Welcome to NerdWallet’s Smart Money podcast, where we answer your real-world money questions.

This week’s episode starts with a discussion of the few remaining ways people can reduce their tax bills, including contributing more to retirement and health care funds.

Then we pivot to this week’s question from Marco in New York, who says, “I’ve learned a bit about stocks, index funds, mutual funds and so much more, but it’s very overwhelming and I’ve just been circling for weeks trying to decide where to open an account. I was hoping you could dive more into how to select the best platform to invest your money. What makes some better than others? I also currently have a 401(k) through my company. Is it smart to do my personal investing on the same platform to be consistent?”

Have a money question? Text or call us at 901-730-6373. Or you can email us at [email protected] To hear previous episodes, return to the podcast homepage.

Check out this episode on any of these platforms:

Our take

Fortunately, you don’t need to be an expert to open a brokerage account and start investing. It’s a learn-as-you-go project. The important thing is to start as early as you can. The longer you’re in the market, the more wealth you can build.

If you’re overwhelmed, consider starting with an option that does most of the work for you, such as a robo-advisor. These computerized platforms ask you a few questions and then set you up with a portfolio of investments that’s constantly monitored and adjusted.

If you want to be more hands-on, the best investing platform will depend on a number of factors. Some firms specialize in helping new investors learn, with lots of online educational materials and live seminars. If you have a limited budget, you’ll

By Martinne Geller and Toby Sterling

LONDON/AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Shareholders in Unilever Plc have approved the company’s plan to end its 90-year-old dual-headed structure in favour of a single London-based entity, the Anglo-Dutch consumer goods company said on Monday.

The proposal passed with the support of more than 99% of shares voted.

The results were released during shareholder meetings streamed online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Investors in Dutch-listed Unilever NV

approved the move with 99.4% support last month.

Unilever wants to unify on Nov. 29, ending a hybrid structure that dates back to the merger of British soap maker Lever Brothers and Margarine Unie in the Netherlands.

The maker of Dove soap, Hellmann’s mayonnaise and Ben & Jerry’s ice cream says the dual structure hampers its ability to conduct acquisitions and asset sales quickly, such as the planned sale of its tea business.

Such flexibility is key to Unilever’s ambition to shift its portfolio into higher-growth areas like premium beauty. Unilever has said this will become even more important as a result of the pandemic.

The final steps towards completing the unification include UK High Court hearings on Oct. 23 and Nov. 2, with the Dutch-listed shares ceasing trading after Nov. 27.

The only potential worry for Unilever is an “exit tax” proposed by a Dutch opposition party that could cost the company up to 11 billion euros ($13 billion).

A top Dutch legal body said on Friday the current plan appeared at odds with fundamental principles of law. The opposition party has re-submitted its proposal for consideration with amendments, though no debate has been scheduled on it in parliament.

Unilever has said it does not think the law is viable, but if passed before the unification is finalised, it would be a reason to stop it.

Unilever began

SHANGHAI (Reuters) – China’s move to cool a rising yuan stands little chance of stopping further gains, international banks say, as the strength of the world’s number two economy and a near-record yield advantage drive big and steady inflows.

Over the weekend, the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) scrapped a requirement for banks to hold a reserve of yuan forward contracts, removing a guard against depreciation and sending the currency down 1% for its steepest drop since March.

Yet an identical move three years ago ultimately proved ineffective, and investors say this time the conditions are even more likely to buoy the yuan, perhaps as far as 6.5 per dollar.

“In all previous instances, the impact of the regulatory change was temporary,” said Eugenia Victorino, head of Asia strategy at Swedish bank SEB in Singapore.

“We continue to expect the yuan to remain on an appreciation trend, with USD/CNY approaching 6.60 by end-2021,” she said.

Goldman Sachs forecasts yuan, last quoted at 6.7436

, will hit 6.5 per dollar in 12 months.
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Much as in 2017, the PBOC’s move follows a long spell of appreciation. The yuan has strengthened more than 6% since late May and just closed its best quarter in a dozen years as China leads the world out of the coronavirus pandemic and soaks up capital flows.

Foreign holdings of Chinese government debt rose at the fastest pace in more than two years last month, with the spread between Chinese

and U.S. 10-year

government bond yields holding near record highs scaled in July. In another nudge for the yuan to weaken, Beijing granted $3.4 billion in outbound investment quotas last month, the first fresh permission for such flows since April 2019.
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Yet analysts say China’s economy, projected to keep growing as the rest of

  • Shares of Dillard’s jumped more than 40% on Monday after one of Warren Buffett’s investing lieutenants disclosed a personal stake in the embattled retailer.
  • Ted Weschler, who is an investment manager at Berkshire Hathaway, bought roughly 1.08 million shares of Dillard’s, or about 5.89% of shares outstanding.



Dillard's department store.


© Provided by CNBC
Dillard’s department store.

Shares of Dillard’s jumped 45% on Monday after one of Warren Buffett’s investing lieutenants disclosed a personal stake in the embattled retailer.

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According to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Ted Weschler, who is an investment manager at Berkshire Hathaway, bought roughly 1.08 million shares of Dillard’s, or about 5.89% of shares outstanding.

The Friday filing shows that Weschler topped the 5% threshold on Sept. 29. The filing noted that the shares will be held in a trust on behalf of Weschler’s family members.

Shares of Dillard’s are down more than 40% this year amid lackluster sales. In the latest quarter, however, the retailer reported a much smaller-than-expected quarterly loss thanks to inventory and cost control measures. Revenue, however, came up short.

Weschler, along with Buffett’s other protégé Todd Combs, have been responsible in recent years for steering Berkshire into some winning bets in the technology sector.

Weschler joined Berkshire Hathaway in early 2012 after spending a total of $5.3 million for two meals with Buffett through Buffett’s annual “Power Lunch” charity auction.

Subscribe to CNBC PRO for exclusive insights and analysis, and live business day programming from around the world.

Continue Reading

Source Article

  • Shares of Dillard’s jumped 15% during premarket trading on Monday after one of Warren Buffett’s investing lieutenants disclosed a personal stake in the embattled retailer.
  • Ted Weschler, who is an investment manager at Berkshire Hathaway, bought roughly 1.08 million shares of Dillard’s, or about 5.89% of shares outstanding.



Dillard's department store.


© Provided by CNBC
Dillard’s department store.

Shares of Dillard’s jumped 15% during premarket trading on Monday after one of Warren Buffett’s investing lieutenants disclosed a personal stake in the embattled retailer.

Loading...

Load Error

According to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Ted Weschler, who is an investment manager at Berkshire Hathaway, bought roughly 1.08 million shares of Dillard’s, or about 5.89% of shares outstanding.

The Friday filing shows that Weschler topped the 5% threshold on Sept. 29. The filing noted that the shares will be held in a trust on behalf of Weschler’s family members.

Shares of Dillard’s are down more than 40% this year amid lackluster sales. In the latest quarter, however, the retailer reported a much smaller-than-expected quarterly loss thanks to inventory and cost control measures. Revenue, however, came up short.

Weschler, along with Buffett’s other protégé Todd Combs, have been responsible in recent years for steering Berkshire into some winning bets in the technology sector. Weschler joined Berkshire Hathaway in early 2012 after spending a total of $5.3 million for two meals with Buffett through Buffett’s annual “Power Lunch” charity auction.

Subscribe to CNBC PRO for exclusive insights and analysis, and live business day programming from around the world.

Continue Reading

Source Article