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How Will My Children Pay for College? 7 Tips to Help You Plan, Save, and Pay

As a parent, one of the most significant concerns is ensuring that your children have the financial resources they need to pursue higher education. With college tuition costs continuously rising, it's no surprise that many parents stress about their children's future college expenses. It is never too early to start planning and saving for college or changing spending habits to prepare for education expenses.
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The Most Common Estate Planning Mistakes and How To Mitigate Them

In the realm of estate planning, the ripple effects of our oversights often linger long after we're gone, impacting the lives of those we leave behind. It’s the uniqueness of this area of planning that makes it paramount to get things right. Yet, many often trip up. Here's a closer look at the six most common estate planning mistakes and how you can work towards sidestepping them.
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Estate Planning & Business Transition Checklist

Whether you are an individual looking to optimize your estate planning or a business owner contemplating a seamless transition, the steps you take now can pave the way for a more secure and prosperous future. It's never too early to start.
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Estate Planning and Asset Protection: Are They The Same?

You may sometimes hear the terms "estate planning" and "asset protection" used interchangeably. They actually have different meanings, and it's important to incorporate both strategies into future financial plans. Here, we discuss key differences between estate planning and asset protection, as well as the optimal occasions when you should consider each wealth-preservation strategy.
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An Estate Planning Guide for Beginners

Estate planning is a comprehensive process that involves organizing your assets and making informed decisions concerning how your wealth will be handled before and after death. It is a critical phase of wealth management, essential for anyone seeking to manage their assets and efficiently pass them to heirs.
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An Excellent First Quarter for Stocks

The first quarter is in the books, and it was an excellent one for stocks. The S&P 500 index rode a resilient U.S. economy, easing inflation, rising corporate profits, and anticipation of summertime rate cuts from the Federal Reserve (Fed) to solid gains in March, the fifth straight winning month, and the best first quarter since 2019.
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Raising Savers

Who doesn’t remember their first job, receiving your first paycheck, and even applying for and using a credit card for the first time? Access to money provides a sense of freedom and the ability to buy things you want with your own money. For many of us, we find it easy to spend money. When we are young, we don’t think much about the importance of saving and having funds put away for life’s responsibilities and emergencies.
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Steady Federal Reserve Rates are Good for Us

A topic of recent interest among investors is the Federal Reserve's decision to maintain current interest rates, rather than pursuing a lowering strategy. While this may initially seem like a cause for concern, a closer examination reveals that steady rates have significant benefits for the economy and, by extension, investors.
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Why the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit Is an Important Tax Break

Families with childcare expenses know how difficult it can be in a world of increased inflation, rising cost of living, and minimal wage increases. To help families cope with child and dependent care costs, a new bill, known as The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit Enhancement Act of 2024, has secured a temporary expansion of the previous act to increase the financial assistance provided to families with childcare expenses.
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There's Still Time to Fund an IRA for 2023

The tax filing deadline is fast approaching, which means time is running out to fund an IRA for 2023. If you had earned income last year, you may be able to contribute up to $6,500 for 2023 ($7,500 for those age 50 or older by December 31, 2023) up until your tax return due date, excluding extensions. For most people, that date is Monday, April 15, 2024.
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Tax Season News and Survival Tips

It's not easy to keep up with complex tax laws that always seem to be changing, much less figure out how they might affect you personally. Even so, it's important to consider the potential impact of taxes when making many types of financial decisions.
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A Personalized Approach for Women Investors

For women, wealth represents more than just financial independence. It embodies the opportunity to create a lasting legacy, positively impacting their lives, their loved ones, and society as a whole. As women perceive and value wealth as a source of security and long-term stability, it's crucial to align their financial goals with their values and aspirations.
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The Role of AI in Investing and Financial Planning

As investors navigate the dynamic landscape of the financial markets, they find themselves at the intersection of cutting-edge technology and traditional expertise. The advent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and data-driven solutions has undoubtedly revolutionized the financial advisory space.
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How High Earners Can Build a Strong Retirement with Their 401(k)

Approximately 60 million workers contribute to a 401(k)-retirement plan. A 401(k) is a tax-advantaged retirement savings plan companies offer employees and is funded through elective salary deferrals. There are several benefits to having a 401(k), especially if you are a high earner, that offer ways to build a substantial retirement. However, there are some downsides to keep in mind.
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Retirement Planning: A Map to Changes in 2024

As we kick off 2024, the world of retirement planning is undergoing a fairly significant transformation, as tax brackets, retirement contribution limits, estate and gift tax exemptions, among other things, are set to undergo upward revisions. Additionally, the gradual introduction of Secure 2.0, a pivotal retirement legislation, continues to unfurl, introducing implications that resonate deeply with both prospective retirees and current savers.
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Is a 529 to Roth IRA Rollover Right for You? Here's What You Need to Know

If you have a 529 education savings plan, it can now be converted to a Roth IRA. Both plans are funded by after-tax money. Initially, the money put into a 529 plan had to be used toward education expenses. If, for whatever reason, the money wasn’t needed for educational expenses and it was withdrawn for other purposes, you would be subject to a penalty and capital gains taxes. That is not the case anymore.
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Financial Independence and Married Women

Financial independence is an important goal regardless of your age, partnership status or stage of life. It allows you to remain self-reliant and prevents you from being controlled by others. And even if you have not always approached your marriage or partnership with financial independence in mind, it is never too late to start.
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Caregiving: A Decision That May Impact Your Retirement Savings

Many women have been a caregiver while raising children. Still, now many are caring for a loved one out of necessity as the older family member can no longer care for themselves. The Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies report, The Many Faces of Caregivers, indicates that 42% of Generation Xers and 42% of Baby Boomers care for a parent, and 57% of Individuals born before 1946 are currently caring for a spouse or loved one.
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Deciphering the New Age of Required Minimum Distributions

The landscape of retirement finance is often complex, and the latest revisions to the rules governing Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) underscore this point. With the introduction of the Secure 2.0 Act, investors must adapt to new timelines for withdrawing from their retirement nest eggs.
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Combining Finances with Your Partner

When merging your finances with your partner’s, it’s important to be transparent and enter the experience with an open mind. If you’re considering starting the journey toward joining your finances, this guide can help you navigate the process effectively and with more confidence.
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Tips to Navigating Gen Z’s Economic Challenges

As the world evolves, so too do the challenges faced by the younger generations entering the workforce. Over the last year, nearly four in 10 Gen Z individuals have found themselves grappling with financial setbacks, according to recent surveys. This has led to a paradigm shift in their spending habits and lifestyle choices.
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Important Lessons from 2023

Stocks defied the skeptics in a very unpredictable 2023. The Dow Jones finished at an all-time record high on December 28, and the S&P 500 came within a whisker of a fresh all-time high after the index rallied more than 20% for the year.
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2024 Contribution Limits: What’s New?

Life today is expensive, and contributing to a retirement plan is more beneficial than ever. Recently, the IRS announced it was raising the contribution limit for 401(k)s to $23,000 for 2024, up from $22,500. In a world where pensions are nearly gone, having the ability to put more money away can help you prepare for a retirement that may be here faster than you think.
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4 Tax Planning Tips for High-Net-Worth Families

Tax planning might be complex, but it's also essential—especially for high-net-worth families, where missing tax breaks or failing to optimize income could cost significant dollars, maybe millions, over a lifetime. And even in the short term, with the highest marginal federal tax rate sitting at 37% for 20241 (plus additional state and local taxes), a lack of tax planning could mean you keep less than half of every dollar you earn.
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How secure is your data when it’s stored in the cloud?

