Kiplinger5 min read
Holistic Legacy Planning: It's About More Than the Money
Planning your legacy can be a complicated process. Navigating how to pass on financial assets, real estate and possessions can be stressful, and some people end up putting it off due to concerns about difficult conversations with family, confusion ar
Kiplinger6 min read
Some Financial Adviser Credentials Are Not Trustworthy
If you're working with a Certified Financial Planner, you might feel confident that you are working with a fiduciary -- someone who is required to put your interests ahead of their own. Unfortunately, you could be wrong, because under current rules,
Kiplinger4 min read
Can Your 401(k) Withstand Market Volatility?
It's no secret that volatility has returned to the stock market. From October 2018 through January 2019, the S&P 500 monthly returns were -6.84%, +2.04%, -9.03% and + 8.01%. Given that most savers have 401(k)s as the main source of their retirement
Kiplinger6 min read
Aldi vs. Whole Foods, Round 2 (After Amazon Cut Produce Prices)
Whole Foods announced another round of price cuts on April 1, this time claiming to lower everyday prices on hundreds of produce items by an average of 20%. Since we just compared prices on 50 grocery staples at Aldi and Whole Foods in October - Al
Kiplinger5 min read
The 5 Highest-Rated Dow Jones Stocks
The Dow Jones Industrial Average is enjoying a remarkable rally. In 2019, Dow stocks - a group of 30 American blue-chip companies - have soared 13.9% as a group. We now find ourselves within striking distance of the index's all-time high, and if earn
Kiplinger3 min read
Why It's Important to Talk to Your Children about Your Financial Plan
As my children grow older, I grapple with a mix of emotions -- some sadness and nostalgia for when they were small enough to sit on my lap, but above all, excitement for them to learn and experience life on their own. Both of my sons are in college n
Kiplinger4 min read
Build a Retirement Plan That Provides Paychecks AND Playchecks
If you're worried about not having enough money saved to retire, you certainly aren't alone. Time and again, polls find it's a top concern for pre-retirees. In one telling survey conducted for Allianz Life in 2017, 63% of respondents said they feare
Kiplinger4 min read
The Case for a Lump Sum Pension Distribution
Large corporations, like Pfizer and Bristol-Myers, have long extolled the benefits of their defined benefit pension plans. However, in 2017, Pfizer finally pulled the plug on its defined benefit plan in favor of a more company-friendly 401(k) employe
Kiplinger4 min read
Your Estate Plan Isn't Complete Without Fixing the Password Problem
When I was a young trust officer just getting started in this business 30-some years ago, estate administration was a much simpler process. Not only have estate planning techniques become more complex, but the way an executor gathers information abou
Kiplinger4 min read
8 Steps to Appeal Your Property Tax Bill
Home values have risen across the country, which means many homeowners' property taxes are going up, too. The average annual property tax for owner-occupied single family homes nationwide in 2017 was $3,399, an effective tax rate of 1.17%, according
Kiplinger6 min read
9 Things You Must Know About Retiring to Arizona
Much like Florida, Arizona's population swells in the winter months -- a 2002 study by the Arizona State University reported a boost of nearly 300,000 retirees who temporarily settled in Arizona for the winter. In Lake Havasu City, for instance, the
Kiplinger5 min read
How to Adopt a Retirement Distribution Mindset
The moment is arriving: After decades of sweating and saving, you're about to retire and glide off into a golden sunset. No more dealing with the boss's temper tantrums, catching the 7 a.m. train into the city or ironing those white shirts on Sunday
Kiplinger6 min read
The 5 Best Vanguard Funds for Retirees
Vanguard, with more than $5 trillion in global assets under management, is the world's largest mutual fund provider - and for good reason. Vanguard funds pioneered index investing and, since its founding in the 1970s by the late Jack Bogle, have emph
Kiplinger12 min read
50 Top Stocks That Billionaires Love
Do you want to invest like real billionaires do? Most billionaires obviously have much more money to burn than the average investor. And they also have enough cash in the bank to wait things out should their stock picks turn sour. Still, given the so
Kiplinger2 min read
Why Adviser Rankings May Not Be All They Seem
People love rankings, whether they involve college basketball, universities or the best places to live. Rarely do consumers dig deeper to determine the criteria behind the rankings. One of the findings of behavioral finance is that humans love shortc
Kiplinger6 min read
11 Reasons You Need Umbrella Insurance Right Now
An umbrella insurance policy can protect your assets and future earnings from expensive lawsuits. This type of policy increases the liability limits beyond the coverage offered by your auto and homeowners insurance policies. "Catastrophic financial l
Kiplinger2 min read
What Are the Income Tax Brackets for 2019 vs. 2018?
