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What’s on my mind? You can read about it in my blog. Whether it’s ideas from the industry or emerging trends, you can read about it here. And once in a while, I may throw in a movie review or some other surprise. So keep checking in. I'm glad to have you reading along.

 

Monday, February 10, 2020

The Week on Wall StreetStocks advanced four days out of five during the past market week, erasing the losses of the week before. The Nasdaq Composite surged 4.04%, the S&P 500 3.17%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average 3.00%. Foreign...

 

Monday, February 3, 2020

The Week on Wall StreetStock benchmarks declined for a second straight week as coronavirus news tempered risk appetite.The S&P 500 fell 2.14% on the week. The Nasdaq Composite dipped 1.76%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 2.55%....

 

Monday, January 27, 2020

The Week on Wall StreetStock prices fell last week as investors considered the potential health and economic risks of the flu-like coronavirus.Foreign stock markets, as tracked by the broad MSCI EAFE index, fell 1.03% for the week....

 

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

The Week on Wall StreetTraders were in an upbeat mood last week, reacting to news out of Washington: the signing of the phase-one trade deal between the U.S. and China as well as the Senate passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement...

 

Monday, January 13, 2020

The Week on Wall StreetThe market had a choppy five days, with traders reacting to geopolitical developments and weaker-than-expected jobs data. Even so, the three major U.S. equity indices posted weekly gains and continued their...

 

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Monday, January 6, 2020

The Week on Wall Street Stocks descended from record highs Friday, as traders reacted to a U.S. drone strike that killed Iran's top military officer. Oil prices rose more than 3% following the breaking news.[1] Wall Street benchmarks...

 

Monday, December 30, 2019

What Drove the Markets? Four factors influenced investment performance in 2019: a shift in U.S. monetary policy, the ongoing trade dispute between the U.S. and China, earnings, and the economy. Stocks reached record highs in 2019. The...

 

Monday, December 16, 2019

The Week on Wall Street The U.S. and China announced a limited trade agreement last week. That news lifted U.S. and foreign stocks, leading to weekly gains. Advancing 0.91% on the week, the Nasdaq Composite outperformed the S&P 500...

 

Monday, December 9, 2019

The Week on Wall Street Key Wall Street benchmarks were up and down last week – or rather down and then up. A Tuesday retreat was offset by a Friday rally spurred by the Department of Labor’s November jobs report. While the S&P 500...

 

Monday, December 9, 2019

Some people approach buying a car like they approach marriage, “‘til death do us part.” Others prefer to keep their options open, trading in every few years for the latest make and model, the most cutting-edge...

 

Monday, December 2, 2019

Chris Rock once remarked, “You don’t pay taxes – they take taxes.” That applies not only to income, but also to capital gains...

 

Monday, November 25, 2019

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Monday, November 18, 2019

According to Yale University's Crash Confidence Index, only about 27% of investors are confident the stock market will not crash sometime during the next six months.1 But if fear leads investors to avoid the entire investment class,...

 

Monday, November 11, 2019

Caring for Aging Parents Thanks to healthier lifestyles and advances in modern medicine, the worldwide population over age 60 is growing. The United Nations estimates that by 2050 the number of people aged 60 and older will have more...

 

Monday, November 4, 2019

The U.S. labor market stood strong against headwinds in October. Nonfarm payrolls increased 128,000 last month, higher than consensus estimates for an 85,000 gain. October’s payrolls beat expectations despite a 42,000 slide in...

 

Monday, October 28, 2019

Everyone loves a winner. If an investment is successful, most people naturally want to stick with it. But is that the best approach? It may sound counter intuitive, but it may be possible to have too much of a good thing. Over time,...

 

Monday, October 21, 2019

The reason withdrawals from an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) prior to age 59½ are generally subject to a 10% tax penalty is that policymakers wanted to create a disincentive to use these savings for anything other than...

 

Monday, October 14, 2019

Pursuing your retirement dreams is challenging enough without making some common, and very avoidable, mistakes. Here are eight big mistakes to steer clear of, if possible. No Strategy: Yes, the biggest mistake is having no strategy at...

 

Monday, October 7, 2019

This modern twist on the Ben Franklin maxim reflects the multiplicity of taxes to which earnings are subject in today’s world.¹ Finding ways to manage expenses is one of the cornerstones of a sound financial strategy. Here...

 

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced last week that she would support an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump...

 

Monday, September 30, 2019

The city of Detroit emerged from bankruptcy in 2014. Still, its previous inability to pay investors left some questioning their long-held assumption about the relative safety of municipal bonds.¹ Without question, in the wake of...

 

Monday, September 23, 2019

Economic BlogSeptember 19, 2019 U.S. leading indicators were unchanged in August, following a 0.4% increase in July. The Conference Board’s Leading Economic Index (LEI) was flat month over month, beating Bloomberg estimates of a...

 

Monday, September 16, 2019

Immediate vs. Deferred Annuities Despite not being as well known as some other retirement tools, annuities account for 8% of all assets earmarked for retirement. With about $2.3 trillion in assets, annuities hold more funds than Roth...

 

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

U.S. consumers are feeling especially empowered these days, despite growing pessimism about the economic outlook. As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, Consumer Confidence Pushes Through Trade Uncertainty, the Conference Board’s...

 

Monday, August 26, 2019

U.S. leading indicators rebounded in July, a good sign for the durability of the expansion. The Conference Board’s Leading Economic Index (LEI) rose 0.5% month over month, the biggest gain since September 2018, and above...

 

Monday, August 12, 2019

We’re a week into August, and trade tensions have been the biggest driver of U.S. stocks...

 

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Most portfolios are constructed based on an individual's investment objective, risk tolerance, and time horizon. Using these inputs and sophisticated portfolio-optimization calculations, most investors can feel confident that they own...

