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Alice Haine has all the answers to your personal finance questions. Learn about saving, investing, managing debt and much more. Join us every week on Pocketful of Dirhams, a new podcast by The National coming straight from our news room in Abu Dhabi. Make sure to subscribe and follow us on your favourite podcast app so you can stay up to date on our latest episodes.
 
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show series
 
As the popular saying goes: money does not grow on trees. But wealth can grow through careful money management. While getting on top of your finances may seem like an insurmountable task for some, taking control and being consistent will help you turn a time-consuming chore into a habit you actually enjoy. From tracking your expenses to following a…
 
It’s hard to pick up a newspaper these days without some reference to cryptocurrencies on the pages. But for some, the world of crypto assets and Blockchain technology seems like another language. Since Bitcoin was first created after the 2008 financial crash, cryptocurrencies have multiplied, along with their value. While the rise and fall of cryp…
 
The UAE property market is buoyant once again after changes to mortgage rules and new visa programmes for expatriate retirees and foreign investors boosted sentiment in the sector. Dubai property transactions hit their highest level since 2010 in the first quarter of this year, according to ValuStrat. The positivity in the market is encouraging man…
 
It’s all very well to keep your personal finances to yourself when you are single. But what happens if you continue this habit when you are married? Financial infidelity can have a devastating effect on a marriage and create huge trust issues between couples if one of them is not honest about money. From hiding purchases to having a secret bank and…
 
When a group of debt experts sat around a conference table at The National’s office in Abu Dhabi five years ago, they never imagined the discussion would help to ease the debt problems of hundreds of UAE residents. At the time, banks were inundated with borrowers unable to repay their liabilities because they could no longer take on fresh credit fo…
 
Becoming a millionaire is a dream for many – to have the financial freedom to never worry again about paying bills or living from pay cheque to pay cheque. But reaching that $1 million mark is easier said than done. It takes patience, discipline and a "millionaire mindset" to reach your financial goals.It’s also about having a long-term investment …
 
While saving and budgeting are important habits to teach children when they are young, financial experts say generosity and gratitude are also essential components of financial literacy programmes. Understanding the importance of giving back can lead to positive affirmations for children, making them feel as though they can make a difference in the…
 
The Covid-19 pandemic has weighed heavily on millions of workers around the world, with many either losing their jobs, being furloughed or having their salaries cut. While a number of UAE employers reduced their staffing budgets last year to remain operational, the latest salary report by global recruitment consultancy Hays paints a more positive p…
 
Teaching your teenager how to manage their money may not be as straightforward as you think. Personal finance only forms a tiny part of the curriculum at school, with teenagers often relying on their parents to learn vital lessons about managing money. But with teens sometimes resistant to anything their parents have to say, they may choose to ask …
 
Vouchers, coupons and discount codes – there are many ways to cut the cost of dining out, spa treatments and entertainment in the UAE. While coupon websites such as Groupon or Cobone offer daily deals, apps such as The Entertainer present buy-one-get-one free offers as well as percentage discounts.Other options include VoucherSkout, Repeat and Helw…
 
NFTs – or non-fungible assets – have been making waves in the investing world after digital artist Beeple sold his Everydays: The First 5,000 Days artwork for an eye watering $69.3 million at a recent Christie’s auction. There’s no arguing that alternative investments, such as collectables like cars, antiques, autographs and long-lost letters penne…
 
While last year’s coronavirus lockdown in the UAE led to drop in demand for real estate across the country, there are signs the market is recovering particularly in popular areas and for higher-end homes. Some residents are hunting for properties with gardens or more space as the work-from-home trend continues, while demand for short-term rentals i…
 
While great strides towards gender equality have been made over the years, crucial issues remain. In the world of personal finance, concerns include "the gender wage gap" and that many women looking to invest are underserved by the male-dominated financial services sector.According to the World Economic Forum, it will take women 200 years to achiev…
 
New research by YouGov has found that more than half of UAE residents have cut non-essential spending over the past six months, while 77 per cent will continue doing so in the future.That’s no surprise considering the global economic impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, which caused widespread pay cuts and job losses as businesses closed and millions o…
 
Relocating to another country is always a challenge when you factor in finding a new place to live and work, securing school places and shifting your finances along with the contents of your home.Some might think moving to their own country would be easier, but former Dubai resident Simon Cahill, a chartered financial planner and partner at London-…
 
One of the biggest personal finance concerns many people have faced over the years is dishonest advisers selling complex, high-commission financial products to unsuspecting investors that can lock them in for years.Amber Waheed is one of them. The Dubai-based business strategist and author of the recently released The Great Fraud Fightback lost $80…
 
