Financial Advice for Retirement, Social Security, IRAs and Estate Planning

Bob's Blog on Retirement & Beyond

Beware Your Intuition

October 25, 2011

Many folks make decisions based on their “gut instincts” or what their intuitions tell me is right. One of the themes of Retirement Watch through the years is that’s often a big mistake in financial matters. This morning’s Washington Post has an interesting take on this theme. A former FBI profiler just had a book […]

Many Homes Underinsured

October 20, 2011

Most people don’t give a lot of thought to their homeowner’s insurance. They relied on the insurance agent to set the coverage amounts for the home and its contents. Often, the contents and personal possessions coverage is based on either a guess or a formula. This can be a mistake, especially as the home rises […]

New Estate Tax Rules

October 20, 2011

The 2010 tax deal created some new estate and gift tax rules, for at least two years through the end of 2012. One of the innovations is the portability of the estate tax credit. When a married person dies and his or her estate does not use his full $5 million estate tax exemption equivalent, […]

Why to Worry about the Euro Deal

October 19, 2011

European leaders promised they’ll have a plan to solve the European sovereign debt deal soon. The deal likely will try to avoid more than a nominal default or restructuring of Greece debt by adding a lot of money to either banks or Greece and the other debtor countries. The goal is to avoid a global […]

Another Recession Warning

October 18, 2011

Expect negative economic growth in the fourth quarter of 2011 and beginning quarters of 2012. That’s the message in the latest quarterly shareholder letter from Van Hoisington and Lacy Hunt of Hoisington Investment Management. The duo have been heavily invested in long-term government bonds for some time, to the benefit of their shareholders. They are […]

What’s Happening with PIMCO All Asset?

October 18, 2011

I’ve long recommended either PIMCO All Asset or All Asset All Authority mutual funds. They’re tactical asset allocation funds, meaning manager Rob Arnott alters the portfolio’s allocation to fit his expectations about the economy and markets. Arnott uses an approach I like, and the results are better than most. He looks for value in the […]

The Euro Crisis Explained

October 17, 2011

Many people know that the sovereign debt crisis in Europe is a problem for all of us. But they don’t fully understand how it developed and why it’s a problem. John Makin of the American Enterprise Institute, in his latest essay, does an excellent job of explaining how the crisis developed and why each of […]

End of the CLASS Program

October 14, 2011

In Retirement Watch and elsewhere I’ve directed attention to the CLASS program, enacted as part of the Affordable Health Care Act (the 2010 health care reform law). Government and private actuaries analyzed the proposed program, which was supposed to provide cash for Americans who need long-term care, and concluded it was not sustainable and eventually […]

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