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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Driver history is just one factor; there are many others. Your auto insurance payment is not just based on your driving history. Assorted variables come into play that have nothing to do with your accident record or your experience...

 

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Classroom educators are coping with hybrid plans and pension fund shortfalls. Arizona. Kentucky. Massachusetts. Michigan. Pennsylvania. Rhode Island. Tennessee. In these states and others, teachers are concerned about their financial...

 

Monday, July 9, 2018

A move that high earners can make in pursuit of tax-free retirement income. Does your high income stop you from contributing to a Roth IRA? It does not necessarily prohibit you from having one. You may be able to create a backdoor Roth...

 

Friday, July 6, 2018

A few realities that must be acknowledged. Shopping for life insurance means paying attention to detail. In scrutinizing these details, however, some fundamental, big-picture truths may be ignored. If you want to renew or upgrade...

 

Thursday, July 5, 2018

In the olden days, the word ‘subscription’ typically was applied to just magazines and newspapers. Today, that’s not the case. Americans are buying everything from meal kits to baby products to vitamins by subscription. A McKinsey &...

 

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Thursday, July 5, 2018

It takes nearly 18 hours to drive from Chicago to Orlando, Florida. Gas for the trip is $89-$173. Set aside 1 day and 5 hours to travel the 2,025 miles from Ann Arbor, Michigan to Tempe, Arizona. Gas is $156-$304.1 Dual or seasonal...

 

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

You’re looking forward to retiring and living a long, comfortable life of ease, freedom, and relaxation.You’ve read the advice on saving and investing for retirement. You’ve spent years implementing responsible...

 

Monday, July 2, 2018

On July 4, 1776, the American colonies banded together and declared independence from Great Britain. The countries had been at war for more than a year due to a number of issues, particularly in regards to harsh taxation and a lack of...

 

Thursday, June 28, 2018

To the relief of many South Africans, Day Zero has been pushed back to 2019. Day Zero is the date on which Cape Town will run out of water, and its four million residents will begin to collect daily water rations of about seven gallons...

 

Monday, June 25, 2018

We’re becoming savvier to identity theft and taking care of our personal information, both online and in the physical world. Perhaps it is this sophistication that has criminals turning to stealing the identity of children. Over...

 

Friday, June 22, 2018

You’ve graduated college, or maybe you’ve completed your postgraduate studies – time to celebrate. But, after you clear up the party and hang up your cap and gown, a looming task awaits: paying off your college debt....

 

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Five noteworthy figures from the previous week 1.75%-2.0% The new target range for the federal funds rate. Wednesday, the Federal Reserve raised the nation’s benchmark interest rate by another quarter point, as widely anticipated...

 

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Some good reasons to retain it. Do you need a life insurance policy in retirement? One school of thought says no. The kids are grown, and the need to financially insulate the household against the loss of a breadwinner has passed. If...

 

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Tracking legislation that may impact your business, your estate, your retirement, or your wallet. Recent Developments Tariffs on imported metals from European Union, Mexico, and Canada now in effect. On June 1, the U.S. applied 25%...

 

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

While it is hard for any pre-retiree to determine an exact answer to that question, it seems some are just stumped. A Bankrate survey just asked working-age Americans how much they should save to have a comfortable retirement, and the...

 

Friday, June 15, 2018

There are incidents that standard policies may not cover. No insurance policy will protect you from everything. Even the most comprehensive umbrella liability policy has its shortcomings. A good auto, homeowner, or renter policy will...

 

Thursday, June 14, 2018

There are many perceived requirements of being a dad. “One of the jobs of a good dad is to help kids become a little tougher, a little more resilient, a little more separate…dads push kids to leave the nest; they brush off the dirt...

 

Thursday, June 14, 2018

You’ve invested your life into caring for their wellbeing. You cherish them and want them to mature into smart, healthy, successful adults. Naturally, as they become adults and grow older, your authority over them recedes. They...

 

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Dispelling some misperceptions about the program. Some myths & misperceptions keep circulating about Social Security. These are worth dispelling, as more and more baby boomers are becoming eligible for their retirement benefits. Myth...

 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Resist the temptation. Your future self will thank you. Retirement accounts are not bank accounts. Nor should they be treated as such. When retirement funds are drawn down, they impede the progress of retirement planning, even if the...

 

Monday, June 11, 2018

If that trade-off sounds worthwhile, rest assured you are not the only one who feels that way. Sixty-six percent of the working Americans surveyed late last year by consulting firm Willis Towers Watson said that they would defer a...

 

Friday, June 8, 2018

They are all too common. Many households think they are planning carefully for retirement. In many cases, they are not. Weak spots in their retirement planning and saving may go unnoticed. Couples should recognize that they may face...

 

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Setting a strategy down may help you define just what you need to do. Many people save and invest vaguely for the future. They know they need to accumulate money for retirement, but when it comes to how much they will need or how they...

 

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

The words ‘bear market’ have been bandied about a lot lately. When you read or hear them, remember to respond the same way you would if you saw an actual bear in the woods – by staying calm and keeping your wits about you. A changing...

 

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

It only makes sense – yet many retirees live without one. You won’t be able to withdraw an unlimited amount of money in retirement. So a retirement budget is a necessity. Some retirees forego one, only to regret it later....