As cloud storage becomes more common, data security is an increasing concern. Companies and schools have been increasing their use of services like Google Drive for some time, and lots of individual users also store files on Dropbox, Box, Amazon Drive, Microsoft OneDrive and the like. They’re no doubt concerned about keeping their information private – and millions more users might store data online if they were more certain of its security.
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Taxation of Investments

It's nice to own stocks, bonds, and other investments. Nice, that is, until it's time to fill out your federal income tax return. At that point, you may be left scratching your head. Just how do you report your investments and how are they taxed?
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Financial Resolutions for Individuals Nearing Retirement

Getting close to retirement is exciting, but it often brings a little worry about your financial future. The closer you get, the more you may be concerned with the rising living costs and if your finances are on track to allow you to live as planned when retirement comes. Whether your retirement is within the next couple of years or the next five, the new year is the perfect time to make financial resolutions to help you toward your retirement goals. Below are just a few financial resolutions to
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Keep Calm and (Financially) Plan On: Navigating Money Stress with a Financial Pr

Money worries may be one of the biggest sources of stress—from wondering how to pay for an unexpected expense to making retirement calculations when considering leaving a job. In the midst of inflation, war, and stock market volatility, it may be tough to maintain a level head. What might a financial professional do to help you navigate money stress? Here are a few things a financial professional may do to possibly decrease your stress.
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Outlook 2024: A Turning Point

In 2024, we believe markets will make a definitive turn to a more recognizable place. Where the last two years had investors focused on inflation, market volatility, and striving for a sense of economic balance, we expect to see some return to the previous status quo, characterized by more familiar and steadier economic and market patterns.
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November to Remember

Solid gains for both stocks and bonds gave investors a November to remember. As financial markets continue to defy skeptics, I’m reminded of a quote from Warren Buffett’s long-time partner and one of the greatest investors of our time, Charlie Munger, who passed away last week. “The world is full of foolish gamblers, and they will not do as well as the patient investors.” We couldn’t agree more at LPL Research. Patient investors have been rewarded in 2023 and will continue to be.
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Countdown To Investing in the New Year: 10 Questions To Ask Yourself

If one of your New Year's resolutions involves enhancing and expanding your investment portfolio, look no further. In a true New Year's Eve countdown tradition, ask yourself these 10 questions to help review your investment plans.
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Talking to Your Children About Inheritance

Generational wealth involves proactive financial planning, especially when parents or grandparents pass on their wealth to loved ones after they die. Entrusting family members with receiving an inheritance is more than just getting a hold of assets or a check in the mail. It is about understanding how to steward the hard-earned wealth that you and your spouse spent your lives building.
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Swiftonomics 101: How to Rock Your Own Financial Eras Tour

Taylor Swift is one of the most popular megastars performing today. Not only does she write catchy songs, but she is also a savvy businesswoman and the first musician to ever earn a billion dollars solely on their songwriting and performances. Here are five financial lessons you can learn from her, along with those memorable lyrics and musical hooks.
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Socially Responsible Investing

Investing with an eye toward promoting social, political, or environmental concerns (or at least not supporting activities you feel are harmful) doesn't mean you have to forgo pursuing a return on your money. Socially responsible investing may allow you to further both your own economic interests and a greater good, in whatever way you define that term.
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5 Tips for Navigating Medicare in Retirement

One of the main concerns about retirement is health care. As healthcare costs continue to rise, medical bills may quickly derail your retirement plan. The good news is when you turn 65, you will be able to apply for Medicare, which provides you with coverage for some of the larger bills you may face during your retirement. Though navigating Medicare is a little tricky, the following tips can make the process less daunting. 
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3 Common Social Security Scams and How To Avoid Being Fooled by Them

Targeted scams have become even more popular with the amount of personal information readily available on the internet. Social Security recipients are, unfortunately, targeted by some of the most sophisticated scam artists out there. From phone scams to phishing attempts and intercepted deposits, here are three common Social Security scams and how you might avoid being fooled by them.
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Year-End Investment Decisions

What are year-end investment decisions? Year-end investment decisions may sometimes result in substantial tax savings. Tax planning may allow you to control the timing and method by which you report your income and claim your deductions and credits. The basic strategy for year-end planning is both to time your income so that it will be taxed at a lower rate, and to time your deductible expenses so that they may be claimed in years when you are in a higher tax bracket.
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Your Traditional 401(k) Year-End Review Checklist

A 401(k) plan is one of the most popular and effective techniques for saving for your retirement. A company will automatically withdraw and contribute money from each paycheck to your 401(k) plan. Some employers will even match a percentage of the contribution. Are you maximizing these contributions? There are also limits on how much you are allowed to contribute annually.
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Offering Thanks

The penultimate month of the year is often a time to reflect and offer thanks. And while economic and geopolitical uncertainty can overshadow the positives, there are things to be thankful for. Here is just some of what we’re thankful for, now that we’re in the second to last month of the year.
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Staying the Course

All in all, October can be volatile, but there’s probably no need to get spooked by bouts of higher volatility.
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5 Differences Between Planning for Long-Term Care and Crisis Planning

While it's important to make long-term plans for long-term care, crisis planning can be just as crucial when it comes to preserving your assets. Here we discuss three key differences between planning for long-term care and planning for a crisis.
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What to Know About Multigenerational Estate Planning

Over the next few decades, many Boomers may transfer this wealth to their Gen X, millennial, and Gen Z children, perhaps incurring a hefty tax bill. Here are some ways to handle multigenerational estate planning so that the generations after you may keep these assets in the family.
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Financial Planning Tips for Young Adults

It's never too early to think about your financial future. Though you may not hit your peak earning years until your 40s or 50s, learning positive financial habits early might help support you when you need it later.
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Protecting Your Financial Information Online

More consumers are conducting financial transactions online and may become vulnerable to tracking, hacking, identity theft, phishing scams, and other cyberspace risks. Here are some ways to help you safeguard your information.
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Tips for Your Year-End Financial Planning Review

When you work with a financial professional, then you know how important the year-end review is to the financial planning process. Here is what you should do in order to make your annual financial planning review more efficient and productive.
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Figuring Out a 401(k) Strategy That Works for You

Everyone wants a comfortable retirement, but the road you take there will depend on your specific situation. When you invest, you assume a certain level of risk (but like everyone you're hoping that your holdings will increase in value). One of the most challenging aspects of investing involves matching your tolerance for risk with your investment objectives.
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Stocks and Bonds Before and After Taxes

Investing in U.S. stocks and bonds is a popular way for individuals and institutions to grow their wealth and generate income. However, it is important to consider the impact of taxes on these investments before and after making them.
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How Compound Interest Makes You Money

Interest is one of the simplest and most appealing ways to gain profits from an investment. Like clockwork, you receive an interest payment on your principal, or the amount of money you deposit when you open an account.
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New Job and Four Tips for Your New 401(k)

Saving for retirement is important for all ages, the key is to start early Land a great new job? Awesome. Now is the perfect time to think about your 401(k) and retirement plan, whether you had one before or not.
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Staying Invested in a Tricky Market Environment

Making economic forecasts and stock market predictions can be humbling.
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Retirement-Planning Tips for Women

Women often face special challenges when planning for retirement.
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What to Know Before You Open Your Next Investment Account

Understanding the difference between taxable, tax-deferred, and tax-exempt accounts can improve portfolio diversification and make a difference in how much you earn over time.
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5 Keys to Investing for Retirement

