The female trader

If you’re involved in spread betting or CFD trading, it’s understandable that you’ll want to make a profit from your trading. Different traders have different strategies with varying levels of success, but gender is seen as being important. Research conducted by a Cambridge University professor showed that when it came to trading on the markets, women were seen as better at making important decisions than men, and that they were more cautious in their approach.

There has been a huge rise in the number of women traders, and the fact that many of them are making significant profits every year could be put down to being more pragmatic when it comes to their trading. As the infographic clearly displays, the average annual profit of the top female traders is over £250,000, with the top one making over five times that amount. This proves that women are just as capable of being successful as men in this field.

Take a look at the City Index infographic below to find out more information about female trader:

Job openings for truckers

Here’s another area where plenty of jobs are open:

Attention out-of-work Americans: Want to be a trucker?

A worsening shortage of truck drivers is pushing up freight rates and delaying some deliveries, defying the weak economy, high unemployment and falling gasoline prices.

“It’s getting harder to get drivers,” says Mike Card, president of Combined Transport of Central Point, Ore., and incoming chairman of the American Trucking Associations. “I could hire 50 guys right now.” He now employs 393 drivers.
Many Baby Boomers are retiring and fewer young people are interested in long-haul-trucking careers that often require drivers to be away from home for weeks at a time, says Ben Cubitt, senior vice president of Transplace, which manages freight delivery for businesses.

Despite the 8.2% national jobless rate, many unemployed construction and factory workers can’t afford the $4,000 to $6,000 cost of a six-week driver-training course, says Rosalyn Wilson, senior business analyst of consulting firm Delcan.

The training costs are certainly an issue, but this can be a an excellent option for plenty of people looking for work. Do your research and see if this might apply to you.

Working on projects during job interview process

With a very competitive job market, prospective employers are getting much more demanding in their interviews. Basically, they don’t want to just talk to you. They want to see what you can do. So job applicants end up doing work for free as they work through projects developed by the prospective employer to test actual skills.

In today’s competitive job market, employers are increasingly asking candidates to show — not just tell — what they can do. Top candidates are asked to solve problems on the spot, give feedback on products, and research new markets. “Companies ask for whatever they want, and people do it,” says Cynthia Shapiro, an L.A.-based career strategist. One of Shapiro’s clients created 10 greeting cards in 24 hours to win a graphic design job, while another client did market research and made a formal presentation to top executives — only to hear that the company was no longer filling the position.

These case study-style interviews, also known as situational, scenario, or behavioral interviews, have been common among i-banking and consulting firms but are now permeating all sectors. Career experts say the techniques are relevant to even the upper echelons of executives — those used to being wooed with box seats. SHL, the world’s largest employment assessment provider, saw a 65% jump last year in employers using such techniques to vet candidates.

This is new in many industries, even if it’s been commonplace in the tech world for years. Software jobs in particular involve hacking sessions as part of the interview process. That said, it’s a new trend that you have to be prepared for.

Jobs opening up in insurance industry

Around the world we’re all still grappling with the after-effects of the financial crisis from several years ago. Now we have troubles with Greece and other countries in Europe to contend with, though we might finally be seeing light at the end of the tunnel.

That said, we are seeing some healthy trends as various industries get back on their feet. In the United States for example, record low mortgage rates have spurred job openings as banks have had to keep up with demand for refinancings. This has helped to offset some of the cutbacks in the financial services industry. While workers in this area won’t be seeing the huge bonuses from the last decade, these are still very desirable jobs.

The insurance industry also appears to be improving if you look at the news on jobs in insurance. InsuranceJobs.com recently announced that demand is still strong for insurance jobs.

Currently InsuranceJobs.com is showing nearly 5,000 new positions for insurance employment from hundreds of companies. Areas of the strongest demand from companies appear to be for insurance claims jobs, claims adjusters, insurance sales, insurance agents, and insurance customer support representatives. These type insurance career opportunities are coming from prominent insurance companies such as; AAA, Allstate, Farmers, Florida Blue, MAPFREE, UNUM, and USAA just to name a few.

Workers with solid office, computer, clerical and phone skills can do very well in this area, and these jobs are opening all around the world as well. In the UK for example you can check out insurance jobs with Direct Line Group. Professionalism is very important in this field, so make sure your resume is updated and that you’re prepared to interview well. These jobs are often best for workers who enjoy an office environment, yet there are many positions like insurance adjusters that can spend time out in the field. Look for positions that match your strengths and interests. If you’re good in math, perhaps an actuary job is right for you.

The insurance business will also be growing worldwide as emerging nations like China and India start consuming these services with the growth of their middle class, and US and British companies will likely be very active in trying to penetrate those markets, so insurance might also be an interesting field for workers interested in international business.

The virtual classroom of the future is here now

The idea of college kids congregating in libraries on college campuses will likely never go away, but a revolution in higher learning is underway that can shake up the university system in the United States and around the world.

The trend of putting college courses online for free is exploding, and the idea of a college education may never be the same. That’s probably a good thing, as the cost of a college education has been spiraling out of control. We believe that the emergence of self-education through free online tools will be one of the great trends of the 21st century.

Steve Klinsey is the founder and CEO of New Mountain Capital and has been very active in education reform for years. He has published a very interesting commentary in Baron’s discussing this topic.

The American Dream is increasingly blocked by steadily rising college costs, and America’s student debt stands at more than $1 trillion. Fortunately, the combination of readily available technology and a simple regulatory change could create a low-cost or even a no-cost alternative path toward a college degree. The edX program recently announced by MIT and Harvard points the way toward a massively open online course movement.