 

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

Some couples elect to consolidate their personal finances, while others largely keep their financial lives separate. What choice might suit your household? The first question is: how do you and your partner view money matters? If you...

 

Monday, June 4, 2018

Turn your intent into a commitment. Goals give you focus. To find and establish your investing and saving goals, first ask yourself what you want to accomplish. Do you want to build an emergency fund? Build college savings for your...

 

Friday, June 1, 2018

Sometimes more money can mean more problems. “Lifestyle creep” is an unusual phrase describing an all-too-common problem: the more money people earn, the more money they tend to spend. Frequently, the newly affluent are the...

 

Thursday, May 31, 2018

What steps can a family take? Besides impacting lives and relationships, dementia can also impact family finances. It may call for another family member to assume money management responsibilities for a parent, grandparent, or sibling....

 

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

What should you know? What should your executor know? When people think about estate planning, they may think in terms of personal property, real estate, and investments. Digital assets might seem like a lesser concern, perhaps no...

 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Some retirement savers choose this option in their 401(k) plan. Ever hear of an SDBA? That acronym stands for self-directed brokerage account. If you are enrolled in a 401(k), 403(b), or 457 plan, you might want to see if your plan...

 

Thursday, May 24, 2018

If you’ve ever composed a grocery list in your head while driving carpool and listening to your children discuss who got in trouble at school and why, then you know what it’s like to have your attention divided. If you’ve ever worked...

 

Monday, May 21, 2018

Suggestions to accelerate & maintain the pace of the effort. Numerous articles have mentioned the obstacles women can face as they save for retirement. Turning from the negative, here are some positive factors that may help women save...

 

Friday, May 18, 2018

Steps toward saving more & revitalizing your retirement strategy. When it comes to retirement saving, many women lag behind many men. Historically, that has been the case. The 2015 edition of Financial Finesse’s annual survey,...

 

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Want a better financial future for yourself? Act now. As a young woman, you have an opportunity to make some major financial strides. You truly have time on your side when it comes to investing, saving, and harnessing the power of...

 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Examining how these insurance products are structured and their potential. A fixed index annuity offers you an alternative to a Wall Street investment. It is an insurance product structured with two goals in mind: principal protection...

 

Friday, May 11, 2018

A recent poll of pre-retirees suggests that truth risks being ignored. Steady income or a lump sum? Last year, financial services firm TIAA asked working Americans: if you could choose between a lump sum of $500,000 or a monthly income...

 

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Mother’s Day is almost here! We all have moms and, whether they gave birth to us or not, they have helped us become the people we are today. Here are 10 reasons moms are so important, adapted from Psychology Today:11. She gave birth to...

 

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Working longer might work out well for you. Are you in your fifties and unsure if you have enough retirement savings? Then you have two basic financial choices. You could start saving and investing more of your pay than you currently...

 

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

If you are starting at or near 50, consider these ideas. Do you fear you are saving for retirement too late? Plan to address that anxiety with some positive financial moves. If you have little saved for retirement at age 50 (or...

 

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

How they work, how they may help you reduce taxes. Are you concerned about the inheritance taxes your heirs may have to pay? Then you may want to consider creating a charitable lead trust. A charitable lead trust is the inverse of a...

 

Monday, May 7, 2018

Part of a series on how to care for your aging parents. Every tenth American adult has diabetes. That may sound like an outrageous statement, but it was a claim recently made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which...

 

Friday, May 4, 2018

Families should know about these new tax-advantaged savings vehicles. Families with special needs children have a new tax-advantaged savings option. The ABLE account, also called a 529A savings account, is patterned after the popular...

 

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Federal tax reforms lead to new possibilities for these education savings accounts. Do you have a 529 college savings plan? Have you thought about opening a 529 plan account? If the answer to either question is “yes,” you...

 

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Even with interest rates rising, you may want to explore the possibilities. In the first quarter of 2018, the refinance share of home loan applications in the U.S. fell to 40%, the lowest in ten years. Higher mortgage rates had reduced...

 

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

You must avoid it. Think about tomorrow, not just today. No woman wants to end up a “bag lady” – impoverished, out of options, left to fend for herself on the streets. Only a tiny percentage of women from affluent...

 

Monday, April 30, 2018

A primer for parents and grandparents. A university education can often require financing and assuming debt. If your student fills out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and does not qualify for a Pell Grant or other...

 

Friday, April 27, 2018

Should you have to leave your federal job early, would you be eligible? You may anticipate working for the federal government until you retire. One question is worth considering, however: what if you have to leave your federal job...

 

Saturday, April 7, 2018

If you buy a home and you have no life insurance, there is a financial risk. It may not be immediately evident, but it must be acknowledged – and it should be addressed. What if you die, and your spouse or partner is left to pay...

 

Friday, April 6, 2018

Why a middle-class woman may end up less ready to retire than a middle-class man. What is the retirement outlook for the average fifty-something working woman? As a generalization, less sunny than that of a man in her age group. Most...

 

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Technology is a life changer. GPS has improved interpersonal relations by eliminating arguments about asking for directions. Apps for car services, food delivery, video streaming, news media, and social media have changed the way we...

