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1
Protection for Bank Accounts, Brokerage Firms, Annuities and Insurance Policies: A Summary
2
Income Tax Changes in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
3
Diversified Portfolio is Still the Long-Term Favorite
4
What Should You Do With Your 401(k) When You Change Jobs?
5
Lehman CDS Auction Should Reveal Winners and Losers

Protection for Bank Accounts, Brokerage Firms, Annuities and Insurance Policies: A Summary

I’ve written several posts on the asset protection limits available to consumers who have invested in a variety of financial assets. With all the changes and adjustments that have taken place in the last few months in the financial landscape, I thought it might be helpful to provide a single article summarizing the insurance /protections currently available to investors.

Some protections are temporary for now, while others appear to be permanent.  I expect there will be future modifications of federal protections if there are changes in the condition of the financial markets, for good or ill.

Money Market Accounts
The …

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Income Tax Changes in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act

With so much attention being given to the $700 billion bailout of banks and the financial industry in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, not much has been said about the individual income tax provisions included in the massive 440-page bill passed last month. If you’d like to avoid searching the full bill for the parts that might be personally relevant, here’s a quick summary of some provisions that could be interesting to you even if you’re not an enormous bank.

Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) relief
For the last several years, Congress has been applying bailing wire and duct …

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Diversified Portfolio is Still the Long-Term Favorite

There’s a lot of soul-searching among advisers these days, when financial markets all over the world seem to be tanking simultaneously. Still, past experience has shown that pulling an investment portfolio entirely out of stocks after a downturn is a bad idea. The problem is that no one can say for certain when stock markets will begin to go up.  Mind you, eventually some stock timer somewhere will announce that it’s time to get back into stocks, and lo, the stock market will climb, as if by magic.  But with thousands of professional stock timers out there making predictions, someone

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What Should You Do With Your 401(k) When You Change Jobs?

This is a question that most people will face sooner or later, since labor statistics indicate that the average person entering the workforce will change jobs at least seven times. What follows is a short discussion of some of the key considerations that should be kept in mind as you evaluate this question. This summary is not personalized financial advice; remember that there will be tax and/or other financial consequences depending on what you decide to do.

Every few weeks, I get some sort of mailing from one of various investment firms urging me to roll my old retirement accounts …

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Lehman CDS Auction Should Reveal Winners and Losers

Lehman CDS Until now, it hasn’t been entirely clear how much damage will result from the Lehman bankruptcy. An auction taking place today will be an important step in assessing which financial institutions stand to take a hit. Today’s auction involves a type of security that many people know little about or have only heard of recently: credit default swaps.

What are credit default swaps?

Generally, an “investment swap” involves trading one security for another.  However, another kind of investment swap is a contract: one in which two parties agree to enter into transactions with each other on the basis of changes …

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