Making decisions about your retirement account can seem overwhelming, especially if you feel unsure about your knowledge of investments.
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Retirement Re-education: Back to School Time for Retirement Planning

Retirement planning is a constantly evolving process. Strategies that may have worked fine a few years ago may no longer be the optimal direction to continue.
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Better-Than-Expected First Half

As we finalize the log on the first six months of 2023, we believe there's value in reflecting on recent months gone by.
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Optimizing Your Social Security Retirement Benefits

What does it mean? Getting the most out of your contributions Optimizing your Social Security retirement benefits means getting the best return possible on each dollar you've contributed to the system.
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Securing Your Future with Life Cycle Planning

The need for regular saving and investing spans many life stages.
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From Riches To Rags In Three Generations: Managing Generational Wealth Checklist

Generational wealth encompasses financial assets with a monetary value.
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10 Tips to Work Toward Financial Freedom

Financial freedom enables you to choose how you spend or interact with your money and have the choice to decide what to do with it.
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401k In-Plan Roth Conversions

A 401(k) in-plan Roth conversion (also called an "in-plan Roth rollover") allows you to transfer the non-Roth portion of your 401(k) account into a designated Roth account within the same plan.
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Remarkable Rise Of ESG Investing

Responsible investing is widely understood as the integration of environmental, social and governance factors – hence the ESG acronym – into investment processes and decision-making.
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401(k) Rollovers Can Make or Break Retirement

In an era characterized by high job turnover, it is more important than ever for employees to carefully manage their retirement savings.
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5 Homeowner Estate Planning Tips to Consider

Estate planning helps disperse your assets according to your wishes. The effort may seem daunting at first, but estate planning does not have to be overly complicated.
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Investor Sentiment Tested

Spring is often thought of as an uplifting time, marked by growth and renewed hope as we emerge from the long months of winter and look ahead to the rest of year. Investors saw signs of such renewed hope in recent weeks, especially on the inflation front as several inflation measures showed signs of improvement. We also saw markets stabilize after the surprisingly fast collapse of Silicon Valley Bank.
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Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (UTMA/UGMA)

The Uniform Transfers to Minors Act (UTMA) is a law enacted in most states authorizing parents or other designated custodians to manage investments for the benefit of a minor child. Every state has some form of this law on its books. An older form of this law, the Uniform Gifts to Minors Act (UGMA), unlike UTMA, does not authorize investments in specific types of property; otherwise, it's essentially the same as UTMA.
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Trusts for Families

There are a number of family trusts that estate planners generally no longer use, either because they have lost certain tax benefits or because they are simply no longer a favored method of gifting. These trusts include the Clifford trust, the pot trust, and the Crown trust. Read more for what to use instead.
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Mother Knows Best: 6 Small Business Lessons We Learned From Our Moms 

Mothers are our teachers, starting from the time we are born and lasting throughout our lives. They have a role in teaching us how to be good people, take care of ourselves, and even be a success in the business world. Many small business owners are able to take the lessons they learned from their mothers and translate them into how they run their careers and business.
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Setting and Targeting Investment Goals

Setting investment goals means defining your dreams for the future. When you're setting goals, it's best to be as specific as possible. Writing down and prioritizing your investment goals is an important first step toward developing an investment plan.
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A Resilient March

The financial markets’ resilient performance during March was striking, despite pockets of uncertainty surrounding the strength of the economy—and not to mention concerns over the durability of the banking system. The ability of the market to navigate nearly two weeks of headline-related risk tested the underlying resolve of the market’s capacity to look ahead.
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SRI Vs ESG: The Difference Between These Investment Strategies

If you're curious about socially responsible investing, you may have encountered all kinds of phrases about this phenomenon, including socially responsible investing (SRI), mission-related investing, sustainable investment, ethical investment, socially conscious investment, impact investing, and investing based on environmental, social and governance (ESG) principles.
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6 Money Myths That Are Limiting Your Wealth

Money myths have also been circulated with such frequency that many people unknowingly believe them. These myths also tend to restrict people’s thinking regarding their money, which can potentially limit their wealth opportunities.
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There's Still Time to Fund an IRA for 2022

The tax filing deadline is fast approaching, which means time is running out to fund an IRA for 2022. If you had earned income last year, you may be able to contribute up to $6,000 for 2022 ($7,000 for those age 50 or older by December 31, 2022) up until your tax return due date, excluding extensions. For most people, that date is Tuesday, April 18, 2023.
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The Tax Benefits of a Backdoor Roth IRA for High Earners

A Backdoor Roth IRA is a strategy that allows individuals who earn too much to directly contribute to a Roth IRA to still contribute to one indirectly. The strategy takes advantage of a loophole in the tax code that allows individuals to convert their traditional IRA to a Roth IRA, regardless of their income level. This type of conversion has become increasingly popular in recent years because of the significant tax benefits that it offers to high earners.
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Understanding Social Security Strategies

As you age, the question of when to collect Social Security (SS) retirement benefits will likely come to mind. There is no one size fits all age; your unique circumstances and goals will dictate the appropriate time for you to take Social Security retirement benefits. Some SS strategies may boost your monthly benefit amount, helping you get the most from your SS benefits. Here are some strategies to consider.
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SVB Collapse

Financial markets were shaken last week as Silicon Valley Bank (SVB), the California bank subsidiary of SVB Financial Group (SIVB), fell into FDIC receivership. SVB is the first FDIC-insured institution to fail since 2020 and the largest by assets since Washington Mutual failed in 2008.
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The Strength of LPL Financial

We want to provide some important information regarding the resilience of LPL Financial’s business model, our financial stability and liquidity position, the steps we take to help protect client accounts, how we are regulated, and our approach to enterprise risk management.
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Waiting For New Highs

Financial markets have experienced quite a bit of change this year in just two short months. We started the year hopeful that stocks would benefit from a better economic and monetary policy environment by the spring, but recent developments suggest that may be further out than we initially thought. We remain confident that a new bull market will come—it just may require a bit more of our patience before we get there.
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Ten Tips to Live Life on Your Terms and Understanding Retirement Plans

It's no secret that women have special concerns about financial independence that need to be addressed. No matter where you are in your career, money management will become an important part of your life. While it may be true that money can't buy or ensure happiness, your ability to manage your finances can play a large role in your financial future, and to a large extent, your ability to live life on your terms.
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A Refresh for Your Finances

Spring is a great in-between time of year to take stock of your financial health and to create goals for the rest of the year—or to plan for the years ahead. But before you dive headfirst into any new financial plan, you need to take a look at the current state of your finances. Are they where you want them to be? Have you had trouble putting enough away to account for the unexpected? The steps here can help you get started.
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Planning for Earned Income in Retirement

If you're like a lot of people, retirement won't be the world of gardening, golfing, traveling, and tennis you once envisioned. Rather, retirement will mean relaxing and working. Maybe you've retired from your "regular" job and started a business, or perhaps you want to work part-time just to stay busy. However, if you work after you start receiving Social Security retirement benefits, your earnings may affect the amount of your benefit check.
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Luck of the Investor: Making Your Own Luck on St. Patrick's Day

As Samuel Goldwyn once said, "The harder I work…the luckier I get!" But when it comes to investing, luck may play a huge role in outcomes—no matter how hard you work. Here, we discuss some ways that luck may impact your investing, as well as some steps you may wish to take to try to make your own good luck this St. Patrick's Day.
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The Tax Benefits of a Backdoor Roth IRA for High Earners

A Backdoor Roth IRA is a strategy that allows individuals who earn too much to directly contribute to a Roth IRA to still contribute to one indirectly.
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Opportunities in 2023