 

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Tax reform has lowered the threshold. If you itemize, you should note the reduced medical deduction threshold for 2018. This year, you can deduct qualified medical expenses exceeding 7.5% of your adjusted gross income. Next year, the...

 

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

How much attention do you pay to this factor? Will you pay higher taxes in retirement? Do you have a lot of money in a 401(k) or a traditional IRA? If so, you may receive significant retirement income. Those income distributions,...

 

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

“There’s no place like home.”1Conjuring an image of ‘home’ was a lot easier for Dorothy than it is for people who are on the cusp of retirement. After all, isn’t retirement supposed to be a new start? Aren’t retirees supposed to wave...

 

Monday, March 19, 2018

Things to think about when planning for a single retirement. Most retirement planning literature portrays a retirement transition in the context of a couple or a family – but what about those who retire alone? What particular...

 

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Once away from work, your cost of living may rise before it falls. New retirees sometimes worry that they are spending too much, too soon. Should they scale back? Are they at risk of outliving their money? This concern is legitimate....

 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

It’s almost time to don green and gold. That’s right, March 17 is upon us. There’s more to the holiday, however, than eating corned beef and cabbage and celebrating the Irish. For instance, St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland,...

 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Who should inherit your IRA or 401(k)? See that they do Here’s a simple financial question: who is the beneficiary of your IRA? How about your 401(k) or annuity? You may be saying, “I’m not sure.” It is smart to...

 

Friday, March 9, 2018

Article Source: The Arizona Republic - www.azcentral.comPhotos: Tim Tingle/ The Republic All Bob McGuire wanted was to cash out his wife's modest retirement account and use the money to pay the mounting bills that have accompanied her...

 

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

A new batch of job hunters has arrived, fresh-faced and clutching diplomas – in 2016, the first graduating class of Generation Z, post-millennials born sometime circa 1995-2005, have entered the workforce. In some ways, they will...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

Going green at the office is simple and just as important as it is at home. One easy way of becoming more environmentally sensitive at the office is by installing water-efficient appliances. The Environmental Protection Agency states...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

How do you battle depression when you’re too depressed to put forth the effort? Here are 9 tips to lift your spirits and to bring some good, old-fashioned cheer into your life. Enlist Fido and Fluffy. Hanging out with your pets...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

You stand. You wait. You look at your watch. You feel like throwing your club at the putter who seems to be spending hours examining the geothermic, topographic, and kinesiologic ramifications of the green before making one measly putt...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

Most modern thieves may not be wearing masks or lurking in dark alleys. They can be found snooping around the Internet in search of personal information or identities to steal—the most productive way to leading lives of crime....

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

Serves 4 Ingredients: 2 tablespoons honey 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar 4 6-ounce skinless cod fillets Kosher salt and pepper 1 tablespoon canola oil 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped 4 scallions,...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

Volatility continued last week as markets posted their 1st weekly loss in 3 weeks. Despite some recovery on Friday, the S&P 500 dropped 2.04%, the NASDAQ slipped 1.12%, and the Dow lost 3.05% for the week. Internationally, the MSCI...

 

Monday, March 5, 2018

It’s a scenario that bears considering: You have a healthy and happy home life, and you want to have a baby, but your financial situation doesn’t leave much room to help you meet the needs of a newborn, much less as the...

 

Friday, March 2, 2018

Why do some households tread water financially while others make progress? Does it come down to habits? Sometimes the difference starts there. A household that prioritizes paying itself first may end up in much better financial shape...

 

Thursday, March 1, 2018

All retirees want their money to last a lifetime. There is no guarantee it will, but, in pursuit of that goal, households may want to adopt a couple of spending and investing precepts. One precept: observing the 4% rule. This classic...

 

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

The ups and downs of bitcoin have amazed investors. Back on April 1, 2017, one bitcoin was valued at $1,089.51. Five months later, the price had risen to $4,950.72. On December 16, the price hit a historic peak at $19,343.04.1 With the...

 

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Here’s a number most people would like to see on an annual statement: 21.6 percent. That was the annual return for the Standard & Poor (S&P) 500 Index during 2017. In general, U.S. stock indices did quite well last year – and the year...

 

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Affluent couples and individuals do not always have a chance to “age in place” near family caregivers and convenient medical services. Life plan communities have emerged to respond to that reality. About 2,000 of these...

 

Monday, February 26, 2018

When you enter your mid-fifties, your retirement plan enters its countdown phase. This is the time to examine key aspects of your retirement strategy. As you near retirement age, you want to evaluate your risk exposure. If a market...

 

Friday, February 23, 2018

INFLATION SUDDENLY INTENSIFIES The Consumer Price Index rose 0.5% in January, its greatest month-over-month advance since January 2017. Core inflation (minus food and energy prices) increased 0.3%, marking the largest monthly gain in...

 

Thursday, February 22, 2018

“Knock, knock.” “Who’s there?” “An IRS agent.” It may sound like a joke, but the IRS warns taxpayers of potential scammers posing as representatives of the taxing agency in person, on the...

