Author Archive for Gregg Hancock

The Pros & Cons of Roth IRA Conversions

The Pros & Cons of Roth IRA Conversions

What are the potential benefits? What are the drawbacks?

 

Provided by

 

If you own a traditional IRA, perhaps you have thought about converting it to a Roth IRA. Going Roth makes sense for some traditional IRA owners, but not all. 

 

Why go Roth? There is an assumption behind every Roth IRA conversion – a belief that income tax rates will be higher in future years than they are today. If you think that will happen, then you may be compelled to go Roth. After all, once you are age 59½ and have had your Roth IRA open for at least five years (five calendar years, that is), withdrawals of the earnings from your Roth IRA are exempt from federal income taxes. You can withdraw your Roth IRA contributions tax free and penalty free at any time.1,2

 

Additionally, you never have to make mandatory withdrawals from a Roth IRA, and if your income permits, you can make contributions to a Roth IRA as long as you live.2

 

For 2017, the contribution limits are $135,000 for single filers and $199,000 for joint filers, with phase-out ranges respectively starting at $120,000 and $189,000. (These numbers represent modified adjusted gross income.)2

 

While you may make too much to contribute to a Roth IRA, you have the option of converting a traditional IRA to a Roth. Imagine never having to draw down your IRA each year. Imagine having a reservoir of tax-free income for retirement (provided you follow Internal Revenue Service rules). Imagine the possibility of those assets passing to your heirs without being taxed. Sounds great, right? It certainly does – but the question is: can you handle the taxes that would result from a Roth conversion?1,3    

 

Why not go Roth? Two reasons: the tax hit could be substantial, and time may not be on your side.

 

A Roth IRA conversion is a taxable event. The I.R.S. regards it as a payout from a traditional IRA prior to that money entering a Roth IRA, and the payout represents taxable income. That taxable income stemming from the conversion could send you into a higher income tax bracket in the year when the conversion occurs.2

 

If you are nearing retirement age, going Roth may not be worth it. If you convert a large traditional IRA to a Roth when you are in your fifties or sixties, it could take a decade (or longer) for the IRA to recapture the dollars lost to taxes on the conversion. Model scenarios considering “what ifs” should be mapped out.

 

In many respects, the earlier in life you convert a regular IRA to a Roth, the better. Your income should rise as you get older; you will likely finish your career in a higher tax bracket than you were in when you were first employed. Those conditions relate to a key argument for going Roth: it is better to pay taxes on IRA contributions today than on IRA withdrawals tomorrow.

 

On the other hand, since many retirees have lower income levels than their end salaries, they may retire to a lower tax rate. That is a key argument against Roth conversion.   

 

If you aren’t sure which argument to believe, it may be reassuring to know that you can go Roth without converting your whole IRA.

 

You could do a multi-year conversion. Is your traditional IRA sizable? You could spread the Roth conversion over two or more years. This could potentially help you avoid higher income taxes on some of the income from the conversion.2

 

Roth IRA conversions can no longer be recharacterized. Prior to 2018, you could file a form with your Roth IRA custodian or trustee to undo a Roth IRA conversion. The recent federal tax reforms took away that option. (Roth IRA conversions made during 2017 may still be recharacterized as late as October 15, 2018.)2  

  

You could also choose to “have it both ways.” As no one can fully predict the future of American taxation, some people contribute to both Roth and traditional IRAs – figuring that they can be at least “half right” regardless of whether taxes increase or decrease.

 

If you do go Roth, your heirs might receive a tax-free inheritance. Lastly, Roth IRAs can prove to be very useful estate planning tools. If I.R.S. rules are followed, Roth IRA heirs may end up with a tax-free inheritance, paid out either annually or as a lump sum. In contrast, distributions of inherited assets from a traditional IRA are routinely taxed.3

Gregg A Hancock Jr.
Vice President SENB Wealth Management
Trust Business Development Officer
SENB Wealth Management
309-757-0700
wealthmanagement@senb.com

www.senb.com

 

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc.

 

 

Citations.

1 – cnbc.com/2017/07/05/three-retirement-savings-strategies-to-use-if-you-plan-to-retire-early.html [7/5/17]

2 – marketwatch.com/story/how-the-new-tax-law-creates-a-perfect-storm-for-roth-ira-conversions-2018-03-26 [3/26/18]

3 – time.com/money/4642690/roth-ira-conversion-heirs-estate-planning/ [1/27/17]

 

 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE, April 16, 2018

­

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE

WEEKLY QUOTE

 

“Truth burns up error.”

      

– Sojourner Truth

      

   

WEEKLY TIP

 

As your career in the medical, legal, or tech sector progresses, you may build significant wealth, and you may need more than just term life insurance. Later in life, you could face issues that call for liquidity after your death. Permanent life insurance may help to address them.

   

  

WEEKLY RIDDLE

 

The oldest of two sisters is 4 years old. The little sister is half her age. When the big sister is 100, how old will the little sister be?

 

 

Last week’s riddle:

When you say its name, it is no longer there. What is it?

 

Last week’s answer:

Silence.

