Retirement

  • Most Topular Stories

  • A Slice of (Your) Retirement Life

    A Satisfying Retirement - Leads To A Satisfying Life
    Bob Lowry
    17 Apr 2014 | 2:00 am
    A few weeks ago the post, What's Going On?, generated several comments that expressed an interest in reading about other retirees' experiences in all the areas that concern us: is retirement everything you hoped, and if not, why not? What keeps you up at night and what excites you every morning? How do you productively fill your time and balance commitments with freedom? How about travel...doing more or less than you thought you would?.....basically we are asking to hear some of each other's unique story.Those types of interviews filled my last book. I found those…
  • Tax Time is Over. Maybe.

    Getting Your Financial Ducks In A Row
    sraskie
    21 Apr 2014 | 10:59 am
    For most folks tomorrow marks the one week anniversary of filing their 2014 tax return. Not much needs to be done after they’ve filed except for deciding to have more withheld in 2014 for those folks who had to write a check to Uncle Sam or deciding what to do with the refund (hint: put it in an IRA) for those folks who got a refund. What happens when the return may have been submitted with mistakes or perhaps costly errors? Generally, if the error is minor the IRS will correct errors or accept returns without certain forms or schedules attached. For those returns that have a change in…
  • Reference "Points"

    Data "Points"
    20 Apr 2014 | 4:30 am
    We started setting money aside for our children’s college education relatively early, but as they began actually considering their options, it was clear that our savings wouldn’t be enough to cover the expense at some of the schools on their lists. Moreover, while all three wouldn’t all be in college at the same time, there was enough overlap to make it “complicated.”While we didn’t want to limit our kids’ college choices, we had certain real world constraints—and so we told them how much we could contribute to their college expenses, and that they were free to make up the…
  • Income for Life

    Sensible Money - Scottsdale Financial Advisors
    admin
    8 Apr 2014 | 12:45 pm
    A comprehensive retirement plan means you can relax and enjoy retirement. You can’t control everything in retirement. But when you have a comprehensive plan in place that helps you manage the aspects that are within your control it frees you up to relax and enjoy yourself. Ask yourself these questions: Are you prepared for retirement? Do you have a strategy for investing your retirement assets? Is it the same strategy you’ve used to get this far? Your savings and investment strategy may have been quite effective in helping you accumulate assets. But that same strategy may not be…
  • Tips for Being a Better Saver

    FutureAdvisor Blog
    E.A. Mann
    18 Apr 2014 | 8:26 am
    We’ve all heard that American households don’t save enough. At around 4.3% of income, many families are not amassing a nest egg large enough to weather a family emergency, invest in retirement, or deploy savings strategically: say, to make large purchases with cash and avoid costly payment plans. The results can be devastating. Luckily, all hope is not lost. There is low hanging fruit available for any family that wants to boost its savings rate. Keep Your Service Providers on their Toes If you dutifully pay your phone, cable and utility bills year after year, your service providers love…
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    Data "Points"

  • Reference "Points"

    20 Apr 2014 | 4:30 am
    We started setting money aside for our children’s college education relatively early, but as they began actually considering their options, it was clear that our savings wouldn’t be enough to cover the expense at some of the schools on their lists. Moreover, while all three wouldn’t all be in college at the same time, there was enough overlap to make it “complicated.”While we didn’t want to limit our kids’ college choices, we had certain real world constraints—and so we told them how much we could contribute to their college expenses, and that they were free to make up the…
  • Needs "Assessment"

    13 Apr 2014 | 6:47 am
    My eating habits have always tended toward what my mother politely calls “finicky.” Oh, she tried repeatedly over the years to broaden my horizons but without much success. My wife has similarly tried to expand and improve my dietary choices over the years, but even with the admonition of needing to set a good example for my kids, (my) old habits die hard. In exasperation, she’ll frequently say, “Have you ever even tried _____?”One of the more surprising findings from the 2014 Retirement Confidence Survey was that fewer than half of respondents indicate they (or their spouse) have…
  • "Expected" Values

    6 Apr 2014 | 5:30 am
    Over the past several years, a growing amount of attention has been focused on the decumulations of defined contribution plan balances in retirement. Much of that focus has, of course, been driven by concerns that those individuals won’t have enough resources accumulated to fund those retirements. More recently, there has been a sense that one way to help provide a different perspective on these retirement savings would be to provide participants with an estimate of what their current or projected savings would produce in terms of a retirement income stream.In May 2013, the U.S. Department…
  • Bargain Based