 

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Serves 4 Ingredients: 4 (6-oz) skinless salmon fillets ½ teaspoon coarse salt ½ teaspoon pepper 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons olive oil 3 garlic cloves, minced ¼ cup dry white wine, such as...

 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

After months of relative calm, market fluctuations are causing many investors to wonder what is happening to the economy. Last week, the S&P 500 lost 5.16%, the Dow dropped 5.21%, and the NASDAQ declined 5.06%. The MSCI EAFE also gave...

 

Monday, February 12, 2018

If you’re looking for a gift that will express your love better than chocolates or a bouquet of flowers, don’t fret. Trendhunter.com has some innovative and unconventional suggestions:• Literary love tattoos. Perhaps, you’d like Rainer...

 

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Serves 4 Ingredients: 1 tablespoon butter, unsalted 1 onion, chopped 8-ounce slice of deli ham, diced ½ teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped ½ cup chicken broth, low sodium 17 ½ ounces potato gnocchi 1 cup frozen peas,...

 

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Behaviors worth changing for the New Year. Do bad money habits constrain your financial progress? Many people fall into the same financial behavior patterns year after year. If you sometimes succumb to these financial tendencies, the...

 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Here’s a riddle for you: Some people are reluctant to start me, unless I’m automatic. I’m frequently exhausted when I don’t roll over. I’m sometimes left behind. Retirees devour me. What am I? Answer: A retirement savings plan.New jobs...

 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Serves 4 Ingredients: 1 ¼ pounds Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut in half 2 tablespoons olive oil ½ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon pepper 1 pound sausage links, lamb, pork, or chicken 1 cup couscous, cooked 2 medium...

 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

What standbys did tax reforms eliminate? Are the days of itemizing over? Not quite, but now that H.R. 1 (popularly called the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act) is the law, all kinds of itemized federal tax deductions have vanished. Early drafts of...

 

Friday, January 26, 2018

The financial website 247WallStreet.com set out to find the answer late last year, analyzing county-specific data compiled from a joint project of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and University of Wisconsin Population Health...

 

Thursday, January 25, 2018

After you retire, your tax situation will change. Recognizing that oncoming change is crucial. Some ideas that may seem smart from a pre-retiree standpoint might be ill-advised once you have transitioned into retirement. Other retiree...

 

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Accurate short drives may make for more strategic games, but they sure don’t make approach shots any easier or less intimidating. In the long run, short drives translate into more shots and higher scores. Who wants that? How do...

 

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

MONEY IS THE NUMBER ONE STRESSOR IN AMERICANS’ LIVES. There’s no doubt Americans are living in a supercharged, super stressful world right now. Even if thestresses of the world are not necessarily weighing you down, you...

 

Monday, January 22, 2018

Benjamin Franklin may have recognized life’s 2 certainties: death and taxes, but a letter from the IRS can certainly produce a similar sense of doom. IRS representatives understand the angst a letter from the agency can produce...

 

Friday, January 19, 2018

Serves 4 Ingredients: 1¼ pound pizza dough 4 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for greasing ½ cup marinara sauce ¾ cup shaved pecorino cheese 2 medium zucchini, trimmed 1 jalapeño chile, thinly sliced...

 

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Domestic markets continued their strong start to 2018, posting gains across the board for their 2nd week. The S&P 500 added 1.57% and closed at a new record high on Friday. The index just posted its best 10-day beginning to a year...

 

Friday, January 12, 2018

When it comes to federal income tax, there are few subjects capable of causing as much confusion as the AMT. And while the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, passed in the first days of 2013, made permanent a number of temporary...

 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Most Americans know Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist minister and the leader of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States until he was assassinated in 1968. Test your knowledge with this quiz about Dr. King.1. Before...

 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

At one time, the typical American family looked like this: a breadwinner father who commuted a short distance to work and earned a very good living, and a stay-at-home mother who took care of the kids and family home with aplomb. Life...

 

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Answer: As parents, both of you will want to keep the best interests of your children in mind. That means you should compare your health plan with your spouse's health plan and determine which one offers the most comprehensive health...

 

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Business overhead expense insurance is a type of disability insurance that's designed to protect your business if you become disabled. Specifically, it provides monthly payments to your business for a specified period of time so that...

 

Friday, January 5, 2018

What is in-home care? Not every older American ends up in a nursing home or a retirement community. In fact, most older individuals continue to live at home, many with the assistance of some type of in-home care. In-home care can help...

 

Thursday, January 4, 2018

If you have a 401(k) plan at work and need some cash, you might be tempted to borrow or withdraw money from it. But keep in mind that the purpose of a 401(k) is to save for retirement. Take money out of it now, and you'll risk running...

 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Fifteen years ago, a Health Services Research report described the challenges ahead for the United States as the Baby Boom generation aged into retirement. Four issues were paramount: 1) improving payment and insurance systems for...

 

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

1. In the accumulation phase, you (the annuity owner) send your premium payment(s) (all at once or over time) to the annuity issuer. If these payments are made with after-tax funds, you may invest an unlimited amount. 2. The annuity...

 

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Answer: Yes, but the taxable portion of your distribution may be subject to a 10 percent penalty for early withdrawal if you're not yet age 59½. If you are 59½ or older and take money from your traditional IRA, you will...