 

 

April 16, 2018

   

CONSUMER SENTIMENT INDEX DESCENDS SLIGHTLY

In its initial April edition, the University of Michigan’s survey of household sentiment saw its index decline to 97.8 from its final March reading of 101.4. The survey’s chief economist, Richard Curtin, believed that “uncertainty surrounding the evolving [U.S.] trade policy” affected the reading, but he added that “confidence still remains relatively high.”1

 

A SURPRISE RETREAT FOR THE HEADLINE CPI

Economists polled by Briefing.com assumed the Consumer Price Index would rise 0.1% in March. Instead, it fell by that amount, largely due to a dip in gasoline costs. Core consumer inflation increased 0.2% and matched their expectations. Looking at the big picture, the Department of Labor said that consumer prices were up 2.4% year-over-year through March.2,3

 

OIL SOARS AS POSSIBILITY OF SYRIA STRIKE LOOMS

Light sweet crude rose 8.6% in five days on the NYMEX, breaking a 2-week losing streak and settling at $67.39 Friday. That was oil’s best close since December 2014.4

 

STOCKS CLIMB AS EARNINGS SEASON BEGINS

Less anxiety about tariffs and renewed optimism about tech and financial shares led the market higher last week. The S&P 500 gained 1.99% in five days to settle at 2,656.30 Friday. The Dow Industrials rose 1.79% to a Friday close of 24,360.14, and the Nasdaq Composite added 2.77%, wrapping up Friday’s trading day at 7,106.65. Wall Street’s “fear index,” the CBOE VIX, declined 18.99% for the week.5

 

THIS WEEK: On Monday, Bank of America, Celanese, and Netflix present Q1 results, and March retail sales numbers also arrive. Tuesday, earnings from Comerica, CSX, Goldman Sachs, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, Northern Trust, and UnitedHealth appear, plus data on March construction activity. Wednesday’s earnings roll call includes Abbott Labs, Alcoa, American Express, Fred’s, Morgan Stanley, U.S. Bancorp, and United Rentals; investors will also consider a new Federal Reserve Beige Book.  BoNY Mellon, BB&T, Blackstone Group, E*TRADE, GATX, KeyCorp, Novartis AG, Nucor, Pentair, Philip Morris, Quest Diagnostics, Snap-On, Sonoco Products, and W.W. Grainger report earnings on Thursday, when new initial jobless claims numbers are also released. GE, Honeywell International, Procter & Gamble, Regions Financial, Schlumberger, State Street, SunTrust Banks, and Waste Management announce earnings Friday.

 

% CHANGE

Y-T-D

1-YR CHG

5-YR AVG

10-YR AVG

DJIA

-1.45

+19.10

+12.78

+9.80

NASDAQ

+2.94

+22.42

+23.14

+21.23

S&P 500

-0.65

+14.06

+13.44

+10.00

REAL YIELD

4/13 RATE

1 YR AGO

5 YRS AGO

10 YRS AGO

10 YR TIPS

0.69%

0.32%

-0.68%

1.23%

 

Sources: wsj.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov – 4/13/185,6,7,8

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends. 10-year TIPS real yield = projected return at maturity given expected inflation.

 

 

Please feel free to forward this article to family, friends or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our distribution list, please reply with their address. We will contact them first and request their permission to add them to our list.

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc.

 

Citations.

1 – sca.isr.umich.edu/ [4/13/18]

2 – briefing.com/investor/calendars/economic/2018/04/09-13 [4/13/18]

3 – foxbusiness.com/markets/us-consumer-prices-post-first-drop-in-10-months-on-weak-gasoline [4/11/18]

4 – marketwatch.com/story/oil-prices-post-first-weekly-gain-in-three-weeks-2018-04-13 [4/13/18]  

5 – markets.wsj.com/us [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F13%2F17&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F13%2F17&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F13%2F17&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F12%2F13&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F12%2F13&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F12%2F13&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F14%2F08&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F14%2F08&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F14%2F08&x=0&y=0 [4/13/18]

7 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [4/13/18]

8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [4/13/18] 

 

 

Smart Financial Steps After College

Smart Financial Steps After College

A to-do list for the twentysomething.

 

Provided by

 

Did you recently graduate from college? The years after graduation are crucial not only for getting a career underway, but also for planning financial progress. Consider making these money moves before you reach thirty.

 

Direct a bit of your pay into an emergency fund. Just a little cash per paycheck. Gradually build a cash savings account that can come in handy in a pinch.

