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.
Couples considering divorce should ensure money saved for children's college expenses is used properly, Brian Boswell writes. He gives advice on how to address those savings in a separation agreement.
The Labor Department has published its final rule smoothing the path for states that want to create workplace retirement-savings plans. The rule guarantees that the plans won't have to comply with the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act as long as a few basic requirements are met.
Families are eager to get detailed professional advice on how to save for their children's college expenses, according to a Fidelity survey. Among parents who have children expected to attend college, seven out of 10 want more specific and precise guidance about how much to save for higher education.
Securities and Exchange Commission officials drafting a rule governing liquidity risk management by funds are closely examining a Federal Reserve study of corporate bond funds' trading of liquid assets. The Fed study concluded that measures managers take to rein in risk "may not be sufficient to keep run risks at bay, and under certain circumstances, may even depress bond prices."
Retiring abroad to a country with a low cost of living is one option for people who want to stretch their nest egg. In many countries, income from Social Security alone places Americans among the wealthy, according to author Tim Leffel.
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