Answer this riddle: what’s the one thing that will eventually happen to everyone, but generally, no one wants to discuss? Death is a subject that immediately conjures up all sorts of emotions because, let’s be honest, the absence of being IS emotional. But, death is also cause for practicality. It’s a cause for stating clearly what to do about money and property so there is no dispute or cause for fights between family members claiming...
The quick answer is “it depends.” But, for the 33 percent of retirees who now rely more heavily on their Social Security benefits to sustain their lifestyle, the answer takes on even more significance. Generally, your income from Social Security is not taxable on its own; but when it’s combined with other sources of income for tax reporting purposes, a portion of your Social Security benefits, up to 85 percent, could be includable as taxable...
1. Underestimating the Odds of Becoming Disabled The risk of a disabling illness or injury that prevents a worker from doing his or her job is more significant than most people realize. According to information compiled by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), a male U.S. worker at age 35 faces a one-in-four chance of disability taking him off the job for 90 days or longer during his working career. A 35 year-old woman...
Any protection strategy that focuses only on insurance can leave you and your family vulnerable to the threat of legal system which doesn’t necessarily share your objectives. Absent specific, court sanctioned directives on your part, your life and the lives of your family members will be subject to the default provisions of the law that guide critical financial, family and health decisions when you are unable due to incapacitation or death. A sound protection strategy...
In the story of Alice in Wonderland, Alice arrives at a fork in the road and wonders aloud which road to take. A smiling Cheshire Cat appears and asks her what her destination is, to which she replies, “I don’t know.” The toothy cat then proffers the only possible response, “Well, then it doesn’t matter.” While it’s not the type of exchange that might actually occur in our lives, it should, especially as we consider...
In the story of Alice in Wonderland, Alice arrives at a fork in the road and wonders aloud which road to take. A smiling Cheshire Cat appears and asks her what her destination is, to which she replies, “I don’t know.” The toothy cat then proffers the only possible response, “Well, then it doesn’t matter.” While it’s not the type of exchange that might actually occur in our lives, it should, especially as we consider...
Many investors, who experienced the 2008 – 2011 stock market roller coaster ride, quickly developed a low tolerance for volatility. As a result they moved a significant portion of their investments into safer, fixed yield vehicles and many have yet to return to the stock market.1 What many investors may not realize is that wholesale switches from one asset class to another in order to avoid volatility can actually increase it. Secondly, for investors with...
In many respects, people can be their own worst enemies in their quest for financial security. When you consider that our lives are nothing more than a culmination of the decisions we make each day, if we tend to make more bad decisions than good decisions, or worse, if we can’t make decisions at all, it’s should be no surprise when financial security remains elusive. When it comes to finances and investment decisions, many people...
Throughout its recent history, life insurance has been a paradox for many people. It’s greatly appreciated when it is needed most, at the death of a breadwinner, and it’s dreaded when it is being contemplated to fill a need. Few consumer products are the object of such a love/hate relationship as life insurance. The thought of buying life insurance is not something that most people relish, yet, if it is done right, it can provide...
Bradley Bishop |
Over the past few years, municipal bonds may have fallen out of favor due to the fact that, until recently, the returns in the stock and bond markets were generating steady returns. Now, with the market continuing its wild gyrations, and the bond market hanging on the edge of uncertain fed policies, investor attention has shifted to tax free municipal bonds as a haven for money in search of reliable returns. And, with the recent...
Bradley Bishop |
Few financial instruments are as complex as life insurance, but it doesn’t have to be a mystery as to how it works. For most people, life insurance is the single most important part of their financial life as it may provide the only source of capital that will be needed to sustain a family’s financial security when one of the breadwinners dies. It represents a substantial obligation on the part of a life insurer which...
Bradley Bishop |
For generations a debate has raged on over whether it’s best to buy whole life insurance or to buy term life insurance and “invest the difference”. Proponents of each method are adamant in their positions and both offer sound reasoning in their answers. But, for anyone to tell you which is the best for you without knowing anything about you is tantamount to someone telling you which road to take without knowing where you are...