Wednesday, 12 June 2019
Legalized marijuana is a polarizing topic in the U.S., but one aspect of it that is attractive to all sides is the potential tax revenue. But how much are we actually talking about?
A recent article in Forbes magazine noted that there are now ten states that have legalized pot sales, plus D.C., and seven of them currently tax and regulate revenue-producing stores. Those taxes typically total 10-37 percent more than local sales taxes...
Traditional Retirement Planning for Couples Omits the Most Important Part: Good Communication
Tuesday, 04 June 2019
DID YOU KNOW?
36% OF COUPLES SAY THEY HAVEN’T EVEN THOUGHT ABOUT A RETIREMENT PLAN[I]
47% OF COUPLES DISAGREE ABOUT HOW MUCH MONEY THEY’LL NEED IN RETIREMENT[II]
Let’s say you’ve done everything right. You’re on a relatively traditional retirement track. You worked your 30+ years, you’ve saved, raised the kids, bought the house, and you’re still with your spouse. It sounds like your retirement is set and ready to launch. You have earned the right to enjoy it in the way you’ve been thinking about it for years. There’s just one little detail that may have been overlooked. Have you discussed your ideal retirement with your spouse? Do you know what theirs is?
Wednesday, 15 May 2019
Most of us think of the cost of transportation as the monthly payment on our car, perhaps with gasoline prices factored in. But when you add insurance, maintenance, registration fees, taxes and depreciation (that is, having to buy a new car when your current one collapses into repair hell), you may actually be spending thousands of dollars a year on personal mobility...
Your home is your best investment, right?
Thursday, 09 May 2019
A few recent analyses suggest that this old chestnut may not apply anymore—if it ever did. Researchers from the San Francisco Fed have recently concluded that from 1870 through 2015, worldwide returns on homes—that is, the average yearly home appreciation across all houses in the world—was 6.9% after inflation. The comparable yearly return for global stocks was 6.7%. Closer to home (so to speak), U.S. stocks returned 8.5% a year over that time period, vs. 6.1% for houses. In America, houses appreciated a little less robustly than homes abroad, and stocks were much better investments than global ones.
You want to feel happy, right? Doesn’t everybody?
Tuesday, 07 May 2019
Research has shown that once you get past providing for your basic needs, additional money doesn’t materially increase your happiness level, and we all know that meds can only go so far toward adding to our sense of well-being. Are there any other strategies that can move the needle on our happiness scale?
A recent article online in Forbes looked at some research and found a few tricks and habits that might induce more happiness in our lives. The first is exercise. Cardiovascular exercise (that is, a strenuous workout) functions almost like a wonder drug with regard to a person’s overall well-being and has recently been associated with the growth of new neurons in the hippocampus, the part of the brain known to be affected by depression.
Lives are busy. Between work, families, and all the little details and obligations it’s easy to see how our finances, especially long-term finances, can get neglected.
Wednesday, 10 April 2019
But the good thing is, with a little effort and time on the front end, you can really get on top of your finances and be able to check something important off the list. Sound too good to be true? Well, read below to get some tips that can help you get on top.
Write Out Your Goals
Did you know people who write out their goals are 42% more likely to achieve them? This probably has something to do with making the intangible (an idea) tangible. Writing something down helps imprint it in our memory, and it is also a visual reminder. So, write down, in as much detail as you are able, what you want to focus on financially. Most of the goals, like buying a house, starting a business, retiring early or well, will all involve long term planning. But the first step in any plan is figuring out what your target is.
Retirement, like any major life event, can be a rocky transition. For people who had high powered leadership roles, that transition to civilian life may be all the harder.
Thursday, 21 March 2019
Each year, over one hundred CEO’s retire from the S&P 1000. They may leave with nice exit packages and praise for their successes, but often, because their positions were so demanding, they didn’t put too much thought into what would happen next.
Feeling the Loss
The average CEO retires at age 62 and with the average lifespan in the mid-eighties, that leaves over two decades to fill. Retirement can be a challenging period for some, resulting in depression, social isolation, and a loss of purpose. CEOs and other highly successful individuals may, in fact, be more prone to depression than others.[i] Ironically, their success may contribute to their feeling of loss later in life. If self-worth is measured by success or competition, adapting to a non-career driven life may be more challenging. Often, the best way to avoid retirement malaise is to have a plan. The transition to retirement is all the more difficult for individuals who define themselves by what they do. Taking time before retirement to self-reflect and dig into what you want to do next, can help with feelings of loss.
"When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves."
