Objective information about retirement, financial planning and investments

Stock Market Highs and Your Retirement

After a rough year in 2018,  the S&P 500, the Dow and the NASDAQ closed at record highs today just ahead of the July 4th holiday. So far in 2019, stocks have staged a very nice recovery. These gains are in spite of the questions and issues … [Continue reading]

4 Steps to Make Your 401(k) Work as Hard as You Do

Whether you work as an employee or you are self-employed you work hard for your money.  In spite of what was said on PBS Frontline The Retirement Gamble and elsewhere in the press, in my opinion 401(k) plans are one of the best retirement savings … [Continue reading]

The Bull Market Turns 10 – Now What?

On March 9, 2009 the market downturn fueled by the financial crisis bottomed out as measured by the S&P 500 Index. On that day the index closed at 677. As we approach the tenth anniversary of the ensuing bull market, the index closed at 2,749 on … [Continue reading]

SALT and Your Taxes

One of the big topics this tax season is SALT. This is not a seasoning for food, but rather SALT stands for state and local taxes. The treatment of these expenses in terms of their deductibility for those who itemize is a major change for the 2018 … [Continue reading]

The Super Bowl and Your Investments

Update, with the Patriots' win yesterday the indicator says the markets should have a down year in 2019. As I mention below, the indicator has been wrong for three years running, as investors let's hope for a fourth year. It’s Super Bowl time and … [Continue reading]

Will my Social Security be Taxed?

Contrary to what some politicians might say, your Social Security benefits are not an entitlement. You’ve paid Social Security taxes over the course of your working life and you’ve earned these benefits. Many retirees and others collecting Social … [Continue reading]

Why Should I Care if My Financial Advisor is a Fiduciary?

The Department of Labor released its final draft of their fiduciary rules mandating that financial advisors place their client's best interests first when offering advice on their retirement accounts in 2016. Here is a post I wrote just before the … [Continue reading]

My Top 10 Most Read Posts of 2018

I hope that 2018 was a good year for you and your families and that you’ve had a wonderful holiday season. For us it was great to have our three adult children home and to be able to spend time together as a family. We all ate way too much good … [Continue reading]

Charitable Giving and Tax Reform

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed in December of 2017 marks the biggest overhaul in the tax code in many years. One area that will be impacted under tax reform is charitable giving. While charitable contributions remain eligible as an itemized … [Continue reading]