    30 Mar 2014 | 12:57 pm
    My father had many admirable personality traits, but he also had his quirks. He was buying in bulk at warehouse stores well before it was “cool” to do so (and before many of the current generation of such stores existed), and he was an earlier adopter of generic food brands. And, yes, sometimes he bought generic food and paper stocks in bulk. While the quality of such offerings has doubtless improved dramatically over the years, I still shudder at the memory of my first sip of generic cola.My childhood encounters with generic products notwithstanding, I’ve generally not been as…
  • Security "Blanket"

    23 Mar 2014 | 5:00 am
    “How do they expect to retire on THAT?”In the several days since the 2014 Retirement Confidence Survey(1)  hit the streets, I think I’ve heard that question more than any other. “That” in this case is the widely cited finding of the survey that 36% of respondents have less than $1,000 (aside from home equity and defined benefit plan) saved – and that’s up from 20 percent in that category in 2009 and 28 percent a year ago(2).So, how does that group expect to retire?We can’t know for certain, but there are several things that might offer a better understanding. First, many…
 
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    Sensible Money - Scottsdale Financial Advisors

  • Income for Life

    admin
    8 Apr 2014 | 12:45 pm
    A comprehensive retirement plan means you can relax and enjoy retirement. You can’t control everything in retirement. But when you have a comprehensive plan in place that helps you manage the aspects that are within your control it frees you up to relax and enjoy yourself. Ask yourself these questions: Are you prepared for retirement? Do you have a strategy for investing your retirement assets? Is it the same strategy you’ve used to get this far? Your savings and investment strategy may have been quite effective in helping you accumulate assets. But that same strategy may not be…
  • Welcome Kathleen Mealey!

    admin
    3 Mar 2014 | 5:04 pm
    Sensible Money welcomes Kathy Mealey. A service business lives and dies by the quality of its people. A sales organization isn’t so concerned with that. In my brokerage firm days the revolving door of advisors who were hired and quit spun around at a rapid pace. It wasn’t about expertise, and unfortunately if often wasn’t about ethics. It was about  finding people who could sell. Times are a-changing though, and for the better I must say. Our organization is on the forefront of that change. We are specialists. You only retire once, and the planning that goes into a successful…
  • More Frequently Asked Questions About Our Services

    admin
    19 Feb 2014 | 1:11 pm
    Smart planning delivers an increase in retirement income when compared to an unplanned approach*. How do your services work? We quote you a one-time price to prepare a financial plan. We call this going through our Juicing® process – as it is designed to help you squeeze more out of your money. Your financial plan projects how well prepared you are to meet your financial goals. A plan is necessary in order to make the appropriate investment recommendations. Once the plan is understood, most Sensible Money clients work with us on an ongoing basis to manage investments and provide planning…
  • Case Study – How Much Can I Spend This Year in Retirement?

    admin
    4 Feb 2014 | 3:45 pm
    Your Money Your Values Once retired, the planning doesn’t end. You’ll still want to remodel, travel, or perhaps move to a different state. A plan helps outline the financial aspects of these decisions. Take the case of a couple we’ll call George and Marla. They began working with us in early 2007. George is ten years older than Marla, and the goal was to get Marla retired so they could have time together while both are still healthy and living an active lifestyle. Marla retired in 2010 and the two began traveling. In their first year of retirement they fell in love with Ouray, Colorado.
  • Investment Sense – My Favorite 2014 Predictions

    admin
    28 Jan 2014 | 10:41 am
    Index Returns to Dec. 31, 2013 – 1 month, 5 year, 10 year As you (hopefully) know by now, we don’t write these newsletters to impress you with our forecasting prowess. We know our crystal ball doesn’t work – and we know no one else’s works either.  This certainty always makes the beginning of the year quite entertaining. Everywhere you look someone is making a 2014 prediction about something – health care, Congress, interest rates, etc. -  you name it, plenty of people have put a prediction on it. It’s like a giant casino full of wagers. Why do people play? Throw enough…
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    FutureAdvisor Blog