When we look back on 2022, it's easy to identify the challenges, but if we look closer, we can also uncover some opportunities.
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Getting Your Financial House in Order

Many people may find the notion of creating and adhering to a financial plan about as appealing as doing housework. As everyone knows, putting off chores can lead to further procrastination. And, the longer you let things go, the more difficult it is to get started. But eventually, the time comes when you just have to buckle down and get to work.
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IRS Increases 401(k) Limit By Record Amounts

On October 21st, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced that the amount individuals can contribute to their 401(k) plans in 2023 has increased to $22,500, up from $20,500 for 2022. The IRS today also issued technical guidance regarding all of the cost-of-living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for tax year 2023.
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Nothing Says Love on Valentine's Day Like a Spousal IRA

Looking for ways to save "I love you" on Valentine's Day? Then you may want to consider opening a spousal individual retirement account (IRA). This gift says, "Let's grow old together comfortably," and shows your partner that you care about their financial wellness.
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Reasons for Optimism

The beginning of a calendar year is often the time when the previous year's reflections transition to a new year's hopes.
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Understanding Compound Interest and Its Impact on Your Financial Goals

Anyone involved in financial matters of any kind will have to deal with interest, either working for or against you. A quote often attributed to Albert Einstein provides readers with insight into the benefit or crutch of interest in your financial strategy.
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How to Recognize and Protect Yourself Against Tax Identity Theft  

When you hear the term identity theft, the first thought that comes to mind may involve a data breach or opening a credit card in someone else's name. But another common type of identity theft involves the use of someone's Social Security number to unlawfully intercept their income tax refund.
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Six Steps to Consider Before Tapping Your Retirement Savings Plan

The first step in any retirement income plan is to estimate how much income you'll need to meet your desired lifestyle. The conventional guidance is to plan on needing anywhere from 70% to 100% of your pre-retirement income each year during retirement
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Tax Planning and Financial Planning Go Hand in Hand

If you’re in the group of one in four Americans who do not already have a financial plan, it may be time to create your first one.
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Outlook 2023: Finding Balance

Through all the challenges, newfound opportunities, and every high and low we've experienced during the last couple of years, it's no surprise why we might be striving for more balance.
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Cheers to a New Year of Investing

For many investors, this year has been a wild ride- with interest rate increases, a crypto implosion, and whipsawing values in the major market indices.
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Keeping it in the Family Through Generational Giving

What is family wealth, and how do you preserve it? You have worked hard for years and accumulated wealth.
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The 12 Days of Year-End Planning: Things to Consider Going into “The New Year"

At the end of the year, it is necessary to reflect on your financial picture, review the last 12 months, and plan for the future.
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A Year-End Checklist for Traditional & Safe Harbor 401(k) Plans for an Employer

The popularity of 401(k) plans today is because they offer certain tax advantages to employers and employees.
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Make a Positive Impact This Giving Tuesday With Impact Investing 

While Black Friday and Cyber Monday center on consumer deals, Giving Tuesday—the Tuesday after Thanksgiving—has a different focus. Each year, individuals and corporations are encouraged to use the day to support charities and social causes, along with encouraging others to be generous by offering to match donations.
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Looking Ahead

October is now behind us and it has delivered on its track record as a historically favorable month for stocks, offering some respite for investors as major equity indices rose for the month.
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4 Ways to Save for Retirement Without a 401(k)

You are not alone if you do not have access to a 401(k) retirement plan. Pew Research data reveals that 35% of private-sector employees do not work for an employer that offers a plan. Fortunately, other retirement savings options are available, some of which provide similar tax benefits as a 401(k).
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Federal Reserve Preview

With a series of important economic indicators suggesting the economy is declining and inflation is finally decelerating, albeit very slowly, markets are beginning to factor in that the Fed may soon transition to a less aggressive stance in early 2023.
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Why Millennials and Gen Zers Need a Roth IRA

If Millennials or Generation Zers ask me what to do to get ahead financially, I have a laundry list: create a budget, start investing now, be smart about your taxes and so on.
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Appropriate Checklists for Year-End Tax Planning

Tax planners often develop checklists to guide taxpayers toward year-end strategies that might help reduce taxes. Typically, suggestions are grouped into several different categories, such as "Filing Status" or "Employee Matters," for ease of reading.
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Three Things to Know About Recessions: The 3 D’s

If the U.S. economy enters a recession, the causes and potential outcome will be hotly debated. At LPL Research, our starting point is always looking at history.
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Low Bar for Earnings Season Brings Third Quarter Expectations Down

Expectations are very low for this earnings season. The challenges are many, with intense cost pressures and slowing economic growth at the top of the list.
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Pockets of Vulnerability Magnified by Monetary Policy

As Federal Reserve (Fed) officials continue to emphasize the Fed's commitment towards restoring price stability, the dollar marches ever higher.
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Could the Worst be Behind Us?

First, we want to acknowledge the tremendous damage and displacement caused by Hurricane Ian. Our thoughts are with those impacted by this devastating storm.
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Trick or Treat, Wall Street! 4 Helpful Halloween Lessons for Investors  

With the spooky season already approaching, you may wonder if there is anything that can be done to enter 2023 as financially secure as possible. This is a great time of year to look back —and forward — to set goals and track your progress.
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Have You Checked Your Retirement Plan Lately?

Have You Checked Your Retirement Plan Lately       The classic definition of a correction is a decline of 10% or more in a stock index. A bear market is a downturn of 20% or more in several broad market indexes, typically over a period of several months or longer.  It's generally a good idea to review your employer-sponsored retirement savings plan at least once each year and when major life changes occur.
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Markets on Watch as Xi Jinping’s Influence to be Tested in October

On October 16, China will begin its 20th National Congress of the Chinese Communist Party in Beijing.
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Protecting Your Financial Information Online

More consumers are conducting financial transactions online and may become vulnerable to tracking, hacking, identity theft, phishing scams, and other cyberspace risks. While nothing can guarantee complete safety on the Internet, understanding how to protect your privacy can help mitigate your exposure to risk.   Here are some ways to help you safeguard your information:   Read privacy policies.
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5 Key Steps To Help Women Strengthen Their Business and Their Retirement

As a female entrepreneur, you may face different challenges than your male counterparts. For example, women were disproportionately affected by the COVID pandemic. 1 They also tend to earn less than their male peers—largely in part because they are still responsible for the majority of the world's unpaid labor. To counteract these challenges, women must be proactive about strengthening their businesses and preparing for retirement.
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Why It May Be Time to Take Advantage of Higher Yields

The LPL Research Strategic and Tactical Asset Allocation Committee is increasing its recommended interest rate exposure in its tactical allocation from underweight to neutral.
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How Much Higher Can Rates Go?