 

Monday, July 29, 2019

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.” Niels Bohr, A Danish physicist who won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1922 Hardly a day goes by that we don’t get a question regarding the...

 

Monday, July 22, 2019

The baby boomers have re-defined everything they’ve touched, from music to marriage to parenting and, more lately, to what “old” means—60 is the new 50! Longer, healthier living, however, can put greater stress...

 

Monday, July 15, 2019

After Federal Reserve (Fed) Chair Jerome Powell’s congressional testimony this week, it appears at least a 25 basis point (.25%) cut is in the cards on July 31. This...

 

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

If you live in or have visited a big city, you’ve probably run into street vendors—people who sell everything from hot dogs to umbrellas in carts—on the streets and sidewalks. Many of these entrepreneurs sell...

 

Monday, July 1, 2019

Insurance is meant to protect you against financial loss...

 

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Social Security’s been a fact of retirement life ever since it was established in 1935. We all think we know how...

 

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Of those aged 65 and older, 10 to 20 percent have mild cognitive impairment...

 

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

A power of attorney is a legal document that authorizes someone to act for you...

 

Monday, June 3, 2019

Well, it finally happened. The S&P 500 Index pulled back more than 5% from its all-time high...

 

Monday, May 20, 2019

There's no right time to begin collecting Social Security benefits...

 

Monday, May 13, 2019

Trade fears drove stocks to their worst week of the year...

 

Monday, May 6, 2019

There are many factors to consider when deciding whether to roll over a distribution from a 401(k)...

 

Monday, April 29, 2019

If you're receiving benefits based on your own work record, your benefits will continue...

 

Monday, April 22, 2019

As we get older and our health declines, the greater the chances are....

 

Monday, April 15, 2019

A living trust is a popular estate planning tool that lets you...

 

Monday, April 8, 2019

What a start to 2019! The S&P 500 Index had its best first quarter since 1998....

 

Thursday, April 4, 2019

To qualify for an income tax deduction for home office expenses...

 

Monday, April 1, 2019

One way to get an estimate of...

 

Monday, March 25, 2019

The Federal Reserve (Fed) has doubled down on its patient stance...

 

Monday, March 18, 2019

Answer: The federal government insures certain pension benefits. Specifically, it insures defined benefit plans..

 

Monday, March 11, 2019

Answer: Generally speaking, as much as possible. You need to build a fund that you'll be able to draw on for much of your retirement income. Believe it or not...

 

Friday, March 8, 2019

This Saturday, March 9, 2019, marks the 10-year anniversary of the end to the worst bear market for U.S. stocks since the Great Depression. Although at that time no one could have imagined we’d be looking at the longest bull...

 

Monday, March 4, 2019

“March comes in like a lion, and goes out like a lamb."What a start to 2019...

 

Monday, February 25, 2019

It depends on what kind of IRA you're talking about. Traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs are each subject to different contribution rules. You're allowed to contribute up to $5,500 to a traditional IRA in 2018 (unchanged from 2017)...

 

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Investors have been especially patient during the S&P 500 Index’s 93-day drought of record highs, especially considering the gauge has posted a new high every 12 days on average in this bull market. However, history shows the S&P...

 

Monday, February 11, 2019

The Federal Reserve (Fed) just delivered a widely expected, but important monetary policy decision. On January 30, policymakers decided to leave interest rates unchanged, removing the “some further gradual (rate) increases”...

 

Monday, February 4, 2019

Every year the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) releases its list of tax scams, spotlighting the myriad ways that people try to separate you from your money.¹ The “Dirty Dozen” Identity Theft Using your personal...

 

Monday, January 28, 2019

The Super Bowl indicator suggests that stocks rise for the full year when the Super Bowl winner comes from the original National Football League (now the NFC), but...

 

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

The right answer in your case will depend on a number of key factors. These include, among others, your income and assets, your attitude toward risk, whether you have access to an employer-sponsored plan at work,...

 

Thursday, January 17, 2019

The U.S. government is in Day 27 of a partial government shutdown, now the longest in history.

 

Monday, January 14, 2019

The S&P 500 Index is off to its best start in years, but this is on the heels of the worst year for stocks since 2008. The trifecta of crashing oil prices, confusion from the Federal Reserve (Fed), and trade issues with China all...

 

Thursday, January 10, 2019

The results may surprise you...

 

Monday, January 7, 2019

(Fed) rhetoric has spooked financial markets, especially as uncertainty has clouded investors’ horizons. But we still believe the fundamental U.S. economic landscape is compelling,...

 

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Retirement can have many meanings. For some, it will be a time to travel and spend time with family members. For others, it will be a time to start a new business or begin a charitable endeavor. Regardless of what approach you intend...

 

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Answer: Asset allocation is the process of deciding how to divide your investment dollars across several asset categories. Stocks, bonds, and cash or cash alternatives are the most common components of an asset allocation strategy....

 

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Answer: It depends. The right answer in your case will depend on a number of key factors. These include, among others, your income and assets, your attitude toward risk, whether you have access to an employer-sponsored plan at work,...

 

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Answer: The right answer for you will depend on your situation. First of all, don't underestimate the psychological impact of early retirement. The adjustment from full-time work to a more leisurely pace may be difficult for you. So...

 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Health Care Costs Can Add Up In Retirement Tip: Medicare beneficiaries spent an average of $4,734 out of pocket on health care in 2010, the most recent year for which figures are available. Forty-two percent of that went to premiums,...

 

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Tip: Still Selling Strong. In 2015, investors purchased $236.7 billion in annuity contracts. Most of this capital—$133 billion—went into variable annuities. Source: LIMRA, 2016 Individuals hold more than $2.0 trillion in...