One of our biggest financial milestones in life is buying a home. From saving up for a deposit to applying for a mortgage and having it approved is a dream come true for millions around the world. Buying property is also one of the best investments we can make – even if it doesn't appreciate in value, it still means that we are paying ourselves rat…
 
There’s a lot of content that goes viral on popular short-form video app TikTok these days. Think pranks, dance challenges, lifestyle tips and even the trolling of former US president Donald Trump thanks to a merry band of K-Pop fans and Tiktok teens. But there’s one surprising sector that Gen Zs and millennials are also embracing: personal finance…
 
While the Covid-19 crisis has decimated the finances of some people, it has been kinder to others. Some have lost jobs or had their incomes slashed, while others have managed to retain the same wage level and actually build up a healthy savings pot because restrictions have prevented them from spending. So, how should the young handle their new Cov…
 
Investing your money is a tricky business, particularly when the financial markets are trying to factor in a global pandemic. Wild swings in equity prices can cause emotional reactions, with some investors buying or selling without thinking about the long-term implications. While an army of DIY investors in the UAE now adopt a long-term approach by…
 
The UK left the European Union on January 1, more than four years after the country voted to leave the economic bloc in a 2016 referendum. Britain’s exit from the EU comes at a very challenging time for the country’s economy. Not only are businesses adapting to a raft of new rules from the trade deal, they are also enduring a third national lockdow…
 
After soaring 300 per cent last year, Bitcoin’s value is still on the rise, as investors pile funds into the leading cryptocurrency. The prices of many other digital coins have also increased sharply, as cryptocurrencies experience a mini boom. While some analysts are making wild predictions about Bitcoin’s price rising as high as $400,000 from its…
 
The coronavirus pandemic came as a surprise to us all, making 2020 one of the most challenging years of our lives. From a financial point of view, it has hurt some but benefited others. For those who lost their jobs or had their incomes reduced, it has made the last 10 months a struggle. For others who managed to retain their salary, movement restr…
 
For many, 2020 will be a year they would rather forget. Whether the pandemic affected their health, their families or their finances, its effects will be evident for some time to come. Investors across the globe also suffered a rollercoaster ride in 2020, with markets experiencing some wild swings over the course of the year. And while some people …
 
Like many parts of the world, the UK property market has experienced a roller-coaster ride of ups and downs as it absorbs the effects of Covid-19. While there was a total halt in transactions at the height of the pandemic when the country first went into lockdown, the second half of the year saw mortgage applications and transactions surge on the b…
 
Over the past few weeks, the UAE has seen a number of legal and immigration changes that will have a big effect on life in the Emirates. Among them is a very significant expansion to the UAE’s golden visa scheme, which offers a 10-year residency visa to expatriate workers in certain professions. So how does the visa work? How do you find out if you…
 
The UAE government has embarked on one of the biggest overhauls of the legal system in years. Among the changes are amendments to family and personal law with new regulations covering divorce, couples living together and other areas affecting people’s daily lives. From a personal finance perspective, however, one of the most interesting changes cen…
 
With life expectancy rates rising rapidly across the globe thanks to advances in healthcare and better living standards, many of us will get the chance to celebrate our 100th birthday. But the financial implications of hitting such a milestone mean that the concept of traditional retirement is fast disappearing. After all, can we really afford to f…
 
As the world waits for the outcome of the US presidential election, investors have every right to feel nervous. Last week saw global markets spiral downwards on the back of uncertainty about the election result and heightened restrictions across Europe due to a rise in the number of coronavirus cases. Some analysts say that political risk is now a …
 
For Generation Z - those born between 1996 and 2015 - brushing up on personal finance know-how is something many carry out through financial apps or by watching videos on YouTube. With boosting financial literacy levels a key aim for governments across the globe, and the world still gripped by the devastating financial effects of Covid-19, there ha…
 
The coronavirus outbreak has infected more than 40 million people worldwide and damaged economies, industries and employment levels. But women are being disproportionately hurt by the economic fallout of the crisis. With sectors that typically employ women, such as retail and hospitality, badly affected by Covid-19, women’s jobs are 1.8 times more …
 
There are numerous asset classes you can invest your money into – from stocks and bonds to exchange traded funds, mutual funds, gold, art, cryptocurrencies and more.But one of the favourites, particularly in the UAE, is property – mainly because it is a tangible asset. Investing in real estate is sometimes considered a more solid and secure investm…
 
For people new to the world of investing, buying stocks can be a scary concept, particularly during periods of extreme volatility. But according to SimplyFI.org, a non-profit community of personal finance and investing enthusiasts in the UAE, investing does not need to be complex at all. It says the process can actually be quite simple and you can …
 