  • Tips for Being a Better Saver

    E.A. Mann
    18 Apr 2014 | 8:26 am
    We’ve all heard that American households don’t save enough. At around 4.3% of income, many families are not amassing a nest egg large enough to weather a family emergency, invest in retirement, or deploy savings strategically: say, to make large purchases with cash and avoid costly payment plans. The results can be devastating. Luckily, all hope is not lost. There is low hanging fruit available for any family that wants to boost its savings rate. Keep Your Service Providers on their Toes If you dutifully pay your phone, cable and utility bills year after year, your service providers love…
  • Exotic Retirement Locations

    futureadvisor
    13 Apr 2014 | 11:57 am
    There are many factors to consider when deciding where you are going to retire to: climate, living expenses, even language. Here are three places you can choose to retire in without breaking the bank and still have a taste of the exotic. First off is Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. This beach resort city can only be considered a slice of paradise. All this at a great price too. It somehow manages to retain its air of historical significance: Mexico-ness, if you will, while thriving as a modern city. It has everything a retiree needs: great restaurants, golf courses, marinas and of course, beaches.
  • Our Response to the Heartbleed Bug

    Clyde Law
    10 Apr 2014 | 3:09 pm
    You may have heard in the news that many major Internet sites were affected by the Heartbleed Bug. We want to assure you, our users, that FutureAdvisor’s security and engineering team has been following developments since the vulnerability was first announced, and has taken the necessary steps to assess our systems and address any that were affected. Bottom Line Our security assessment confirmed that FutureAdvisor systems storing customer information were not affected by the Heartbleed Bug. The systems that were affected have been patched and are no longer vulnerable. Technical Details…
  • Top Investment Trends For 2014

    futureadvisor
    10 Apr 2014 | 2:30 pm
    We’re now firmly into 2014, and a few important changes for savings are worth making note of. MyRA is the most significant change in offering a new class of retirement investment for those on middle incomes, but we also expect a reversion to more normal stock market returns after 2013 and continued expansion of lower fee investment opportunities via ETFs. MyRA Expected To Launch By The End Of The Year As announced in the State of the Union address in January, a new government initiative makes it even easier to save for retirement, particularly for those on lower incomes. MyRA (My…
  • How People With Over $20M Invest

    futureadvisor
    3 Apr 2014 | 1:10 pm
        Wealth Distribution Of Those With Over $20M The IRS discloses average income details for wealthy Americans. The data above shows the distribution of assets for Americans with over $20M in wealth for 2012. The bulk of assets are held in stocks, either those that trade on the stock market or privately held equity, and if you treat non-corporate business assets and limited partnerships as similar to stock, then you have the wealthy investing over half their wealth in stock-like investments. Real estate represents 10% and bond 11%. Within bonds, there is a heavy skew towards state…
 
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    Brunswick Plantation Living

  • The 5 Secrets Of Truly Happy People by Brunswick Plantation Living

    Kevin Anderson
    22 Apr 2014 | 6:19 am
    The 5 Secrets of Truly Happy People Happiness… that indefinable yet ever-desired state of mind and being that we all so desperately crave; books have been written, thousands of talks and sermons given, and hundreds of movies produced to show … Continue reading →The post The 5 Secrets Of Truly Happy People by Brunswick Plantation Living appeared first on Brunswick Plantation Living.
  • Easter Traditions…Easter Bunny and Colored Eggs

    Bev
    17 Apr 2014 | 10:30 am
    Easter is on April 20th this year, and  Colored Eggs  and the Easter Bunny are traditions recognized as part of the celebration.  For Christians, Easter is a deeply religious holiday, celebrating the day Jesus arose from the dead after the … Continue reading →The post Easter Traditions…Easter Bunny and Colored Eggs appeared first on Brunswick Plantation Living.
  • Coastal Living News and Events 4.14

    Bev
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:46 am
    Spring has Sprung in Coastal North Carolina…So Much to Do & See! Spring and Easter celebrations, along with a variety of other events are minutes from Brunswick Plantation and Golf Resort...The Two State Solution to Fun! Enjoy a Better Way … Continue reading →The post Coastal Living News and Events 4.14 appeared first on Brunswick Plantation Living.
  • Brunswick Plantation News and Events 4.14