 

Speaking of emergencies, remember health insurance. Without health coverage, an accident, injury, or illness represents a financial problem as well as a physical one. Insurance is your way of managing that financial risk. A grace period does come into play here. If your employer does not sponsor a health plan, remember that you can stay on the health insurance policy of your parents until age 26. (In some states, insurers will let you do that until age 29 or 31.) If you are in good health, a bronze or silver plan may be a good option.1,2

 

Set a schedule for paying off your college debt. Work toward a deadline: tell yourself you want to be rid of that debt in ten years, seven years, or whatever seems reasonable. Devote some money to paying down that debt every month, and when you get a raise or promotion, devote a bit more. Alternately, if you have a federal college loan balance that seems too much to handle, see if you qualify for an income-driven or graduated repayment plan. Either option may make your monthly payment more manageable.3

 

Watch credit card balances. Use credit when you must, not on impulse. A credit card purchase can make you feel as if you are buying something for free, but you are actually paying through the teeth for the convenience of buying what you want with plastic. As Bankrate.com notes, the average credit card now carries a 16.8% interest rate.4

 

Invest. Even a small retirement plan or IRA contribution has the potential to snowball into something larger thanks to compound interest. At an 8% annual return, even a one-time, $200 investment will grow to $2,013 in 30 years. Direct $250 per month into an account yielding 8% annually for 30 years, and you have $342,365 three decades from now. That alone will not be enough to retire on, but the point is that you must start early and seek to build wealth through one or more tax-advantaged retirement savings accounts.5

 

Ask for what you are worth. Negotiation may not feel like a smart move when you have just started your first job, but two years in or so, the time may be right. It can literally pay off. Jobvite, a maker of recruiting software, commissioned a survey on this topic last year and learned that only 29% of employees had engaged in salary negotiations at their current or most recent job. Of those who did, 84% were successful and walked away with greater pay.6

 

Of course, you also have the power to negotiate your pay when you change jobs. That ability is not always acknowledged. Robert Half, the staffing firm, recently hired independent researchers to poll 2,700 U.S. workers employed in professional environments. The pollsters found that just 39% of these workers attempted to negotiate a better salary upon their most recent job offer. The percentage was higher for men (46%) than for women (34%).7

 

Financially speaking, your twenties represent a very important time. Too many people look back over their lives at fifty or sixty and wish they had been able to save and invest earlier. These are the same people who may face an uncertain retirement. Rather than be one of them years from now, do things today that may position you for a better financial future.  

 

Gregg A Hancock Jr.
Vice President SENB Wealth Management
Trust Business Development Officer
SENB Wealth Management
309-757-0700
wealthmanagement@senb.com

www.senb.com

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment.

 

 

Citations.

1 – tinyurl.com/y7nne8bd [11/7/17]

2 – money.cnn.com/2017/10/20/pf/health-insurance-first-time/index.html [10/21/17]

3 – fool.com/investing/2018/03/22/your-2018-guide-to-federal-student-loan-repayment.aspx [3/22/18]

4 – bankrate.com/finance/credit-cards/current-interest-rates.aspx [4/5/18]

5 – investor.gov/additional-resources/free-financial-planning-tools/compound-interest-calculator [4/5/18]

6 – cnbc.com/2017/05/25/most-employees-dont-negotiate-their-salary.html [5/25/17]

7 – smallbiztrends.com/2018/02/salary-negotiation-statistics.html [2/8/18]

 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE

­ 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE, April 9, 2018

WEEKLY QUOTE

 

“No trumpets sound when the important decisions of our life are made. Destiny is made known silently.”

      

– Agnes de Mille

      

   

WEEKLY TIP

 

If you are divorcing, be sure to call the card issuers of your joint credit card accounts. Let them know that you are going through a divorce and that you would like to cancel the joint account and open one in your name alone.

  

  

WEEKLY RIDDLE

 

When you say its name, it is no longer there. What is it?

 

 

Last week’s riddle:

Weight within my stomach, trees on my back, nails in my ribs, and feet I lack. What am I?

 

Last week’s answer:

A ship.

 

 

April 9, 2018

   

HIRING WEAKENED IN MARCH

Payrolls expanded by only 103,000 net new jobs last month, according to the latest employment report from the Department of Labor. Some economists wondered if harsh weather distorted the number (job growth was also poor in March 2015 and March 2017). The main jobless rate stayed at 4.1%; the broader U-6 rate, counting the underemployed, fell 0.2% to 8.0%, an 11-year low. Yearly wage growth was at 2.7%. Lastly, February’s huge net job gain was revised up by 13,000 to 326,000.1

    

TRADE TENSIONS PERSIST

Thursday night, the Trump administration announced the possibility of $100 billion of additional tariffs on Chinese imports. In response, the Chinese government issued a statement saying it would “fight back firmly.” Earlier on Thursday, China had presented a list of U.S. goods that could face up to $50 billion in future excise taxes in that nation. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin told the media Friday afternoon that U.S. and Chinese officials are both pursuing a resolution to the tariffs battle, stating: “We’re absolutely willing to negotiate.”2

 

ISM INDICES: ANOTHER IMPRESSIVE MONTH

The Institute for Supply Management’s two closely watched purchasing manager indices were lower in March, but their readings still indicated burgeoning U.S. service and factory sectors. ISM’s service sector PMI declined 0.7 points to a mark of 58.8, while its manufacturing industry PMI settled 1.5 points lower at 59.3.3

 