Inflationary dynamics continue to surprise to the upside, and markets now expect the Fed to pursue one of its most aggressive rate hiking campaign in years.
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Getting Jobs Market Back into Balance

Federal Reserve Chairman Jay Powell reiterated his warning that getting inflation under control will require some pain. Powell is likely making these warnings based on the arcane, clunky relationship between inflation and unemployment.
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The Best and Worst of Times

The strong market rally that peaked in mid-August was viewed by many analysts as a transition from a bear to bull market, based on the surge in breadth that stocks enjoyed and the magnitude of the two-month rally that began in mid-June totaling 17%.
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September’s Calendar Cruelty for Stocks

The difficult 2022 for stocks may not get much easier because as we now wait for better news on the inflation front, we have to contend with a seasonally weak month of September.
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What to Know About Multigenerational Estate Planning

Baby Boomers — those born between 1946 and 1964 — hold about $20 trillion in wealth.1 Over the next few decades, many Boomers may transfer this wealth to their Gen X, millennial, and Gen Z children, perhaps incurring a hefty tax bill. Here are some ways to handle multigenerational estate planning so that the generations after you may keep these assets in the family.
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Financial Planning for Female Entrepreneurs

Women own nearly 20% of the businesses that employ people in the United States, and countless more women run their businesses without employees. There are over one million women-owned firms. They employ over 10 million people and generate nearly $1.8 trillion in revenue annually.1 If you are a female entrepreneur, you help create these stunning statistics but may also face interesting challenges with personal and business finances.
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Earnings Recap: Still Hanging In There

Earnings growth of 6-7% doesn't sound very exciting, but given the challenges corporate America has faced, we consider the nearly-complete second quarter earnings season a resounding success.
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Moving Your 401(k) to a Roth IRA Tax-Free?

After-tax funds can be segregated from other funds in the account and transferred directly to a Roth IRA. In fact, it would be a mistake not to. (Don't confuse after-tax contributions to a regular 401(k) with contributions to a Roth 401(k), which are also made with after-tax dollars but to which slightly different rules apply.)
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Now Might Be a Good Time for a Roth Conversion

One silver lining in the current bear market is that this could be a good time to convert assets from a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA. Converted assets are subject to federal income tax in the year of conversion, which might be a substantial tax bill. However, if assets in your traditional IRA have lost value, you will pay taxes on a lower asset base when you convert.
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Home Sales Fall (Again). What’s Next?

Existing home sales fell 5.9% in July, the sixth consecutive month of declines as higher interest rates weigh on housing affordability and prospective buyers.
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Is This the Start of a New Bull Market?

Investors cheered the two better-than-expected inflation reports last week, pushing the S&P 500 to 16% above its June 16 low and only 11% below its all-time high.
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The Case for a U.S. Recession Weakens

The market pundits remain intensely focused on the question of whether the U.S. economy is in or about to enter recession, so we thought a piece on what a recession might mean for the stock market would be of interest.
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6 Keys to More Successful Investing

A successful investor maximizes gain and minimizes loss. Though there can be no guarantee that any investment strategy will be successful and all investing involves risk, including the possible loss of principal, here are six basic principles that may help you invest more successfully.
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Big Week for Market Watchers

Last week was epic for market-watchers. A Federal Reserve (Fed) rate hike, a much-anticipated gross domestic product (GDP) report, and the busiest week of earnings season got most of the headlines.
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Countdown to Retirement: Strategies for Saving in Your 50s

Forget about endless days of leisure. Retirees seek adventure, travel, and new business pursuits. While these changes may redefine retirement, will retirees be able to finance their plans?
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What a Week for the Stock Market

That was quite a week. These days a Federal Reserve (Fed) policy meeting alone gets a lot of headlines and has market participants on the edge of their seats.
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How to Manage Your 401(k) When You Switch Jobs

In the past, boomers and generation Xers often held on to jobs for 10 or more years. Some professionals stayed with the same company for most of their working lives.
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Staying on Track with Your Retirement Investments

Investing for your retirement isn't about getting rich quick. More often, it's about having a game plan that you can live with over a long time.
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Three Factors That Could Change the Course of Inflation

For the past year, supply-related problems contributed more to inflation than demand-related imbalances, but that may be changing soon. There are at least three factors that could change the course of inflation.
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Managing Market Volatility

Markets rarely give us clear skies, and there are always threats to watch for on the horizon, but the right preparation, context, and support can help us navigate anything that may lie ahead.
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Midyear Outlook: Navigating Turbulence

Markets rarely give us clear skies, and there are always threats to watch for on the horizon, but the right preparation, context, and support can help us navigate anything that may lie ahead.
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Looking Forward

As the calendar has turned to July, investors would certainly like to forget the first six months of 2022. However, the Fourth of July Independence Day holiday does bring with it reason for celebration.
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Constructive, Not Complacent: Lowering S&P 500 Target

Stocks have been unable to make up much ground since the June 16 lows, with a bear market rally amounting to only around a 4.3% gain in the S&P 500 Index since then (as of July 1).
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Myths and Facts About Social Security Myths

Myth: Social Security will provide most of the income you need in retirement.
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When the Stock Market is Down, Should You Consider a Roth IRA Conversion?

A Roth IRA conversion involves repositioning traditional IRA or qualified employer-sponsored retirement plan assets into a Roth IRA.
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What Parents Should Know About Using IRAs for College Savings

When you ponder saving for college, you may think your options are limited to a 529 college savings account or a regular brokerage account.
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Relief at the Pump and for Portfolios?

2022 has been rough all-around for the American consumer. Not only are we battling decades-high inflation, but investor's portfolios are off to one of the worst starts to a year in history as we near the halfway point.
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The Great Wealth Transfer: Is Your Family Prepared?

Over the next twenty years, a wealth transfer will occur that exceeds $30 trillion as the Baby Boomer generation passes the remainder of their wealth to the Millennials and subsequent generations.
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Bear Market Q&A

The bear market that started on June 13 has left the S&P 500 Index 23.5% below its January 3 high.
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Is the 60/40 Portfolio Dead?

This year has been tough for investors, not just because stocks have fallen but also because bonds have not helped mitigate those losses as they have historically done.
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What’s a Suitable Age to Receive Social Security?

Advice from the Social Security Administration can guide your decision!
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Ready to Retire? How to Know for Sure

Retirement is an exciting time for many, and the reward for years of hard work. While there is no set age for retirement, it is important to be prepared before you make the leap, so that you enjoy your retirement and financial stability during it.
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The Economy Is Slowing But Not Shrinking

Many pundits are issuing recession warnings and saying the economy is heading for a hard landing. Amid the cacophony of voices, we think the economy is slowing just like central bankers want but not shrinking.
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6 Tennis Tips To Help Make Your Retirement a Grand Slam

Whether you make tennis one of your leisure activities during retirement or just enjoy watching the sport, you may not realize that the same strategies used in a tennis match may also translate into retirement.
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Looking through the Clouds

We fully acknowledge how tough it is to see the bull case for stocks right now, and a retest of recent lows is certainly possible, but this week we lay out the bull case for the second half of the year.
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IRA Mistakes to Avoid

If you already contribute to a 401(k) or another retirement account through work, you may not have spent much time thinking about opening an individual retirement account (IRA).
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Dawn of a New Era for Core Bonds

Core bond investors have experienced the worst start to the year ever. However tough this year has been so far though (and it has been tough), the potential for future returns has improved meaningfully, in our view.
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Corporate America Delivers, Market Attention Focused Elsewhere

First quarter earnings season was solid by just about any measure, but based on recent market behavior it's obvious that in general market participants paid little attention.
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Have We Really Seen Extreme Pessimism Yet?