    Bev
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:38 am
    Brunswick Plantation and Golf Resort is set for Spring! The flowers are blooming and so are the activities we enjoy with friends and neighbors…Fun For All! The following are happening right here in our lovely gated community! Enjoy! Couples Golf … Continue reading →The post Brunswick Plantation News and Events 4.14 appeared first on Brunswick Plantation Living.
  • Golf News from the Pro 4.14 at Brunswick Plantation and Golf Resort

    Kevin Anderson
    15 Apr 2014 | 5:29 am
    Hello to All, April is here and so is the Spring weather.  The golf course is greening up and is busy with play. The Pro Shop is continuing to offer discounts up to 30% on most items, so come take … Continue reading →The post Golf News from the Pro 4.14 at Brunswick Plantation and Golf Resort appeared first on Brunswick Plantation Living.
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    Retirement And Good Living

  • In retirement – too soon beats too late

    Kathy Mathews
    23 Apr 2014 | 4:43 am
    My 92 year old father still drives. I went on a website to get ideas on how to have the “talk” with him about giving up his car. I memorized my lines and started out. “Hey Dad, can you imagine that one day you won’t drive anymore?” According to the website, he would say “Yes” and I would say, “Well how about you do it too soon rather than too late?” Then we would have a mature and thoughtful conversation about the car keys, etc.   Instead my father answered “No” and that was the end of the conversation. I was very disappointed that my dad did not know his lines and…
  • Retirement Rational – Courtesy of the Cookie Raider

    Gordon Kinghorn
    22 Apr 2014 | 3:27 am
    “Young people need models, not critics.” (John Wooden)   As a former soldier, one who served with the British Army, (thirty-five years unblemished service) I can relate only too well to the concerns of former military men and woman when it comes to our respective retirement years – ours was an occupation that demanded much more than a professional nine-to-five mentality – we didn’t merely enlist into our respective Army’s, we became indoctrinated with specific values and standards for utilization within a disciplined and highly-motivated infrastructure…and employed…
  • Retiring in Mexico: Making Lemonade When Handed Lemons

    Tricia Lyman
    21 Apr 2014 | 4:40 am
    Mike and I had a dream plan for retirement with living 6 months in our home in the mountains of WA and 6 months of living and/or traveling in other countries, exploring the world. But quickly that dream faded away with the economic crash in 2008. We had a successful real estate business in a small rural town in Northeast Washington. With the 2008 economic slowdown and other local factors we decided the time was best for closing our doors.   I stayed in real estate and did well under the circumstances. Mike became a catastrophe insurance adjuster. But no matter how hard we worked, we…
  • What should You do when you retire?

    Lisa Graff
    18 Apr 2014 | 11:48 am
    Many retirees I know claim to be retired, but their life resembles a 40 hour work week. At a thrift shop where I volunteer twice a month, there are several retirees who work 4 or 5 days a week. They are in charge of departments—jewelry, furniture, house wares etc. Nobody made them an official boss, but they seem to have slipped into roles perhaps similar to their previous ones including the hassles that accompany it. Recently a friend told me she feels like a widow because her husband volunteers for the SPCA for over 30 hours a week. My neighbor across the street was ecstatic for the first…
  • Retirement is Great!

    Kerry Watson
    16 Apr 2014 | 9:01 am
    In 2008 we spent six short weeks in Europe visiting France, Italy and cruising on the Mediterranean and decided there and then that we would return to the beautiful regions of Provence in France and Tuscany in Italy for a extended time once we retired. We loved it there. On returning to our home in Western Australia (WA) we dreamt about where we would stay and what we would do on our return…. and even wondered if we would really ever get there.   So in 2013 when we both retired and the reality was no longer a dream, we headed off on our nine-month trip to start our retirement in La…
 
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    A Satisfying Retirement - Leads To A Satisfying Life

  • And There It Sits

    Bob Lowry
    21 Apr 2014 | 2:00 am
    Buying an RV is not something most of us do on a whim. Whether it is a motorhome, trailer, or pop-up camper, there is at the very minimum several thousand dollars invested in your rig. A newer Class A motorhome (the kind that look like very fancy bus) can range from $100,000 to well over one million dollars. When Betty and I took the plunge about 18 months ago we bought a used Class C motorhome. So far we have been very pleased. It is almost 8 years old, has over 120,000 miles on the engine, and has some cosmetic wear and tear. But, we have been diligent in the maintenance and upkeep and have…
  • A Slice of (Your) Retirement Life

