Author: Katherine Plotnik

Five Tips to Regain Your Retirement Savings Focus in 2021

In early 2020, 61% of U.S. workers surveyed said that retirement planning makes them feel stressed.1 Investor confidence was continually tested as the year wore on, and it’s likely that this percentage rose — perhaps even substantially. If you find yourself among those feeling stressed heading into the new year, these tips may help you focus and enhance your retirement savings strategy in 2021. 1. Consider increasing your savings by just 1%. If you participate in a retirement savings plan…
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Seeking Sun or Savings? Explore a Retirement Move

Many people intend to retire in the place they call home, where they have established families and friendships. But for others, the endof a career brings the freedom to choose a new lifestyle in a different part of the country — or the opportunity to preserve more wealth and protect it from taxes. This big life decision is not all about money or the weather. Quality-of-life issues matter, too, such as proximity to family members and/or a convenient airport, access…
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Five Investment Tasks to Tackle by Year-End

Market turbulence in 2020 may have wreaked havoc on your investment goals for the year. It probably also highlighted the importance of periodically reviewing your investment portfolio to determine whether adjustments are needed to keep it on track. Now is a good time to take on these five year-end investment tasks. 1. Evaluate Your Investment Portfolio To identify potential changes to your investment strategy, consider the following questions when reviewing your portfolio: •How did your investments perform during the year?…
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How to Teach Your Kids When You Lack Confidence About Money

Recently, I was part of a virtual panel using Zoom. We were talking about money and confidence. Specifically, about children and how do we talk to our kids about money. One of the women on the panel with me said something that gave me an “aha” moment. She said that a lot of times even though she is a super successful business owner, she does not feel qualified to talk to her kids about money. She doesn’t feel like she…
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Money Hacks

There is a big trend right now of life hacks. So, I came up with three money hacks that you can do now to change how you think and feel about your money. Open your wallet. Look at your money and how it is organized. Is your money a mess in your wallet? Or is it nicely organized? If you have all your money in an orderly fashion that is much different than if your money is out of order,…
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Job Loss – How to Financially Cope

If you have lost your job, it is important not to panic. Breathe. Stay calm. Everything always works out how it is supposed to. Here are four things you can do now to ease the stress financially and emotionally if you have been laid off. Assess your situation. Now is the time to be calm and to stop and look where you are and where you would like to be. If you don’t have a budget, create one. If you…
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The Changing College Landscape

The 2020-2021 academic year is right around the corner, and the coronavirus pandemic has upended the college world, like everything else. Not only has COVID-19 impacted short-term college operations and student summer plans, but the virus could end up being the catalyst that changes the model of higher education in the long term. Here are some things to know about the changing college landscape. College funds. Market volatility has been at record high levels this year, and college nest eggs…
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Markus Winkler

Tapping Retirement Savings During a Financial Crisis

As the number of COVID-19 cases began to skyrocket in March 2020, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The legislation may make it easier for Americans to access money in their retirement plans, temporarily waiving the 10% early-withdrawal penalty and increasing the amount they could borrow. Understanding these new guidelines and the other rules for loans and early withdrawals may help you determine if they are appropriate options during a financial crisis. (Remember that tapping…
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Turbulent Times: Bear Markets Come and Go

The longest bull market in history lasted almost 11 years before coronavirus fears and the realities of a seriously disrupted U.S. economy brought it to an end.1 Bear markets are typically defined as declines of 20% or more from the most recent high, and bull markets are sustained increases of 20% or more from the bear market low. But there is no official declaration, so often there are different interpretations and a fair amount of debate regarding when these cycles…
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It Is Not How Much You Make, It Is How Much You Keep

You probably have heard this phrase before and it is true. “It is not how much you make, it is how much you keep.” That is the truth. If you make $100,000 a year and you spend $100,000 a year you will not get ahead. If you spend more than you make, or spend everything you make, you cannot get ahead. Life is about being happy. Spending money and having stuff does not bring happiness. Research from the San Francisco…
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