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How Women Are Different from Men, Financially Speaking

September 11, 2017
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We all know men and women are different in some fundamental ways. But is this true when it comes to financial planning? In a word, yes. In the financial world, women often find themselves in very different circumstances than their male counterparts. Everyone wants financial security. Yet women often face financial headwinds that can affect…

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Immediate vs. Deferred Annuities

July 24, 2017
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The terms immediate annuity and deferred annuity simply indicate when the distribution phase of the annuity begins. Both allow unlimited contributions, and both can provide, upon election, a continuous stream of payments for life. Immediate annuities Immediate annuities allow you to convert a lump sum of cash into an income stream. They differ from deferred…

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Growth vs. Value: What's the Difference?

April 24, 2017

With the wide variety of stocks in the market, figuring out which ones you want to invest in can be a challenging task. Many investors feel it’s useful to have a system for finding stocks that might be worth buying, deciding what price to pay, and identifying when a stock should be sold. Bull markets–periods…

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Investing as a Couple: Getting to Yes

April 17, 2017
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In a perfect world, both halves of a couple share the same investment goals and agree on the best way to try to reach them. It doesn’t always work that way, though; disagreements about money are often a source of friction between couples. You may be risk averse, while your spouse may be comfortable investing…

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Understanding the Net Investment Income Tax

December 26, 2016
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If your income hits a certain level, you may face an additional wrinkle in calculating your taxes: the net investment income tax (also referred to as the unearned income Medicare contribution tax). This 3.8% Medicare tax applies to some or all of your net investment income if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) exceeds certain…

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10 Years and Counting: Points to Consider as You Approach Retirement

July 18, 2016
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If you’re a decade or so away from retirement, you’ve probably spent at least some time thinking about this major life change. How will you manage the transition? Will you travel, take up a new sport or hobby, or spend more time with friends and family? Should you consider relocating? Will you continue to work…

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The Joys and Financial Challenges of Parenthood

July 11, 2016
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Parenthood can be both wonderfully rewarding and frighteningly challenging. Children give gifts only a parent can understand–from sticky-finger hugs to heartfelt pleas to tag along on Saturday morning errands. You raise them with a clear goal that you secretly dread will actually take place–that someday they will be grown, independent, and ready to move out…

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Setting and Targeting Investment Goals

July 4, 2016
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Go out into your yard and dig a big hole. Every month, throw $50 into it, but don’t take any money out until you’re ready to buy a house, send your child to college, or retire. It sounds a little crazy, doesn’t it? But that’s what investing without setting clear-cut goals is like. If you’re…

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Maintaining Your Financial Records: The Importance of Being Organized

June 27, 2016
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An important part of managing your personal finances is keeping your financial records organized. Whether it’s a utility bill to show proof of residency or a Social Security card for wage reporting purposes, there may be times when you need to locate a financial record or document–and you’ll need to locate it relatively quickly. By…

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New Rules Affect Retirement Savings Advice

April 21, 2016
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On April 6, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued new “conflict of interest” rules regarding financial advice as it relates to retirement plans and IRAs. The new DOL rules generally hold financial professionals to a fiduciary standard if they receive compensation for providing investment advice to retirement plan participants or IRA owners, which means…

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