Surprise of 2019 – Lower Rates & High Bond Returns

Andy Reynolds

Weekly Update

Key Takeaways:   As the Federal Reserve eyes another rate cut, it is important that investors: Review interest rates on loans. Review your equity/bond exposure. Seek competitive rates on cash deposits.   With rates falling drastically over the past twelve months, one of the more surprising outcomes of 2019 so far has been the return … Continued

Thoughts About Estate Plans

Frank Yozwiak

Weekly Update

There is a misconception that you only need an estate plan if you are extremely wealthy – this is simply not true.  A sound estate plan is an integral part of any overall financial plan.  An estate plan is the best way to ensure that those you love and care about will be taken care … Continued

Alternative Uses of Social Security Income

John Boardman

Atheneum

Key Takeaways:    There are many unique situations that could justify taking Social Security earlier. The psychological benefits of a new income stream can relieve anxiety around a new planning strategy. To take Social Security before age 70, the financial and non-financial benefits of claiming Social Security early should outweigh the benefits of deferral.   … Continued

What Makes People Happy in Retirement?

Andy Reynolds

Weekly Update

As financial advocates and planners, we are typically the first to learn of a potential retirement.  Most clients want to know if they are going to have enough money during retirement and how they will make their nest egg last for potentially 30+ years.  This is our area of expertise and we pride ourselves in … Continued

Two Classic Social Security Strategies Being Retired

Cameron Hamilton

Atheneum

Key Takeaways: Americans turning 66 in 2019 should consider the Restricted Application strategy The File and Suspend strategy has been eliminated as an option for new applicants These and potential future Social Security reforms are controlled by Congress.   Social Security is the biggest source of retirement income in our country.  In 2015, 34% of … Continued

Paying to Lend – $13 Trillion in Negative-Yielding Bonds

Brian Burton

Weekly Update

With nearly 20% of the global government bond market yielding negative interest rates, the question everyone wants answered is, who in their right mind is buying this stuff?  Investors in these bonds are paying more for them than they will ever receive back in interest and principal if they are held to maturity.  Zero return … Continued

Social Security: Whether to Wait to Start Taking Retirement Benefits

Frank Yozwiak

Atheneum

Key Takeaways: You could be facing up to a 30% reduction in your PIA by taking Social Security retirement benefits at age 62. By waiting until age 70, your retirement benefits will be roughly 32% higher than your PIA. The breakeven for taking Social Security retirement benefits at age 70 compared to age 66 is … Continued

Should we be scared by all-time market highs?

John Boardman

Weekly Update

The short answer is No.   We have noticed some amount of “concern” in clients when markets and/or their accounts reach all-time highs.   The old adage of “Buy low, Sell high” would seem to fly in the face of investing at all-time highs.   It is also very natural for investors, who have achieved a new, higher … Continued

Social Security Income: Not-So-Simple Basics

Andy Reynolds

Atheneum

Key Takeaways: Delaying Social Security income past Full Retirement Age to age 70 will result in a higher annual payment. The Social Security statement makes the assumption that one continues their current earnings rate until the age of projection.  Retiring prior to this age but delaying SSA payments will likely result in a smaller amount. … Continued

Looking Forward to the Second Half of 2019

Brian Burton

Weekly Update

If there’s one lesson to be learned from markets so far in 2019 it is to look beyond the noise, headlines and temporary gyrations, and instead focus on the longer-term outlook using fundamentals to help guide investment decisions.  Think back to late 2018 when the headlines read, “Hawkish Fed Pushing U.S. Economy into Recession”, and … Continued