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End-of-the-Year Money Moves

End-of-the-Year Money Moves

Here are some things you might want to do before saying goodbye to 2018. What has changed for you in 2018? Did you start a new job or leave a job behind? Did you retire? Did you start a family? If notable changes occurred in your personal or professional life, then you will want to…

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Growth Report – Monday, November 12, 2018

Growth Report – Monday, November 12, 2018

SERVICE SECTOR KEEPS BOOMING At a lofty October mark of 60.3, the Institute for Supply Management’s non-manufacturing purchasing manager index was a bit lower than the record 61.6 reading seen in September, but it also beat the 59.3 consensus forecast from Refinitiv. Across the 12 months ending in October, the mean reading for the index…

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No, That Is Not the I.R.S. Calling

No, That Is Not the I.R.S. Calling

Watch out for crooks impersonating I.R.S. agents (and financial industry professionals). Do you know how the Internal Revenue Service contacts taxpayers to resolve a problem? The first step is almost always to send a letter through the U.S. Postal Service to the taxpayer.1 It is very rare for the I.R.S. to make the first contact…

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Growth Report – Monday, November 5, 2018

Growth Report – Monday, November 5, 2018

HIRING SURGED LAST MONTH The Department of Labor’s latest employment report painted a picture of a thriving economy. Payrolls expanded with 250,000 net new hires in October, with wages improving 3.1% year-over-year (that was the best 12-month wage increase in nine years). Unemployment remained remarkably low at 3.7%; underemployment, as measured by the U-6 rate,…

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When Is Social Security Income Taxable?

When Is Social Security Income Taxable?

To find out, look closely at two factors. Your Social Security income could be taxed. That may seem unfair or unfathomable. Regardless of how you feel about it, it is a possibility. Seniors have had to contend with this possibility since 1984. Social Security benefits became taxable above a certain yearly income level in that…

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Growth Report – Monday, October 29, 2018

Growth Report – Monday, October 29, 2018

FIRST ESTIMATE OF Q3 GDP: 3.5% A 4.0% gain in consumer spending and a 3.3% advance in government spending helped strengthen the economy in the three months ending in September. Bureau of Economic Analysis data shows that the past two quarters represent the best 6-month period for U.S. growth since 2014. It appears likely that…

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Tolerate the Turbulence

Tolerate the Turbulence

Look beyond this moment and stay focused on your long-term objectives. Volatility will always be around on Wall Street, and as you invest for the long term, you must learn to tolerate it. Rocky moments, fortunately, are not the norm. Since the end of World War II, there have been dozens of Wall Street shocks.…

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Growth Report – Monday, October 22, 2018

Growth Report – Monday, October 22, 2018

HOMES MOVE AT THE SLOWEST PACE IN 3 YEARS Existing home sales slumped 3.4% in September as the annualized sales rate decelerated to a degree unseen since November 2015. In reporting this, the National Association of Realtors cited the usual factors: climbing mortgage rates, tight inventory, and ascending prices (the median sale price in September…

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Taking a Loan from Your Retirement Plan = Bad Idea

Taking a Loan from Your Retirement Plan = Bad Idea

Why you should refrain from making this move. Thinking about borrowing money from your 401(k), 403(b), or 457 account? Think twice about that because these loans are not only risky, but injurious, to your retirement planning. A loan of this kind damages your retirement savings prospects. A 401(k), 403(b), or 457 should never be viewed…

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Growth Report – Monday, October 15, 2018

Growth Report – Monday, October 15, 2018

UNCERTAINTY BREEDS SELLING, FOLLOWED BY A RELIEF RALLY On Friday, Wall Street rebounded from a disquieting slump that saw the blue chips take an almost 1,400 point dive. The S&P 500 gained 1.42% to snap a 6-session losing streak, the Nasdaq Composite rose 2.29% to fight back from a correction, and the Dow rose 1.15%.…

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