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Thursday, May 19, 2022

May is a month to celebrate the older Americans in our country and honor their lives and the accomplishments they still have ahead of them. Older Americans Month was established in 1963 by President John F. Kennedy to bring awareness...

 

Thursday, May 12, 2022

"Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful," according to legendary investor Warren Buffett. It's a great quote but complex advice to follow, especially in 2022 when stock prices are down double-digits. It...

 

Thursday, May 5, 2022

If you have a balance on a credit card or an adjustable rate mortgage, you might be noticing changes in your payments. Higher interest rates are starting to ripple through the personal finance landscape, and it doesn’t look like...

 

Thursday, April 28, 2022

In recent weeks, the word recession has started creeping into business news and financial market coverage. Is that cause for alarm or just another attention-grabbing headline? There’s no simple answer. A recession is defined as...

 

Thursday, April 21, 2022

The Federal Reserve, in recent years, has been committed to being open about its policy on interest rates. And that commitment was on full display in recent weeks. In an early April speech, Fed Governor Lael Brainard said the central...

 

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Thursday, April 14, 2022

You may have heard that both Amazon and Alphabet (Google's parent company) recently announced stock splits. But what you may have missed is the subplot to the unfolding story. The decision to split makes it likely that one of them...

 

Thursday, April 7, 2022

April marks the start of Financial Literacy Month, a nationally recognized movement to promote and support financial understanding in children and teens. For many, it's a fantastic opportunity to teach and connect with their children...

 

Friday, April 1, 2022

What do The Dukes of Hazzard, M*A*S*H, and The Love Boat all have in common? They were top-rated television programs in 1982; the last time inflation was hovering in the 7% range. When inflation is running hot, you can feel its...

 

Thursday, March 24, 2022

What is unfolding in Ukraine is extremely troubling. As Russia presses its military advantage, it is inspiring to see Ukrainians defending their country. And while the images of fleeing refugees and bombed out maternity wards create...

 

Thursday, March 17, 2022

The latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) report was recently released and confirmed what economists anticipated: consumer inflation has risen 7.9% over the past year, the largest spike since 1982— none of which is a surprise for...

 

Thursday, March 10, 2022

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has made the Fed’s interest rate decision a little more complicated. The Fed appears set to raise interest rates by 0.25% at its March meeting. Up until recently, there was talk by Fed officials...

 

Thursday, March 3, 2022

It’s easy to get excited reading the news. With all of the storms and stress of the last few years, it’s only natural to react to each ping of our phone’s news apps with a deep sigh and a cynical “what...

 

Thursday, February 24, 2022

There is plenty to worry about these days. Top of mind is the escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine. The U.S. has closed the embassy in Kyiv and warned of a dramatic buildup of Russian forces on the border with Ukraine...

 

Thursday, February 17, 2022

You may have heard the saying, “inflation hurts savers and benefits borrowers.”  The expression suggests that borrowers benefit from inflation because they pay back lenders with dollars worth less than when the money...

 

Thursday, February 10, 2022

If you’re concerned about today’s market volatility, you might take some comfort from one of my favorite quotes by Warren Buffett. “I would tell them don’t watch the market closely,” said the Oracle of...

 

Thursday, February 3, 2022

It was interesting to note, amid other economic indicators, that many of the highest of the high-end auto brands are having banner years. While many more everyday domestics and imports are still dealing with supply issues, to the...

 

Thursday, January 27, 2022

For the first time in nearly 20 years, the IRS has released updated actuarial or life expectancy tables. Those who take a required minimum distribution (RMD) from their retirement accounts may already know we use these tables to...

 

Thursday, January 20, 2022

When bond yields go up, bond prices go down. It’s a time-tested principle, but it’s also one we haven’t experienced much since the pandemic began. At least, not until the past several weeks. You could feel the effect...

 

Thursday, January 13, 2022

By any measure, 2021 was a strong year for investors. But what’s in store for 2022? From my perspective, I expect that many of the same forces that influenced markets last year will play a role again in the year ahead. COVID-19...

