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

Bob's Blog on Retirement & Beyond

Employers Sponsoring Retirement Plans Beware

June 20, 2011

Small businesses and other organizations that sponsor retirement plans for their employees need to be careful. The federal government believes most plans don’t comply with the tax law and it’s out to change that. The Department of Labor added hundreds of employees for enforcement. The IRS also released its list of audit targets, and those […]

Clients vs. Advisors

June 20, 2011

I see numerous surveys of clients or investment advisors or both. This one had a point that stands out for the extent of the current disconnection between what advisors and clients are thinking. Clients are less confident and are more content with fixed income investments and other conservative investments.Advisors on the other hand are more […]

Analyzing Your Bills

June 20, 2011

There always are articles claiming you can find “free money” by taking simple steps such as switching your spending to the lowest-cost provider. Here’s a novel and extreme version of that advice. A consulting firm claims that 95% of all monthly service bills contain errors. This article is replete with examples. Before you get too […]

Reforming Medicare

June 20, 2011

Here’s a piece that simplifies the debate over Medicare reform. Geoff Colvin of Fortune takes the view that there are only two big picture ways to fix Medicare’s fiscal problems. He says one way’s been proven not to work, so we ought to try  the other way. Medicare has become the largest issue in America […]

Evaluating Medicare Reform

June 16, 2011

At least we’re finally having a public discussion of alternatives to the current Medicare system, because the current system can’t survive. Unfortunately, some of those in the discussion are resorting to pejoratives instead of substantive arguments. One pejorative is to say that the reform proposals are voucher programs. One advocate of a reform proposal says […]

Small Business Still Dragging

June 15, 2011

Since early 2009 we’ve had two economies. Major U.S. companies benefited from the government’s stimulus efforts and growth abroad. They’ve done well with revenues and profits rising. They’ve also managed to increase their profit margins. Small businesses are another story. They don’t have access to the growing foreign markets. They had to depend on sales […]

Continuing the Balance Sheet Recession

June 15, 2011

Since early in the financial crisis we’ve diagnosed the U.S. economic problem as one of too much debt. American households over-leveraged. They took on debt far above the long-term average, whether you measured it by a percentage of GDP, household income, household assets, or any other measure you want to use. We followed the Federal […]

A Recession Forecast

June 15, 2011

Many economists and analysts say the economy is slowing down, but they’re very quick to add that they don’t see another recession. They see only growth of less than 2% for a while. Not so David Rosenberg of Gluskin Sheff. Rosenberg, who’s been cautious throughout the recovery that began in March 2009, now says he’s […]

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