 

Monday, January 1, 2018

Even with all of your savvy college shopping and research about financial aid, college costs may still be prohibitive. At these prices, you expect you'll need to make substantial financial sacrifices to send your child to college. Or...

 

Friday, December 29, 2017

What is it? By definition, a crisis is a turning point, a time when you have to make crucial decisions (often suddenly) that will affect your future. Although smart planning is the key to effectively dealing with periods of crisis,...

 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

While much of the political fire and fury from Congress’ tax plan debate has settled, some of the economic smoke still lingers as financial analysts and private investors plot their way through the new $1.4 trillion law’s...

 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The last bear market in bonds began in the middle of the last century and lasted for about 31 years. Some investors who bought bonds in 1950 locked in relatively low rates of return for a very long time. On January 1, 1950, 10-year U.S...

 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

New years bring new adventures, and 2018 is no different. To paraphrase Ed Sullivan: 2018 could be a really big year. Here are a few of the events we can look forward to:• Men’s World Cup in Russia. CBS’s power rankings put Brazil at...

 

Thursday, December 28, 2017

When your local weather forecaster tells you that it's going to rain, what do you do? That's easy--you reach for your umbrella. So why not purchase an umbrella that can protect you in stormy financial weather? Umbrella liability...

 

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

What would you do with an extra $10,000? Maybe you'd pay off some debt, get rid of some college loans, or take a much-needed vacation. What if you suddenly had an extra million or 10 million or more? Now that you've come into a...

 

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

When developing your estate plan, you can do well by doing good. Leaving money to charity rewards you in many ways. It gives you a sense of personal satisfaction, and it can save you money in estate taxes. A few words about transfer...

 

Friday, December 22, 2017

ELDER FINANCIAL ABUSE TYPES, WARNING SIGNS, RECOGNITION, PREVENTION, AND REPORTING OVERVIEW OF ELDER FINANCIAL ABUSE Nationwide, elder abuse is a major public health problem. Elder abuse occurs when a caregiver or someone in a...

 

Thursday, December 21, 2017

PROPOSED TAX REFORM: KEY DETAILS TO KNOWThis fall, the Senate and House released proposed legislation that would dramatically alter taxes in theThe United States.1Both bills have to pass through a number of steps before potentially...

 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

“The holidays are often seen as a time of joy: ruddy cheeks, festive parties, and twinkling laughter, all wrapped in a warm, tinsel-framed glow. It’s the most wonderful time of the year! It may be the ‘season to be jolly,’ but not...

 

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Maybe you've decided that graduate school is the path to advancement in your current job or your ticket to a better career. Or maybe you just want to take a few classes to upgrade your skills. Either way, returning to school as an...

 

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Legal battles often bring new meaning to the word stress. Knowing what to expect is half the battle of getting through the process. Although you may be one of the fortunate few who've never been a party to a lawsuit, that could change....

 

Monday, December 18, 2017

"Deadly mold invades home!" While this may sound like something out of a horror movie, many homeowners are concerned about health risks associated with infestations of toxic mold. And the insurance industry isn't taking the mold issue...

 

Friday, December 15, 2017

If you own a home, you may be wealthier than you think. The equity in your home could be one of your largest assets, especially if your mortgage has been paid down over the years or paid off. This home equity can be a valuable source...

 

Thursday, December 14, 2017

When you determine how much income you'll need in retirement, you may base your projection on the type of lifestyle you plan to have and when you want to retire. However, as you grow closer to retirement, you may discover that your...

 

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Losing a spouse is a stressful transition. And the added pressure of having to settle the estate and organize finances can be overwhelming. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to make dealing with these matters less difficult....

 

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

As you grow older, your housing needs may change. Maybe you'll get tired of doing yardwork. You might want to retire in sunny Florida or live close to your grandchildren in Illinois. Perhaps you'll need to live in a nursing home or an...

 

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Conventional wisdom says that what goes up, must come down. But even if you view market volatility as a normal occurrence, it can be tough to handle when it's your money at stake. Though there's no foolproof way to handle the ups and...

 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

If you fail to estimate your federal income tax withholding properly, it may cost you in a variety of ways. If you receive an income tax refund, it essentially means that you provided the IRS with an interest-free loan during the year....

 

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

The terms immediate annuity and deferred annuity simply indicate when the distribution phase of the annuity begins. Both allow unlimited contributions, and both can provide, upon election, a continuous stream of payments for life....

 

Monday, December 4, 2017

Your credit report contains information about your past and present credit transactions. It's used primarily by potential lenders to evaluate your creditworthiness. So if you're about to apply for credit, especially for something...

 

Friday, December 1, 2017

As the cost of a college education continues to climb, many grandparents are stepping in to help. This trend is expected to accelerate as baby boomers, many of whom went to college, become grandparents and start gifting what's...

 

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Many parents pay for college with a combination of current income, savings, and financial aid. By learning the basics of financial aid, you'll be able to understand how the aid process works and compare the aid awards your child...

 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

There is a simple and unsettling reality in the United States. Most Americans are not financially prepared for retirement. There is a simple and unsettling reality in the United States. Most Americans are not financially prepared for...

