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Stock Diversification: Large, Mid, and Small

August 2016

The S&P 500 index returned more than 32% in 2013, a great year for the stock market. That was impressive, but the S&P 600 index — which includes much smaller companies than those in the S&P 500 — performed even better, returning more than 41%. In 2015, as the market struggled, small-company stocks lost almost… Read more

HOT TOPIC: Equity Crowdfunding: Why Investors Should Tread Carefully

August 2016

Equity crowdfunding is a nontraditional way to raise the money needed to launch or expand a small business. Instead of seeking a large cash infusion from an “angel investor” or venture capital firm, shares are offered online to a larger group of people, each of whom takes a smaller stake in the company. Before May… Read more

Putting Your Kids on the Payroll

July 2016

If you could use a little help for your business this summer, there are some good reasons to recruit your own offspring. First and foremost, it’s a good opportunity for teens and college students to earn money for their own expenses while gaining valuable work experience for the future. Involving children in the operation of… Read more

The Second Time Around

July 2016

Roughly four in 10 new marriages in 2013 included at least one partner who had been married before, and altogether about 42 million Americans have been married more than once.1 A second marriage can create numerous estate planning challenges, especially when you wish to provide for both your current spouse and your children from a… Read more

Home-Sweet-Home Equity

July 2016

Buying a home is a long-term commitment, so it’s not surprising that older Americans are much more likely than younger Americans to own their homes “free and clear.” On average, only about 36% of owner-occupied housing units in the United States do not have a mortgage. For units occupied by homeowners who are 65 and… Read more

Teaching Children About Finance

July 2016

More than nine out of ten parents believe it is important for students to learn about personal finance in school, and three out of four think there should be a finance requirement to graduate from high school. Even so, 72% express at least some reluctance when it comes to talking about finances at home.1 Certainly,… Read more

Market Slices: Investing in Sector Funds

July 2016

The U.S. economy is complex, and business performance can vary widely among different industries. Some industries tend to lead when the economy is growing rapidly, others shine during periods of slower growth, and still others outperform during periods of recession or recovery. Regardless of broader cycles, industries may respond differently to certain trends or specific… Read more

HOT TOPIC: The British Are Leaving! Why the Brexit Matters to Investors

July 2016

On June 23, citizens of the United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland) voted to leave the European Union by a margin of 52% to 48%.1 Though pre-election polls suggested that public opinion was evenly divided, when the election results became clear, financial markets around the world reacted swiftly to concerns about potential economic… Read more

Men, Women, and Investment Partnership

June 2016

Many studies have shown that men and women tend to have different approaches to investing. In general, men are more aggressive in their investment strategies, whereas women tend to be more conservative.1 The difference is probably not surprising, but the practical results of these different approaches may not be what you expect. Research dating back… Read more

Life Policies Plus Long-Term-Care Benefits

June 2016

It may be hard to fathom, but the median annual cost of a private room in a nursing home has surpassed $90,000, and the median cost of a home health aide is already more than $45,000 a year.1 If you expect to pay for long-term care out of pocket, it might be wise to consider… Read more

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