Should the Self-Employed
Plan to Work Past 65

Some solopreneurs think they will “work forever,” but that perception may be flawed. About 20% of Americans aged 65-74 are still working. A 2016 Pew Research Center study put the precise figure at 18.8%, and Pew estimates that it will reach 31.9% in 2022. That estimate seems reasonable: people are living longer, and the labor force participation rate for Americans aged 65-74 has been rising since the early 1990s.1,2 It may be unreasonable, though, for a pre-retiree to blindly assume he or she will be working at that age. Census Bureau data indicates that the average retirement age in this country is 63.3

May is Disability Insurance
Awareness Month

Do you really want to live without this coverage? If you forgo it, you may pay a high price. Disability insurance is an important insurance coverage that most people lack. Many people think of it as optional – when they think of it at all. Have you thought about it? If you are a parent or a head of household, you should. The odds of a disability are not that long. The Council for Disability Awareness, a non-profit research and education group, estimates that roughly a quarter of today’s 20-year-olds may become disabled at some point in their working lives.1 If you are a breadwinner going without disability insurance, are you taking a risk? Suppose an injury stops you from working for months or years. Even if your household benefits from two or more incomes, the financial hit could be significant.

Insurance for the Small Business Owner

What kind of coverage do you need, and why? Do you own a small business? Are you starting one? What kind of insurance should you have? Truthfully, you should consider (and preferably have) three kinds of insurance for your business and its assets. Liability insurance. Absolutely essential. If you run a small business, especially one that provides services of some kind, you will inevitably be sued someday or at least threatened with a suit. Liability insurance will help

Robo-Advisors vs. Human Advisors

If an investor chooses a non-human financial advisor, what price could they end up paying? Investors have a choice today that they did not have a decade ago. They can seek investing and retirement planning guidance from a human financial advisor or put their invested assets in the hands of a robo-advisor – a software program that maintains their portfolio. Why would an investor want to leave all that decision making up to a computer? In this era of cybercrime and “flash crashes” on Wall Street, doesn’t that seem a little chancy? No, not to the financial firms touting robo-advisors. They are wooing millennials, in particular. Some robo-advisor accounts offer very low
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America Saves Week

How much are you setting aside on behalf of your goals? “Set a goal, make a plan, and save automatically.” This is the motto of America Saves Week, which begins on February 27. America Saves – a project of the American Savings Education Council – calls on Americans to do all three of those things to try and improve their finances. Each winter, it surveys Americans to see how well (or poorly) they are saving. The survey is in its tenth year, and perhaps some recent trends will be reversed in the 2017 edition. Last year, 52% of Americans said that

Protecting Yourself
While Shopping Online

What steps should you take? Whether you shop online routinely or infrequently, the risk of identity theft rises as you offer more and more information about yourself online. Avoid using a debit card, and use only one credit card. If your debit card gets hacked, the thieves may be able to access your bank account. But if you use just one credit card for online shopping, you will have only one card to cancel if your card number is compromised. (It would also be wise to keep a low credit limit on that particular card.) Look for the..

How Millennials Can Get a
Good Start on Retirement Planning

Some simple steps may make a major financial difference over time. If you are younger than 35, saving for retirement may not feel like a priority. After all, retirement may be 30 years away; if your employer does not sponsor a retirement plan, there may be less incentive for you to start. Even so, you must save and invest for retirement as soon as you can. Time is your greatest ally. The earlier you begin, the more years your invested assets have to grow and compound. If you put off retirement planning until your fifties, you may end up having to devote huge chunks of your income just to catch up, at a time when you may have to care for elderly parents, fund college educations, and pay off a mortgage. Do your part to reject the financial stereotype that the media places on millennials. Are you familiar with it...

Comprehensive Financial Planning:
What It Is, Why It Matters

Your approach to building wealth should be built around your goals & values. Just what is “comprehensive financial planning?” As you invest and save for retirement, you will no doubt hear or read about it – but what does that phrase really mean? Just what does comprehensive financial planning entail, and why do knowledgeable investors request this kind of approach? While the phrase may seem ambiguous to some, it can be simply defined. Comprehensive financial planning is about

Making Decisions
About Life Insurance

Man is Mortal. That makes life insurance a little unique and interesting, doesn’t it? We purchase things like health insurance, car insurance and home insurance, then hope we never have a need to use them. Life insurance is different because it’s a widely accepted fact that, sooner or later, each one of us will die. So many choices. When it comes to life insurance, there are many options. You may have heard terms like “whole life insurance,” “term insurance,” or “variable insurance,” but what do they all mean? And what are the differences? Well, first let me point out what they have in common: all life insurance policies provide payment to a beneficiary in the event of your death. Except for that basic tenet, the differences between policies can be major.

Money Habits That May
Help You Become Wealthier

Financially speaking, what do some households do right? Why do some households tread water financially while others make progress? Does it come down to habits? Sometimes the difference starts there. A household that prioritizes paying itself first may end up in much better financial shape in the long run than other households. Some families see themselves as savers, others as spenders. The spenders may enjoy affluence now, but they also may be setting themselves up for financial struggles down the road. The savers better position themselves for financial emergencies and the creation of wealth.

What to Do With an Inheritance

When a loved one dies, it’s already an emotional time, and receiving an unexpected windfall only complicates things. An inheritance can completely change your lifestyle or at least bolster your financial outlook, but only if you make sound decisions. The most important thing to keep in mind when dealing with an inheritance is to create a plan for its use. Because of the emotional circumstances surrounding your inheritance, it may be best to wait before making any decisions so you have time to process your thoughts and develop a coherent plan.

Dealing With Identity Theft

About 7 percent of Americans over the age of 16 are victims of identity theft every year. There is a strong possibility that, at some point, your identity will be stolen. While everyone hopes it will never happen to them, it’s always best to be prepared. Here are the essential steps to take if your identity is stolen.

1. Alert the Bank Alert the company that is associated with the compromised information. Notify them of the situation and ask to freeze any affected accounts. Be sure to change all log in information and PIN numbers to ensure security.