Financial Wellness @ Work

How to Assess Your Financial Wellness

Last week, we started to explore the concept of financial wellness, a term used to describe our complete financial picture or overall financial health. The following question was presented as food for thought – what does financial wellness mean to you?  Read more

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What Are Your Monkeys and Bananas?

One of the phrases my coworkers and I used a lot (at another firm during my career) in times of frustration was “monkeys and bananas.” That was our way of saying that we were operating under a bunch of constraints and no one could explain a logical or rational reason for those constraints.  “That’s the way it’s always been done…” is the beginning of an explanation that would always irritate me.  Just because something has always been done that way doesn’t mean it’s the way it should continue to be done.  So…how does that relate to monkeys and bananas???  Read more

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What Does “Financial Wellness” Mean To You?

Last week, we kicked off “Ask A Planner Week” at Financial Finesse. This was designed to allow our social media fans and followers an opportunity to ask us questions so that our team of CFP® professionals can provide an unbiased answer. This initiative is being led by Erik Carter, JD, CFP® and you can check out Erik’s response to the first question “When Should You Sell Your Mutual Fund?” by clicking here to see his Thursday blog submission. We have already received many additional questions that are excellent and this is an ongoing initiative. So we encourage others to keep the questions coming in to Facebook and TwitterRead more

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How Our History Can Help Us Shape Our Future

200 years ago, Francis Scott Key wrote the Star Spangled Banner in the Baltimore harbor near Fort McHenry.As a Baltimore guy, this past weekend was glorious.  There were thousands of people celebrating the bicentennial of the Star Spangled Banner in the Baltimore area, tall ships from all over the world were in the harbor, the Blue Angels were doing aerial shows, there were fireworks and the Orioles were beating the Yankees in an important series.  (That has no bearing on the bicentennial, but it makes being in Baltimore a lot more fun.)  It was a great weekend to look back at our country’s history and reflect upon where we’ve been as a country and where we’re headed.  Read more

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Cyber-Thieves Strike Again: What To Do If You Are a Victim

Well, it’s happened again. Another national retailer has had its payment systems hacked. This and similar cyber attacks against corporations appear to be on the rise so as a consumer you will want to be especially diligent in watching your accounts for unauthorized use. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) offers four steps you should take when you suspect that your debit or credit card information has been compromised: Read more

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Will Changes to FICO Scoring Affect your Credit Score?

Are you thinking of applying for a loan in the future? If so, you might want to know that there are some upcoming changes in how FICO calculates credit scores. This is important to be aware of since FICO is one of the most widely used credit scoring methods. The new FICO® Score 9 will incorporate three major changes. Read more

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Do You LUV Your Brand?

As someone who travels a lot for work, news from airlines always gets my attention.  Southwest Airlines is doing an overhaul of their logo, their paint jobs on planes, their snack bags…virtually everything associated with their brand.  We see the same images and messages all the time and after a while we stop noticing. I always think of Charlie Brown’s teacher when I hear a friend of mine threaten her kids with some form of punishment (which never happens, they still get ice cream after failing to listen to anything she says).  The same “you’re going to bed early” or “no technology if you don’t do X” or some similar thing is held out as a consequence, yet there are never consequences. In order for her kids to take her seriously or for companies to get us to pay attention again, sometimes a change is required.  Southwest is doing exactly that with their makeover of their logo and branding efforts. Read more

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Managing Mom’s (or Dad’s) Money

I recently spoke to a caller on the Financial Helpline, where we provide over the phone financial coaching as an employee benefit through her employer.  She had just learned that her parents had deeded over the family home to her nephew, who was in his early 20s and barely getting by. Her mom had just recently settled into an assisted living facility at $5,500 a month due to an onset of dementia. Her dad, age 93, still lived at home with her sister and nephew and was getting worried he might go broke trying to pay for her care and he didn’t want to lose the family home.   Read more

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Fooling Ourselves

I was scrolling through the SiriusXM radio dial while driving recently and found a song I hadn’t heard in at least 20 years.   Styx – Fooling Yourself  was playing as I was weaving in and out of traffic, trying to get home in time to meet my girlfriend at a reasonable time for sushi.  It seemed like the more I changed lanes and zoomed past a line of cars, I’d get behind a super slow car and the line of cars passed me by.   Read more

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My Back to School Checklist

It is hard to believe that summer is winding down and school is right around the corner. I talk to many other parents this time of year who have a wide range of thoughts regarding the back to school routine. Some ask “where did all of the time go” while others cannot wait to get their cute little monsters out of the house and out of their hair. If you are a parent with school-aged children, you are likely experiencing a similar feeling of disappointment/relief. Read more

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