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Consider Munis for Tax-Free Income

December 2016

The city of Detroit’s 2013 bankruptcy and the continuing debt crisis in Puerto Rico have cast municipal bonds in a negative light for some investors. In general, however, “munis” are considered to be a relatively safe investment and more stable than corporate bonds. A 2015 study found that only 0.14% of municipal bonds default within… Read more

HOT TOPIC: Three Financial Issues to Watch Under the New Administration

December 2016

On January 20, 2017, Donald J. Trump will be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. Between now and then, attention should largely focus on efforts to facilitate an orderly transfer of power, but there will be no shortage of conjecture over what may happen after the inauguration. While changes are likely,… Read more

Bracing for Potential Cybersecurity Threats

November 2016

A recent report suggests that hackers are targeting small businesses at an alarming rate. In fact, cyber attacks on businesses with fewer than 250 employees accounted for 43% of all reported attacks in 2015, up from 34% in 2014.1 By one estimate, cybercrime costs the global economy as much as $575 billion each year.2 Given… Read more

Medicare Means Testing

November 2016

As more baby boomers turn 65, Medicare enrollment is projected to swell from 57 million in 2016 to around 64 million in 2020 and 81 million by 2030.1 In 2015, legislation known as the “Doc Fix” changed the formula used to reimburse physicians for Medicare services, offering a long-term solution for one of Medicare’s most… Read more

Step Up to Help Reduce Taxes on Inherited Assets

November 2016

If you have assets that have appreciated in value, such as stocks or real property, you could be subject to substantial capital gains taxes when you sell the assets (see chart below). However, if you leave these assets to your heirs, any gain accrued before your death would not be taxed because of the step-up… Read more

Balancing Medicare and Work-Based Insurance

November 2016

Almost 20% of Americans 65 and older are still working — the highest level since before Medicare was established in 1965. This amounts to almost 9 million workers who are eligible for Medicare, and the number is expected to grow as about 8,000 baby boomers turn 65 every day until 2030.1–2 Some employers may require… Read more

Feeling Confident: Steps to Saving More

November 2016

In 2016, 21% of U.S. workers said they were very confident they would have enough money for a comfortable retirement. This was about the same percentage as in 2015, but both years showed a big increase in confidence from the 13% level in 2013, when many Americans were still struggling to recover from the Great… Read more

HOT TOPIC: Are Soaring Health-Care Costs Hurting the U.S. Economy?

November 2016

About 8% of U.S. household spending went toward health care in 2015, up from 5.8% in 2007. Even though the growth of nationwide health-care spending has slowed, the cost burden is falling more heavily on consumers.1 More than 118 million people qualify for coverage through government programs such as Medicare, which serves individuals age 65… Read more

Comparing Your Retirement Plan Options

October 2016

Retirement plan contributions made for yourself and your workers are generally tax deductible as a business expense. Offering one of these retirement plans could help you shelter more of your income from taxes and build wealth outside of your business. It might also be an effective way to reward and help retain valuable employees. 401(k)… Read more

Looking for Income? Consider Closed-End Funds

October 2016

Most mutual funds are open ended, which means the investment company can issue and redeem fund shares to meet investor demand. By contrast, closed-end funds issue a fixed number of shares in an initial public offering (IPO), and investors who want to purchase shares after the IPO must do so on a secondary market, such… Read more

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