Financial Wellness @ Work

What To Do (And Not Do) During This Market Downturn

Have you looked at your 401k statement lately? If so, you might have been tempted to sell out of any stock funds you have. Don’t. You’ll likely be turning a temporary loss into a permanent one. Read more

What If Money Fell Into Your Lap?

In a story that may or may not eventually turn out to be true, two men claim to have found a train that allegedly vanished at the end of the Nazi regime and it was (in theory) loaded with valuables. They are offering to share that location with authorities if they are given 10% of the value.  There are all kinds of legal, ethical and moral questions that would surround a found former Nazi treasure trove should this train actually exist and should they be given a nice finder’s fee. That could, if it’s a whole train filled with valuables, be quite the fortune! What are they going to do with it? Read more

Permanent Life Insurance or Mortgage Payoff?

We recently received a question on our Facebook page from a couple in their 50’s who are trying to decide between a fixed universal life insurance policy with a quoted return of “7% minus fees” vs paying off a mortgage with a 3.5% interest rate. This combines two common question topics: using permanent life insurance as an investment and paying off a mortgage early. Let’s take a look at some things to consider: Read more

Can You Put Your Investment Plan On A Note Card?

Does investing seem complicated? Despite the presence of overly complicated financial strategies and the often vexing financial jargon used by financial professionals, investing does not have to be so complex.Investing is simply a balancing act where the challenge is to find the ideal balance between risk and reward.  Read more

Some Of The Riskiest Investments May Surprise You

One of the biggest fears people have when it comes to investing is a year like 2008, when the US stock market fell almost 40%. But as long as you didn’t bail out of stocks, you would have recovered your losses in about 5 years and then gone on to make more money. The same is true of every other market downturn since the Great Depression. If you’re worried about the real risk of permanent loss, some of the riskiest investments actually seem much safer. Here are ones that may surprise you: Read more

Is A Financial Advisor Worth Paying For?

If you’re hiring an advisor to pick investments that will outperform the market, the answer is probably no. There’s no evidence that financial advisors’ recommendations add value in this way even if their advice were free. Add a 1% advisory fee and you’ll probably underperform the market. There are also now a host of “robo-advisors” that will help you put together and manage a customized portfolio of low cost index funds for a much lower fee. However, here are some services that may be worth paying a financial advisor for: Read more

Managing Your Pension In A 401k World

Lately there’s been a lot of criticism of 401k plans in the news and some of it is very valid. A 401k that is poorly designed and/or poorly managed can leave people in a bad place when they want to retire, but traditional pensions aren’t a perfect solution either. Don’t get me wrong. If you have a pension that is a GREAT benefit to have. You just can’t assume that everything will work out as planned.  Read more

What Makes A Good Mutual Fund?

That’s a common question I get in our investing workshops. Most people instinctively look at performance. After all, that’s how we typically measure ability and try to predict future performance in most areas but investing is different. Read more

There’s No Such Thing As A “Safe” Investment

There is so much information regarding the best investment mix for your financial goals. I challenge you to watch one episode of Squawk Box and see how long it takes for your head to spin with all of the conflicting information. On top of everything, everyone has a different idea about risk. I was talking with my colleague, Kelley, and asked her to share her perspective on how people should look at risk. Below is her guidance. Read more

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