Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Your Finances and You: What You NEED to Know for 2016

David Milberg - Financing your Money in 2016

As 2015 comes to an end, people are looking ahead to 2016 to see what the financial future holds for them. With the national economy gaining strength and Wall Street performing better than ever, it seems like the sky is the limit. However, while all sounds good, there are still many areas of finance that people are finding difficult to navigate. When it comes to personal finances as well as other aspects of money management, here are several things you'll need to be on the lookout for in the coming year.

Mobile-Based Payment Systems

With the introduction of such systems as Apple Pay, it's becoming easier than ever for people to spend money on purchases big and small. In fact, it's having an effect on the personal savings rate. Currently at less than six percent, it's expected to stay there or dip even lower as expenses continue to rise while incomes remain stagnant.

Luxury Home Buying

While the housing market continues to gain strength, the surprising news is that it's not being driven by first-time home buyers, but rather luxury home buyers. According to the National Association of Realtors, the number of first-time home buyers is currently at its lowest point in 30 years. Instead, luxury home buyers who have high incomes along with large sums of equity in their homes are keeping the market afloat.

From Swiping to Dipping

As identity theft has hit an all-time high in the past year, credit card technology has finally started to shift from swiping to dipping. Expected to be mainstream in 2016, EMV cards will begin to replace magnetic-swipe cards in an effort to give consumers more security during their transactions. Unlike magnetic-swipe cards, EMV cards use embedded chips to make payments. But to make the transaction even more secure, the chips are able to create a unique transaction code that is thus far unable to be duplicated. Already widespread in Europe, EMV cards have so far lived up to their billing of providing consumers with a much greater way to keep their personal information away from criminals.

As these trends prepare to continue well into 2016, it's safe to say that the financial landscape will begin to look far different than it does today. Whether it's a new type of credit card or home buyers with plenty of money to match their dreams, 2016 promises to be a fascinating financial year.

David Milberg is an investment banker from NYC.

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