APRIL BEGINS WITH VOLATILITY

After five days of rollercoastering, the major stock indices ended the week notably lower, as investor worries about tariffs and tech giants continued. Across five trading sessions, the S&P 500 fell 1.38% to 2,604.47; the Nasdaq Composite, 2.10% to 6,915.11; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, 0.71% to 23,932.76. Oil prices fell 4.6% for the week over concerns about U.S.-China trade and a boost in the number of rigs in operation.4,5

 

THIS WEEK: Nothing major is slated for Monday. The March Producer Price Index appears on Tuesday. Minutes from the last Federal Reserve policy meeting arrive Wednesday, along with the March Consumer Price Index and quarterly results from Bed Bath & Beyond and Fastenal. On Thursday, BlackRock and Rite Aid present earnings, and investors also consider the latest initial claims figures. Earnings season is in full swing Friday with announcements from Citigroup, Infosys, JPMorgan Chase, PNC Financial Services Group, and Wells Fargo; complementing all that, the University of Michigan releases its preliminary April consumer sentiment index.

 

% CHANGE

Y-T-D

1-YR CHG

5-YR AVG

10-YR AVG

DJIA

-3.18

+15.82

+12.86

+8.98

NASDAQ

+0.17

+17.62

+23.17

+19.24

S&P 500

-2.59

+10.48

+13.54

+8.98

REAL YIELD

4/6 RATE

1 YR AGO

5 YRS AGO

10 YRS AGO

10 YR TIPS

0.70%

0.39%

-0.74%

1.23%

 

Sources: wsj.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov – 4/6/184,6,7,8

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends. 10-year TIPS real yield = projected return at maturity given expected inflation.

 

 

Please feel free to forward this article to family, friends or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our distribution list, please reply with their address. We will contact them first and request their permission to add them to our list.

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. The information herein has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. Investments will fluctuate and when redeemed may be worth more or less than when originally invested. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All market indices discussed are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment. Indices do not incur management fees, costs and expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks. The NASDAQ Composite Index is a market-weighted index of all over-the-counter common stocks traded on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is a market-cap weighted index composed of the common stocks of 500 leading companies in leading industries of the U.S. economy. NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (NYMEX) is the world’s largest physical commodity futures exchange and the preeminent trading forum for energy and precious metals, with trading conducted through two divisions – the NYMEX Division, home to the energy, platinum, and palladium markets, and the COMEX Division, on which all other metals trade. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards. This material represents an assessment of the market environment at a specific point in time and is not intended to be a forecast of future events, or a guarantee of future results. MarketingPro, Inc. is not affiliated with any person or firm that may be providing this information to you. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional.

 

Citations.

1 – cnbc.com/2018/04/06/nonfarm-payrolls-march-2018.html [4/6/18]

2 – usnews.com/news/business/articles/2018-04-06/the-latest-china-says-it-will-fight-us-tariffs-at-any-cost [4/6/18]

3 – instituteforsupplymanagement.org/ISMReport/NonMfgROB.cfm?navItemNumber=31046&SSO=1 [4/4/18]

4 – markets.wsj.com/us [4/6/18]

5 – marketwatch.com/story/oil-futures-end-23-lower-amid-trade-worries-rising-rig-count-2018-04-06/ [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F6%2F17&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F6%2F17&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F6%2F17&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F5%2F13&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F5%2F13&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F5%2F13&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=4%2F7%2F08&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=4%2F7%2F08&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

6 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=4%2F7%2F08&x=0&y=0 [4/6/18]

7 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [4/6/18]

8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [4/6/18] 

 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE, April 2, 2018

 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE

WEEKLY QUOTE

 

“Silence is more musical than any song.”

      

– Christina Rossetti

      

   

WEEKLY TIP

 

About to start a business? Then be sure to file the correct forms with state government. Get in touch with your Secretary of State’s office (and your city and county) to see what licenses and forms you may need.

  

  

WEEKLY RIDDLE

 

Weight within my stomach, trees on my back, nails in my ribs, and feet I lack. What am I?

 

 

Last week’s riddle:

There are 43 hikers walking toward a desert peak. On the way, 6 decide to hike another peak, 12 head back, and 25 make it to the peak. What happens to the rest of them?

 

Last week’s answer:

There are no more, 6 + 12 + 25 = 43.

 

 

April 2, 2018

   

HAS CONSUMER SPENDING MAINTAINED ITS PACE?

A new Department of Commerce report states that consumer spending rose 0.2% in February as consumer incomes improved 0.4%. These numbers replicated January’s gains. Even so, the personal savings rate hit a 6-month peak of 3.4% in February, suggesting that spending may have leveled off in the first quarter. Newly revised data shows that the economy was very healthy in the fourth quarter. Real consumer spending (personal spending adjusted for inflation) increased 4.0% while Gross domestic product expanded at a 2.9% annual rate. (The previous Q4 GDP estimate was 2.5%.)1,2

    

STILL PLENTY OF OPTIMISM ON MAIN STREET

Last week, the Conference Board announced a reading of 127.7 for the latest edition of its monthly consumer confidence index, not far from the outstanding mark of 130.0 it reached in February. The University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index also fell slightly, declining to a final, impressive March mark of 101.4 from its preliminary reading of 102.0.2

