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Do You Have Enough Life Insurance?

August 2017

A 2016 survey found that two out of five U.S. households have no life insurance protection. And many households who do have insurance think they need a higher level of coverage.1 The most common reason survey respondents gave for not purchasing life insurance was that it was too expensive, yet consumers tend to overestimate the… Read more

HOT TOPIC: Low Volatility: Calm Before the Storm?

August 2017

The U.S. stock market has been unusually calm in 2017, while gradually trending upward. Through July 28, 2017, the S&P 500 gained or lost 1% or more on just four trading days. By contrast, over the same period in 2016, there were 39 such days, with gains or losses of 2% or more on seven… Read more

Offering Life Insurance as an Employee Benefit

July 2017

Employee turnover has become a problem for many small businesses, primarily because it is often difficult and expensive to replace experienced workers who decide to leave. In fact, 57% of companies report that employee retention is now a top concern.1 Making life insurance part of your employee benefit program could be a cost-effective way to… Read more

Anticipating Inflation?

July 2017

For the 12 months ending in December 2016, inflation (measured by the Consumer Price Index, or CPI) increased 2.1%, the fastest pace since June 2014. Inflation stalled in 2015, rising just 0.7%. Headline CPI is a broad and closely watched measure of price changes across the U.S. economy.1 The inflation rate is still well below… Read more

Interested in Interest Rates?

July 2017

After falling to historic lows during the recession, interest rates have been rising. Try this short quiz to test your interest rate knowledge. 1. Which of the following interest rates is directly controlled by the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee? A) Prime rate B) Federal funds rate C) Mortgage rates D) All of the… Read more

Surprise! It’s Retirement Time

July 2017

“The best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry.” This famous saying, adapted from 18th-century Scottish poet Robert Burns, could apply to many aspects of life, including retirement.1 In 2016, 46% of retirees said they retired earlier than they had planned. This percentage has consistently been high over the past 25 years, ranging from… Read more

When a Saver Marries a Spender, Every Penny Counts

July 2017

If you’re a penny pincher but your spouse is loose with the family purse strings, money arguments may frequently erupt. Thinking of yourselves as two sides of the same coin might help you appreciate your financial differences. Heads or Tails, Saver or Spender If you’re a saver, you like having money in the bank, investing… Read more

HOT TOPIC: Volatility Puts Tech Sector in the Spotlight

July 2017

Technology stocks experienced a sharp burst of volatility in June 2017. Stocks in the S&P 500 Information Technology sector fell 3.7% during the week ending June 16, even though the performance of the broader S&P 500 index was relatively flat.1 On June 19, S&P tech stocks rebounded 1.7% in a single trading session.2 What caused… Read more

The Pros and Cons of Financing Options

June 2017

A 2015 survey found that nearly half of small employers (with fewer than 500 employees) applied for credit in the previous 12 months. Even though the credit market has become friendlier overall, small companies still have a more difficult time getting approved for bank loans than larger businesses.1 Here are some common types of financing… Read more

Indexed Annuities

June 2017

Like all annuities, an indexed annuity is a contract with an insurance company that provides an income stream — either immediately or at some point in the future — in exchange for premium payments. However, indexed annuities are unique in offering a minimum rate of return (typically 1% to 3%) that helps to preserve principal,… Read more

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