Saving money is a struggle for most people. With a steady flow of monthly income, it is easy to spend with reckless abandon (especially in the first week of your salary payment). By the second week when you are no longer in that salary bubble, you chastise yourself for not saving. Then, you remember that the major difference between those who retire wealthy and those who retire poor is how well they were able to manage their finances during their earning years.
In a bid to help you better manage your money through savings and proper budgeting of all monthly expenses, we researched some of the apps that could help you do just that.
1: Money Dashboard
Money Dashboard helps you to keep tabs on your monthly budget. As its name implies, it is a dashboard for your money which categorises all of your expenses and lets you see them all at a glance. By so doing, you can see what you are spending on most, and where you need to cut back on expenses. To use the app, you will have to download it for free either from www.moneydashboard.com or from the iOS store.
To be financially free, you do not necessarily need to have all the money in the world. What you need, however, is the ability to properly manage the little (or big) money that you have. This is the vision behind Mvelopes, which enables users to set up their monthly financial plans based on their levels of income. This app is free, and you can get it on the iOS store, Google Play, or www.mvelopes.com.
3: Good Budget
Good Budget is an app which helps you to plan out your monthly expenses. With this app, you “will never be caught off-guard by a bill or sudden expense.” This is because as you receive your salary, you can set aside how much you need to run your expenses for the month. It also helps you spend money only on what is important to you instead of frivolities.
The app is particularly good for married couples who both work and contribute to the monthly upkeep of their homes. This is because you and your spouse can sync your accounts so that you can both follow the monthly budget you have set for your home. In other words, it helps both of you know who is spending money when, how and on what.
Get the app on www.goodbudget.com, iOS store and Google Play.
The Mint app will help you budget your monthly expenses based on your financial data, and also periodically avail you of the opportunity to see your financial score in order to keep abreast with your financial status at all times. The app will also use its investment tracking feature to compare your portfolio with market benchmarks and track your asset allocations across various platforms.
It is indeed a money manager which you can trust and use with ease. To read more about the app or get it for free, visit the Mint store at www.mint.com or get it on the iOS store.
Sometimes, it happens that you really need to purchase a product but your budget cannot accommodate the extra expense. The Unsplurge App provides a solution to that by making it possible for you to save and look forward to buying the item you want. As its name may suggest, the app helps you save so that your delayed gratification can be met later. You can get the app on the iOS store.
6: Level Money
You can all agree with the fact that while it is one thing to have a monthly financial budget, it is another thing to actually follow through and be faithful to it. One reason why most people fail to stick to their budgets is that they forget. This is probably your story too. But do worry, because Level Money is here to the rescue.
The Level Money app will remind you when you are spending more than you budgeted. Look at it like an alarm that reminds you that you are oversleeping. Not only does the app help you plan your budget, it also helps you to stick to it. It works in such a way that you link the app to your bank account and let it detect your financial capacity, analyse how much you can afford to spend in a month and then stick to it. Get the app for free on both the iOS store and Google Play Store.
Wally is a virtual budget journal with which you can manually log your expenses and store pictures of your receipts. The app can also store details about points of purchases just in case you later need such details for whatever reason. And just like Level Money, the app will remind you when you exceed your set budget.
It is free of charge and can be gotten from both the iOS store and Google Play Store.
Pennies could be the easiest-to-use budgeting/saving app out there. The app tracks your payday and updates your budget as soon as your salary is paid. It can also avail you the opportunity to transfer money when you need it between budgets.
Pennies is blunt, in that it can tell you exactly how your spending habits today can affect your financial standing tomorrow. So it is probably what you need to keep you in check just in case you are one of those who struggle to stick to your financial goals.
You can get the app on iOS store and Google Play Store.
While Pennies is blunt, Qapital can be said to be a strict budgeting app which “charges” your guilty pleasures and returns the money you do not need in your budget back to your savings. The app can also help you identify the triggers as per expenses, and help you avoid them.
You can get the app today on the iOS and Google Play Stores.
Just in case you are one of those who have too much money and don’t know what else to do with it other than subscribe to different services you barely use, Truebill will help you unsubscribe from such services. The app is like the budget police, tracking and cancelling all paid subscriptions that are wasting away. If you need it, get it now on the iOS and Google Play Stores.
