Planning


Are the Stock Market and the Economy Out of Sync?

June 10, 2020

In normal times, the stock market is often a reflection of the economy. But these are not normal times. Even though April was marked by a global shutdown of businesses, rampant unemployment and low economic growth, the S&P 500 Index ended the month up 12.9%. This represented the highest one-month gain since 1987 and posted…

Gender Dynamics: Pre- and Post-Pandemic

May 26, 2020

In past recessions, industries like manufacturing and construction were often the hardest hit. For example, some economists referred to the Great Recession as a “man-cession” because at the outset, more men lost jobs than women. In some households, wives were able to find employment more often than men. The recovery, however, favored men, who regained…

Why Sequence of Returns is Important

May 14, 2020

The research firm Spectrem Group estimated that at the end of 2019 there were 11 million millionaires in the U.S. By the end of the first quarter in 2020, that number had dropped by at least half a million. Clearly, the recent stock market woes have taken a toll on everyone, not just the working…

Takeaways From Warren Buffett’s Annual Shareholders Letter

April 30, 2020

“When seeking directors, CEOs don’t look for pitbulls. It’s the cocker spaniel that gets taken home.”1 The above quote is one of the ideas Warren Buffett conveyed in his most recent Berkshire Hathaway annual letter to shareholders.1 Buffett drives home the point that people who serve on the boards of public companies are there to represent…

Breaking Down the Recent Jargon of the Market

April 10, 2020

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA), the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq experienced quite a roller coaster ride in March. There are mixed opinions as to whether it was due to the global economic impact of the seemingly unstoppable new COVID-19 coronavirus or due to the federal government’s delayed response and tactical efforts to constrain…

Affordable Housing Crisis Challenges

April 7, 2020

There are several factors contributing to the current housing shortage in the U.S. For starters, low inventory of existing homes for sale has driven up the prices of available housing, leaving many first- and second-time homebuyers unable to afford to buy or trade up. Housing permits for new construction have risen throughout the past couple…

Inheriting a 401(k) Plan

March 24, 2020

Within the scope of an investment portfolio, the commonplace 401(k) may seem to be a simplistic account. But it’s not, especially when it comes to estate and legacy planning. The named beneficiary on the plan will inherit your 401(k) regardless of your will’s instructions. And from there, a spectrum of various choices emerge based on…

Student Loan Debt Affects More Than Millennials

February 18, 2020

Common sense would suggest older workers have a much easier time saving than young adults. They are more likely to have already purchased a home, put kids through college and, by that point, are putting more money away for retirement. A recent study by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies confirms this is true, but…

RMD Considerations

February 13, 2020

With people living longer and benefiting from the long-running bull market, there are more factors to consider in taking required minimum distributions (RMDs) from retirement accounts. The traditional IRA, SEP IRA and 401(k) plans offer tax deductions on contributions and tax-deferred growth on earnings during the accumulation phase, but eventually the government wants you to…

Assessing the Role of Government

February 4, 2020

Recently, President Trump bemoaned the inconveniences of low-flow toilets, showers, dishwashers and energy-efficient lightbulbs – all implemented in the wake of government regulation aimed toward conservation efforts.1 One issue in the political divide between parties is disagreement about the role of government in the economy. When Congress passes legislation or the administration’s Cabinet departments impose…

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