It's been a very tough start to the year with both stocks and bonds down sharply.
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April Showers Bring May Flowers

As we move into spring and leave behind the last signs of a long winter, many worries from a chilly start to the year for markets, unfortunately, are still with us.
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Why You Shouldn’t Sell Your Stocks in May This Year

Every year a barrage of Wall Street commentaries, media stories, and investor questions flood in about the popular stock market adage.
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401(k) Rollover Options to Consider

When people are leaving their employer, one of the decisions they need to make is what to do with their 401(k). A retirement plan participant typically has four options (and may engage in a combination of these options), each choice offering advantages and disadvantages.
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Diversification and Your Qualified Plan

As a small business owner, you know that a qualified plan can make a big difference in your ability to attract and retain desirable workers. At the same time, you may or may not be aware that sponsoring a qualified plan requires the fulfillment of several fiduciary responsibilities, as spelled out in Section 404 of ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended).
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Retirement Planning for Teachers and Public School Workers

The ability to enjoy a secure retirement is an objective that many teachers and their colleagues pursue years before they leave their jobs. Many public school workers, in different positions, devote their lives to furthering the education of young people. Eventually, each must consider life beyond his or her career and the benefits offered through, and outside of, the public school retirement system.
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3 Myths About Converting an IRA to a Roth IRA After Age 60

Suppose you have read or watched a story about converting an IRA to a Roth IRA after age 60. In that case, you may have seen this strategy portrayed negatively or only highlighting the benefits.
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Businesses and Consumers Likely Protected From Near-Term Recession

Not all recessions are created equal. Previous downturns in the U.S. were prompted by various shocks, with the most recent recession started by health and government-induced shutdowns.
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What to Watch This Earnings Season

First quarter earnings season is rolling. BlackRock, Delta Airlines, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and Morgan Stanley were among the first 16 S&P 500 companies to report March quarter results, following 20 index constituents with quarters ending in February that had already reported.
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Headwinds to Global Growth: An Economy of Two Halves

LPL Research reduced U.S. and global GDP forecasts due to Russian commodity disruptions, elevated inflation dynamics, and higher borrowing costs.
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Our Stock Market Final Four

As the Final Four NCAA Basketball Tournament rolls on in New Orleans, we continue our tradition of picking a stock market final four.
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Social Security Retirement Benefit Basics

Social Security benefits are a major source of retirement income for most people. Your Social Security retirement benefit is based on the number of years you've been working and the amount you've earned. When you begin taking Social Security benefits also greatly affects the size of your benefit.
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The Many Faces of Risk

Knowing the different types of investment risk can help you cope with market volatility. When was the last time you checked your retirement plan balance?
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What You Should Know About Contributing to an IRA at Every Age

A traditional IRA offers a great way to shield income from taxation while boosting your retirement accounts. Meanwhile, a Roth IRA can let you pay tomorrow's taxes today. But how can workers who are eligible to contribute to either type of account decide where to allocate their retirement funds?
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Tempered but Optimistic Enthusiasm Over Stocks

As the stock market recovered from the 2020 pandemic lows, valuations reached levels not seen since the dotcom bubble more than 20 years ago. T
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There's Still Time to Contribute to an IRA for 2021

Even though tax filing season is well under way, there's still time to make a regular IRA contribution for 2021. You have until your tax return due date (not including extensions) to contribute up to $6,000 for 2021 ($7,000 if you were age 50 or older on or before December 31, 2021).
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Are Core Bonds Under Pressure?

Core bond investors have experienced one of the worst starts to the year ever, potentially calling into question the validity of bonds in a portfolio.
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Read, Set, Rate Hike

The Federal Reserve (Fed) meets this week and in all likelihood will raise short-term interest rates for the first time since emergency levels of monetary accommodation were provided to markets after the COVID-19 shutdowns.
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Downshift in U.S. Market Growth But Still Above Trend

We currently expect the U.S. economy to grow 3.7% in 2022.
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In 2022 RMD Tables Are Changing, and That's Good News for You!

RMD Tables are changing to keep up with The SECURE Act of 2019.
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How Soon Are Rate Hikes Coming?

With inflationary pressures running higher than many central bankers are comfortable with, calls for interest rate hikes have become louder.
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Spring Cleaning Your Investments

Everyone needs to clean-up their financial clutter at least once a year!
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Financial Planning Tips for High-Earning Women

When it comes to saving for retirement, women may have extra challenges, even those with a higher-than-average income.
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Crossing the Bridge to a Satisfying Retirement

After spending many years building your career, you have likely accumulated a comfortable nest egg. If you have reached a point where retirement is the next big step, you need to develop a strategy that will help you cross the bridge from the world of work to the world of leisure.
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Strong Earnings Momentum to Start 2022

Corporate America has capped off an outstanding 2021 with an excellent fourth quarter earnings season so far.
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Which Region Will Get the Gold in 2022?

The near-10% correction in the S&P 500 Index and even larger drawdown in the Nasdaq have gotten a lot of attention this year.
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LPL Research’s Sustainable Investing Year in Review

Sustainable investing hit several milestones in 2021, but continued to attract its critics. Below we look at how sustainable investing fits within the broader concept of sustainability, its growth during 2021, and an implementation framework that has been helpful for many.
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Retirement Plan Limits on the Rise in 2022

Many IRA and retirement plan limits are indexed for inflation each year. Although the amount you can contribute to IRAs remains the same in 2022, other key numbers will increase, including how much you can contribute to a work-based retirement plan and the phaseout thresholds for IRA deductibility and Roth contributions.
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Pay Down Debt or Save for Retirement?

You can use a variety of strategies to pay off debt, many of which can cut not only the amount of time it will take to pay off the debt but also the total interest paid.
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3 Practical Time Management Tips for Investors

We discuss three time management tips investors may employ to free up some extra time for what matters most.
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Potential Catalysts for a Market Turnaround

After a tough start for stocks in 2022, investors are looking for reasons to expect a rebound.
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Don't Expect the Fed To End This Bull Anytime Soon

The Federal Reserve (Fed) has engineered a massive hawkish shift, causing a bit more stock market volatility recently. But how worried should investors be?
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Can Corporate America Keep it Rolling?

Corporate America has been on quite a run.
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The History of the Roth IRA

Although the Roth IRA has been a part of the retirement lexicon for years when compared to other types of retirement accounts, it's quite young.
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Three 2021 Market Lessons for 2022

In many ways, 2021 was a typical year for markets, but it also reinforced some basic market lessons that are hard to learn, even if they are not new.
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Beware Scams at Tax Time

Identity thieves often swipe your bank or credit card account numbers, birth date information or Social Security Number (SSN) to steal from your accounts, open a new and phony account or make illegal purchases. Some 15.4 million consumers were victims of identity theft or fraud last year, according to a report from Javelin Strategy & Research.
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Five Healthy Habits for Financial Wellness

Financial stress can have a direct negative impact on a person's health and happiness. Unfortunately, this may lead to a downward spiral. The more stress you're feeling, the larger your financial hurdles may seem, and the more you may rely on unhealthy stress-reducing habits. Fortunately, there are steps you may be able to take to improve your financial situation and help manage money-related stress. Below are five habits you may wish to adopt to work toward financial wellness.
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Tax Prep Checklist: Everything You Need to Be Ready for Tax Season

Regardless of whether you prepare your taxes yourself or use a professional's services, it's a good idea to gather the information and documentation you need well in advance of your actual tax filing date. Below, we've listed some key information you need when preparing this year's taxes.
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Five New Year's Resolutions for Those Nearing Retirement

Getting ready for retirement is both exciting and daunting. While you are likely looking forward to the enjoyment and relaxation that retirement may bring, you are also cautious about ensuring you have enough money to be able to retire in the comfort you anticipate. If your retirement years are on the horizon, below are a few new year's resolutions that may help put you on track.
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Stock Market Outlook 2022: Another Good Year?

We expect solid economic and earnings growth in 2022 to help U.S. stocks deliver additional gains next year.
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LPL Research Discusses Outlook 2022 & the Coming Year

We believe pent-up demand, gradual improvement in supply chain challenges, solid labor force growth, and productivity gains will all contribute to another year of above-trend economic growth in 2022.
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Will Omicron Ruin the Santa Rally?

