Retirement Articles

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The Backdoor Roth IRA

March 7, 2017

When your adjusted gross income is too high ($186,000 for married couples filing jointly in 2017), your ability to make a contribution to a Roth IRA is phased out. You can’t make a contribution. But there’s a backdoor way to make a Roth IRA contribution when you’re a high income taxpayer. The method works and […]

A Case for Preferred Stocks

March 6, 2017

We sold preferred stocks from the Retirement Watch portfolios last July. They’ve since declined a bit as interest rates rose. This article makes the case that preferreds are the only part of the markets potentially trading at a discount and in particular favors two preferred stock issues, both from banks. But the recommendation comes with […]

Midlife Crisis at 90 Years of Age?

March 2, 2017

This psychiatrist says that the traditional midlife crisis hasn’t been established by data (subscription might be required) but that in his practice he’s found more elderly are having episodes with the earmarks of a midlife crisis. He says these episodes usually are triggered by a series of losses and other events that are too much […]

The Markets so Far in 2017

March 2, 2017

The first two months of 2017 are behind us. Let’s take a look at how the main asset classes began the year. It’s quite a contrast from 2016, when all assets except government bonds were in freefall. U.S. stocks took most of the headlines in the first two months of 2017. You’re probably aware of […]

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Identifying and Avoiding the Risks behind the Headlines

February 27, 2017

Will there be major economic and financial policy changes in 2017? Should your portfolio be adjusted to reflect those changes? Those questions dominated the recent MoneyShow Orlando. As I’ve said recently, we are in a period of exceptional uncertainty. A wide range of policy changes is possible, and that means a wide range of economic […]

Avoiding The Estimated Tax Trap

February 27, 2017

Estimated tax payments are a traditional trap for retirees. Most retirees were employees during their careers and had income taxes withheld from their paychecks. They never had to deal with the estimated tax rules and are surprised by the process in retirement. If you expect to owe more than $1,000 in federal taxes that will […]

Minimizing the Most Important Number on Your Tax Return

February 27, 2017

The most important number on your federal income tax return is on line 37, the last line on the first page of Form 1040. It’s your adjusted gross income (AGI). For retirees, AGI is even more important than for most other taxpayers. Your taxable income used to be the most important line on your return, […]

Avoiding RMD Mistakes with Retirement Accounts

February 27, 2017

Most people know that after reaching age 70½, they have to take required minimum distributions (RMDs) from their IRAs. But that rule is only the tip of the iceberg. Not knowing all the RMD rules is a source of many mistakes, resulting in extra taxes and penalties. Required minimum distributions also must be taken from […]

November 2020:

Congress Comes for your Retirement Money

A devastating new law has just been enacted, with serious consequences for anyone holding an IRA, pension, or 401(k). Fortunately, there are still steps you can take to sidestep Congress, starting with this ONE SIMPLE MOVE.
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