 

PENDING HOME SALES INDEX POSTS A GAIN

The National Association of Realtors said that its gauge of housing contract activity rose 3.1% for February, even with seeming obstacles like a thin inventory of existing homes on the market and a scarcity of affordable properties. Pending sales were still down 4.1% year-over-year.3

 

CHOPPY WEEK ENDS EVENTFUL QUARTER

After sizable advances and retreats across four trading sessions, the three major U.S. equity benchmarks ended higher for the abbreviated market week. The S&P 500 settled Friday at 2,640.87; the Nasdaq Composite, at 7,063.44; the Dow Jones Industrial Average, at 24,103.11. The S&P rose 2.03% in four trading days; the Nasdaq, 1.01%; the Dow, 2.42%.4

 

THIS WEEK: The Institute for Supply Management releases its March factory PMI Monday. Nothing major is scheduled for Tuesday. ISM’s March service sector PMI arrives Wednesday, plus a new ADP payrolls snapshot and earnings from CarMax and Lennar. New initial claims figures and the March Challenger job-cut report appear Thursday. On Friday, the Department of Labor presents its March employment report, and Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell delivers a speech on the U.S. economic outlook in Chicago.

 

% CHANGE

Y-T-D

1-YR CHG

5-YR AVG

10-YR AVG

DJIA

-2.49

+16.67

+13.07

+9.73

NASDAQ

+2.32

+19.77

+23.23

+21.24

S&P 500

-1.22

+11.85

+13.66

+10.08

REAL YIELD

3/29 RATE

1 YR AGO

5 YRS AGO

10 YRS AGO

10 YR TIPS

0.69%

0.41%

-0.64%

1.13%

 

Sources: barrons.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov – 3/29/184,5,6,7

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends. 10-year TIPS real yield = projected return at maturity given expected inflation.

 

 

Please feel free to forward this article to family, friends or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our distribution list, please reply with their address. We will contact them first and request their permission to add them to our list.

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc.

 

Citations.

1 – cnbc.com/2018/03/29/us-personal-income-feb-2018.html [3/29/18]

2 – investing.com/economic-calendar/ [3/29/18]

3 – nationalmortgageprofessional.com/news/66542/pending-home-sales-february [3/28/18]

4 – barrons.com/public/page/weekstocks.html [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F29%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F29%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F29%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F28%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F28%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F28%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F28%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F28%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F28%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/29/18]

6 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [3/29/18]

7 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [3/29/18] 

 

 

A Retirement Gender Gap

A Retirement Gender Gap

Why a middle-class woman may end up less ready to retire than a middle-class man.

 

Provided by

 

What is the retirement outlook for the average fifty-something working woman? As a generalization, less sunny than that of a man in her age group.

 

Most middle-class retirees get their income from three sources. An influential 2016 National Institute on Retirement Security study called them the “three-legged stool” of retirement. Social Security provides some of that income, retirement account distributions some more, and pensions complement those two sources for a fortunate few.1

 

For many retirees today, that “three-legged stool” may appear broken or wobbly. Pension income may be non-existent, and retirement accounts too small to provide sufficient financial support. The problem is even more pronounced for women because of a few factors.1

 

When it comes to median earnings per gender, women earn 80% of what men make. The gender pay gap actually varies depending on career choice, educational level, work experience, and job tenure, but it tends to be greater among older workers.2

 

At the median salary level, this gap costs women about $419,000 over a 40-year career. Earnings aside, there is also the reality that women often spend fewer years in the workplace than men. They may leave work to raise children or care for spouses or relatives. This means fewer years of contributions to tax-favored retirement accounts and fewer years of employment by which to determine Social Security income. In fact, the most recent snapshot (2015) shows an average yearly Social Security benefit of $18,000 for men and $14,184 for women. An average female Social Security recipient receives 79% of what the average male Social Security recipient gets.2,3

 

How may you plan to overcome this retirement gender gap? The clear answers are to invest and save more, earlier in life, to make the catch-up contributions to retirement accounts starting at age 50, to negotiate the pay you truly deserve at work all your career, and even to work longer.

 

There are no easy answers here. They all require initiative and dedication. Combine some or all of them with insight from a financial professional, and you may find yourself closing the retirement gender gap.  

 

 

www.senbpresentsww.com

wealthmanagement@senb.com
www.senb.com

 

Citations.

1 – forbes.com/sites/karastiles/2017/11/01/heres-how-the-gender-gap-applies-to-retirement/ [11/1/17]

2 – money.cnn.com/2017/04/04/pf/equal-pay-day-gender-pay-gap/index.html [4/4/17]

3 – forbes.com/sites/ebauer/2018/03/16/how-should-we-make-social-security-fairer-for-moms/ [3/16/18]

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc.

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE, March 26, 2018

­ 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE

WEEKLY QUOTE

 

“Knowledge is the eye of desire and can become the pilot of the soul.”

     

– Will Durant

      

   

WEEKLY TIP

 

If it feels like your federal student loan debt is holding you back from saving enough for the future, think about switching to an income-based repayment plan, which could cap your loan payments at no more than 10% of your income and free up more money you could contribute to retirement accounts.