    Bob Lowry
    17 Apr 2014 | 2:00 am
    A few weeks ago the post, What's Going On?, generated several comments that expressed an interest in reading about other retirees' experiences in all the areas that concern us: is retirement everything you hoped, and if not, why not? What keeps you up at night and what excites you every morning? How do you productively fill your time and balance commitments with freedom? How about travel...doing more or less than you thought you would?.....basically we are asking to hear some of each other's unique story.Those types of interviews filled my last book. I found those…
  • To Move or Stay Put: I Can't Decide

    Bob Lowry
    14 Apr 2014 | 2:00 am
    Is it ignorance or apathy?  I don't know and I don't care. Jimmy Buffett may have summarized my dilemma best with these lyrics from one of his songs. Betty and I have changed our mind on this one decision so often that our kids now just roll their eyes and ask, "What is your plan today?" We have lived in our current home for twelve years. It was a major downsize choice after our daughters finished college and moved out to start their lives. It is a pleasant, older home with a big backyard, enough room for us and plenty of storage, room for the RV on the side yard, and in a quiet and…
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    Early Retirement Extreme

  • RV vs. apartment

    Jacob
    23 Apr 2014 | 10:44 pm
    We just came back from one week’s vacation at the in-laws, so now I need a vacation. I always seem to need some time to recover after the bustling activity of family gettogethers. Anyway, staying in an 2.5 bedroom apartment for the first time since we moved into the RV allowed me to make some observations on what it’s like to live in an apartment from the perspective of a fulltime RV dweller. An apartment is much like an RV. It has the same things, couches, chairs, tables, kitchen. bathroom, etc. EXCEPT everything is strangely far apart. Normally in an RV, one person can be…
  • Can I retire with 2 million dollars?

    Jacob
    23 Apr 2014 | 10:34 am
    This, and various perturbations, is one of the most frequent Google search terms that hit this site. I think my very general answer would be that if you have to ask that question, then the answer is, “PROBABLY NOT!” If you ask whether you can retire with $10 million, the answer is still no. The problem is essentially scale-less. Asking the question implies that one has accumulated X dollars without any thought towards expenses and jobless income. I posit that if those things are considered, the answer would be obvious and the question would not have to be asked. However, until one figures…
  • The last pair of boots I’ll ever buy

    Jacob
    22 Apr 2014 | 10:28 pm
    I have used the same pair of boots almost every day since my early 20s. I’ll be 35 in a few months. Like with most “extreme” stats, a pair of boots which are 13+ years old blow the normal expectation values out of the water; much like being able to retire in five years… or having more than 2 page views per blog visit I don’t know how many reheelings (resoling the heel only) I have had done on them. I lost count around 8. I know the full sole has been replaced once because I found an excellent cobbler in the city I live in. Vibram Skywalk. Don’t get anything…
  • Great post, I agree, and other common blog comments

    Jacob
    22 Apr 2014 | 10:23 am
    Ever wondered why some comments appear more than others and why some comments only appear on blogs with many readers? The explanation is fairly simple: human psychology and statistics. Great timing. I was just doing this … It is self-evident that for a post with some relevance to real life activities, the probability of a person engaged or about to be engaged in such an activity multiplied by the probability of the person commenting (these probabilities are not necessarily independent, but I doubt the cancel each other out, if anything they increase as someone with some reason to…
  • Does retiring early lead to a shorter lifespan?

    Jacob
    21 Apr 2014 | 10:14 pm
    Not according to this graph, which shows an almost inverse correlation between retirement age and lifespan, that is, the sooner you retire, the longer you will live. The graph shows linearity going into earlier years. It is interesting how long that relation holds. This somehow contrasts with this study which comes to the opposite conclusion. However, if, as stated in the comments, the study was not corrected for the poorer health of some early retires, e.g. people retire early because they are in poor health, the conclusion that one doesn’t live long is obvious, no? A priori reasoning…
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    Retirement: A Full-Time Job

  • Another Way to Save on Travel Costs in Retirement

    Retired Syd
    1 Apr 2014 | 10:01 am
    (Photo Details:  Sydney and Doug overlooking the Lido Deck) We just got back from a cruise, my first ever, to Mexico.  My parents-in-law splurged and treated the entire family to luxurious mini-suites with adjoining balconies.  I only gained one pound, which was a real feat considering the quantity of food I consumed while onboard.   But even for people without such generous parents, there's still a way to enjoy vacations without paying for lodging.  That's the subject of my article in yesterday's Wall Street Journal--sorry for the delay in posting:  Home Exchanges Can Stretch Your…
  • Save More So You Can Splurge More

