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Retirement Planning Weak Spots

Retirement Planning Weak Spots

They are all too common. Many households think they are planning carefully for retirement. In many cases, they are not. Weak spots in their retirement planning and saving may go unnoticed. Couples should recognize that they may face major medical expenses. Each year, Fidelity Investments estimates how much a pair of newly retired 65-year-olds will…

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Set Goals as You Save & Invest

Set Goals as You Save & Invest

Turn your intent into a commitment. Goals give you focus. To find and establish your investing and saving goals, first ask yourself what you want to accomplish. Do you want to build an emergency fund? Build college savings for your child? Have a large retirement fund by age 60? Once you have a defined motivation,…

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Using a Roth IRA as a College Savings Tool

Using a Roth IRA as a College Savings Tool

A tax-advantaged option too many families overlook. At first glance, a Roth IRA might seem an unusual college savings vehicle. Upon further examination, it may look like a particularly smart choice. A Roth IRA allows you to save for college without the constraints of a college fund. This is an important distinction, because you cannot…

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Financing a College Education

Financing a College Education

A primer for parents and grandparents. A university education can often require financing and assuming debt. If your student fills out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) and does not qualify for a Pell Grant or other kinds of help, and has no scholarship offers, what do you do? You probably search for…

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TSP Withdrawal Options Are Changing

TSP Withdrawal Options Are Changing

New rules could soon mean more flexibility. By 2020, federal employees with Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) accounts should have new withdrawal choices for their invested assets. New rules are scheduled to be implemented through the TSP Modernization Act, permitting TSP participants more flexibility.1 The TSP withdrawal rules have been strict for many years. Too strict,…

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The Major 2018 Federal Tax Changes

The Major 2018 Federal Tax Changes

Comparing the old rules with the new. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act made dramatic changes to federal tax law. It is worth reviewing some of these changes as 2019 approaches and households and businesses refine their income tax strategies. Income tax brackets have changed. The old 10%, 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, 35%, and 39.6%…

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Catching Up on Retirement Saving

Catching Up on Retirement Saving

If you are starting at or near 50, consider these ideas. Do you fear you are saving for retirement too late? Plan to address that anxiety with some positive financial moves. If you have little saved for retirement at age 50 (or thereabouts), there is still much you can do to generate a fund for…

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How Retirement Spending Changes With Time

How Retirement Spending Changes With Time

Once away from work, your cost of living may rise before it falls. New retirees sometimes worry that they are spending too much, too soon. Should they scale back? Are they at risk of outliving their money? This concern is legitimate. Many households “live it up” and spend more than they anticipate as retirement starts…

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Keeping This Correction in Perspective

Keeping This Correction in Perspective

After 20 months of relative calm, this volatility needs to be taken in stride. Are you upset by what is happening on Wall Street? It may help to see this pullback within a big-picture context. Corrections have become so rare as of late that when one occurs, emotion threatens to influence investment decisions. So far,…

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The Retirement Mindgame

The Retirement Mindgame

Your outlook may influence your financial outcome. What kind of retirement do you think you’ll have? Qualitatively speaking, what if the success or failure of your retirement begins with your perception of retirement? A whole field of study has emerged on the psychology of saving, spending, and investing: behavioral finance. Since retirement saving is a…

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