45% of American workers have saved less than $25,000 for retirement, and 26% have saved less than $1,000.
Source: Employee Benefit Research Institute, 2018
Will you outlive your retirement income? Are your financial expectations for the coming year realistic?
Our financial newsletters are designed to provide helpful information on a wide variety of financial topics. Simply click on one of the newsletter topics below to read the article in its entirety.
- HOT TOPIC: Government Acts to Blunt Financial Impact of Global Pandemic
A discussion of the measures being taken by the federal government to support workers, businesses, financial markets, and the economy in these trying times.
- Setting a Retirement Savings Goal
This article features a worksheet to help you estimate the savings you might need to generate your desired retirement income.
- Looking for Value with P/E Ratios
Discover the basics of P/E ratios, with an emphasis on analyzing them in the appropriate context for making meaningful comparisons.
- Early Retirement and Your Tax-Deferred Savings
Find out how the rules for early-distribution penalty exceptions differ for withdrawals from traditional IRAs and employer-sponsored plans.
- Living Benefits Can Help Counter Retirement Risks
Optional riders that add living benefits to annuities might help retirees address two financial risks: outliving their savings and paying for long-term care.
- Don’t Let a Disaster Keep the Lights Off Forever
As a small-business owner, do you know the types of coverages that may or may not be included in a standard business owner policy?
- HOT TOPIC: Government Acts to Blunt Financial Impact of Global Pandemic
- HOT TOPIC: The Coronavirus and the Global Economy
An examination of how China’s coronavirus-driven slowdown has affected global business activity and a look at its potential economic impact.
- Stay-at-Home Spouse? Consider a Spousal IRA
Stay-at-home spouses can fall behind in saving for retirement. This article explains how a spousal IRA can help keep retirement savings on track.
- Three Lessons from Retirees
A survey of workers and retirees yielded three key findings that may prove helpful in planning for retirement. Find out more.
- Five Red Flags That Raise the Odds of an Audit
Ever wonder why the IRS might take a closer look at a taxpayer’s return? This article discusses different types of audits and what might trigger one.
- Behavioral Biases That Can Lead to Costly Mistakes
Learn about six blind spots that can lead to regrettable portfolio decisions (and how investors might avoid them).
- Classifying Workers: Know the Rules and Risks
This article explores the complex web of federal and state tax and employment laws that determine how businesses must classify workers.
- HOT TOPIC: The SECURE Act and Your Retirement Savings
A discussion of the important provisions in the SECURE Act that could affect retirement, tax, and estate planning strategies.
- Three Generations of Retirement Strategies
Millennials, Gen Xers, and baby boomers face different challenges in pursuing retirement goals. This article offers strategies to help address them.
- Do Target-Date Funds Hit the Bull’s-Eye for You?
More than half of 401(k) participants invest in target-date funds, but are they right for everyone? This article provides an overview.
- Retirement Savings: Traditional, Roth, or Both?
How does a traditional or Roth structure affect your IRA or employer-sponsored retirement plan? And what do their differences mean for older workers?
- Municipal Bonds
Tax changes in the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act affect some investors more than others, with implications that spill into the municipal bond market.
- What Is Cyber Insurance, and Do You Need It?
Cyber attacks and loss of data can be devastating, so businesses should be proactive about addressing this risk.
- HOT TOPIC: Two Trade Agreements Offer Optimism, But Uncertainty Remains
A look at the U.S.-China “skinny” trade deal and the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and their potential impact on consumers and the U.S. economy.
- Give and Receive with a Charitable Remainder Trust
Discover how to give a substantial gift to a favorite charity while receiving a flow of income during your lifetime.
- Running with the Dogs
See how the Dogs of the Dow, an investing strategy known for chasing dividends and value, can be implemented through a unit investment trust.
- Rain, Sleet, Snow — and Lawsuits?
Icy winter walkways can lead to injuries and lawsuits. Find out how an umbrella policy can offer higher liability coverage.
