Our Blog

Our Blog

Our Blog

How much should I spend on a home?

Your family has outgrown their current home and it is time to explore the real estate market.  To make an educated decision regarding how much you can spend on a home, two ratios are key, the “Basic Housing Ratio” and the “Broad Housing Ratio”.

Beware the Bogus IRS

Most people have seen bogus emails purported to be from the executors of the estate of Nigerian princes or other obscure foreign notables who want to give them millions of dollars, and sometimes they get bogus calls telling them they can win a lottery sweepstakes or receive debt relief.

ETFs or Index Funds – Which is Better for the Passive Investor?

ETFs and index mutual funds are emerging as the investment of choice for investors who are discovering the virtues of passive investing. Not surprisingly they have both seen an explosion of growth and are especially popular choices for retirement plans and investors with a long time horizon.

Estate Tax Complexities

With the higher exemptions, you no longer have to plan for your estate, right? Wrong.

Quantifying the Value of Financial Planning Advice

Avoiding the Pain

There’s no question that we experience emotional pain and anxiety when our portfolios are losing money due to market downturns.  Behavioral scientists tell us that we feel losses twice as keenly as positive returns.

Strong Dollar, Weak Profits

Oil prices are getting all the blame for the recent U.S. stock market downturn, but it’s hard to see the connection when so many companies and consumers benefit from low energy costs.  A better culprit is the strong dollar.

The Good Side of Bad Markets

After the recent downturn in the U.S. and global stock markets, you can be pardoned if you wished that the markets were a bit tamer.  Wouldn’t it be nice to get, say, a steady 4% return every year rather than all these ups and downs?

 

The Great Panic of 2016

Wow!  There’s no diplomatic way to say this: the global stock markets are in panic mode right now.  In two weeks of trading, the U.S. S&P 500 index is down 8% on the year, which brings us close to correction territory (a 10% decline), and has some predicting a bear market (a 20% decline). 

Make the Most of Your 401(k)

As more Americans shoulder the responsibility of funding their own retirement, many rely increasingly on their 401(k) retirement plans to provide the means to pursue their investment goals. That's because 401(k) plans offer a variety of attractive features that make investing for the future easy and potentially profitable.

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