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investment management

Can You Psych Yourself Up to Save More Money for Retirement?

You have probably spent decades saving for retirement, and you might have a decade or more of saving to go before you actually retire. At times, your resolve may be tested. The stock market may falter; household money pressures may mount; new near-term priorities may arise. So, what can you do to stay on point and stick with this financial commitment you have made to your future self?

The Steward Approach to Managing Market Volatility

Over the past few months, investor concerns about rising interest rates, oil prices, tech stocks, trade wars and a variety of other daily “headline issues” have resulted in significant market volatility. Looking ahead, volatility may continue as markets adjust to potentially higher inflation and interest rates. To help frame the current market volatility, we offer the following reminders:

The Great Recession: Ten Years Later

10 Years After the Financial Crisis: What Have We Learned?


Where were you in September 2008?  Over the weekend of September 13 & 14, 2008, it became obvious that Lehman Brothers was in serious financial trouble and probably would not survive.  Being on the “inside” of the financial industry we knew a lot was about to change for us and a lot of other Americans.

The Great Recession: Ten Years Later

10 Years After the Financial Crisis: What Have We Learned?


Where were you in September 2008?  Over the weekend of September 13 & 14, 2008, it became obvious that Lehman Brothers was in serious financial trouble and probably would not survive.  Being on the “inside” of the financial industry, I (Tim) anticipated life was about to change for me and a lot of other Americans.  So as our family spent the weekend at a soccer tournament, I was compiling my “depression checklist” in between soccer games.   While I was comfortable with my investment strategy, my plan included a number of cost-cutting items like growing a garden, dropping some of our kid’s expensive activities (like soccer) and pooling resources with extended family.  It also included some opportunistic to-do’s like drawing on our home equity line, looking for investment opportunities and maybe starting a business.

Stop Procrastinating About Financial Planning

Some things to think about as you get started with your strategy.

First, look at your expenses and your debt. Review your core living expenses (such as a mortgage payment, car payment, etc.). Can any core expenses be reduced? Investing aside, you position yourself to gain ground financially when income rises, debt shrinks, and expenses decrease or stabilize.  

Take Advantage of The New Tax Laws

The $1.5 trillion tax reduction will act as a tailwind for the economy in general, but it will also have a positive impact on most people’s individual economy. You've filed your 2017 tax return, but now is the time to start thinking about tax planning opportunities for 2018. 

The biggest changes in personal taxes are 1) lowering tax rates for most income levels, 2) eliminating personal exemptions, and 3) roughly doubling the standard deduction to $12,000 for individuals and $24,000 for married couples.  For about 2/3 of tax payers that used to itemize deductions, the result will be simplification of tax preparation as the standard deduction will provide a greater benefit than itemizing deductions. 

The Economic Outcome of a College Degree

Many parents want to make sure their child’s degree will result in a high-paying job.

But, what kind of salary will a child make after graduating from college? This question preoccupies many parents of teenagers who are aghast at college price tags. These parents want to make sure that the money they plunk down for a bachelor’s degree will ultimately pay off with good-paying jobs for their children. Here's some research that you may find helpful.

Good Reasons to Retire Later

Working longer might work out well for you.

Are you in your fifties and unsure if you have enough retirement savings? Then you have two basic financial choices. You could start saving and investing more of your pay than you currently do, or you could work longer so you have fewer years of retirement to fund.

An Estate Plan or a Wealth Transfer Strategy? What's Right For You?

Basic estate planning documents may not communicate your intentions.

There are three degrees of estate planning: advanced, basic, and none at all. Basic is better than none, but elementary estate planning can still leave something to be desired.

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