  

  

WEEKLY RIDDLE

 

There are 43 hikers walking toward a desert peak. On the way, 6 decide to hike another peak, 12 head back, and 25 make it to the peak. What happens to the rest of them?

 

 

Last week’s riddle:

It has two rings. It moves upon request. If a mixture is not right, it simply sits and rests. What is it?

 

Last week’s answer:

A piston.

 

 

March 26, 2018

   

TRADE WAR POSSIBILITY WEIGHS ON STOCKS

Last week, the U.S. imposed excise taxes on steel and aluminum imported from select countries and announced that up to $60 billion of Chinese imports would also soon face tariffs. These protectionist moves weakened bullish sentiment on Wall Street. The S&P 500 fell steadily Thursday and Friday and had its worst week since 2016, slipping 5.95% to 2,588.26; the Dow Industrials sank 5.67% on the week to 23,533.20. The Nasdaq Composite settled at 6,992.67, down 6.54% for the week.1,2

    

FED MAKES ITS FIRST INTEREST RATE MOVE OF 2018

After Federal Reserve officials voted to increase the target range on the federal funds rate by 0.25% to the 1.50-1.75% level Thursday, their dot-plot forecast showed no change in the pace of tightening planned for this year. Three hikes are projected for 2019 and two more in 2020. In succession, the increases envisioned for 2018-20 could leave rates near 3.4% by the final quarter of 2020.3

 

EXISTING HOME SALES INCREASE

New National Association of Realtors data shows that the sales pace improved 3.0% in February. That left resales 1.1% higher, year-over-year. The same cannot be said for new home purchases: they fell 0.6% last month according to the Census Bureau, leaving the seasonally adjusted annual sales rate at its weakest level since October.4,5

 

MEANWHILE, OIL SURGES

WTI crude staged a major rally last week, jumping up 5.6% to close Friday at $65.74 a barrel on the NYMEX. With equities under pressure, gold also gained more allure: prices rose 0.8% across five days to $1,352.90 on the COMEX.2,6

 

THIS WEEK: Monday, Paychex and Red Hat report earnings. On Tuesday, the Conference Board presents its March consumer confidence index; the Street also considers earnings from Lululemon Athletica, Restoration Hardware, Shoe Carnival, and Sonic. Wednesday, investors await the third Q4 GDP estimate, the February pending home sales index from the NAR, and earnings announcements from Blackberry, GameStop, Hudson’s Bay Co., and Walgreens Boots Alliance. February personal spending numbers, the final March University of Michigan consumer sentiment index, and Q4 results from Constellation Brands appear Thursday. Nothing major is scheduled for Friday.

 

% CHANGE

Y-T-D

1-YR CHG

5-YR AVG

10-YR AVG

DJIA

-4.80

+13.93

+12.43

+8.75

NASDAQ

+1.29

+20.20

+23.10

+20.05

S&P 500

-3.19

+10.33

+13.25

+9.17

REAL YIELD

3/23 RATE

1 YR AGO

5 YRS AGO

10 YRS AGO

10 YR TIPS

0.75%

0.46%

-0.60%

1.24%

 

Sources: wsj.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov – 3/23/181,2,7,8,9

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends. 10-year TIPS real yield = projected return at maturity given expected inflation.

 

 

Please feel free to forward this article to family, friends or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our distribution list, please reply with their address. We will contact them first and request their permission to add them to our list.

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., 

 

Citations.

1 – nytimes.com/2018/03/23/business/trade-tariffs-markets-stocks-bonds.html [3/23/18]

2 – markets.wsj.com/us [3/23/18]

3 – marketwatch.com/story/fed-lifts-rates-in-powells-first-meeting-says-outlook-has-strengthened-2018-03-21 [3/21/18]

4 – tradingeconomics.com/united-states/existing-home-sales [3/23/18]

5 – tradingeconomics.com/united-states/new-home-sales [3/23/18]

6 – quotes.wsj.com/futures/CRUDE%20OIL%20-%20ELECTRONIC [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F23%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F23%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F23%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F22%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F22%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F22%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F24%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F24%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

7 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F24%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/23/18]

8 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [3/23/18]

9 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [3/23/18] 

 

 

Tax Efficiency in Retirement

Tax Efficiency in Retirement

How much attention do you pay to this factor?

 

Provided by

   

Will you pay higher taxes in retirement? Do you have a lot of money in a 401(k) or a traditional IRA? If so, you may receive significant retirement income. Those income distributions, however, will be taxed at the usual rate. If you have saved and invested well, you may end up retiring at your current marginal tax rate or even a higher one. The jump in income alone resulting from a Required Minimum Distribution could push you into a higher tax bracket.

 

While retirees with lower incomes may rely on Social Security as their prime income source, they may pay comparatively less income tax than you will in retirement – because up to half of their Social Security benefits won’t be counted as taxable income.1

 

Given these possibilities, affluent investors might do well to study the tax efficiency of their portfolios; not all investments will prove to be tax-efficient. Both pre-tax and after-tax investments have potential advantages.