    Retired Syd
    26 Mar 2014 | 3:00 pm
    (Photo Details:  Sydney and Doug on the splurge-more side of the equation in Hawaii) Despite the fact that I do a lot of things to save money, I would not describe myself as a frugal person.  While I do like to save a buck, or thousands of them, I do not shy away from spending when it’s something that I really want.  We saved a ton of money on flights to and around Southeast Asia, but our first week’s tour is something no frugal person would approve of.   I don’t save money just for the purpose of saving money, I save it so I can spend it on something I really value.  We have a…
  • Fear of Flying

    Retired Syd
    25 Mar 2014 | 12:02 pm
    (Photo Details:  Twenty-one year old Sydney in Paris) Putting together all that information for my post yesterday about the frequent flyer miles totally shocked me.  Not just because I hadn’t really realized how much free travel we’ve managed over the last six years.  But also because that list didn’t even include the flights we did pay for like an all-inclusive trip to Cabo, two package deals to Hawaii, and a several other trips down to LA and to Vegas.  I never would have guessed we went on that many trips! The other thing I realized, is somewhere during this travel frenzy, I…
  • Have Miles, Will Travel

    Retired Syd
    24 Mar 2014 | 9:29 am
    (Photo Details:  Used frequent flyer miles to get two of my BFF's and me to New York--Business Class!) For those of you who love to travel and want to find ways to save money doing it—this post is for you.  Today’s lesson is how to work the flight mileage award plans.  You don’t need to spend more money to get more miles, you just need to spend smarter. For Beginners You will need to start with a small investment—in a credit card that earns airline miles.  Ours costs $100 per year.  We charge everything--and I mean everything--we buy.  That means groceries, gas, clothing, home…
  • The Full-Time Job of Retirement Travel

    Retired Syd
    19 Mar 2014 | 11:01 am
    (Photo Detail:  Hayman Island, Australia) One of the things I looked forward to when I retired was the chance to travel more frequently, and for longer stretches of time.   Home-exchange has turned out to be a great way to stretch the length of our trips without straining our travel budget.  But the big advantage of retirement is being able to get out of town whenever opportunity knocks. And opportunity to travel with friends has knocked many times over the last six years of our retirement.  I can only think of two or three times during my working years that we were able to coordinate a…
 
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    Oblivious Investor

  • Cookie Cutter Portfolios Are (Usually) Just Fine

    Mike
    21 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    A reader writes in, asking: “I don’t get it. From reading Harry Sit’s series on Vanguard financial plans, why would I want to pay for a financial plan if all that’s included in the portfolio is the same four funds that are included in a target retirement fund anyway? That seems like a cookie cutter portfolio.” Yes, they are cookie cutter portfolios. And, in my opinion, that’s a good thing. That is, if Vanguard thought that the average investor should have some other allocation (e.g., overweighting REITs or using only TIPS for the bond portion of the…
  • Investing Blog Roundup: Try Harder or Do Something Easier?

    Mike
    18 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    This week I especially enjoyed a piece from Bryan Caplan at EconLib about when to advise people to a) try harder as opposed to b) trying something easier, as well as an investing-specific followup piece at Abnormal Returns. Try Harder or Do Something Easier? from Bryan Caplan at EconLib Active vs. Passive: Try Harder or Do Something Easier? from Abnormal Returns Investing Articles Investors Trying to Beat the System Are Invariably Disappointed from Carl Richards Vanguard Total World Stock Index Fund (and a 2-Fund Portfolio) from Barry Barnitz Find a Financial Advisor Outside Your Local Area…
  • When Should I Contribute to a Roth IRA as Opposed to Traditional IRA?

