Archive - July 29, 2009

1
Common Reasons for Tax Problems
2
Getting a Guaranteed Minimum Rate of Return
3
Are You Eligblie for a Roth IRA
4
The “Secret” of Successful Individuals
5
Are Variable Annuities For You?

Common Reasons for Tax Problems

It is important to understand the reasons for the tax problems and their underlying causes. If you have a tax issue, do not forget the ultimate goals that you have for the Tax Resolution and Financial Freedom process. You should be trying to deal with your tax problems and replacing the problematic financial behaviors with positive ones. This process requires accountability, so be honest with yourself. Now is not the time to dwell on past mistakes. You need to use the knowledge of past mistakes or uncontrollable circumstances as a motivator to guide you along the process of change.

Here …

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Getting a Guaranteed Minimum Rate of Return

An equity-indexed annuity is an annuity that’s value is linked to a stock or market index; the S&P 500 index is most common.

Equity-indexed annuities have a guaranteed minimum rate of return (also referred to as a floor). This guarantee is usually between 0 and 3 percent annually. In exchange for this guarantee, equity-indexed annuities also have a cap, which is the maximum rate of return the investment can make in a given year. Currently, most indexed annuities have a cap of around 7 percent. Consequently, if the index the annuity is linked to returns 10 percent in a given …

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Are You Eligblie for a Roth IRA

The Roth IRA, as we’ve covered here many times, represents a very valuable retirement savings vehicle. There are several reasons that the Roth IRA is so valuable, including:

  • qualified withdrawals are tax free
  • withdrawal of regular contributions is available at any time for any reason
  • there is never a Required Minimum Distribution for the original account owner

With all of these benefits, you can see why the Roth IRA has become a very popular option for retirement savings. So the question now becomes: Am I eligible to contribute to a Roth IRA?

Roth IRA Eligibility

The eligibility requirements for a …

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The “Secret” of Successful Individuals

In support of articles I’ve written here previously, the WSJ put out an article today that tells us “Investors Turn to Independent Advisers“. Apparently, folks are beginning to understand that the “broker” isn’t working in their best interest.

“The reality is that the brokerage firms are set up for the brokerage of products,” says Ms. Rosenband (a former Smith Barney rep). And even though brokers’ titles may have changed over the years to “financial advisers and consultants,” she says the culture at the firms hasn’t. As a result, clients were often confused about what they were getting, she …

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Are Variable Annuities For You?

Variable annuities enable investors to defer taxes on investment gains until money is withdrawn. Additionally, variable annuities have a death benefit guaranteeing the beneficiary a specified amount – usually the amount invested – upon the investor’s death. For a fee, most annuities offer “living benefits” guaranteeing a rate of return (usually 2 to 5 percent) over time. Withdrawals can be taken as desired, or converted into a fixed periodic payment (annuitized). Withdrawals before age 59½ suffer a 10 percent penalty.

Annuity gains are ordinary income, currently taxed between 10 and 35 percent. While most investments receive a “step-up in basis” …

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