 

What’s a pre-tax investment? Traditional IRAs and 401(k)s are classic examples of pre-tax investments. You can put off paying taxes on the contributions you make to these accounts and the earnings these accounts generate. When you take money out of these accounts, you are looking at taxes on the withdrawal. Pre-tax investments are also called tax-deferred investments, as the invested assets can benefit from tax-deferred growth.2   

 

What’s an after-tax investment? A Roth IRA is a classic example. When you put money into a Roth IRA, the contribution is not tax-deductible. As a trade-off, you don’t pay taxes on the withdrawals from that Roth IRA (so long as you have had your Roth IRA at least five years and you are at least 59½ years old). Thanks to these tax-free withdrawals, your total taxable retirement income is not as high as it would be otherwise.2

 

Should you have both a traditional IRA and a Roth IRA? It may seem redundant, but it could help you manage your marginal tax rate. It gives you an option to vary the amount and source of your IRA distributions considering whether tax rates have increased or decreased.

 

Smart moves can help you reduce your taxable income & taxable estate. If you’re making a charitable gift, giving appreciated securities that you have held for at least a year may be better than giving cash. In addition to a potential tax deduction for the fair market value of the asset in the year of the donation, the charity can sell the stock later without triggering capital gains for it or you.3

 

The annual gift tax exclusion gives you a way to remove assets from your taxable estate. In 2018, you may give up to $15,000 to as many individuals as you wish without paying federal gift tax, so long as your total gifts keep you within the lifetime estate and gift tax exemption. If you have 11 grandkids, you could give them $15,000 each – that’s $165,000 out of your estate. The drawback is that you relinquish control over those dollars or assets.4

 

Are you striving for greater tax efficiency? In retirement, it is especially important – and worth a discussion. A few financial adjustments could help you lessen your tax liabilities.

 

Gregg A Hancock Jr.
Vice President SENB Wealth Management
Trust Business Development Officer
SENB Wealth Management
309-757-0700
wealthmanagement@senb.com
www.senb.com

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment.

 

 

  
Citations.

1 – ssa.gov/planners/taxes.htm [3/16/18]

2 – fool.com/taxes/2018/03/09/what-does-it-mean-to-be-pre-tax-or-tax-advantaged.aspx [3/9/18]

3 – kiplinger.com/article/taxes/T065-C032-S014-5-ways-to-maximize-your-charitable-giving.html [3/6/18]

4 – forbes.com/sites/ashleaebeling/2017/10/19/irs-announces-2018-estate-and-gift-tax-limits-11-2-million-per-couple/ [10/19/17]

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE, March 19, 2018

­ 

WEEKLY ECONOMIC UPDATE

WEEKLY QUOTE

 

“One person with a belief is equal to a force of 99 who have only interests.”

     

– John Stuart Mill

      

   

WEEKLY TIP

 

Are you worried that long-term care expenses might eat up your parents’ financial resources? Urge them to develop a plan for funding their health care needs through insurance products or other resources.

  

  

WEEKLY RIDDLE

 

It has two rings. It moves upon request. If a mixture is not right, it simply sits and rests. What is it?

 

 

Last week’s riddle:

Nate gets messages every day from people who want his services, yet he gets paid when he drives away his customers. What does he do for a living?

 

Last week’s answer:

He is a rideshare driver.

 

 

March 19, 2018

   

price gains EasE

There was no half-percent spike in inflation in February. In contrast to January’s big jump, the headline Consumer Price Index rose 0.2% in the second month of 2018, with the core CPI following suit; the year-over-year CPI gain ticked slightly higher to 2.2%. The headline and core Producer Price Index also increased 0.2% last month; yearly wholesale inflation rose just 0.1% to 2.8%.1

     

THE CONSUMER IS CONFIDENT

Displaying a preliminary March reading of 102.0, the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index reached a 14-year peak last week. Analysts polled by Reuters expected the gauge to decline 0.6 points to 99.3. As for consumer habits, the Department of Commerce just noted a 0.1% retreat for retail sales in February; sales advanced 0.3% with gas and auto buying factored out.1,2

 

RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION FLAGS

Overall housing starts fell 7.0% last month, according to the Census Bureau. The silver lining: groundbreaking on single-family projects increased 2.9%. Building permits decreased 5.7%.3

 

INVESTORS SELL AS THEY WAIT ON THE FED

During the trading week before the Federal Reserve’s March policy meeting, all three major Wall Street benchmarks staged retreats. The Nasdaq Composite declined 1.04% across the week to 7,481.99; the S&P 500 fell 1.24% to 2,752.01. Blue chips took the biggest hit: the Dow Jones Industrial Average settled 1.54% lower for the week, slipping to 24,946.51 Friday. Rising 6.56% in five days, the CBOE VIX concluded the week at 15.60.4

 

THIS WEEK: Oracle announces quarterly results on Monday. Tuesday, FedEx and Steelcase present earnings. Wednesday, investors anticipate an interest rate hike from the Federal Reserve; in addition to the Fed’s latest policy announcement, the news stream also includes February existing home sales and earnings from Five Below, General Mills, Guess, and Winnebago. Thursday, Wall Street reviews new initial jobless claims figures and earnings news from Accenture, BP Midstream Partners, Carnival, Cintas, ConAgra Brands, Darden Restaurants, KB Home, Lands’ End, Michaels Companies, Micron Technology, and Nike. On Friday, reports on February hard goods orders and new home sales arrive.

