07 Apr 2016

Historic Pro-Investor Fiduciary Regulations Now Under Attack From Trump Administration

[sgmb id=”2″] The Trump Administration has announced that it will seek to reverse the U.S. Department of Labor’s historic announcement that millions of investors will finally be able to receive objective, unbiased information about their investment choices. This attack on the fiduciary standard also is being abetted by the most

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06 Apr 2016

Should the Retirement Industry Accept Some Blame for the Retirement Crisis?

Social responsibility has been a buzzword in corporate America for decades, but nowhere has it been more conspicuously vacant than in the recent stories about the pending retirement crisis that is currently facing millions of Americans. At issue is whether the retirement industry, comprised of investment, mutual fund and insurance

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20 Nov 2015

Investors and Retirees Should Expect Less in 2016

2016 looks like it will be a rocky years for investors. U.S. economic growth in 2016 was cut to 2.4%, a decrease from a previous estimate of 2.8%, according to a report by Goldman Sachs in September 2015. On a global level, GDP growth was cut from 4.3 %  to 3.7% primarily due

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05 Nov 2015

The Investment Company Institute Again Betrays Individual Investors

The leading trade association of the $16 trillion in assets (as of year-end 2014) mutual fund industry has again shown its distain for individual mutual fund shareholders. In a recent letter to Congressional committee, the president of the Investment Company Institute (ICI), the mutual fund industry’s leading lobbying group, went

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30 Sep 2015

Why Modern Business Requires Changes in Retirement Planning

Most advice on retirement planning has traditionally focused on the basics of portfolio construction, risk management, diversification, maximizing contributions and other financial considerations. But there is also another important aspect of retirement that only gets marginal coverage.  That aspect is happiness. Various indexes, such as the World Happiness Report, now

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04 Sep 2015

Principal Life Agrees to Lower Fees As Part of Class Action Settlement Offering Proprietary Funds

      Principal Life, a subsidiary of Principal Financial, one of the nation’s largest companies in the 401(k) industry, likes to portray itself as the folksy neighbor interested in your financial well-being. But as a recent settlement shows, Principal Life has no qualms about pushing its own, more expensive

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17 Aug 2015

DOL Seeks to End Victimization of Investors

In the never-ending debate about the retirement advisor industry’s adoption of the fiduciary standard–aka, giving a customer an even break–a Department of Labor (DOL) official has cut to the chase and said the fiduciary rule would effectively change the advisory business culture. And that’s exactly why the industry hates the

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31 Jul 2015

How the Decline in Housing Wealth Affects Financial Planning

The unprecedented decline in housing prices suffered as a result of the 2008 recession is still significantly affecting retirement wealth, but it also has great far-reaching implications for the future of retirement planning. The reason: home ownership is the main engine for generating retirement wealth for most Americans. Housing wealth exceeds

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20 Jul 2015

Should Financial Advisors Criticize Capitalism?

Financial advisors today find themselves in a major ethical dilemma: Should they represent their own monetary interests before those of less-sophisticated clients? Or, should they mention, as history has repeatedly shown, that the larger financial system contains more built-in major risks that cannot be hedged and can destroy years of accumulated

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12 Jul 2015

A Bad New Trend for Retirement

As the number of part-time workers continues, more workers are now becoming freelancers to make an income.  But this large shift comes at even larger price: freelancers do not get benefits, including the all-important 401(k) plan and its critical employer match. According to a CNBC report, over 53 million Americans

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