 45 Pages


As a percentage of your estimated monthly disposable income (which you identified in Week 2), what proportion is represented by your monthly automobile, mortgage, and/or rental payments? What is the percentage remaining after those monthly expenses have been deducted? Assess and discuss the implications in terms of how they influence your personal financial planning….

What factors commonly influence a person’s daily buying choices?  How does a service contract differ from a warranty? What rights do purchasers of products have even if there is no written warranty?

When might leasing a motor vehicle be appropriate?  Find a special on a leased car from the internet that caught your eye and tell us about it.  Provide links.  What actions are appropriate when buying a used car?  If you had to buy a used car, which one would it be.  Go to cars.com and research this car.  Compare different prices options that you have found.  Identify which option you would choose and why.

There are many scams out there that can impact our financial lives if we fall victim to them.  Has anyone ever been a victim of a scam or fraud?  Describe some situations in which you might use the services of a lawyer.

Subsistence Spending – 45 Pages


Suppose you found yourself in a position where your monthly level of income was cut in half. Assume this misfortune will persist for the long term. Discuss the effect such a salary reduction would have on your current lifestyle. What conclusions can you draw? What changes would you make regarding your expenses and how would you implement any new financial strategies?…

Analyze the costs and benefits associated with renting. Describe your situation and tell us why you do or do not rent.  Consider the current economic situation. Name the five major steps in the home-buying process.  If you have ever bought a home, please describe your experience in each of these five steps.  If you never owned a home, please describe what impedes you from doing so.

Please name some of the costs associated with purchasing a home.  Do you feel that these costs are justifiable? Why or why not?

Evaluating Motor Vehicle Leases.  Compare the costs of buying and leasing a motor vehicle. Please use dealer visits, advertisements, and Web sites to obtain information for this activity.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of owning a home?

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Insurance Trade-Offs and Lowering Insurance Costs and Risks Discussions Week 6 All Students Posts 90 Pages


Insurance Trade-Offs – 43 Pages


What forms of insurance coverage do you currently carry and pay for? As a percentage of your estimated monthly disposable income (which you identified in Week 2), what proportion do these coverages represent? Are there areas where you feel you are underinsured? Overinsured? What trade-offs are involved in determining the amount of insurance coverage you currently carry? Insurance is a very important financial tool that I feel all of my students need to know the basics at minimum.  Without incorporating insurance into your financial plan, you are setting yourself up for a catastrophe at best.  Let’s start with the fundamentals. How are the most common risks classified?….

There are four major methods to manage risk.  What are they?  Provide examples of each.

What are the steps in planning your personal insurance coverage?  Please provide an outline of your own personal insurance program using these steps. Be specific.

Set your goals, plan to reach your goals, put your plan into action, and check your results. To put your risk management plan to work, you must answer four basic questions: What should be insured, and for how much? What kind of insurance should be bought, and from whom?  What main coverages are included in home insurance policies? What are the main coverages included in most automobile insurance policies?

Lowering Insurance Costs and Risks – 47 Pages


What strategies might you implement to lower your insurance costs, while at the same time minimizing the risks involved in lowering such coverage? For example, in the area of health insurance, ask whether you are a smoker. In the area of auto insurance, how could your driving habits change?  What is health insurance and what is its purpose?…

What are group health insurance plans and individual health insurance?

Can you name the several types of health insurance coverage available under group and individual policies? Provide a discussion of each one. Find an article that relates to this topic from one of the sites provided in the Webliography and discuss its findings with your classmates.

What are the major provisions of a health insurance policy? Provide a discussion of each one.

What are the major sources of health insurance and health care? Pick one source and find an article that relates to this topic from one of the sites provided in the Webliography…

BUSN 380 All Discussions

Zero-Based Asset and Home Valuation and Estate Taxes Discussions Week 7 All Students Posts 84 Pages


Zero-Based Asset – 41 Pages  


U.S. Treasury bills held to maturity have a beta of zero. Why? Discuss the implications of this risk-return trade-off with respect to your overall investment portfolio as you approach retirement age. Are there any assets that you would avoid investing in as you near retirement age? Why is retirement planning important?  Why is retirement planning important to you?  Survey friends, relatives, and other people to get their views on retirement planning ….

What expenses are likely to increase or decrease during retirement?  What are examples of defined-contribution plans? How do they differ from defined-benefit plans?

Three ways to invest in mutual funds offered by investment companies are closed-end fund, exchange- traded funds, and open-ended funds.  Please describe and provide an example of each type.

In your own words, describe the difference between a managed fund and an index fund. Which fund would you choose for your investment program?  Please name and elaborate on the advantages and disadvantages of investing in mutual funds…

Home Valuation and Estate Taxes – 43 Pages


Discuss the factors that may lead to an appreciation in the value of a home over the next 15 years. Discuss the factors that may lead to a depreciation in the value of a home over the next 15 years. How will the value of your home affect the amount of tax to which your estate will be liable subject to your death? What are the four types of taxes that must be considered in planning your estate?…

What is a will? Why is it an important estate-planning tool?  Distinguish among the four types of wills.

What is included in an estate?  What are the various ways to handle the payment of the estate tax?  Distinguish among the various types of trusts used in estate planning.

Evaluating retirement housing options.  Which type of housing will best meet your retirement needs? Where will this type of housing be located at (i.e., Florida, Hawaii, your neighborhood).  Make a checklist of the advantages and disadvantages of your housing choice.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of real estate investments?  Please elaborate.

BUSN 380 All Discussions