Historically, December has been a great month for stocks, but now we have the Omicron variant causing major volatility and uncertainty.
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New Year, New Goals: Your Countdown to Financial Health

For many people, a new year provides a new start; and nothing says "new"; like a fresh new set of financial goals. But setting these goals is easier said than done. What steps should you take to get the most bang for your buck over the next year?
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3 Financial Moves to Consider Before Ringing in the New Year

Although you don't have to wait until January to begin working on your financial goals, a new year may bring a much-needed fresh start on your spending and saving goals. Read on for three financial moves you may want to consider before ringing in the New Year.
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Writing a Business Plan for a Small Business

Running a business without a written business plan is like heading out on a cross-country trip without a map or GPS. Although you may be able to make it to your destination, you may spend far more time and money navigating through unexpected complications than you would if you had a guide. Many lenders require a copy of your business plan as one of the key documents it needs when deciding whether to extend a loan or line of credit. But what should be included in your business plan?
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The Stock Market, Economy, and New Year: Three Reasons To Be Thankful

There are only six weeks to go in 2021 and it has been an incredible year for the stock market bulls. In fact, in many ways it could go down as one of the best years ever.
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Retirement Mistakes to Fix Before the Holidays

You probably spend more time planning your holiday gathering than preparing for your golden years. As a result, you make basic mistakes in trying to fund your retirement. Here are a few of the top mistakes people make to screw up this potentially crucial saving.
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A Peek at Peak Inflation

After an upside inflation surprise in October, it's clear that peak inflation may still be ahead, possibly even pushing into 2022.
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Developed International: If Not Now, When?

Since we began our investing careers, we've had the concept of diversification drilled into our heads. Some refer to it as the only free lunch in investing.
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5 Things That Might Spook Markets

With Halloween over the weekend, what better to write about this week than what scares us?
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Spotlighting Women-Owned Businesses on Women's Entrepreneurship Day

Celebrated on November 19th, Women's Entrepreneurship Day was established by Women's Entrepreneurship Day Organization (WEDO) in 2013.
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Can You Spot the Scam? Common Financial Fraud Warning Signs

Many people are familiar with the scammers who promise to pay millions of dollars in exchange for briefly holding funds in your bank account or those who offer to enhance certain body parts risk-free.
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A Financial Review Can Pay Off at Year End

Why not spend a few hours reviewing your finances? The changes you make today could result in increased savings. Consider the following seven important items.
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Bullish Setup Into Year-End

The S&P 500 Index has gained more than 20% so far this year, making more than 50 record highs along the way. Certainly nobody should be upset with that return if that was all 2021 brought us.
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Q3 Earnings Preview: Less Upside

We expect solid earnings gains during the upcoming third-quarter earnings season, but upside surprises will be smaller.
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Answering the Top Debt Ceiling Questions

Last week, Congress was able to push back a fast-approaching deadline for raising the debt ceiling to December. Markets applauded the move with a relief rally.
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Early Thoughts on 2022

While a lot can still happen between now and the end of 2021, we don't think it's too early to start thinking about what stocks might do next year.
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Financial Planning at Every Age

In 2013, a Gallup poll found that only about one in every three U.S. households maintained a budget.
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A Retirement Planning Primer

Does your retirement seem years and years away?
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Inherited IRAs: What You Should Know

The rules pertaining to Individual Retirement Account (IRA) beneficiaries can be complicated. Here is a quick look at the limitations the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) places on the beneficiaries of IRAs.
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Resources for Women-Owned Small Businesses

Small businesses face many problems related to their size, capital, and capability, and for women-owned small businesses, the challenge is sometimes even greater.
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Revisiting Our 10-Year Treasury Yield Forecast

Until recently, we expected the 10-year Treasury yield to end the year between 1.75% and 2.0%.
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Optimizing Required Minimum Distributions

Seventy-two is an important age milestone for those in or near retirement, as it marks the time when required minimum distributions (RMDs) begin to be withdrawn annually from IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement plans.
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Policy Risks Loom But Clarity Ahead

Several policy-related risks loom in September and October that may lead to an increase in market volatility.
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Poking The Bear

First and foremost, this week'ss commentary should not be construed to suggest that we are saying stocks will go up forever. We are also not saying that stocks are immune from a pullback in the final four months of 2021.
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Why You Should Resist the Temptation To Cash Out Your 401(k) Early

For some investors, it might be tempting to tap into your 401(k) to help pay down debts, purchase a home or take a once-in-a-lifetime vacation. However, doing so could seriously cost you, both now and in the future.
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Why Stagflation Isn’t In the Cards

The term stagflation has been circulating increasingly in the financial media as inflation readings have risen sharply in recent months.
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Some Key Uses of Life Insurance

Have you ever thought about the important role life insurance can play in helping you manage a variety of important financial objectives?
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Choosing the Right 401(k) for Your Employees & Your Business

Implementing a 401(k) plan for your employees is good business. It means you're thinking strategically, that you care for your employees, and are focused on the long-term health of your company.
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Education: One of the Best Investments You Can Make

It wasn’t long ago when an individual went to college, got an education, and embarked on one career that usually lasted a lifetime. Many companies provided on-the-job training, and little emphasis was put on the idea of going back to school to continually upgrade your skills or change careers.
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Corporate America Does It Again

Here, we recap the strong numbers and raise our forecasts for earnings and for S&P 500 fair value at year-end.
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COVID Update: Delta Variant Market Impact

The highly transmissible Delta variant of COVID-19 now makes up an overwhelming majority of the new cases in the U.S., bringing with it a rise in cases and hospitalizations.
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Five Things To Know Heading Into August

Last week was a huge news week, from the Fed, to gross domestic product (GDP), to a giant week of earnings reports. Below we review the big events from last week, while also looking ahead to what could be an eventful August for investors.
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What Retirement Plans Are Available?

When securing your financial future, saving for retirement usually is a no-brainer. But between an IRA, Roth IRA, 401(k), 457(b), SEP IRA, and the other retirement vehicles, how can you know which plan or plans are right for you?
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Six Surprises So Far in 2021

2021 has been a very strong year for both stocks and the economy, but that doesn't mean there haven't been some surprises.
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Eligibility Requirements for IRAs

A 401(k) isn't the only way to save for retirement -Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) can provide you with another savings vehicle regardless of whether your job offers a 401(k).
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A Checklist Comparing Traditional and Roth IRAs

Currently, there are two popular Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) that you might consider: the traditional IRA and the Roth IRA.
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Investing for Major Financial Goals

How do you set goals? The first step in investing is defining your dreams for the future.
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Midyear Outlook 2021: Picking Up Speed

It is hard to believe we have passed the halfway point of 2021. After a 2020 that would never end, the first six months of 2021 flew by.
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Three Things to Watch This Earnings Season

Despite lofty expectations, results exceeded expectations by one of the biggest margins ever. So what will companies do for an encore?
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Think You Know Retirement? Take Our Five-Question Quiz!