 

% CHANGE

Y-T-D

1-YR CHG

5-YR AVG

10-YR AVG

DJIA

+0.92

+19.16

+14.38

+10.84

NASDAQ

+8.38

+26.80

+26.06

+24.37

S&P 500

+2.93

+15.56

+15.27

+11.56

REAL YIELD

3/16 RATE

1 YR AGO

5 YRS AGO

10 YRS AGO

10 YR TIPS

0.77%

0.51%

-0.55%

1.05%

 

Sources: wsj.com, bigcharts.com, treasury.gov – 3/16/184,5,6,7

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends. 10-year TIPS real yield = projected return at maturity given expected inflation.

 

 

Please feel free to forward this article to family, friends or colleagues. If you would like us to add them to our distribution list, please reply with their address. We will contact them first and request their permission to add them to our list.

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro.

 

Citations.

1 – investing.com/economic-calendar/ [3/16/18]

2 – cnbc.com/2018/03/16/march-consumer-sentiment.html [3/16/18]

3 – bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-03-16/u-s-housing-starts-cooled-in-february-after-robust-january [3/16/18]

4 – markets.wsj.com/us [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F16%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F16%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F16%2F17&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F15%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F15%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F15%2F13&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=DJIA&closeDate=3%2F17%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=COMP&closeDate=3%2F17%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

5 – bigcharts.marketwatch.com/historical/default.asp?symb=SPX&closeDate=3%2F17%2F08&x=0&y=0 [3/16/18]

6 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyield [3/16/18]

7 – treasury.gov/resource-center/data-chart-center/interest-rates/Pages/TextView.aspx?data=realyieldAll [3/16/18]

 

 

 

Catching Up on Retirement Saving

Catching Up on Retirement Saving

If you are starting at or near 50, consider these ideas.

 

Provided by

 

Do you fear you are saving for retirement too late? Plan to address that anxiety with some positive financial moves. If you have little saved for retirement at age 50 (or thereabouts), there is still much you can do to generate a fund for your future and to sustain your retirement prospects.

        

Contribute and play catch-up. This year’s standard contribution limit for an IRA (Roth or traditional) is $5,500; common employer-sponsored retirement plans have a 2018 contribution limit of $18,500. You should try, if at all possible, to meet those limits. In fact, starting in the year you turn 50, you have a chance to contribute even more: for you, the ceiling for annual IRA contributions is $6,500; the limit on yearly contributions to workplace retirement plans, $24,500.1

 

Look for low-fee options. Lower fees on your retirement savings accounts mean less of your invested assets going to management expenses. An account returning 6% per year over 25 years with an annual expense ratio of 0.5% could leave you with $30,000 more in savings than an account under similar conditions and time frame charging a 2.0% annual fee.2

 

Focus on determining the retirement income you will need. If you are behind on saving, you may be tempted to place your money into extremely risky and speculative investments – anything to make up for lost time. That may not work out well. Rather than risk big losses you have little time to recover from, save reasonably and talk to a financial professional about income investing. What investments could potentially produce recurring income to supplement your Social Security payments?

 

Consider where you could retire cheaply. When your retirement savings are less than you would prefer, this implies a compromise. Not necessarily a compromise of your dreams, but of your lifestyle. There are many areas of the country and the world that may allow you to retire with less financial pressure.

 

Think about retiring later. Every additional year you work is one less year of retirement to fund. Each year you refrain from drawing down your retirement accounts, you give them another year of potential growth and compounding – and compounding becomes more significant as those accounts grow larger. Working longer also lets you claim Social Security later, and that means bigger monthly retirement benefits for you.

 

Most members of Generation X need to save more for their futures. The median retirement savings balance for a Gen Xer, according to research from Allianz, is about $35,000. A recent survey from Comet Financial Intelligence found that 41% of Gen Xers had not yet begun to build their retirement funds. So, if you have not started or progressed much, you have company. Now is the time to plan your progress and follow through.3,4

 

Gregg A Hancock Jr.
Vice President SENB Wealth Management
Trust Business Development Officer
SENB Wealth Management
309-757-0700
wealthmanagement@senb.com
www.senb.com

 

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc.

 

Citations.

1 – irs.gov/newsroom/irs-announces-2018-pension-plan-limitations-401k-contribution-limit-increases-to-18500-for-2018 [10/25/18]

2 – businessinsider.com/401k-fees-devastate-retirement-2017-5 [5/10/17]

3 – fool.com/retirement/2018/02/07/heres-what-gen-xers-have-saved-for-retirement.aspx [2/7/18]

4 – entrepreneur.com/article/309746 [3/2/18]