I love you, but not your ‘I Love You Will’

By Allison L. Lee
Posted on June 12, 2023

Are you and your spouse planning to write your wills this season? Congrats! Will-writing is one of the most loving things you can do for each other and for all the people and causes that matter most to your life. But if you’re thinking about implementing simple “I Love You Wills,” read on. While this simple will plan design can work well for many couples, for others, the practical... READ MORE

Investing in fixed income alternatives

By Elliot Raphaelson
Posted on June 07, 2023

Many who invested in bond mutual funds with long maturities in 2022 were disappointed because total returns were negative. When interest rates increase, the value of long-term bonds falls. Thus, for investors who thought that bond holdings would protect them, a fall in fund prices was disappointing, because in 2022 both bond prices and stock prices fell dramatically in value. What... READ MORE

Treasury bills good for earning interest

By Erin Bendig
Posted on May 29, 2023

Savings rates have continued to go up this year, so if you’ve been looking for a place to store your savings and earn interest in the short term, you’ve probably considered a high-yield savings account or CD. And while these are both good options, there’s another short-term investment alternative you should also consider: Treasury bills. Treasury bills (T-bills) have maturity dates ... READ MORE

Comprehensive retirement planning guide

By Elliot Raphaelson
Posted on May 16, 2023

In December 2021, I wrote a favorable review of Wade Pfau’s Retirement Planning Guidebook, published by Retirement Resources. Pfau has recently produced a second edition of his book, which addresses all the major regulations passed since then. Many experts agree this book is the most comprehensive and best-written personal finance book ever written. I agree. If you are approaching... READ MORE

How working affects Social Security benefits

By Jim Miller
Posted on May 11, 2023

Dear Savvy Senior, I started drawing my Social Security retirement benefits back in 2021, when I was forced to retire early. Now I’m interested in going back to work part-time. Will this affect my benefits, and if so, how much? —Back to Work Dear Back, You can collect Social Security retirement benefits and work at the same time, but depending on how old you are and how much... READ MORE

Social Security, Medicare facing changes

By Amanda Seitz and Hannah Fingerhut
Posted on May 02, 2023

Most U.S. adults are opposed to proposals that would cut into Medicare or Social Security benefits, and a majority support raising taxes on the nation’s highest earners to keep Medicare running as is. The new findings, revealed in a March poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, come as both safety net programs are poised to run out of enough cash to pay... READ MORE

REITS offer ways to invest in real estate

By Edward E. Fernandez
Posted on April 28, 2023

With the equity market as volatile as ever, investors are increasingly turning to alternative assets to generate cash flow. One investment vehicle that’s drawing particular attention is real estate investment trusts, or REITs. Research by Nareit shows that investments in REITs have more than doubled over the past 10 years. REITs come in many different forms, with varying criteria.... READ MORE

Many say tipping is getting out of control

By Haleluya Hadero
Posted on April 26, 2023

Across the country, there’s a silent frustration brewing about an age-old practice that many say is getting out of hand: tipping. Some fed-up consumers are posting rants on social media complaining about tip requests at drive-throughs, while others say they’re tired of being asked to leave a gratuity for a muffin or a simple cup of coffee at their neighborhood bakery. What’s... READ MORE

Credit unions share profits with members

By Melissa Lambarena
Posted on April 24, 2023

In the past year, the Federal Reserve has employed several interest rate hikes in an effort to stabilize the U.S. economy. Depending on your situation and financial institution, your debt may have gotten more expensive or your savings might have grown. As rates continue to change, it’s worth exploring whether you’re still getting the best offer around. Compared with big banks, a... READ MORE

Keeping up with the federal gift tax rules

By Rocky Mengle
Posted on April 20, 2023

Thanks to the gift tax exclusion (a.k.a., the gift tax limit or gift tax exemption), you can give money or property each year to family members, friends and others without having to pay any federal gift tax or even file a gift tax return. The federal gift tax rates range from 18% to 40%, so avoiding the tax can save you a lot of money. And not having to bother with a gift tax return can... READ MORE