Archive - August 2016

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How will working or not working affect my Social Security?
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Financial Literacy Building Blocks for Kids
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The Golden Bear: The Bear Market of 1973
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Book Review: Making Social Security Work For You

How will working or not working affect my Social Security?

Will Social Security be affected if I work longer, or quit earlier than full retirement age? This question comes up a lot whenever I speak on Social Security strategies, as I did last night at Mt. Prospect Library. As with most things about Social Security, it’s not a snap answer, and it depends on your personal situation. But here’s some pointers.

Situation #1

You’ve been out of the workforce for a number of years: being a stay at home parent, going back to school, taking care of an elderly family member, working for free in a family business.  Can you …

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Financial Literacy Building Blocks for Kids

Wed, AUG 3rd, 2016

Financial decisions were once much simpler. Let’s rewind the clock to a time when, after graduating from high school or college, individuals would begin a job at a company where they would remain for the entirety of their career. Cash inflows were simply a pay check while working, followed by a pension in the golden retirement years. Employers would fully cover the cost of health insurance, and, upon retirement, Medicare would substitute. Banking would occur at a local bank where tellers were identified by their first name, and interest was paid on cash savings. If there …

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The Golden Bear: The Bear Market of 1973

A Bear Market is defined as an index dropping at least 20% from some previous high. Smaller drops in the market between 10% and 20% are called “corrections.” Larger drops of at least 50% are called a “crash.”

Since 1950, there have been exactly nine Bear Markets in the S&P 500 Price Index (the most common representation of “the market”). Only one of these turned into a stock market crash. The other eight stopped dropping before the loss from peak to bottom was greater than 50%.

Although you might think that only eight Bear Markets over 65 …

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Book Review: Making Social Security Work For You

This book, by my friend and colleague Emily Guy Birken, is a great book for gaining a better understanding of Social Security benefits. I recommend Making Social Security Work for You to anyone looking for answers about Social Security benefits. Birken is also the author of The Five Years Before You Retire, another excellent retirement planning tome.
making_social_security_work_for_you
Birken’s style of writing is easy-to-follow. She has a subtle sense of humor that comes out in her writing. This makes the material enjoyable to read, even for a dry subject like Social Security.

Making Social Security Work for You

I especially …

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