EdX is designed to make MIT and Harvard college courses widely available online, building on the MITx program that already offers MIT courses free of charge online to any student anywhere. EdX will support students’ learning and grade their work, and a certificate from the program will be granted for successful course completion. EdX is also offering to give its online-course-delivery software to other educational institutions that want to broadly distribute their courses.

Last fall, Stanford offered an introductory Artificial Intelligence course for free, online. It reported that 160,000 students, from high schoolers to retirees, enrolled from 175 countries, and 22,000 students completed the rigorous course.

Princeton, the University of Michigan, the University of Pennsylvania, and others are pursuing similar paths. The Open University system in the United Kingdom and Western Governors University in the U.S. have been pioneering this philosophy as well.

Digital technology can revolutionize the cost structure of education, just as it has for other forms of information. However, regulation needs to change to enable the advance, particularly in the area of accreditation.

He goes on to discuss ways that some sort of certificate of completion can be given to people who complete these courses online, and how the government can incentivize universities to come up with a standardized system to handle these certificates so that prospective employers and other universities can count on them.

This is yet another example of the tremendous power the the internet and social media. The exponential effect this can have on global learning is simply staggering and also very exciting.

Hopefully, the days of ridiculously priced college educations will be coming to an end.

Start-ups offer free college education

The cost of college tuition is skyrocketing, so it’s not surprising that some entrepreneurs are trying to fill the void.

Technology start-ups are cracking into the higher education market and there pitch is an enticing one: A college education for anyone at almost no cost.

Sound to good to be true? The founders of tech start-ups behind this revolutionary idea say they have already had success with their models, but they say there needs to be more momentum if their idea is to succeed.
“The 99% should be protesting college campuses,” says Sebastian Thrun, a Stanford University artificial intelligence professor, who recently co-founded Udacity, a technology start-up dedicated to providing higher education at a very low cost.

Two companies doing this are Udemy and Udacity. The new trend is self-education with all of the tools out there, including free lectures on iTunes and Khan Academy.

Smart employers will start to figure this out as well, and I suspect in the future we’ll see job applicants will put a Self-Education section on their resumes. It shows initiative and prospective employers can always quiz applicants on what they learned for verification.

Rise of Remote Workers

Here’s a cool infographic on the remote worker revolution. We’re seeing it with so many companies as more people want to work from home, and more companies are more than happy to accommodate them.

How Businesses Are Getting Left Behind Because of Phone Numbers

It would seem some well established businesses may be getting left behind simply because of the type of phone number they use. This may be a forgivable fault for a start-up or business in its nascence as they have not yet learned everything they need to know about how to build up a customer base, but the larger, international firms should never be making these mistakes.

It is bad enough these companies choose to use premium numbers for their customers to pay their bills but for a customer service line or even to join up with a brand, big companies cannot be forgiven for making these lines premium rate.

Free phone numbers bring extra custom; build an effective customer base, build up company consumer trust and increases brand awareness. It seems beyond the case of foolishness for big companies not to be embracing free telephone numbers.

In the UK for example, 0844 numbers are just as easy to install and run as the premium numbers and are readily available from resellers. So why do big companies still cling to their old ways? They must assess the pros and cons of the situation form a very warped view point. Those in charge of public relations at big corporations must not be able to see past the initial revenue gained through the phone callers who pay premium rates. This is a classic case of not being able to see the wood for the trees.

In actual fact, these companies will lose customers in the long run and ultimately the revenue they are attempting to so firmly grasp. The loss of custom though, will not only stem from the substandard customer service they are offering from premium rate phone numbers. What these people are failing to understand, is that if there is a free way to get in touch with a company, the customer will find it. Modern technology and the rise of social media have removed the wall between companies and consumers. There are now many free platforms for your (unhappy) customers to voice their opinions about your company and the reputation of a brand can be tarnished very easily. It would be a much better idea for the big companies to have a quiet, free phone call with their customers and deal with an issue before it goes viral and is splashed over social media.

Salaries keep rising for tech jobs

The stories are getting interesting again about what technology companies are willing to do to find qualified tech workers. Engineers in particular are seeing salary offer rise considerably. In the late 1990s we saw the dot com boom drive the frothy growth in salaries. This time around, giants like Google and Facebook are the big drivers. There’s just so much competition for qualified workers, and this is particularly true in Silicon Valley.

The other driver is a new wave of innovation that’s being driven by cloud computing. You have all sorts of companies pushing the envelope on what is possible now that we have the tremendous resource of the cloud. You have companies like Amazon offering server space for incredible prices, and then you have Apple linking up all of their devices through the cloud. When you take a photo on your phone, it now shows up in iCloud and is then accessible from your Mac. But it’s not just the big companies getting in on the act. Startups are popping up every day to take advantage of these trends.

All of this results in an excellent job market if you’re an IT worker or an engineer. It’s another reason why you can never go wrong learning technical skills, and it’s a field that many should consider if they’re looking to be retrained after losing a job. If you have base math skills, this might be an area you should strongly consider.

In the 1990s, the dot com bubble burst and many tech workers found themselves looking for work. Of course the business cycle is still an issue, and the current frenzy will probably abate a bit, but now the foundation for technology workers is very strong, and the level of innovation seems to be accelerating. So long term job security in this area is probably a safe assumption. Salaries might level off, but the need for tech workers seems to be something we can all count on for the future.

Kathy Ireland discusses entrepreneurship

When you watch this interview with Kathy Ireland, you get a real sense of the determination and persistence that’s required for someone to be a successful entrepreneur. You have to expect failures but then be prepared to learn from them. It’s easier said than done of course, but you have to be prepared for this.

Watch the video, and you can see the character traits that make a successful entrepreneur.

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