Microcredit Investments Seattle WA

Socially responsible investors have an increasing variety of microlending investment opportunities. As one might expect, the returns aren’t always high, but microlending platforms can diversify a portfolio and put idle funds to good use.

Karen O'Brien
trueNorth Financial Services, LLC
(206) 652-4314
1411 Fourth Avenue, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA
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Helping Clients Identify & Achieve Goals, College/Education Planning, Tax Planning, Ongoing Investment Management, Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®, CPA

Michelle Fait
Satori Financial LLC
(206) 320-9263
1001 Fourth Avenue, Suite 3200
Seattle, WA
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Tax Planning, Helping Clients Identify & Achieve Goals, Women's Financial Planning Issues
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®, EA, MBA

Joseph Hebert
trueNorth Financial Services, LLC
(206) 652-4314
1411 Fourth Avenue, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA
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Ongoing Investment Management, Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules, Helping Clients Identify & Achieve Goals
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®

Elaine Scoggins
Merriman, Inc
(206) 285-8877
800 5th Avenue, Suite 2900
Seattle, WA
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Ongoing Investment Management, Helping Clients Identify & Achieve Goals, Women's Financial Planning Issues
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®, ChFc

Frederic Kutscher
Kutscher Rhodes & Benner, Inc.
(206) 382-4414
705 Second Avenue, Suite 800, Hoge Building
Seattle, WA
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Estate & Generational Planning Issues, Ongoing Investment Management, Tax Planning, Charitable Giving - Trusts & Foundations, Advising Entrepreneurs, College/Education Planning
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, BA, CFP®, JD, MS

Eric Turloff
Turloff Financial Consulting, Inc.
(206) 842-1422
701 5th Ave
Seattle, WA
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Ongoing Investment Management, Retirement Plan Investment Advice, Tax Planning, Advising Entrepreneurs, Planning Issues for Business Owners, Cash Flow/Budgets/Credit Issues
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, BBA, CFA, CPA

Ethan Broga
Empirical Wealth Management
(206) 923-3474
1420 Fifth Avenue, Suite 3150
Seattle, WA
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Ongoing Investment Management, Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules, Tax Planning, Retirement Plan Investment Advice, High Net Worth Client Needs, Hourly Financial Planning Services
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®, MS

Therese Govern
trueNorth Financial Services, LLC
(206) 652-4314
1411 Fourth Avenue, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA
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Ongoing Investment Management, Helping Clients Identify & Achieve Goals, Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules, Women's Financial Planning Issues
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®, CPA, MBA

Ben Jennings
SoundView Advisors
(360) 867-9890
1700 Seventh Avenue, Suite 2100
Seattle, WA
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Ongoing Investment Management, Advising Medical Professionals, Women's Financial Planning Issues, Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules, Insurance Related Issues, including Annuities, Estate & Generational Planning Issues
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NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®, CLU, CPA/PFS

David Lamp
BBJS Financial Advisors, LLC
(206) 682-4840
1501 Fourth Avenue, Suite 2880
Seattle, WA
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High Net Worth Client Needs, Alternative or Private Investments, Hourly Financial Planning Services, Planning Concerns for Corporate Executives, Ongoing Investment Management, Retirement Planning & Distribution Rules
Certifications
NAPFA Registered Financial Advisor, CFP®

Microcredit Investments: Doing OK While Doing Good

Socially-conscious people are finding more avenues for furthering good causes these days. Those interested in microlending have a few new options to think about—including some real investment opportunities. As one might expect with do-good causes, the returns aren’t great, but these vehicles can help diversify a portfolio or put idle money to good use.

Using microfinance as a means of lifting people out of poverty showed up on the global development scene in the 1970s, and since then microlending institutions have been funded primarily through charitable donations. Organizations such as  Trickle Up and Grameen Bank have made billions of dollars available to entrepreneurs all over the world.

In today’s world of social networking, the microlending scene has gone online. Person-to-person lending site Kiva , for example, raised $25 million in its first two years by allowing individuals to earmark their loans to specific borrowers. The small size of most of the loans, and lenders’ ability to fund in increments of $25, is attractive to many individuals who don’t want to tie large sums of their money up in accounts with no return. Kiva ranked number one on NuWire's Top 15 Charities for Investors for 2007 .

African currency in the hands of a craftsman in Ghana
13 million microcredit borrowers have $7 billion in outstanding loans in 2008 In the last few years, the view of microfinance as primarily a charitable cause also has begun to change. The Consultative Group to Assist the Poor wrote in a February that “the entry of private investors is the most notable change in the microfinance investment marketplace. New players arrive on the scene every month.�? The Global Development Research Center (GDRC) says there are now 13 million microcredit borrowers with US$7 billion in outstanding loans, and the volume is growing at a 30 percent annual rate.

GDRC also says the repayment rate for microloans is 97 percent. At that rate, it’s no wonder that private investors are interested. Here are a few thoughts about opportunities to earn modest returns through microlending.

Securities investments

The most common way for socially-conscious investors to get into microlending is to put money into a security or note that raises capital for a microfinance institution to fund loans. This is the approach taken by MicroPlace , which says it is “currently the only website that provides everyday investors with the ability to make investments in the microfinance industry.�? The investment is actually in a note issued by Calvert Foundation, which funnels the principal to lending organizations that make loans to borrowers. As with other debt instruments, interest is paid over the term of the security, but investors don’t get any principal payments until the security matures. Interest rates of up to 3 percent are available, and investments can be for as little as $50.

MicroPlace investors can choose whether their loans will benefit the &ldquo...

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