Take a look at your e-mail folders. You probably haven’t given them much thought over the years. But marketing consultant Zach Hanlon says on Fast Company that you should reconsider your arrangement, and opt for five main folders.
Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are not hard to find. In fact, IRAs hold a quarter of all retirement plan assets in the U.S according the Employee Benefit Research Institute. It is highly likely for investors to have some type of IRA account, and the vast majority of IRA accounts are of the traditional type. For many, assets in IRAs came from rollover contributions from other qualified plans such as a 401(k) plan of a previous employer, or from annual contributions. As IRAs become more common with time we expect there to be a greater understanding of them in society, but these accounts have specific rules that can become confusing for many investors. These are common mistakes that can be avoided if properly understood.
Parents with the financial means to assist adult children often wrestle with the decision. When you have the funds, it can be hard to say "no" and deny helping your child (no matter the child's age). But, is providing financial assistance always the best idea?
The fact is that parents who know their child is financially stable and responsible sleep much better than parents who don't.
If you have a child who hasn't demonstrated the financial strength to weather a storm, how do you know when to back away?
As a financial professional, I see the anguish parents have in this area as they attempt to successfully launch a child to full independence. The water gets muddied by the emotional bond between parent and child. Below is a series of questions that may help you gain clarity as you make these tough decisions.
It is that time of year again when we start looking forward to that special summer vacation. We at Spectrum sometimes get questions as to what should be done before taking a trip outside the country, or we might hear of someone else's unfortunate situation where something unexpected happened that affected the trip. There are a few things that can be done in advance that should help prevent unexpected financial issues from dampening what would have been a great trip abroad.
Yesterday, the Federal Reserve pledged to remain "patient" before raising interest rates, leading the Dow Jones Industrial Average to its biggest one-day gain so far in 2014. While Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen continued to stress that the decision is "completely data-dependent," the general consensus among policymakers and market participants is that we will see the first rate hike sometime in 2015. Two of the primary determinants in the Fed's decision are currently at odds.
In my post on the jobs report last week, I stated that we would have liked to have seen more evidence of wage growth. Today, I would like to spotlight a recent article in The Wall Street Journal that finds while wage gains have yet to pick up on a national level, they have begun to accelerate across key industrial states.
I have received some questions from clients about a recent report from Barron's pointing out that an analyst is predicting a large drop in companies buying back shares in the second quarter of 2014, compared to the first quarter of 2014. The article suggested that we could see the second quarter drop by one-third of quarter one's total purchase amount. The first quarter of 2014 was one of the best periods on record as seen in the graph further down in the post.
How "rigged" is the stock market that Michael Lewis described in his recent "60 Minutes" interview? On March 30, Lewis joined the show to promote his new book, "Flash Boys," and discuss the book's findings. The topic of high-frequency trading is complex even for financial professionals, and Lewis is able to take the topic and turn it into plain English. However, during the "60 Minutes" piece he claimed that the stock market is "rigged," and this is an alarming assertion for our clients and the many other investors participating in the market.
In my last post on bonds, I mentioned that we are closely watching various measures of inflation, including average hourly earnings and capacity utilization. Today, I want to highlight a recent article from Bloomberg that does a great job of explaining another potential source of inflation pressure: short-term unemployment.
As we enter 2014, all eyes continue to be on the economy. With that in mind, today I want to highlight an interesting article that recently appeared in The Wall Street Journal titled "Small Businesses Anticipate Breakout Year Ahead." The article caught my eye because according to the Small Business Administration, small businesses (those with fewer than 500 employees) accounted for 67 percent of the net new jobs created from mid-2009 to 2011 (the most recent data available). In other words, these companies have been a huge contributor to the ongoing economic recovery.