    Mike
    14 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    In reply to a recent Vanguard blog post indicating that investors contribute significantly more to Roth IRAs than to traditional IRAs, a reader asked for an explanation of when it makes sense to use a Roth IRA as opposed to traditional IRA. For most people, the question of whether to make tax-deferred (i.e., “traditional”) retirement account contributions as opposed to Roth contributions is a function of marginal tax rates. (At any given time, your marginal tax rate is the rate of tax you would have to pay on an additional dollar of income.) A simplified example illustrates how…
  • Investing Blog Roundup: Last Call for 2013 IRA Contributions

    Mike
    11 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    Just a friendly reminder: We’re down to the wire here on 2013 IRA contributions. Also, for those of you who will have to make estimated tax payments in 2014, April 15 is the due date for payment #1. Investing Articles If You Can: How Millennials Can Get Rich Slowly (a new short book by William Bernstein) Jason Zweig and Jonathan Clements on Consuelo Mack WealthTrack Vanguard Financial Plan Review Part 4 from The Finance Buff Do Small Cap Value Stocks Add Value in Retirement Portfolios? from Joe Tomlinson Why You Don’t Need to Worry About High Frequency Traders from Monevator…
  • The Social Security Lump Sum Strategy: Don’t Bother

    Mike
    7 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    Reminder: Today at 3pm EST, I’ll be participating in a WSJ webcast about creating an action plan for tapping investments and Social Security in retirement. Questions from viewers are very welcome, so please join us. (For anybody who is interested but who cannot make it at the scheduled time, a recorded version of the webcast will be available at the same URL afterward.) A reader recently asked me about an article in ThinkAdvisor in which the authors suggest that advisors recommend a “lump-sum” Social Security strategy to their clients. The article states: “For those…
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    Getting Your Financial Ducks In A Row

  • Be Careful When Converting

    sraskie
    23 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    Conversion of St Paul (Photo credit: Lawrence OP) When converting from a 401(k), traditional IRA, 403(b), SIMPLE IRA, SEP or 457(b) to a Roth IRA there are some important tax considerations to keep in mind. First, converting from a tax deferred plan to a tax free plan it’s not always the best idea. Generally, it’s going to make sense to convert if the tax payer believes that he or she will be in a higher income tax bracket in retirement. For example, John, age 28 has a 401(k) and recently left his employer. He’s currently in the 15% bracket but expects to be in the 28% bracket or higher…
  • Tax Time is Over. Maybe.

    sraskie
    21 Apr 2014 | 10:59 am
    For most folks tomorrow marks the one week anniversary of filing their 2014 tax return. Not much needs to be done after they’ve filed except for deciding to have more withheld in 2014 for those folks who had to write a check to Uncle Sam or deciding what to do with the refund (hint: put it in an IRA) for those folks who got a refund. What happens when the return may have been submitted with mistakes or perhaps costly errors? Generally, if the error is minor the IRS will correct errors or accept returns without certain forms or schedules attached. For those returns that have a change in…
  • Do Unto Others?

    sraskie
    18 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    In the financial services industry there has been considerable discussion on the application of the fiduciary standard of care for clients versus the suitability standard of care. There are generally two sides to the argument: on the fiduciary side the standard of care is to act in the best interests of the client (the standard that Jim and I are held to and embrace) and the other side which is a suitability standard of care in which the recommendation needs to be suitable, but not necessarily in the best interest of the client. This is where things get sticky. Acting in the best interest of…
  • Obamacare and Your 2013 Tax Return

    Jim Blankenship
    14 Apr 2014 | 5:12 am
    Taxation – Highlighted in the dictionary (Photo credit: efile989) So – you’re considering your income tax return (or maybe you’ve already filed) and you’re wondering if there are things you need to know with regard to Obamacare.  Fortunately, it’s not much (for most folks), for your 2013 return anyhow.  Next year will be a different story. The IRS recently produced their Health Care Tax Tip HCTT-2014-10 which lists some tips about how the health care law impacts your 2013 tax return.  The actual text of the Tip is below: What do I need to know about the Health Care Law for…
  • The Cost of Waiting

    sraskie
    11 Apr 2014 | 5:00 am
    Procrastination is a silent and slow killer. Everyone, including yours truly, is guilty of putting things off, waiting until the last minute and then scurrying around frantically to get done what we could have easily gotten finished weeks or months ago if we would have either planned ahead or simply started. Let me give you an example. Last year my wife and I were debating whether or not to have a tree removed from our back yard. The culprit is the much loathed sweet gum tree that is common in this area of the country. Readers familiar with this pariah of the deciduous family of trees…
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    Personalincome.org