- Business or Hobby? It’s All About Taxes
The difference between a money-losing business and a hobby matters at tax time. This article presents IRS criteria for making the distinction.
- Is It Time to Step Up Your Digital Marketing?
Now that 28% of Americans report being online “almost constantly,” could digital marketing be a cost-effective way to attract new customers?
- Hot Topic: The Ag Economy: Tough Times for Farmers in 2019
Farm bankruptcies rose in 2019, despite billions in federal support. This article discusses the effect on rural communities and regional economies.
- Online Shopping Tips
As web-based retail sales continue to grow, these tips may help ensure a safer online shopping experience.
- What’s Required of the Executor of an Estate?
Being named the executor of an estate can be an honor, but this overview shows why it can also be a difficult and time-consuming job.
- Prices and the Economy
Low inflation may seem like good news, but it has a darker side. See which factors might be driving down inflation in the United States.
- Qualified Charitable Distributions
Discover how qualified charitable distributions work and why they may now be more valuable than taking a tax deduction.
- A New Option for Providing Health Coverage in 2020
Learn more about Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements and how they may help small businesses offer employee health coverage.
- HOT TOPIC: Manufacturing Slowdown. . .What Does It Mean for the Economy?
This article looks at some of the reasons behind the manufacturing slowdown and what it might mean for the broader U.S. economy.
- Three Regrets of Retirees
More than half of retirees surveyed had retirement planning regrets. Explore the three most common mistakes and how to avoid them.
- Medicare Open Enrollment
This article explains the changes that Medicare beneficiaries can make during the annual open enrollment period from October 15 to December 7.
- Closed-End Funds May Offer Higher Income
Discover why closed-end funds may offer potentially higher income streams than traditional mutual funds holding similar securities.
- Taming Investment Taxes
Do you know how investments are taxed and which strategies can help improve a portfolio’s tax efficiency?
- Retirement Plans for the Self-Employed Dangle Tax Benefits
Solo 401(k) plans and SEP IRAs may help small-business owners and the self-employed shelter more income from taxes and save for the future.
- HOT TOPIC: Could a Health Savings Account Help Strengthen Your Retirement Plan?
In addition to setting aside pre-tax income to pay current and future medical expenses, an HSA could play an important role in your long-term retirement strategy.
- Protection to Help Your Family
Explore the benefits of individual life insurance versus work-based coverage, and compare term and permanent policies.
- Five Money Issues to Talk About Before the Wedding
Before saying “I do,” newly-engaged couples may want to discuss these five key financial topics.
- What Medicare Won’t Cover
See potentially expensive services Original Medicare doesn’t cover and how Medicare Advantage, Medigap or private insurance might help.
- Index Update: Shifting Sectors Reflect Social Change
How do recent classification changes reflect shifts in the telecommunications sector, and what does that mean to investors?
- Coping with a Labor Shortage
As small businesses struggle to recruit and retain employees in a tight job market, these tips may help owners meet staffing needs.
- HOT TOPIC: Upside Down: What Does the Yield Curve Suggest About Growth?
An inverted yield curve can be an economic indicator along with other factors that contribute to an uncertain outlook for future growth.
- Sticker Shock May Drive Consumers to Used Cars
As new car prices skyrocket, these three trends could make 2019 a good year to buy a three-year-old vehicle.
- Risk Tolerance: Stress-Test Your Portfolio…and Yourself
Do you know your personal tolerance for market risk? Here are three key questions that may help you find out.
- Steps to Help Lower Capital Gains Taxes
Discover how the step-up in basis provision may help reduce capital gains taxes and preserve the value of assets left to heirs.
- Life Insurance Strategies: Reasons Empty Nesters May Want Permanent Coverage
As policyholders age, life insurance could help supplement retirement income, support a surviving spouse, and/or leave a legacy.
- Could Employee Ownership Be Part of Your Succession Plan?