It's never too early to start thinking about your next income tax return. For most taxpayers, that'll be your return for the 2019 tax year--which, by the way, will be due on April 15, 2020. The 2019 tax rates themselves are the same as the tax rates
Kiplinger4 min read
How Long Should You Keep Tax Records?
Once you've filed your tax return, what should you do with all the forms, receipts, canceled checks and other records scattered across your desk? Do you need to keep them, or can you shred them now? The IRS generally has three years after the due dat
Kiplinger6 min read
5 Marijuana Stocks Wall Street Is Most Bullish On
Cannabis and marijuana stocks are an exciting industry right now. According to Cowen & Co.'s Vivien Azer - a pioneer in cannabis-stock analysis - U.S. marijuana sales are set to reach about $80 billion by 2030. Currently, U.S. legal and illicit sales
Kiplinger2 min read
Miss the Tax Deadline? What to Do If You Forgot to File Taxes
If you didn't file your 2018 federal tax return or request a filing extension by April 15, don't let that stop you from submitting your 1040 and paying your tax as soon as possible if you owe the IRS money. Acting quickly will help keep the penalties
Kiplinger5 min read
Is Your Insurance Hurting You Instead of Helping You?
Life insurance is probably the most underappreciated and mis-sold element in financial planning, but with proper integration, it can be an almost indispensable vehicle for wealth transfer. Many people first consider buying life insurance when they pu
Kiplinger5 min read
Is A Stock Market Correction In The Cards?
The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index rocketed more than 15% higher through mid-April. But it's telling that the lion's share of the gains came in the first two months. Stocks have moved higher since the start of March, but at a much more leisurely p
Kiplinger4 min read
Sleeping Your Way to the Top (Or Bottom)
You often spend more time at the office with co-workers than you spend at home with your spouse. So, what can happen? You know the answer; having an office affair. We hear a lot of buzz about this, but how often does it really happen? Important No
Kiplinger4 min read
McKenzie Bezos: 4 Wealth Strategy Concerns
On April 4, it was announced that McKenzie Bezos would be receiving $36 billion worth of assets from her divorce from Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and the world's wealthiest person. First of all, congratulations to Jeff and McKenzie for keeping this
Kiplinger15 min read
The 45 Cheapest Index Funds in the ETF Universe
Vanguard. Schwab. iShares. SPDR. All of these exchange-traded fund (ETF) giants undercut each other for years by putting out the cheapest index funds they could. All competed against each other in a so-called "race to zero." And all lost to the most
Kiplinger8 min read
12 Bank Stocks That Wall Street Loves the Most
Bank earnings season kicked off Friday, April 12, with first-quarter reports from JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC). As more reports roll in, investors will be keen to see what a pause in interest-rate hikes and a potential slowdown in econo
Kiplinger3 min read
Golden Rules for Going Into Business for Yourself
"I work both in sales and as a tech for a Midwest technology company. As an hourly employee, I can see the potential for going out on my own and earning far more than what I am currently being paid. "Today, with so much business, legal and accounti
Kiplinger10 min read
10 Top Consumer Discretionary ETFs to Buy
Consumer discretionary stocks and exchange-traded funds (ETFs) have been among the most closely watched area of the market this year. That's because consumer spending, and the health of the economy broadly, are up in the air. Consider the words of Br
Kiplinger9 min read
8 Ways You Might Be Cheating on Your Taxes
Whether we're pointing out frequently overlooked tax breaks, explaining how retirement income is taxed or providing tools that help you adjust your tax withholding, the editors here at Kiplinger want you to trim as much off your tax bill as legally p
Kiplinger5 min read
10 Secrets of the Millionaires Next Door
We all know somebody like Mitch, your mass-transit-riding, brown-bagging coworker who has toiled in accounting for as long as you can remember. Did you know he owns a vacation house at the beach? Or the McGillicuddy family, who live down the street i
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