Like most of the apps above, the Reach app helps give you a breakdown of where your money is going by-
- Automatically tracking your income and expenses
- Managing your cash transactions by recategorising your ATM withdrawals
- Sending you daily reminders about your budget so that you can keep following it through, and
- Sorting out how much you can spend without jeopardising your financial future.
You can download the app for free from Google Play Store.
In conclusion, managing money is on its own, a difficult task. When you combine that with the many “commercial temptations” that come in the form of digital ads sliding through your screen daily, it becomes really difficult not to overspend. This is why you need to get one of the above-mentioned apps and let it be your financial guide.
Payback and Return on Investments
To calculate payback, the cash flow or return from the investment needs to be known.
In previous articles, we have explored various methods of fundamental analysis, including cash flow and earning. Two key questions every investor asks are — How much will I make from this investment? How soon can I get returns? These questions are broadly Return on Investment (ROI) questions and there are lots of ways to calculate it, including Breakeven Analysis and Internal Rate of Return. Let us look at their ROI tools in detail starting with Payback
Payback is how long it takes for an investment or business to recoup its initial investment. With Payback, the shorter the number, the better. Look at it this way, if you got an offer to build a railway from Lagos to Ibadan and you will get payback in 5 or 8 years, which would you prefer? 5 of course.
Payback analysis is useful where the investor wants to know if the project is work the time and investment capital it is also easy to calculate. A shorter payback also means the project has a shorter time to be exposed to volatility and risk however this does not mean it eliminates risk, it just determines time frame during which the investment is subject to higher volatility without a full return of invested principal. Payback is like Breakeven calculation, but payback is focused on time while breakeven is focuses on time as a unit.
To calculate payback, the cash flow or return from the investment needs to be known. For instance, A company wants to set up an online platform to receive online orders. It estimates the project will cost N5m in total and will increase sales by N1.5m every year. The company projects that the equipment will be depreciated at 20% meaning it will last 5 years. What is the payback for this project?
To calculate payback, we divide the total cash sum by the cash returns for the project. In this case, 5,000,000/1,500,000 that equals to 3.33. Note the company estimated the project equipment will last 5 years
Payback does not talk about profitability, rate of return or if the company investing will remain as a going concern. The calculations are simply focused on when the initial investment is repaid. From the example above, the N1.5 the earned from new project 1.5m is not profit, its cash received because of the new online ordering system. Payback does not also consider Time Value of money, thus again from our example, the Present Value of N1.5M received is not considered. This Payback is often used as a gateway analysis tool to determine if a project should be considered.
To enhance Payback calculations, many analysts will integrate time value calculation with discount rates to match the future cash flows to today’s cash outlay. This is known as Net Present Value (NPV) which is the present value of the cash flows at a discount rate compared to your initial investment. Thus, NPV compares future cash to today’s cash outlay to determine If project is viable. Eg you discount all future dividends from stock using a discount rate back to today and compare it with a market price to determine if you should buy the stock. If NPV is positive, then the project or investment is good, a negative NPV means the future cash flows are worthless, thus not a good investment. The main problem with NPV in my estimation is the assumption of the discount rate to use. A discount rate that too high or low will skew the results of the NPV and render the output false.
The last ROI calculation I want to review is the Internal Rate of Return (IRR). Technically the IRR is the rate of return that makes all cashflows rates of return equal to zero, in other words, it is the rate of growth investment is expected to generate annually. The more positive the better. IRR integrates the elements of payback and NPV and is also use in comparing different options and picking the option with the highest value.
Today, all these formulas are available on Excel sheets and financial calculators on our mobile devices you do not have to be a math’s geek to implement ROI, but I remain a useful tool in comparing projects.
GEEP provides COVID-19 palliative microloans to 87,614 traders
The loans were in line with the government’s policies to reduce poverty and boost productivity.
The Federal Government of Nigeria, through the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), has provided a COVID-19 palliative relief loans to about 87,614 traders across twenty states. This was disclosed earlier today through a brief press statement that was made available via the government’s official Twitter handle.
