What is a trend in the use of social networking in the individual investing industry?

New start-up brokerage firms are offering within their online trading and investing interfaces the ability for individual investors to share information about their own portfolios. This will help to share ideas and information on popular social networking sites.

What is the future trend for socially responsible investing?

As new industries such as clean technology continue to develop and require capital from markets, the entire category of socially responsible investing will continue to grow. According to the Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment, capital under management in socially responsible investments grew 22% from 2010 to 2012, and will continue to do so. The number of firms and community-investing organizations involved in socially responsible investing doubled during the same period.

How will the use of benchmarks change how individual investors perceive their financial goals and objectives in the future?

Many individual investors use index-based benchmarks to measure the success of their investment choices and to decide fundamental investment objectives. The future trend, according to experts at Financial Advisor Magazine, will be the use of personal benchmarking. Traditional benchmarking uses returns of certain benchmarks to decide an investor's portfolio allocation, diversification, and risk objectives. Personal benchmarking uses the individual investor's personal goals, objectives, and desired returns to achieve these results. Because of the fallout of litigation of advisory and investment firms in 2008 and 2009—in part because of poor returns of recommended portfolios— more firms will continue to support personal benchmarking in the years to come.

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