– Viktor Frankl
Tuesday, 26 February 2019
Most people don’t stand at the altar thinking their marriage will end in divorce. When you imagined your life it may have gone a little like college, job, wife, kids, retirement on the beach, or some variation. You probably didn’t add in a mid-life or “gray” (as it’s termed if you are over 50) divorce. But here you are. Life can be unpredictable that way. Considering 52.7% of marriages end in divorce, you’re not alone.[i]
Baby Boomers are divorcing at a much higher rate than the generation before or after them. Currently, 1 in 4 divorces are couples over 50, and the gray divorce rate has doubled since 1990.[ii] There are some theories as to why this is the case. For some, it’s the transitional periods like empty-nest, mid-life crisis, or retirement that trigger the desire to uncouple. The Boomers are also a unique generation in that they plan to live longer and are healthier than previous retirees. Divorce for Boomers also comes with less of a stigma than for previous generations. Unfortunately, there are some downsides to divorcing later and a big one is your financial security. Boomers are already coming up short on their retirement savings. They generally have not saved enough to offset the loss of pensions and The Great Recession. In fact, 48% of Boomers are not on track to afford the basic expenses of retirement.[iii]
Those who are corporate executives or in upper management may have different company benefit options for retirement.
Friday, 01 February 2019
It's important to look over your choices and have a plan in place for your retirement. In this article, we will discuss a few areas to look into before you retire.
Before we talk about the financials, it's good to take some time to discuss the bigger picture of retirement. If you've worked your way up to the executive level, there is a good chance you've invested a lot of your life and your time into your career. As you plan for how you will fund your retirement, it is prudent to also take stock in how you want to live your retired years day to day. Open communication with your partner and family about your goals is key. Having discussions of daily schedules, travel, volunteer work, and downsizing will all help give more structure and shape to this next big step. In that same vein, investing in your overall health through diet and exercise and possibly lifestyle changes may also help improve the quality of your retirement. Being financially secure is obviously very important but being healthy enough to really enjoy it is too. Make sure that you look at the whole of your retirement, not just the money side.
You’ve been working and saving, you have money in the bank for retirement. But, have you spent enough time thinking about what you are going to do when you retire?
Tuesday, 15 January 2019
Where previously in our lives our schedule is filled with work and kids, suddenly you may find yourself with a lot of free time. Oftentimes, people haven’t really set enough time aside to think about what they want to do once they are retired. This is troubling because lacking a clear plan of action or difficulty adapting to a big life change are what can really derail a retirement.[i] It’s easy over decades of working to think of retirement as a finish line, but the danger in that, regardless of how much you have in the bank, is once you are carrying that box off your desk for the last time, you are left with a feeling of now what?
It’s almost time. You’re in your 50s or 60s. You've worked your whole life, you've saved, and perhaps you've gotten some kids through college and into adulthood.
Thursday, 27 December 2018
Perhaps you're married and your spouse is close to retirement as well, or you’re divorced, or you’re single. No matter your situation, retirement is closer on the horizon. You may feel ready to take the plunge. New Year, New You right? Or you may feel anxiety about what life on the other side of working will look like. Who will you be? What will you do? How will you spend your days without the routine of a daily work schedule?
As Christmas approaches and the Congressional session comes to a close for the year, it seems only natural that of course there must be some kind of drama on Capitol Hill in order for 2018 to go out with a bang.
Friday, 14 December 2018
This holiday season Washington, DC has many to choose from. But the one that has gotten the most screen time in the past 48 hours is the threat of a government shutdown.
As unusual televised “negotiations” between Congressional Democrats Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer and President Trump transpired on live television the markets responded negatively as the conversation quickly deteriorated, culminating with the President telling the democratic leaders that he would be “proud” of forcing a government shutdown if he didn’t get what he wanted. He was speaking to funding for a border wall expansion along the US southern border.
One of our responsibilities as an investment advisor is to help you put market news in its proper perspective.
Wednesday, 28 November 2018
If you're reading or listening to the popular press these past few days, you are probably seeing or hearing storm and fury having to do with government shutdowns, market corrections and the possibility that the Fed may raise interest rates. As the popular media scrambles to explain the unexplainable – current market volatility and how long it's going to last – we thought we'd share a headline of our own:
"The stock market is a giant distraction to the business of investing."
Said by Vanguard founder John Bogle in his 2007 classic, "The Little Book of Common-Sense Investing."
Technology has been changing at a breakneck pace for the last forty years. Massive computers that filled entire rooms now live comfortably in your palm.
Wednesday, 31 October 2018
And with each incarnation comes a whole new set of security protocols to protect your private data. Staying on top of the rapid changes to keep your information safe can be overwhelming, but by following some of the basic steps outlined below we hope you can feel more secure. After all, it’s in your best interest to understand how best to defend and protect yourself online.
Studies show that the number one cause of security breaches is the user[i]. The positive interpretation is that, with a little help and information, you can be safer and more secure when handling your sensitive information online.
Does the stress of planning and saving for retirement make your blood run cold?
Monday, 15 October 2018
Are you haunted that a little mistake down the line could cost you your livelihood in your golden years? If this sounds familiar, rest assured you are not alone. In fact, a recent survey found that only 24% of Baby Boomers feel confident they’ll have enough money to last through retirement.[i] That is a sobering number, but the good news is, there are ways to combat the stress and get on track no matter where you are. People make mistakes, it’s part of being human, and while some financial errors can have real financial repercussions down the line, better to forge ahead and learn from the mistakes. A little forethought and planning can make the world of difference not only for your retirement fund but also the stress around it. With a little motivation and some assistance, either in the form of educating yourself or seeking financial guidance, you can get back on track and cut that stress.