 

Thursday, January 6, 2022

Preparing for retirement just got a little more financial wiggle room. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has some new contribution limits for 2022.Staying put for 2022 are traditional Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), with the...

 

Thursday, December 30, 2021

Most people have heard about the Federal Reserve, but I’ve found that few understand the many roles it plays in the overall economy over the years. The Fed makes headlines every few weeks by updating investors on what’s...

 

Thursday, December 23, 2021

 

Thursday, December 16, 2021

 

Thursday, December 2, 2021

Healthcare can be one of the priciest yet essential parts of life’s journey. And yet, many struggle to utilize the financial tools that may help. Take Health Saving Accounts (HSAs), for example. In 2019, 55% of those with HSAs...

 

Thursday, November 18, 2021

While it’s still too early to draw any final conclusions, Congress is getting closer to outlining what tax law changes are under consideration to pay for the proposed $1.75 trillion Build Back Better Plan.1For now, it appears...

 

Thursday, November 11, 2021

Financial markets can be challenging to understand. But when markets enter a “bad news is good news” cycle, it becomes even more difficult to follow along. At its November meeting, the Fed outlined its plan to taper...

 

Thursday, November 4, 2021

Financial markets tend to function best when they have clear, strong leadership. When there’s concern about who’s the boss, markets can struggle.Jerome Powell’s first term as Fed Chair ends in February 2022. Until...

 

Thursday, October 28, 2021

While the world has begun to recover from the economic disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic, the delayed reaction has been felt in the supply chain. Industrial shutdowns around the world slowed production to a relative crawl, leaving...

 

Thursday, October 21, 2021

On October 13, 2021, the Social Security Administration (SSA) officially announced that Social Security recipients will receive a 5.9 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for 2022, the largest increase in four decades. This...

 

Thursday, October 14, 2021

It can be incredibly difficult to make sense of data. A report coming from one body may tell you one thing, and another report might seem to offer a wholly different perspective.Such is the case with August’s jobs numbers from...

 

Thursday, October 7, 2021

Plan for tomorrow, today.That seems like sensible advice, doesn't it? Yet a surprising number of people leave no estate plan in place for their survivors. It makes a certain amount of sense. Nobody likes talking about death. But this...

 

Thursday, September 30, 2021

If you are feeling a bit confused about the direction of inflation, you’re in good company. Some of the best and brightest economists in the country are having a tough time getting their arms around the current inflation trends...

 

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Most likely, you’ve heard what’s brewing in Washington, D.C., called by one of these names. The Build Back Better Act. Or the $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill. Or the Jobs and Economic Recovery Plan for Working...

 

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Perhaps you’ve heard the maxim, “Preparation is the key to success.” But when it comes to life insurance, knowing when to prepare is almost as important as the preparation itself. Sure, it can be difficult to think...

 

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Are you having a tough time keeping track of inflation's mixed signals? You’re not alone. Consumer prices in July climbed at their fastest rate since August 2008. Worse, producer prices, which can be an indicator of future price...

 

Thursday, September 2, 2021

It’s time for your life insurance check-up. September is National Life Insurance Awareness Month, so it’s a great time to review your coverage.1 If you don’t have any life insurance, you’re not alone. Life...

 

Thursday, August 26, 2021

The news keeps getting better for Social Security recipients.It's now projected that benefits will increase 6.1% in 2022, up from the 4.7% forecast just two months ago. That would be the most significant increase since 1983.1...

 

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Have you ever heard the Wall Street expression, "markets climb a wall of worry?" It's the idea that financial markets are constantly on edge. Traders fret about how long a market rally can continue before it runs into trouble. Worry...

 

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Corporate earnings season has begun, and the results are turning heads on Wall Street. Of the 120 companies in the S&P 500 index that reported numbers as of Friday, July 23, 89% of them beat the Street’s earnings-per-share...

 

Thursday, August 5, 2021

On July 6, oil prices reached a six-year high of $76.98 a barrel. This benchmark came as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and allies failed to reach an agreement regarding an increase in production.1 This...

 

Thursday, July 29, 2021

With all the attention given to inflation, stock prices, and job reports, it’s been easy to overlook the remarkable move in the bond market during the past few months. The yield on the 10-year treasury closed at 1.37% on Friday,...

