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Women Need a Unique Approach to Planning for Retirement

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When it comes to planning for retirement, most of us all want the same things—a comfortable standard of living, sufficient income to last as long as we need it, and time to do the things that we enjoy.

In the process of getting there, however, there are different approaches that might be considered, especially when it comes to women. Many women feel they do a good job at managing their current finances but fall short when it comes to planning ahead. Most often, these limitations are due to a lack of adequate time to devote to planning for the future or a lack of understanding about where to begin.

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Book Review: The Opposite of Spoiled by: Ron Lieber

the opposite of spoiledThe Opposite of Spoiled

By: Ron Lieber (Harper Collins, 2015)

Money can be a touchy subject for parents of all income levels. However, if you are a parent who wants to teach your children how to handle their finances, you may be looking for some help talking the talk. This book is meant to be part of that conversation.

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What Investors Can Be Thankful About

stacking-coinsAccentuating the positive during a challenging year for Wall Street.

2015 has presented the world & the markets with considerable challenges. Terrorist shocks, the Russia-Turkey spat, the possibility of a fractured Eurozone, the wild ride for Chinese equities and the global manufacturing slump ... yes, they have weighed on minds and markets, but as the year draws to a close, there is also much to encourage us, and much we can be thankful about economically.

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Financial Literacy: The gift that keeps on giving

gift-of-financial-literacyThere are many opportunities you have as a parent to impart valuable life lessons to your children. Starting when they are very young, you teach them kindness and respect for others. As they grow older into teenagers and young adults, you can continue to teach and mentor your children, helping them gain the confidence to make their own decisions once they become fully independent.

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Hedgefunds Overpromise and Under-deliver

When people in the financial industry talk about institutional investors, they're often referring to pension plans. Pension managers oversee some of the largest portfolios of assets in the financial market, and they attract the interest of sophisticated investment managers and hedge funds, each of whom want a slice of that multi-billion-dollar pie.

Hedge funds market their appeal based on sophistication. They offer strategies that promise to outpace the returns offered by the benchmark indexes. Many hedge fund managers also seek to provide gains during falling markets.

But hedge funds are notorious for their exorbitant fees. That's the price investors pay to access a higher level of expertise and acumen—or so these managers say.

How well do hedge funds and sophisticated money managers make good on their promises? This article answers that question with an emphatic "no", citing research that found the performance of hedge funds hired by pension managers lagged the plan's overall performance. Moreover, these funds charged nearly as much in fees as they failed to deliver in performance, to the tune of over $15 billion.

The takeaway for individual investors is to be wary of sales pitches from sophisticated money managers and skeptical of claims of outperformance. Even the most savvy and largest investors often fall for their unfulfilled and costly promises. Remember, It's impossible for anyone "beat" market, and those claiming to do so are bound to lose sooner or later.

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Do you have a 5/10/20 Retirement Plan?

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We recently received a great piece from the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA) that outlines the basics of how to build a solid plan 20, 10 and 5 years out from retirement. It encourages people to understand what they can do to improve their long term financial plan by providing a checklist that will prepare them for well-being and peace of mind in their golden years.

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Inheritance: A Complex Transition

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For most, inheriting money can be a double-edged sword. Emotions can bounce from sadness to excitement and everything that exists between. Inheritance, while an opportunity, often comes with many challenges both personal and financial. Managing those successfully will allow you to improve your long term wealth and well-being.

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Budget Bill Closes Social Security "Loopholes"

Just like that, two strategies that have helped our clients take advantage of Social Security benefits have been wiped out. As part of the budget bill (H.R. 1314) to raise the U.S. debt limit, two key Social Security "loopholes" have been closed: file and suspend and restricted application for spousal benefits.


The ban on file and suspend will start with suspension requests submitted 180 days after the enactment of the bill on May 1, 2016. The ban on filing a restricted application will apply to anyone who turns 62 in 2016 or later. Depending on your birthday, this may affect your Social Security planning. Retirees who have already filed and suspended or filed claims for restricted spousal benefits are grandfathered in under the new rules and will not be affected by the changes.

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Make Succession a Success

Success After SuccessionIt's not just money that your family and loved ones receive when wealth passes from one generation to the next. There is also a set values and principles to help guide children, grandchildren and other family members toward living meaningful and rewarding lives. Wealth does not define a family—but, it can solidify a foundation on which a family's legacy can grow and flourish.

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Recently Divorced? Prepare a plan for reinvesting in you

Woman Walking On BeachIf you are going through, are considering or have recently gone through a divorce, then you understand already that the emotional toll it takes feels, at times, insurmountable. Sure, you may go to work, or continue to try to enjoy the things that you used to, but it doesn’t feel the same. There can also be feelings of guilt if you are enjoying yourself.

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