As we navigate life in the 21st century, the trend that will have the most profound effect on the future of our society (and other industrialized societies) is the “Age Wave.” In other words, we are living longer and the percentage of older adults is growing at an unprecedented rate.
An important factor contributing to this demographic shift is the aging of the Baby Boom generation—a whopping 76 million Americans who are steadily marching through middle age and into the ranks of “senior citizens.” Because of their numbers and collective “force of personality,” the impact of Baby Boomers on American life has been likened to “a pig in a python”—a distinct bulge that refuses to “pass through” history unnoticed! Just as they have redefined every stage of their lives, Baby Boomers are also redefining aging and retirement. (more…)
“In the same way that
a good Wall Street investment appreciates in value, you want your investments of time and energy to offer high yields. They should make you feel good — happy,
satisfied, energized, or relaxed.”
Marc Eisenson, Gerri Detweiler, & Nancy Castleman
Invest in Yourself: Six Secrets to a Rich Life
Life satisfaction means different things to different people—each person’s definition is unique. But the important thing to realize is that life is multifaceted and that each facet contributes to the quality of life you experience. Therefore, it is helpful to think of each facet as an integral component of your life portfolio, and the investments of time and attention that you make are what make your portfolio grow.
In terms of adult development theory, life after 50 is typically a pivotal stage when individuals reflect on the direction their lives are taking, confront their own mortality, and dare to ask themselves, “Am I really happy?”
However, what distinguishes Baby Boomers from previous generations is that they wear this existential crisis on their sleeves. Rather than indulging in a time of private contemplation and silent suffering, Baby Boomers are forcing us all to rethink what the “mid-life and beyond” experience can and should be like.
You’ve spent years dutifully contributing to a college savings account for your children or grandchildren. Soon it will at last be time to switch from saving to spending.
You’ve done your best to fully fund the cost of four years of college. But there are so many variables and even more that will continue to affect your estimates. These unknowns include scholarships, whether you’re paying in-state or out-of-state tuition, the return rate of your investments and whether your teen will need more than four years to complete her degree. (more…)
“We’re On The Brink Of An AllOut Trade War!”
“Market Futures Fall As Investors Anticipate New Tariffs!”
“What Will Happen If Trade Tensions Escalate!?”
Chances are you’ve seen headlines like these over the past few months. The media can’t stop talking about tariffs and trade tensions and how they might harm the U.S. economy. But are tariffs really that bad? Is it true that we’re approaching a full-blown trade war with China?
In this piece, we hope to untangle reality from the what-ifs and shed some light on what changes, if any, you should make to your financial plan while the threat of tariffs and trade wars looms.
By: Emilie Goldman
With so many ups and downs in the stock market over the past few quarters, investors may be tempted to try to predict the stock market to avoid declines and benefit from the gains. Yet there is already a group of professional managers—called tactical asset allocators—who are trying to time the market.
Tactical asset allocators generally tell investors they will avoid stock market declines and participate in stock market gains. This promise appeals to most investors since we are all interested in growing and preserving our wealth. But does the track record of tactical asset allocators supports their promise? Thankfully, we came across a 2019 study that sheds light on this subject. (more…)
As Bay Area housing prices continue to rise, many residents—the ones who aren’t planning their escape to Arizona, Oregon, Washington or Texas—are opting not to jump into fray.
Instead of squirreling away their dollars in hopes of being able to amass a six-figure down payment, they’re embracing the freedom and better cash flow that comes with renting instead of buying.
For many people, this approach makes sense emotionally and financially. The median price of a Bay Area home is $830,000 – more than three and a half times the median sale price of $232,700 for homes in the U.S. Anyone who’s visited an open house on the Peninsula, in San Francisco, the East Bay or San Jose knows that homes sell quickly and often above the asking price. (more…)
When you were the parent of a newborn, you might have had a moment or two of clarity amid the haze of exhaustion and sleep deprivation. And in those moments, you might have opened a tax-free college fund for the tiny person sleeping nearby.
Fast-forward 18 years—through board books, potty training, the first day of school, summer vacations, soccer games, birthday parties and middle school—and suddenly that tiny person is a high school senior. Meanwhile, you’ve been dutifully adding to the 529 plan to cover the expense of four years of college. The earnings through this plan are tax-free, and so are the withdrawals for qualified education expenses, making this a popular vehicle for covering college costs. (more…)
According to USNews.com, investments in Target Date Retirement Funds have shown unprecedented growth among investments for retirement, with numbers “approaching $400 billion, [and] with projected sales of $2 trillion by 2020.” The reasons for this popularity among those investing for retirement are twofold: 1) ease of fund management for investors and, 2) the default status these funds have enjoyed since 2006 – if 401k account holders do not select an investment, employer plans are allowed to “default” the employee’s 401k into a Target-Date fund.
What is a “Target-Date” Retirement Fund?
Essentially, a “Target-Date” Retirement Fund is a very low-maintenance investment vehicle that is designed to adjust the risk level of your investments automatically as you approach retirement age. By setting a Target Date for your retirement when you establish the account, a single investment vehicle, you let the fund manager know when you expect to retire. As the years pass and your target date approaches, the fund will automatically begin to adjust the asset allocation between stocks, bonds, and cash equivalents, becoming more conservative as you age. (more…)
In 1996 the Internal Revenue Code was modified to include Section 529, creating an education savings benefit for higher education. While contributions to the Plan are not tax deductible, the earnings on the Plan are; making the 529 College Savings Plan an excellent saving tool when you are doing your financial planning for college for your children. With changes to tax code going into effect this year, the Plan becomes even more attractive.
A financial planner can help you enroll in a 529 College Savings Plan
In 2013, couples earning over $450,000, and singles earning over $400,000, will face higher taxes and lower deductions; while all Americans will see greater withholding from their paychecks. In addition, it is highly likely that we will see significant cuts to Federal Financial Aid even as colleges and universities continue to increase tuition and fees. By beginning to save for college now, your financial planning for college will be much more likely to be successful in covering your child’s tuition and expenses later. (more…)