 

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Inflation is defined as the general upward price movement of goods and services in an economy. The key word is “general.” Inflation tends to be uneven and affects the price of some items more than others. If you’ve...

 

Thursday, July 15, 2021

At its June meeting, the Federal Reserve confirmed what many of us have suspected for some time: prices are rising. In fact, prices are climbing faster than many expected. In response, the Fed raised its inflation expectation to 3.4%,...

 

Thursday, July 8, 2021

If there is a "silver lining" to all the inflation talk, it may be that Social Security benefits are expected to see a larger-than-normal increase in 2022. Preliminary estimates call for a 4.7% cost-of-living increase (COLA) in Social...

 

Thursday, July 1, 2021

Recently, you may have seen headlines regarding the Securing a Strong Retirement Act, also referred to as the second version of the SECURE Act, or SECURE Act 2.0. As the bill moves from the House of Representatives to the Senate, many...

 

Thursday, June 24, 2021

President Joe Biden introduced the much-anticipated American Jobs Plan, which outlines an approach to spend roughly $2.2 trillion on the nation's infrastructure and other projects.As part of the legislative process, the Biden...

 

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Now and again, the price action on Wall Street can surprise even the most seasoned investors.Look no further than when President Biden in late April proposed an increase in the tax on capital gains to 39.6% from 20% for those...

 

Thursday, June 10, 2021

A recent survey shows that 63% of investors are more interested in protecting their financial assets and planning for uncertainty in the future than anything else.1There are many reasons for this change, but here are a few of the most...

 

Thursday, June 3, 2021

What does it mean when two of the most powerful voices in American financial life seem to be saying two different things?In one corner, we have the “Oracle of Omaha,” investor Warren Buffett. As one of the nation’s...

 

Thursday, May 27, 2021

A cyberattack shut down a major gas and energy pipeline supplying the East Coast of the United States for several days. The actual pipelines themselves are still functional and have since started running again, but it’s led to...

 

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Will your retirement dreams match your reality?That's perhaps the most critical question to ask people who are currently retired. Was your retirement what you expected, or was it something else?For more than 30 years, the Employee...

 

Thursday, May 13, 2021

Non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, have been the recipient of the latest buzz. NFTs are digital files attached to blockchain codes. If you know anything about digital currencies, you’re probably aware that these blockchain codes are...

 

Thursday, May 6, 2021

Recently, you may have seen reports that a record-low number of homes are available for sale—roughly 1.03 million nationwide. If you compare that to the average number of homes for sale during the past 10 years, it's no surprise...

 

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Now and again, the price action on Wall Street can surprise even the most seasoned investors.Look no further than when President Biden in late April proposed an increase in the tax on capital gains to 39.6% from 20% for those...

 

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Investors looking for "green shoots" to confirm that the economy is on the mend have seen plenty of examples in recent weeks. Retail sales rose 9.8% in March, the largest monthly gain since May 2020. It's important to remember that...

 

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Inflation has emerged as one of the top financial concerns for investors as they size up the economy for the rest of the year. According to research by Deutsche Bank, Google searches for “inflation” are rising rapidly and...

 

Thursday, April 8, 2021

There’s an old Wall Street maxim that says, “markets climb a wall of worry.” And these days, there’s plenty to worry about with the trend in long-term interest rates.The 10-year Treasury yield in recent weeks...

 

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Among the many changes arising from the pandemic, one of the most noticeable was a change in American spending habits.A survey released in March 2021 by Pew Research shows that Americans have increasingly chosen to put away what extra...

 

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Major League Baseball scheduled Opening Day for April 1, but two states have already scored with spring training underway.Every year, spring training divides the 30 MLB teams into two squads. Half of the teams travel to Florida as...

 

Thursday, March 18, 2021

Most people understand that stock prices don't go straight up. But when market volatility increases, the price action can test the mettle of even the most seasoned investor. In recent weeks, stock prices have trended lower with a few...

 

Thursday, March 11, 2021

One time-tested principle of investing is, "when bond yields move higher, bond prices tend to move lower." Investors are doing a "double take" on the 10-year Treasury yield, which recently topped 1.5% — its highest level in...