An employee stock ownership plan may be a tax-friendly way for small-business owners to pass the reins to employees when they retire.
- HOT TOPIC: How Geopolitical Tensions May Affect Oil Prices and the Economy
Explore the relationship between fuel prices and economic growth, factors that influence prices, and how U.S. production altered the global oil market.
- Caught in the Middle: The Sandwich Generation
Tips to help balance the competing demands of saving for retirement and providing financial support to adult children and aging parents.
- Consider REITs for Income and Diversification
Explore the basics of equity real estate investment trusts (REITs) including their potential benefits and risks.
- Life Insurance with Long-Term Care Benefits
Concerned about the costs of long-term care? Discover two strategies that combine life insurance coverage with LTC benefits.
- Qualified Longevity Annuity Contracts (QLACs)
Worried your retirement might outlast your savings? A qualified longevity annuity contract could provide an income stream later in life.
- A Quick and Dirty Guide to Credit
Learn about four financing options that might help small businesses expand, pursue new opportunities, or cover operating expenses.
- HOT TOPIC: All Eyes on the U.S. Economy as It Caps Off Decade of Growth
This article compares the current economic expansion with prior business cycles and examines developments that could affect future growth.
- Seeking Balance in a Mutual Fund
Balancing stocks and bonds can be a central part of building an investment portfolio. Find out how balanced funds follow a similar strategy.
- What’s the Real Return on Your Investments?
Tax rates, interest rates, and inflation can all cut into the value of investment dollars. This article looks at real return on investments.
- Indexed Annuities: Growth Potential with Downside Protection
Discover how indexed annuities work, including the risks and potential benefits of purchasing an indexed annuity contract.
- New Study Finds Widespread Job Loss After 50
A job loss after age 50 can carry serious consequences. These tips may help you prepare professionally and financially for a late-career challenge.
- Calculating Key Financial Ratios
The financial ratios that help measure an organization’s performance may also be used by potential lenders and investors. Learn more.
- HOT TOPIC: U.S.-China Trade War: Who Pays the Price?
A look at the issues behind the trade war with China, as well as who will carry the costs of the tariffs and the potential effect on the U.S. economy.
- A Steady Strategy in Turbulent Times
Dollar-cost averaging can help investors focus on building their portfolios through regular investing rather than reacting to market swings.
- College Savings: Roth or 529 Plan?
Can a Roth IRA double as a college savings tool? Find out how a Roth IRA compares with state-based 529 college savings plans.
- Avoiding Probate with a Transfer-on-Death Deed
Many U.S. states offer a way to avoid probate when leaving the family home to your heirs. Learn more about transfer-on-death deeds.
- Interest Rates and the Economy
Do you know which factors influence bond yields and why the gap between short- and long-term yields is often viewed as an economic indicator?
- Steps to Executing an Exit Strategy
Monetizing a closely held business can be a difficult process, so owners may want to plan an exit strategy before they really need one.
- HOT TOPIC: 1040 Postmortem: Making Sense of Your Taxes and Withholding
Surprised by the final numbers on your 2018 tax return? Here are some tips for adjusting withholding to help avoid surprises next tax season.
- Bonds Can Offer Stability Even with Rising Rates
Explore three major categories of bonds, plus ideas for navigating the bond market amid climbing interest rates.
- SRI Investing: Not Just for Stocks
Find out how individual impact bonds may allow investors to preserve principal and generate income while supporting activities that are important to them.
- Be Aware of Observation Care
Covered by Medicare? Discover how observation status can impact your out-of-pocket costs and eligibility for post-hospital skilled nursing facility coverage.
- Retirement Planning: How Secure Is Social Security?
View Social Security’s financial outlook, plus seven proposed fixes for a looming shortfall that may affect future benefits.
- Watch Out for Scams That Target Businesses
Financial scams aimed at businesses are on the rise. See which potentially costly schemes owners and employees need to look out for.