Profiting from the new oil and gas boom

By: Kathy Kristof
Posted on: December 06, 2013

Decades of importing crude from the vast Arabian deserts left many people believing that America’s dependence on foreign oil was as inevitable as the tide. But sweeping changes in the way oil and gas are extracted are challenging that assumption.The United States, which was once so dependent on imported oil that energy laws were designed to conserve domestic reserves, is now expected... READ MORE

Investing to earn 4 to 8 percent or more

By: Nellie S. Huang
Posted on: August 29, 2013

To earn up to an 8-percent yield in a world where safe investments pay 1 percent or less requires accepting significant risk. But if you really want or need to boost return and are willing to take some risks to do so, read on.Many of today’s best bets for high yields — master limited partnerships (MLPs), mortgage-owning real estate investment trusts, and business development... READ MORE

Why you probably don’t need a living trust

By: Sandra Block
Posted on: August 29, 2013

Living trusts are typically marketed as a way to avoid the cost and hassles of probate — the legal process used to determine that a will is valid and to ensure that your property is distributed according to your wishes.All too often, though, they’re sold to people who don’t need them, said Sally Hurme, a project adviser for AARP. An estate plan that includes a trust costs... READ MORE

Stocks may be less risky than you think

By: Bernard Condon
Posted on: August 29, 2013

Is it too late?If you’ve stayed out of stocks recently, you might be worried that you’ve missed your chance to get back in. After all, they must be expensive now that the Dow Jones industrial average has risen 120 percent in four years to a record high.The good news is that stocks still seem a good bet despite the run-up. The bad news: They’re no bargain, at least by some... READ MORE

Stable value funds help preserve capital

By: Elliot Raphaelson
Posted on: July 10, 2013

Long-term investors should not have a significant amount of money invested in Treasury bills, money market instruments or garden variety savings accounts. The reason is simple: These options return less than 1 percent per year, which means they don’t keep pace with inflation.Yet many people still park their money in these vehicles, simply for the sake of preserving their capital. They ... READ MORE

Will Social Security changes affect you?

By: Jill Schlesinger
Posted on: July 02, 2013

There’s nothing like proposed changes to Social Security limits to get readers of this column going. After President Obama released his fiscal 2014 budget, a number of you wrote in asking, “What will this mean to me?”Well, let’s start with a quick refresher on the current system. To qualify for Social Security retirement benefits, you need to have worked and paid... READ MORE