 

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

The Markets (as of market close November 24, 2017) Stocks rebounded last week in spite of the market shutting down for the Thanksgiving holiday. Each of the benchmark indexes listed here posted weekly gains, led by the Russell 2000,...

 

Monday, November 20, 2017

You're house hunting, and you've brought along a wish list of features that you consider important, such as a certain number of bedrooms, adequate storage, and an up-to-date kitchen. But does your list include features that will affect...

 

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Thanksgiving is the mother of all family dinners. It’s a celebration of our great nation and the many blessings that occur when people unite together in the spirit of communication. As you’re gathered around the table this year, here’s...

 

Friday, November 17, 2017

Medicare won't cover all of your health-care costs during retirement, so you may want to buy a supplemental medical insurance policy known as Medigap. Offered by private insurance companies, Medigap policies are designed to cover costs...

 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Trimming college costs up front can help families avoid excessive college borrowing and the burdensome student loan payments that come with it. Here are some ideas. 1. Pick a college with a lower net price. You can use a college's net...

 

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

There is no magic formula to determine how much you or your child should borrow to pay for college. But there is such a thing as borrowing too much. How much is too much? Well, one guideline for students is to borrow no more than their...

 

Monday, November 13, 2017

You may think that the chances of becoming disabled during your working years are slight, and even if you did get hurt or had to miss time at work, you could get by because you have group disability insurance. Unfortunately, you may...

 

Friday, November 10, 2017

Here are 10 things to consider as you weigh potential tax moves between now and the end of the year. 1. Set aside time to plan Effective planning requires that you have a good understanding of your current tax situation, as well as a...

 

Thursday, November 9, 2017

A will is often the cornerstone of an estate plan. Here are five things you can do with a will. Distribute property as you wish Wills enable you to leave your property at your death to a surviving spouse, a child, other relatives,...

 

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

All too often, we assume the men and women who fought for our country can take care of themselves. Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. There are some important ways ordinary Americans can help those who are returning from battle...

 

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Penne With Spinach and Sausage Serves 6 Ingredients: Salt and pepper 1 pound penne pasta 1 pound Italian sausage, casings removed 1 clove garlic, minced 2 14.5-ounce cans tomatoes, diced (with juice) 1 teaspoon dried basil 1 teaspoon...

 

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Medicare is a federal program that provides health insurance to retired individuals, regardless of their medical condition, and certain younger people with disabilities or end-stage renal disease. Here are some basic facts about...

 

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

In times of crisis, you don't want to be shaking pennies out of a piggy bank. Having a financial safety net in place can ensure that you're protected when a financial emergency arises. One way to accomplish this is by setting up a cash...

 

Monday, October 30, 2017

Retirement and Social Security are inextricably linked. Not only did Social Security help establish the official U.S. retirement age at 65, it also provides a significant portion of today’s retirees’ incomes. Retirement and Social...

 

Monday, October 30, 2017

If you give away money or property during your life, those transfers may be subject to federal gift and estate tax and perhaps state gift tax. The money and property you own when you die (i.e., your estate) may also be subject to...

 

Friday, October 27, 2017

Halloween is almost upon us! Whether you’re wearing a costume, decorating your yard/house, or handing out treats, you won’t be alone. More than 179 million Americans are expected to participate in 2017’s Halloween festivities – and...

 

Friday, October 27, 2017

If your income hits a certain level, you may face an additional wrinkle in calculating your taxes: the net investment income tax (also referred to as the unearned income Medicare contribution tax). This 3.8% Medicare tax applies to...

 

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Mini Italian Beef Sandwiches With Pepperoncini Slaw Serves 12 Ingredients: 17 ounces roast beef au jus, cooked (pre-packaged works) 2 cups bag of frozen bell pepper (red, yellow, and orange) and onion medley 1 teaspoon dried Italian...

 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

When you think of Social Security, you probably think of retirement. However, Social Security can also provide much-needed income to your family members when you die, making their financial lives easier. Your family members may be...

 

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Getting married is exciting, but it brings many challenges. One such challenge that you and your spouse will have to face is how to merge your finances. Planning carefully and communicating clearly are important, because the financial...

 

Monday, October 23, 2017

There's no doubt about it--owning a home is an exciting prospect. After all, you've always dreamed of having a place that you could truly call your own. But buying a home can be stressful, especially when you're buying one for the...

 

Friday, October 20, 2017

Moroccan-Spiced Chicken and CouscousPair this spicy chicken dinner with a glass of Beaujolais-Villages. Serves 6 Ingredients: 3½ pounds of chicken thighs and drumsticks, or 12 pieces Cooking spray 1 teaspoon cumin ½...

 

Thursday, October 19, 2017

As you enter your 60s and 70s, health may become more of an issue than it once was, and your thoughts may turn to the future. Who will take care of you when you can no longer care for yourself? If you must enter a nursing home, how...

 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

You may have a very idealistic vision of retirement--doing all of the things that you never seem to have time to do now. But how do you pursue that vision? Social Security may be around when you retire, but the benefit that you get...

 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Divorce can be a lengthy process that may strain your finances and leave you feeling out of control. But with the right preparation, you can protect your interests, take charge of your future, and save yourself time and money. You...

