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Resources / Education

What’s Your Money Script? Money is power

Money is power. A fool and his money are soon parted. A penny saved is a penny earned. Money is the root of all evil. Do any of these expressions ring true for you? As it turns out, the money beliefs our families espoused while we were growing up may have a profound effect on how we behave financially today — and may even influence our financial success. Beliefs drive behaviors In 2011, The Journal of Financial Therapy published…

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Don’t Delay: The Potential Benefits of Starting to Save Now

For long-term investment goals such as retirement, time can be one of your biggest advantages. That’s because time allows your investment dollars to do some of the hard work for you through a mathematical principle known as compounding. The snowball effect The premise behind compounding is fairly simple. You invest to earn money, and if those returns are then reinvested, that money can also earn returns. For example, say you invest $1,000 and earn an annual return of 7%…

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Key Retirement and Tax Numbers for 2018

Every year, the Internal Revenue Service announces cost-of-living adjustments that affect contribution limits for retirement plans, thresholds for deductions and credits, and standard deduction and personal exemption amounts. Here are a few of the key adjustments to the tax numbers for 2018. Employer retirement plans Employees who participate in 401(k), 403(b), and most 457 plans can defer up to $18,500 in compensation in 2018 (up from $18,000 in 2017); employees age 50 and older can defer up to an…

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How can I protect myself from digital deception?

Imagine that you receive an email with an urgent message asking you to verify your banking information by clicking on a link. Or maybe you get an enticing text message claiming that you’ve won a free vacation to the destination of your choice — all you have to do is click on the link you were sent. In both scenarios, clicking on the link causes you to play right into the hands of a cybercriminal seeking your sensitive information….

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What can I do to crack down on robocalls?

You may not mind if a legitimate robocalls provides a helpful announcement from your child’s school or an appointment reminder from a doctor’s office. But sadly, criminals often use robocalls to collect consumers’ personal information and/or conduct various scams. Newer “spoofing” technology displays fake numbers to make it look as though calls are local, rather than coming from overseas, which could trick more people into answering the phone. Robocalls have been illegal since 2009 (unless the telemarketer has the…

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How Much Risk Can You Take?

Many market shocks are short-lived once investors conclude the event is unlikely to cause lasting economic damage. Still, major market downturns such as the 2000 dot-com bust and the 2008-09 credit crisis are powerful reminders that we cannot control or predict exactly how, where, or when precarious situations will arise. Market risk refers to the possibility that an investment will lose value because of a broad decline in the financial markets, which can be the result of economic or…

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Are Your Participants Experiencing a Fee Imbalance?

Subsequent to the 2012 implementation of ERISA fee reporting regulations (ERISA 408(b)(2) & 404(a)(5)), the Department of Labor (DOL) began to consider the appropriateness of the allocation of plan fees among participants in order to address fee imbalance. This is a subject that generally had not been on the radar screen of many plan fiduciaries, but once identified, tends to generate considerable traction due to its obvious validity. Ironically, advisors’ diligent attention to obtaining the lowest accessible share class…

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HSA: A Tax Trifecta Investment Opportunity

When it comes to fiscally frugal health insurance options, health savings accounts (HSA) aren’t exactly new to the game. They’ve been around since 2003 and have only increased in popularity among employers, politicians and certain types of employees. In recent years, however, the growth in popularity of HSAs is due less to the accounts’ function from a cost-saving benefit plan and more to its utility as a wise choice for investment opportunities. It’s time to look beyond the traditional…

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What financial resolutions should I consider making as I look ahead to 2018?

What financial resolutions should I consider making as I look ahead to 2018? A new year is right around the corner, bringing with it a fresh start for you and your finances. What will you do this year to help improve your financial situation? Evaluate your savings goals. The beginning of the year is a great time to examine your overall financial plan. Maybe you want to buy a  new vehicle this year or save money toward a Caribbean…

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What can I learn from looking back on my financial situation in 2017?

What can I learn from looking back on my financial situation in 2017? If your financial plan for 2017 didn’t work out the way you wanted it to, don’t beat yourself up. Instead, ask yourself the following questions to determine what you can learn from reflecting on your financial situation in the last year. Did you meet your financial goals and expectations for 2017? Perhaps you started the year with some financial goals in mind. You wanted to establish…

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