  • Preserving Your Portfolio in a Down Market

    Kevin Mercadante
    22 Apr 2014 | 8:52 am
    It’s often said that one of the best ways to make money is to not lose it. With the stock market being straight up five years in a row, that may soon be a very tall order to keep when it comes to your portfolio. If a rising tide lifts all boats, then a falling tide…well, you know what it can do. Let’s dare to contemplate the possibility that we’ll soon be investing into a down market, and consider how we might be able to minimize the damage. Look for growth and income – not just growth If growth stocks are the darlings of bull markets, income generating assets become more…
  • Fortress Gold Group Review

    Donny Gamble
    18 Apr 2014 | 10:26 am
    Fortress Gold Group Analysis and Recommendations Based on reviews from various watchdog sites, Fortress Gold Group has maintained a relatively good and strong reputation among its clients. The Better Business Bureau gave the company a grade of A+ from a scale of A+ to F. According to its account on BBB, the company has not yet received any complaints or negative feedback from its clients. It has also been a BBB accredited business since July of 2012. Aside from this, a quick glance at the Fortress Gold Group page on BBB will show vital information about the company. BBB Rating: A+…
  • 7 Investing Terms About the Stock Market You Must Know to Succeed

    Carrie Smith
    15 Apr 2014 | 7:54 am
    Are you just starting to invest in the stock market? It’s often an overwhelming, and even scary, subject for many of us who don’t understand it. But the thankfully it’s been around for a long time and isn’t as complicated of a subject as you might think. Since 1792, when the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) traded it’s first securities and 1817 when the Exchange Board was accepted, investors have been putting their hard-earned money into the market. So don’t be afraid to get your piece of the stock market’s pie, and make your financial goals a reality. In an effort to reduce the…
  • Provident Trust Group, LLC Review

    Donny Gamble
    13 Apr 2014 | 12:48 pm
    Provident Trust Group Analysis and Recommendations Provident Trust Group is a relatively young company that has managed to maintain a generally positive reputation in the financial and investment community. A few complaints were filed against the company in the Better Business Bureau website, but they were only minor and were immediately resolved by the company. Although the small number of complaints were not enough to shed a bad light on Provident Trust Group, positive reviews about the company from real and current clients were hard to find. However, one must keep in mind that this does…
  • NuView IRA, Inc. Review

    Donny Gamble
    11 Apr 2014 | 12:22 pm
    NuView IRA Analysis and Recommendations There is not much information available about NuView IRA, Inc online. In other words, prominent watchdog sites do not feature customer reviews about the company. However, even though the company lacks documented client feedback, this does not mean that the company provides satisfactory service. BBB Rating: A+ http://www.bbb.org/central-florida/business-reviews/financial-services/nuview-ira-in-lake-mary-fl-90206553 In the Better Business Bureau website, NuView IRA was given an “A+” rating on a scale from F to A+. According To the organization’s…
 
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    fl-retirementplan.com

  • Weekly Perspective April 21, 2014

    Gardner Sherrill
    21 Apr 2014 | 12:07 pm
    The Markets "Donetsk is a British city! God Save the Queen." In a parody worthy of The Onion, an online poll suggested citizens of the Ukrainian city of Donetsk would like to secede and join Britain. The city, which was founded by Welsh steel worker John Hughes in the 19th century, has been the site […]
  • THERE’S A NEW INDEX IN TOWN…

    Gardner Sherrill
    18 Apr 2014 | 8:44 am
    ​ About five years ago, the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council proposed a new index be developed, one that would “increase the impact that social entrepreneurs, business leaders, and policy makers can have in the world.” The general idea was the new index would measure social progress and spur competition between nations to improve […]
  • 1st Quarter Review 2014

    Gardner Sherrill
    17 Apr 2014 | 3:13 am
  • A look back at the Fiscal Cliff

    Gardner Sherrill
    15 Apr 2014 | 12:59 pm
    Now that tax day has arrived and 2013 tax returns have been filed, we can assess the impact of the fiscal cliff. Remember the fiscal cliff: the deal in Washington that raised taxes and averted the fiscal cliff at the beginning of 2013? Though it may have been a big story a year ago, it […]
  • Weekly Perspective April 14, 2014

    Gardner Sherrill
    14 Apr 2014 | 8:44 am
    The Markets If you’re feeling whiplashed from the mid-week collision of good and bad economic news, you’re not alone. Continue Reading
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