According to the disclosure, the microloans have helped to reduce extreme poverty and encouraged productivity following the easing of the lockdown. Part of the statement said:
“In line with the vision of the Nigeria Government to curb poverty and boost productivity in different parts of Nigeria, GEEP has provided palliative microloans to 87,614 petty traders hit by COVID19 pandemic in 20 states of the country in the first phase of disbursement.
“These palliative microloans have helped petty traders revive their businesses, as the government eases lockdown measures nationwide. The second phase of the disbursement will target 412,386 petty traders across the country.”
In line with the vision of @NigeriaGov to curb poverty and boost productivity in different parts of Nigeria, @geep_ng has provided palliative microloans to 87,614 petty traders hit by #COVID19 pandemic in 20 states of the country in the first phase of disbursement.#GovtAtWorkNG
— Government of Nigeria (@NigeriaGov) August 10, 2020
The Federal Government also announced that the second phase of the loans would be disbursed to a 412,368 trader across the country in a bid to restart economic productivity as the government eases the economic lockdowns that have heavily affected the informal and formal sectors.
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The palliative schemes under the GEEP scheme include FarmerMoni, TraderMoni, and MarketMoni.
FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans
The Bank of Industry will also join to coordinate the implementation of the scheme.
The Federal Government has released new details on the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) support scheme being rolled out under the National Economic Sustainability Programme.
According to estimates provided, the sum of N50 billion will be used to provide payroll support, N200 billion for loans to artisans, and N10 billion support to private transport companies and workers
The government disclosed in a tweet on the official handle of the government, the support scheme will include a Guaranteed Off-take Scheme for priority products, and an MSMEs Survival Fund.
The Federal Govt is rolling out, under the NESP, support schemes for MSMEs nationwide, including a Guaranteed Offtake Scheme (guaranteeing off-take of priority products); and an MSMEs Survival Fund that will make payroll support available to save jobs & sustain local production. pic.twitter.com/yLkHQn6zy3
— Government of Nigeria (@NigeriaGov) August 10, 2020
Modalities for the take-off scheme
The first track is a Guaranteed Off-take Scheme which will ensure continued local production and safeguard 100,000 existing small businesses to save 300,000 jobs.
Priority products include processed foods, personal protective equipment, hand sanitizers, face-masks, face-shield, shoe-covers and pharmaceuticals.
The implementation committee chaired by Ambassador Mariam Katagum, Minister of the Federal Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment, will collaborate with private sector MSME associations to verify and screen applications from bidding MSMEs, define quantity and price of products required, and also get participants to join in the procurements.
SME survival fund
With a budget of N15 billion, the SME survival fund is expected to sustain 500,000 jobs in 50,000 SMEs.
Major sectors to benefit from the SME survival fund include hotels, restaurants, creative industries, road transport, tourism, private schools and export-related businesses.
The committee will identify eligible SMEs and screening and verification for this fund will be based on company registration, and tax registration. The implementation committee will approve disbursements through microfinance banks and fin-tech credit providers.
MSMEs that are unregistered will receive support to complete registration with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), and all participants will be expected to make payments based on signed agreements.
The Bank of Industry will also join to coordinate the implementation of the scheme.
The scheme will last 3 months with Ambassador Mariam Katagum as Chairman, while Ibukun Awosika, Founder of The Chair Centre Limited (TCCL), and First Bank Nigeria will serve as the Vice Chairman.
More details are to be released subsequently from the Implementation Committee.
In July 2020, the Federal Government announced plans to roll out a N2.3 trillion stimulus package and survival fund for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to stay afloat amid the economic challenges imposed by the pandemic.
The Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who also heads the Economic Sustainability Committee, announced it at the 2020 edition of the Micro MSMEs Awards held virtually in July.
To benefit from the scheme, MSMEs would have to go through a rigorous and painstaking verification process which will be based on certain criteria.
MSMEs that have between 10 to 50 staffs are qualified for this fund. The businesses must make their payroll available to the government for verification while applying for the fund. Once qualified, the MSMEs will be eligible to have their staff salary paid directly from the fund for 3 months.