 

Thursday, March 4, 2021

The acronym “SPAC” is showing up more often these days because there is some big money behind the revitalized investment approach. SPAC stands for Special Purpose Acquisition Company, and they are sometimes referred to as...

 

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

At this time last year, it was still unknown that a deadly global pandemic was on the rise, eventually stalling economic growth and sending crude oil prices into negative territory. But recently, oil prices have surged, with crude...

 

Thursday, February 18, 2021

It can be easy to overlook the nation’s solid economic fundamentals when the financial media splashes stories every day about an army of amateur traders, short-selling mania, and initial public offerings (IPOs) that double in...

 

Thursday, February 11, 2021

What's your "go-to" source for financial information? "Family and friends" is the #1 answer given in the annual Retirement Confidence Survey. But a close second is search engines and other online tools, including online forums like...

 

Thursday, February 4, 2021

The 10-year Treasury yield has climbed higher since the New Year, which means that some bond prices are dropping. You may have seen the headlines that say, “10-Year Yields Over 1%.” For some, the first time they experience...

 

Thursday, January 28, 2021

Your investment strategy is a lot like a marriage. One day you may feel like everything’s going swimmingly. The next day, there might be an argument over who forgot to load the dishwasher. And even the best marriages and...

 

Thursday, January 21, 2021

The personal savings rate in the United States, which is the amount of income left after taxes and household spending, has reached some significant milestones. In April, when much of the country stayed home to avoid the COVID-19...

 

Thursday, January 14, 2021

The first week of 2021 has already had many ups and downs. Just because it’s a new year doesn’t mean that the 2020 issues go away, and so far, 2021 has been no exception to this rule. The markets opened on January 4 and...

 

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Things you can do for your future as the year unfolds. What financial, business, or life priorities do you need to address for the coming year? Now is an excellent time to think about the investing, saving, or budgeting methods you...

 

Thursday, December 31, 2020

Undeniably, spring 2020 has tried the patience of investors. An 11-year bull market ended. Key economic indicators went haywire. Household confidence was shaken. The Standard & Poor’s 500, the benchmark for the broad stock...

 

Friday, December 18, 2020

As you get to the end of your year there are lots of last-minute things you need to work on when it comes to the goals you wanted to accomplish in 2020. Here are some parts of your financial life to think about before we start 2021....

 

Friday, December 4, 2020

As an investor, it can be tempting to get caught up in daily news headlines. For example, wanting to sell all your investments and put them into cash when you are worried about the election outcome. Consider how news about the...

 

Friday, November 27, 2020

With the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates at or near zero, you may wonder about your mortgage. Is it a good time to refinance or even pay off the debt entirely? After all, your mortgage is one of the biggest expenses you may...

 

Friday, November 20, 2020

As the United States sees a rise in cases of COVID-19 across the nation, news of two promising vaccines out of hundreds being tested has offered a ray of hope for a fatigued world.1 A positive reaction to these vaccines affects every...

 

Friday, November 13, 2020

Here are some things you might consider before saying goodbye to 2020 What has changed for you in 2020? For many, this year has been as complicated as learning a new dance. Did you start a new job or leave a job behind? That's one step...

 

Friday, November 6, 2020

On October 26, the Treasury Department released the 2021 adjusted figures for retirement account savings. Although these adjustments won’t bring any major changes, there are some minor elements to note. 401(k)sThe salary...

 

Friday, October 30, 2020

The upcoming election is prompting some people to reconsider their investment strategy.In fact, 45% of consumers with $100,000 or more investable assets expect to make changes to their portfolio due to the upcoming 2020 presidential...

 

Friday, October 16, 2020

When training to become a financial professional, much of our course work centers on the six critical areas of creating a financial strategy. Some recognize October as Financial Planning Month, so it's an excellent opportunity to...

 

Friday, October 9, 2020

Medicare’s open enrollment period runs from October 15 to December 7. If you are enrolling in Medicare for the first time, give yourself plenty of time. You may discover that it is much more complex than an employer-sponsored...