Social Security, Where Budget Cuts Lead to Terrible Service
These days, trying to apply for Social Security benefits, or getting straight answers about what your best claiming strategy might be, is frustrating at best. Recently, Max Richtman, president and CEO of the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, illustrated the problem in vivid detail before the U.S. House Ways & Means Committee. When he began his testimony, he first dialed the agency’s toll-free telephone number. Twenty-five minutes later, he announced to the legislators that his phone was still on hold. A recorded message said that his wait would be about an hour.
2018 First Quarter Market Report
Is the bull market finally over? For the first time in nine calendar quarters, the U.S. investment markets delivered a negative overall return. It was only a slight decline, but the decline reminds us that markets can and do go down from time to time.
Last year, it was hard to turn on your computer without reading about the dramatic rise in cryptocurrency values, or see advertisements for ways that you, too, could participate in this get-rich-quick opportunity to buy virtual money that is backed by no government on Earth.
For many people, it’s hard to find the time and resources to build and manage their assets confidently. It can be even harder to know how to integrate your needs and goals into your financial plan and stay on track for the long-term.
As an independent financial advisor and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional with more than 15 years of experience, I aim to use my knowledge and experience to help my clients save money in taxes, simplify their financial life and enjoy peace of mind knowing someone is watching out for them. Read More “What I Do and How I Can Help”
By Colleen Weber, CFP®, CPA
When we’re young, many of us don’t know what we want to do with our careers. While I had always been interested in the world of investments, financial planning, and tax planning, I wasn’t inspired by the jobs I was seeing.
After graduating from Mankato State University with a degree in accounting, I chose to work in the corporate world, working at various Fortune 500 companies. Up until the late 1990s, the only way to provide financial planning advice was to sell products and offer a limited amount of planning or advice. Despite my interest in the industry, I knew this wasn’t the type of role I wanted to fill. I had no interest in working as a salesperson or having to face conflicts of interest. I knew I wanted a practice that treated clients how I would want to be treated.
Economists and traders pay a lot of attention to something that probably doesn’t keep you up at night: the FOMC Minutes, or, in English, the summary of the discussion among decision-makers on the Federal Reserve Board, known as the Federal Open Market Committee.
What do they discuss? The health of the U.S. economy, the prospects for inflation, and whether interest rates should be raised or lowered. The latter issue, of course, is the reason for all the fuss; traders want to know if rates are going to go up faster than people expect, which might slow down the economy and reduce demand for stocks. Read More “Sunny Weather Forecast”