Social Security Increase (COLA) for 2012–3.6%

Social Security Benefits Increase 2012

The Social Security Administration announced that monthly Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits will increase 3.6 percent in 2012. Called a Cost-of-Living Adjustment, or COLA for short, the 3.6% increase is the first raise in benfits since 2009. About 55 million Social Security beneficiaries will see the increase beginning in January 2012. Another […]

Published or Updated: October 20, 2011

Retirement Income Security Made Simple

Sources of retirement income

If you’re about to retire, you’ve got to be deadly serious about your retirement income security. All kinds of thoughts might be running through your head. “What if I need more income for some unexpected reason? What if my investments don’t do as well as planned? What if I live longer than I expect? Should […]

Published or Updated: March 29, 2014

Everything You Want To Know About Annuities

Annuities

An annuity is an insurance product by which you make a lump-sum payment or series of payments. In return, the insurer agrees to make periodic payments to you beginning immediately or at some future date. Annuities can be used as part of a retirement strategy as many retirees want to receive a steady stream of […]

Published or Updated: March 15, 2013

You Wouldn’t Dare Borrow Money From Your 401k Would You?

401K

I generally regard financial advisers to be smart people when it comes to money. Since they almost universally warn against taking out a loan against a 401k plan, I tend to think they must know what they’re talking about. Recently, however, research has come out indicating that borrowing money from your retirement account can actually […]

Published or Updated: March 17, 2014

The Disappointing Status of Social Security

Social Security

As part of the recent tax deal, President Obama has proposed a 2% reduction of the Social Security payroll tax. With this change, a worker making $50,000 in wages would bring home about $1,000 extra over a year. But this also means smaller revenues for the Social Security Administration. Employees currently pay 6.2% of wages […]

Published or Updated: April 4, 2013

401(k) and IRA Contribution Limits for 2011

401k vs IRA Retirement Accounts

The IRS recently released retirement savings contribution limits for 2011. These caps cover 401(k), 403(b), 457(b), and traditional IRA retirement accounts. For the most part, the limits are unchanged from 2010, although there are some small inflation adjustments with respect to qualifying income limitations. So here are the 2011 401k and IRA contribution limits: Elective […]

Published or Updated: April 4, 2013

Social Security Benefits Flatlined Until 2012

Social Security

Social security, first passed in 1935 as part of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal, encompasses a host of social insurance programs, including well-known federal benefits such as temporary assistance for needy families, unemployment insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. In common parlance, however, Social Security is usually used to refer to […]

Published or Updated: April 5, 2013

How Much Dough Does A Roller Need to Retire?

Magic Number

A simple question, with such a complicated answer. Just how much money do you need to retire?  The short answer is that you should certainly have enough in savings to bridge the gap between your retirement income and expenditures. Trouble is, that it can get complicated pretty quickly. First, you’ll need to figure out an […]

Published or Updated: April 4, 2013

What is a Social Security Statement

Social-Security-Statement-Page1

I just received my Social Security Statement in the mail and thought it would be a good time to cover this important document. Mailed once a year to workers and former workers 25 and older, a Social Security Statement provides information that can help you plan for retirement. It also provides information about disability and […]

Published or Updated: September 13, 2011