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Resources

Common Fiduciary Errors

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. This saying is universal, and certainly applies to fiduciary responsibility. Beginning the year with an eye towards avoiding some of the most common errors makes sense. Most fiduciary errors are unintentional or even well meaning. Here are some examples. Following Plan Documents and Communicating Changes Possibly the most frequent source of fiduciary breach, interpretation of plan provisions is not always intuitive. The remittance of participant deferrals “as soon as…

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Continuity, Coronavirus, ERISA, Stimulus Package

The coronavirus relief includes a “temporary rule preventing partial plan terminations” for plan sponsors of defined contribution retirement plans. The provision specifically states, “A plan shall not be treated as having a partial termination (within the meaning of 4119(d)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) during any plan year which includes the period beginning on March 13, 2020 and ending on March 31, 2021, if the number of active participants covered by the plan on March 31, 2021…

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Majority of Young Adults Living at Home

In 2020, a record number of 18- to 29-year-olds lived at home with their parents. In July, 52% of young adults were living at home, surpassing the previous high of 48% recorded in 1940 at the end of the Great Depression. This record return to the family home has been driven by the coronavirus pandemic and exacerbated by the overall economic downturn, record-low housing inventory along with a shortage of affordable entry-level homes, and high levels of student debt….

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Tips to Help Control Your Finances During the Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has strained the finances of many U.S. households. In an August 2020 survey, 25% of adults said someone in their household had experienced the loss of a job due to the outbreak. Even among those who did not lose a job, 32% said someone in their household has had to reduce hours or take a pay cut due to the economic fallout from the pandemic.1 During these times of financial turmoil and stress, it’s more important…

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Are Value Stocks Poised for a Comeback?

Growth stocks have dominated the market for the last decade, led by tech giants and other fast-growing companies. While it’s possible this trend may continue, some analysts think that value stocks may have strong appeal during the economic recovery.1 No one can predict the market, of course. And past results are never a guarantee of future performance. But it may be helpful to consider these two types of stocks and the place they hold in your portfolio. Value stocks…

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Key Retirement and Tax Numbers for 2021

Every year, the Internal Revenue Service announces cost-of-living adjustments that affect contribution limits for retirement plans and various tax deduction, exclusion, exemption, and threshold amounts. Here are a few of the key adjustments for 2021. Estate, Gift, and Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax The annual gift tax exclusion (and annual generation-skipping transfer tax exclusion) for 2021 is $15,000, the same as in 2020. The gift and estate tax basic exclusion amount (and generation-skipping transfer tax exemption) for 2021 is $11,700,000, up…

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Four Tips to Help Avoid Burnout While Working from Home

The coronavirus pandemic has completely changed the corporate landscape. Many companies have transitioned to having a majority of their employees work from home. As a result, long commutes, office lunches, and face-to-face meetings could be a thing of the past. Even when the pandemic eventually subsides, working remotely may be here to stay. According to a recent survey, three-quarters of adults who are able to work remotely would like to continue doing so at least one day a week…

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Watch Out for These Financial Pitfalls in the New Year

As people move through different stages of life, there are new financial opportunities and potential pitfalls around every corner. Here are common money mistakes to watch out for at every age. Your 20s & 30s Being financially illiterate. By learning as much as you can about saving, budgeting, and investing now, you could benefit from it for the rest of your life. Not saving regularly. Save a portion of every paycheck and then spend what’s left over — not…

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Sequence Risk: Preparing to Retire in a Down Market

“You can’t time the market” is an old maxim, but you also might say, “You can’t always time retirement.” Market losses on the front end of retirement could have an outsize effect on the income you receive from your portfolio by reducing the assets available to pursue growth when the market recovers. The risk of experiencing poor investment performance at the wrong time is called sequence risk or sequence-of-returns risk. Dividing Your Portfolio One strategy that may help address…

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Different Inflation Measures, Different Purposes

                Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, 2020 (data for the period September 2010 to September 2020) The inflation measure most often mentioned in the media is the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), which tracks the average change in prices paid by consumers over time for a fixed basket of goods and services. In setting economic policy, however, the Federal Reserve Open Market…

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