Even if you're saving money in a 401(k), IRA, or another type of retirement account, you may not be paying much attention to the specific rules and regulations governing these accounts.
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Three Things That Worry Us

Markets are off to a strong start this year, with the S&P 500 Index up about 14% so far. However, most of those gains came early in the year, and many stocks have stagnated over recent months.
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Why You Shouldn't Take Early Retirement Withdrawals

When money gets tight, it can be tempting to think about your retirement accounts as a potential source of financial breathing room. However, an early withdrawal from your retirement account can quickly get costly.
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Three Basic Retirement Questions to Ask Yourself

One of these questions is significantly more important to your success.
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The Backdoor Roth IRA in a Nutshell

If you are wondering what in the world a "backdoor Roth IRA" is, you're not alone!
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Inflation And What the Fed Is Saying

Inflation has been on the rise. Investors are not as interested in what's happening now as they are in what's happening next.
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Sustainable Investing Becoming Mainstream in Fixed Income

On May 27, 2021, a couple of events in the energy sector occurred that demonstrated the continued mainstreaming of sustainable investing and underscored the risks and opportunities available to investors.
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Policy Shifts May Challenge Markets

Fiscal stimulus, which was central to the market rebound in the last year, may start moving to the sidelines over the rest of 2021 and into 2022 as the recovery continues.
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Could the Roth 401(k) Be Right For You?

While the Federal government has created a number of tax-advantaged savings accounts designed to help lower- and middle-income workers save for retirement, these plans tend be less useful for employees earning larger salaries.
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Boost Your Retirement with IRAs and 401(k)s

Whether retirement is around the corner or decades away, there are more options than ever to help you plan for it. Let’s look at Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) and 401(k) plans, which offer tax benefits that can help you save for your future.
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Proceed With Caution in the Bond Market

After one of the worst starts to a year for fixed income, returns may not get much better from here. Long-term interest rates have traded sideways recently but we expect rates to potentially rise further, which would put downward pressure on bond prices.
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COVID-19 and Retirement

More and more Americans are contemplating their decision to retire this year. Others are tapping their retirement savings, while others continue to save more due to the economic fallout and impacts of COVID-19.
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Making Sense Of Your ROTH 401(K)

There are specific rules addressing distributions and rollovers of a Roth 401(k), which combines features of Roth IRAs and a traditional 401(k). We offer an overview of the key considerations.
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Stock Market Gains Likely To Slow

After one of the best starts to a bull market in history, the rally has started to show signs of fatigue. A strong economic recovery lies ahead as the reopening continues, bolstering a very strong earnings outlook that is helping stocks grow into elevated valuations.
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Economy Picking Up Speed

The economic recovery continues, as the recipe of vaccines, the reopening, and record stimulus all have combined to produce what should be one of the best years for growth ever. Although some economic indicators could be peaking or about to peak, the stage is set for this cycle of growth to continue for many years, which may surprise some investors.
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5 Investment Considerations for Small Business Owners

If you're a small business owner, many of the best practices employed by individual investors are also available to you (of course!), but you also have some additional options and factors to weigh while creating your investment plans.
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Amazing Earnings Season

It's embarrassing to admit this but in our earnings season preview on April 12, when the consensus estimate reflected a nearly 24% increase, we wrote that S&P 500 Index earnings growth for the first quarter could potentially exceed 30%.
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The Rule of 55: What Do You Need to Know?

The Rule of 55: What You Need to Know?
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Time To Sell In May?

Every year a barrage of Wall Street commentaries, media stories, and investor questions flood in about the popular stock market adage. We tackle this commonly cited seasonal pattern and why some seasonal weakness could make sense in 2021.
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Applying for Small Business Grants

Oh, the things you could do with free funding for your small business!
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Is All The Good News Priced In?

Last week we discussed whether stock prices might be reflecting peak optimism. In that commentary we noted that while sentiment may be overly optimistic and a pickup in volatility would be totally normal, strong breadth measures suggest stocks still may have more upside. This week we tackle that same topic of peak optimism, but by looking at some valuation metrics. While valuations are elevated, they still appear reasonable when factoring in interest rates and inflation.
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Contribute to an IRA Before the May 17th Deadline

Contribute to an IRA Before the May 17th Deadline!
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Peak Optimism?

Global stock markets are off to a strong start in 2021 as the world begins to emerge from the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the United States, vaccinations are increasing, the economy is expanding, unemployment is falling, and stimulus continues to flow through the economy.
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The Earnings Boom Is Here

The outstanding fourth-quarter earnings season we had in 2020 is a tough act to follow, but 2021's first quarter has the makings of another potentially great earnings season.
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Raising Forecasts…Again

The U.S. economy’s recovery from the pandemic continues to surpass our expectations, aided by the accelerating vaccine distribution, massive stimulus, and America’s desire to resume some semblance of normal daily life.
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Key Considerations as You Start Receiving Social Security Benefits

As your retirement draws closer, you will probably start to have lots of questions. There are a few factors that everyone should keep in mind when you begin making your retirement decisions. Keep reading to learn more about three key considerations relating to your future Social Security benefits.
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How to Increase Your Financial Literacy

Unlike verbal literacy, financial literacy isn't often taught in schools, ;which means that many people may enter adulthood without having all the tools they need to make informed and effective financial decisions. Read on for three simple things you can do to work toward increasing your financial literacy.
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Are We on the Brink of an Inflation Crisis?

There is a growing debate over whether an expanding economy, in conjunction with historic fiscal and monetary stimulus, may cause inflation to overheat.
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The Second Year of the Bull Market Begins

The bear market ended one year ago this week, finishing one of the fastest and most vicious bear markets of all-time --- one that led to a drawdown of 34%. Things have come full circle now, as stocks have staged a furious rally, with new highs happening across the globe as the economy recovers at a record pace.
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Traditional IRAs versus Roth IRAs

Currently, there are two popular Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) vying for your attention: the traditional IRA and the Roth IRA. While both are long-term savings vehicles with tax benefits, each has different rules concerning contributions, age, and income that may change from one year to the next.
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6 Essential Tips for Retirement Planning

Whether you are classified as a millennial, Gen Xers, women, or you are in your 40s-50s, retirement planning is a must. The key to successful retirement planning is starting young because it gives you more time to work towards your retirement goals. There are some keys to successful planning for those who have an employer and for business owners who wish to maintain their lifestyle after retirement.
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March Madness: Stock Market Edition

With the NCAA college basketball tournament getting underway this week, here's the “Final Four Factors” for the stock market in 2021: Vaccines, Policy, Profits, & Rates. The likely winner will push stocks higher over the balance of the year.
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Retirement Planning: To Roth or Not to Roth?

When saving for retirement, it often makes sense to contribute to employer-sponsored retirement plans to take advantage of any available employer match opportunities. However, not everyone has access to an employer-sponsored plan. Even if you do, there are reasons you may want to consider using Traditional and/or Roth IRAs to supplement your retirement savings.
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Tax Identity Theft Awareness - Protecting Yourself from Tax Identity Theft

Tax identity theft is when someone steals your Social Security Number, files a tax return with your number, and directs a refund to their own bank account. In other cases, this type of identity theft may involve a scam artist calling on the phone, pretending to be a rep from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and demanding payment over the phone. To protect yourself, keep these tips in mind.
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What to Know About Roth IRA Conversions

The Roth conversion process can sometimes be complex, and a misstep can cost you money in taxes, fees, and penalties. How does a Roth conversion work, and what should you know before getting started?
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Here Comes The Earnings Boom!

Fourth-quarter earnings season is in the home stretch, and it’s been a good one. This week, we recap earnings season and share our latest thoughts on just how strong the earnings rebound could be in 2021 and beyond.
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Key Tax Deadlines for 2021

While the 2020 tax year saw some significant changes to filing deadlines due to the effects of the global pandemic, the 2021 tax season seems to be set to be on track with normal filing deadlines. With the pandemic still in sight, it is important to consider that these dates may be subject to change.
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