Sending money to family members in your home country is something many UAE residents do on a regular basis. But as the world struggles with the effects of Covid-19 and some people have lost jobs or experienced a salary cut, actually having the money to transfer is an issue in itself.With so many of us now focused on keeping costs down, what is the …
 
When it comes to investing, UAE residents generally have two options: use the services of a financial adviser or go it alone and invest on their own. However, a new wave of low-cost digital investment platforms that gauge an investor’s risk tolerance and assigns them a tailored investment portfolio of exchange traded funds have emerged in recent ye…
 
With the Covid-19 pandemic affecting salaries and jobs across the globe, it’s very important that residents in the UAE stay on top of their finances and in turn their credit score. The Central Bank of the UAE's Dh256bn Targeted Economic Support Scheme helps lenders handle problem debts during the pandemic, with many residents receiving payment holi…
 
With universities across the globe forced to shut their campuses amid the pandemic, many students are learning remotely. For those finishing their studies this year, it can also mean attending a virtual graduation ceremony. But what happens to graduates once the university learning experience is over? Normally, those ending their higher education w…
 
Andrew Hallam, the author of Millionaire Teacher and Millionaire Expat, is famous for building up a million-dollar portfolio of low-cost stock and bond index funds on a teacher’s salary. Since retiring from his profession in Singapore in 2014, the personal finance author now blogs about his experiences and delivers talks to investors across the glo…
 
The coronavirus pandemic has changed our lives in many ways. With so much turmoil in the global economy, it’s no surprise that our investment portfolios have taken a big hit. Over the past few months we’ve seen share prices crashing, livelihoods destroyed and governments rolling out generous stimulus packages to prop up economies. While stock marke…
 
The coronavirus pandemic has changed our lives dramatically. And with many in the UAE and around the world now dealing with a salary cut or job loss, there has never been a more important time to diversify how you earn your income.If you only rely on the salary you earn from your job to support yourself, it can leave you and your family vulnerable …
 
As Ramadan draws to a close, many residents in the UAE would traditionally be scouring travel websites for the best offers on Eid breaks. But with hotels in the UAE only just starting to open their doors to guests following the Covid-19 pandemic and global travel restrictions grounding flights across the globe, going away for a few days is not as s…
 
If you have lost your job or are considering a career move, you might feel that now isn’t a great time to secure a new position. Movement restrictions across the globe have caused many to lose their jobs after schools, malls and businesses shut up shop to help contain the spread of coronavirus. Here in the UAE, movement restrictions have seen malls…
 
As we approach the hotter summer months and the end of the academic school year, a number of UAE residents will be planning their relocation either to their home country or another destination.But while shipping is a standard process many of us deal with, things become a little more challenging when you are trying to move during a pandemic. So what…
 
As we approach the summer, many UAE residents are thinking about their travel plans. But while we would normally be discussing the exotic destinations we are heading to, or the journeys we are planning to our home countries, this year is very different. Rather than hunting for the best deals, many of us are more focused on either securing a refund …
 
It’s that time of year when many residents in the UAE consider buying a new car – mainly because the market is flooded with Ramadan offers.From price reductions to zero financing and offers of free maintenance, registrations or insurance, they are all kinds of ways dealerships lure in customers. But buying a new car might not be a top priority for …
 
With the coronavirus outbreak still dominating our lives, stock market volatility looks set to continue as the markets struggle to interpret the economic fallout from the crisis. While some investors may naturally want to flee the carnage and stash their money in the safest possible place, there are still options out there. Airlines, hotel chains, …
 
As the number of coronavirus cases and deaths escalate around the world, the virus is affecting our lives and our finances in one way or another. Containment measures in the UAE, such as stay-at-home directives, cancelled flights and the closing of schools, malls and beaches could lead to a drop in revenue for businesses and a cut in income or job …
 
Alice Haine, personal finance editor at The National talks to Mario Volpi, the sales and leasing manager at Engel & Volkers, about everything you need to know about rents, mortgages and buying property during the Coronavirus pandemic.โดย Pocketful of Dirhams
 
Coronavirus is taking its toll on every area of our lives and nobody knows when the mayhem will end. This is why it is so important to take good care of your finances as well as your health. Stock markets are crashing, employees are working from home, schools and entertainment venues have closed and incomes and jobs are in jeopardy. With so much un…
 
Protecting yourself, your family and your personal belongings with insurance should be part of a comprehensive financial plan. But many residents in the UAE don’t bother to take out protection with some paying the price for having no cover further down the line. While some insurance cover is mandatory in the Emirates, such as car and health insuran…
 
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