 

Monday, October 16, 2017

How times change! In 1940, half of Americans finished their education in eighth grade. College degrees were relatively rare. Just 6 percent of men and 4 percent of women had one.1During the past 80 years, college has become far more...

 

Monday, October 16, 2017

Approximately 66 million people today receive some form of Social Security benefits, including retirement, disability, survivor, and family benefits. (Source: Fast Facts & Figures About Social Security, 2017) Although most people...

 

Friday, October 13, 2017

Incapacity means that you are either mentally or physically unable to take care of yourself or your day-to-day affairs. Incapacity can result from serious physical injury, mental or physical illness, advancing age, and alcohol or drug...

 

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Now that you've decided to start a new business or buy an existing one, you need to consider the form of business entity that's right for you. Basically, three separate categories of entities exist: partnerships, corporations, and...

 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Whether you're seeking to manage your own assets, control how your assets are distributed after your death, or plan for incapacity, trusts can help you accomplish your estate planning goals. Their power is in their versatility--many...

 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Flank Steak Panzanella Salad This salad is even better at room temperature once the bread has absorbed some of the dressing. Swap the steak for chicken or shrimp, or omit for a side salad. Serves 4 Ingredients: Cooking spray 1 pound...

 

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Smartphones are incredibly handy. That may be why about three of every four Americans own them.1 On average, smartphone users spend almost three hours a day – 86 hours every month – using their phones. They send texts and email,...

 

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

"If you can’t do great things, do small things in a great way." – Napoleon Hill

 

Monday, October 9, 2017

If you're a senior, the future may present more of a concern than it once did--you may wonder what you'll do if your health deteriorates. If you must enter a nursing home, for example, how will you pay for it? Fortunately, you may have...

 

Friday, October 6, 2017

A well-diversified investment portfolio contains a mix of stocks, bonds, short-term cash investments, and savings accounts that is tailored to your investment goals and risk tolerance. If you want to diversify your investment portfolio...

 

Thursday, October 5, 2017

A beneficiary is the person or entity you name (i.e., designate) to receive the death benefits of a life insurance policy. Some states require that your beneficiary have an insurable interest in your life or be related to you (at least...

 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

In times of crisis, you don't want to be shaking pennies out of a piggy bank. Having a financial safety net in place can ensure that you're protected when a financial emergency arises. One way to accomplish this is by setting up a cash...

 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

"Determine that the thing can and shall be done, and then we shall find the way." – Abraham Lincoln

 

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Retirement plans established under Section 401(k) of the Internal Revenue Code, commonly referred to as "401(k) plans," have become one of the most popular types of employer-sponsored retirement plans. What is a 401(k) plan? A 401(k)...

 

Monday, October 2, 2017

Smothered Pork Chops Sometimes you just need a big honkin’ plate of pork chops dripping with bell pepper gravy. I made this recipe yesterday, Snapchatting in real time along the way. And by the way, if you’re saying to...

 

Monday, October 2, 2017

The income tax benefits offered by 529 plans make these plans attractive to parents (and others) interested in saving for college. Qualified withdrawals from a 529 plan are tax free at the federal level, and some states also offer tax...

 

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Common stock and preferred stock are the two main types of stocks that are sold by companies and traded among investors on the open market. Each type gives stockholders a partial ownership in the company represented by the stock....

 

Friday, September 29, 2017

Life insurance has come a long way since the days when it was known as burial insurance and used mainly to pay for funeral expenses. Today, life insurance is a crucial part of many estate plans. You can use it to leave much-needed...

 

Thursday, September 28, 2017

You may have heard that IRAs and employer-sponsored plans (e.g., 401(k)s) are the best ways to invest for retirement. That's true for many people, but what if you've maxed out your contributions to those accounts and want to save more?...

 

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

“Never mind what others do; do better than yourself, beat your own record from day to day, and you are a success.” – William J. H. Boetcker

 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Serves 8Ingredients: 8 whole apples, more if using small apples 4 11-oz packages of caramel melts 2 TBSP heavy cream 1 tsp vanilla Dash of salt Toppings: mini chocolate candies (like M&Ms), crushed pretzels, kosher salt, chocolate...

 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

If you fail to estimate your federal income tax withholding properly, it may cost you in a variety of ways. If you receive an income tax refund, it essentially means that you provided the IRS with an interest-free loan during the year....

 

Sunday, September 24, 2017

An individual retirement arrangement (IRA) is a personal savings plan that offers specific tax benefits. IRAs are one of the most powerful retirement savings tools available to you. Even if you're contributing to a 401(k) or other plan...

 

Friday, September 22, 2017

Favorable tax treatment is one of the main reasons for buying an annuity. But what exactly are the tax benefits? And are there any drawbacks? It's important to know the answers to these questions before deciding whether to purchase an...

 

Thursday, September 21, 2017

You've researched long-term care insurance (LTCI) and are seriously thinking of buying a policy. Just make sure you're doing it for the right reasons--don't be swayed by unsubstantiated sales pitches. Here are some claims you'll want...

 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Do you ever wonder where your money goes each month? Does it seem like you're never able to get ahead? If so, you may want to establish a budget to help you keep track of how you spend your money and help you reach your financial goals...

