Losing a job can be devastating for those 50 or older because older workers struggle more than younger counterparts do in the job market. Unemployment, even for six months, can take years to recover from and can hamper retirement plans.
Popular financial myths include needing a massive emergency fund and that marrying always means higher taxes. Many people also misunderstand the best use of individual retirement accounts or the minimal impact of scholarships on college costs.
When a relative dies, family members typically are not saddled with that person's debt, unless that relative has co-signed a loan, or a similar circumstance. Family members typically are not responsible for the remaining balance if creditors have wiped out an estate.
Financial adviser Greg De Jong offers advice on succession, discussing the merger of his multimillion-dollar practice with another firm. Extraction of equity is important, De Jong says, but "No. 2 behind my most important goal: the long-term well-being of my clients."
Couples can maximize their Social Security benefits by delaying filing so they don't outlive their money, claiming the spousal benefit or using the restricted filing strategy, writes Paul Norr, a certified financial planner with Bucks County Financial Planning Group. He explains the benefits of each strategy.
If confronted by a prolonged recession, the Federal Reserve may increase its inflation target and buy a broader range of assets than it has targeted in the past, Chair Janet Yellen said. "Future policymakers might choose to consider some ... tools that have been employed by other central banks, though adding them to our tool kit would require a very careful weighing of costs and benefits and, in some cases, could require legislation," she said.
Index funds seek to match the performance of a specific index, such as the Standard & Poor's 500 index, while mutual funds use active management.
The IRS is introducing a rule to help people avoid penalties for failing to deposit funds from tax-deferred accounts into other qualified accounts within 60 days. The policy allows waivers for people facing such mitigating circumstances as a lost check or death in the family.
Lifetime income options are relatively rare among 401(k) plans, but a survey by Willis Towers Watson found that could change. Half of the sponsors responded that lifetime income tools could be offered "maybe in the future" and 18% said they are considering offering a lifetime income choice by next year.
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