 

Monday, September 18, 2017

Beefy Corn and Black Bean Chili Serves 6Ingredients: 1 lb ground beef 1 16-oz bag of seasoned, frozen black beans and corn 2 tsp no-salt chili powder mix 1 can (14 ounces) beef broth 1 can (14 ounces) tomato sauce with chili seasoning...

 

Monday, September 18, 2017

"Every individual matters. Every individual has a role to play. Every individual makes a difference." – Jane Goodall

 

Monday, September 18, 2017

Social Security was originally intended to provide older Americans with continuing income after retirement. Today, though the scope of Social Security has been widened to include survivor's, disability, and other benefits, retirement...

 

Sunday, September 17, 2017

In today's corporate environment, cost cutting, restructuring, and downsizing are the norm, and many employers are offering their employees early retirement packages. But how do you know if the seemingly attractive offer you've...

 

Friday, September 15, 2017

You may have heard about the horrors of probate, but in truth, probate has gotten an undeservedly bad reputation, especially in recent years. If you bypass probate, your estate will go to your beneficiaries without any court proceeding...

 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A 401(k) in-plan Roth conversion (also called an "in-plan Roth rollover") allows you to transfer the non-Roth portion of your 401(k) account into a designated Roth account within the same plan. The amount you convert is subject to...

 

Monday, September 11, 2017

A successful investor maximizes gain and minimizes loss. Though there can be no guarantee that any investment strategy will be successful and all investing involves risk, including the possible loss of principal, here are six basic...

 

Friday, September 8, 2017

You're beginning to accumulate substantial wealth, but you worry about protecting it from future potential creditors. Whether your concern is for your personal assets or your business, various tools exist to keep your property safe...

 

Friday, September 8, 2017

This recipe debunks the myth that seafood and cheese don’t belong together. The richness of the lobster marries well with the zesty Cheddar and mellow Gruyčre. Serves 8 Ingredients: 16 oz corkscrew pasta 6 TBSP melted butter,...

 

Thursday, September 7, 2017

You know how important it is to plan for your retirement, but where do you begin? One of your first steps should be to estimate how much income you'll need to fund your retirement. That's not as easy as it sounds, because retirement...

 

Monday, August 28, 2017

How to Use a Lob Wedge Golfers sometimes face a situation in which they have little turf to work with to get their ball onto the green. Or they must chip the ball over a bunker with little landing area. The lob wedge is a perfect tool...

 

Monday, August 28, 2017

Grilled Halibut and Fresh Mango Salsa We guarantee that after tasting one bite of this summery dish, you'll want to head right back to the kitchen and make another batch of the tropical salsa. Tangy and fruity with eye-popping color,...

 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Should parents pay for their child’s college education? The message you send can be a lesson in itself. An article this week in “Ask Amy” focused on a young woman’s disappointment that her family couldn’t afford to send her to a dream...

 

Friday, July 21, 2017

Common Factors Affecting Retirement Income When it comes to planning for your retirement income, it's easy to overlook some of the common factors that can affect how much you'll have available to spend. If you don't consider how your...

 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Making decisions about your retirement account can seem overwhelming, especially if you feel unsure about your knowledge of investments. However, the following basic rules can help you make smarter choices regardless of whether you...

 

Monday, July 17, 2017

The idea of Artificial Intelligence (AI) may bring to mind movies like Terminator, Wall-E, and Transcendence, but the reality of AI is expected to help people find answers to some significant issues. For example, a PwC survey found:1 •...

 

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Some people may name a medical device or implant, such as a hearing aid, an artificial joint, or a pacemaker. Others may say they couldn't live without their electric bikes, GPS devices, tablets, or food processors. A surprisingly...

 

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Wouldn’t it be something if you could plump up your retirement savings as easily as you can put on a few pounds eating fast food? Here’s one way to do it: Open a health savings account (HSA). It offers a triple tax advantage and you...

 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

You may be asking yourself whether that’s a trick question. After all, almost one-third of 18- to 34-year-olds are still living at home with their parents. It is, in fact, the most common living arrangement for this age group and a...

 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Please take a few minutes to read this message, because it’s on a very important topic: cybersecurity.On Friday, May 12, 2017, well over 100 countries started getting hit by one of the largest cyberattacks ever seen...

 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Last week, stocks rose but floated within a narrow trading range. By Friday, however, both the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ reached record highs.[i] For the week, the S&P 500 gained 0.63%, the Dow finished up 0.32%, and the NASDAQ rose 0.88%...

 

Monday, April 17, 2017

We are all, inexorably, marching toward old age. By 2030, 72 million Americans will be age 65 or older.1 The good news is longevity has been improving, and people are remaining healthy and vibrant at older ages. The bad news is...

 

Thursday, March 30, 2017

It’s tax season! Every year, around this time, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) publishes its dirty dozen – a list of scams criminals use to try and ferret out personal information and/or steal money.1 For example, if you received an...

 

Monday, February 27, 2017

More than one-half of working Americans know little or nothing about Medicare costs.1 Not knowing can be expensive. On average, people who haven’t yet retired estimate they’ll spend approximately $50,000 on health care after retirement...