The Fourth of July holiday will be very different this year. Although it’s a time to enjoy family and friends, and maybe even watch some fireworks, social distancing and a new wave of COVID-19 cases also may take a seat at the picnic table. We all continue to believe our doctors and medical community will help us conquer this disease; however, with more than 10 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 around the globe (Johns Hopkins), this terrible fight is far from over. Meanwhile, the US economy appears to be turning a major corner, and better times may be ahead later in 2020. (more…)
As we look ahead to the summer months, we can’t help but think what a challenging year it’s been so far. At the same time, we’re encouraged by the resiliency and accelerated innovation among US businesses and the efforts by our national, state, and local governments to support our communities. And we continue to be amazed by the unparalleled dedication and cooperation among our front-line healthcare professionals and medical researchers to see us through to the other side of this health crisis (more…)
We’re all at home now and shopping online has become commonplace. Whether you shop online routinely or infrequently, the risk of identity theft rises as you offer more and more information about yourself online. (more…)
“Every decade or so, dark clouds will fill the economic skies, and they will briefly rain gold. When downpours of that sort occur, reach for a bucket.” —Warren Buffett (more…)
From Our Partners at PAI: The CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act has been a topic of discussion for weeks as legislators discussed the best way to give Americans a much-needed boost as the economy has faltered due to the Coronavirus. Signed into law in late March, there are several provisions that will help students, workers, and retirement plan participants to maintain more financial stability during this challenging time.
CARES Act changes retirement plan provisions for loans and tax-advantaged withdrawals
Retirees and workers alike have likely been groaning when looking at stock values over the last several weeks. While it takes some time for market volatility to level out, these provisions included in the CARES Act may provide retirement plan participants with additional flexibility and more options for loans and penalty-free withdrawals during this stressful time.
PENALTY-FREE WITHDRAWALS FROM RETIREMENT PLANS
Workers who are experiencing financial difficulty due to the effects of COVID-19 on their careers, health, and overall financial wellness will be able to take a penalty-free distribution from a retirement account, like a 401(k) or IRA, between January 1, 2020, and December 31, 2020.
Under normal circumstances, there is a 10 percent penalty tax added to the taxes paid on distributions from a retirement plan before a participant reaches age 59 1/2. However, the CARES Act includes a provision that allows eligible participants to take up to a $100,000 distribution from a retirement account without the addition of the 10 percent tax that normally accompanies an early withdrawal. This tax-favored withdrawal may be repaid to an eligible retirement plan within three years of taking the distribution, with the option to repay beyond the normal annual contribution limits.
Eligible participants for a coronavirus-related distribution are those who have been diagnosed with the virus (or have a spouse or dependent diagnosed), experience adverse financial consequences as a result of being quarantined, unable to work, laid off, or those who had work hours reduced due to the virus.
TEMPORARILY INCREASED LIMIT ON RETIREMENT PLAN LOANS
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented market volatility in recent weeks that has investors and traders scrambling to assess the economic and market impact of the aggressive containment measures. (more…)
Over the past few weeks, investors may have been introduced to a new term they weren’t previously familiar with: circuit breakers. Today, we answer a few simple questions about circuit breakers: (more…)
The S&P 500 Index’s historic washout continued yesterday, culminating in nearly a 10% loss for the day, and leaving the benchmark index officially in bear market territory, just 16 trading days after setting a record high on February 19. In addition, the S&P 500 has now moved more than 4% each day this week, leaving investors and professionals alike wondering when this volatility could end. While nobody knows for sure, one thing we always look for at market bottoms are signs of extremes, both from a sentiment and price perspective. (more…)
Classic Wall Street saying. The last week has sure felt like taking an express elevator down, as the end of February brought a historic stock market sell-off, with the S&P 500 Index moving from an all-time high to a 10% correction in only six days—the quickest such move ever. Along the way, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (Dow) experienced multiple 1,000- point drops, including Thursday’s biggest one-day point drop ever, adding to fears. As the coronavirus spreads around the globe, what was once a promising start to 2020 now has the S&P 500, Dow, and Nasdaq Composite all negative year to date. (more…)
Getting rich quick can be liberating, but it can also be frustrating. A sudden wealth windfall can help you address retirement saving or college funding anxieties, and it may also allow you to live and work on your terms. On the other hand, you’ll pay more taxes, attract more attention, and maybe even contend with jealousy or envy. You may also deal with grief or stress, as a lump sum may be linked to a death, a divorce, or a pension payout decision. (more…)
With the economy and financial markets flashing mixed signals, it’s no wonder that lawmakers are deadlocked on whether to pass a Phase 4 of the CARES Act.
As states cautiously begin the process of relaxing their COVID-19 restrictions, some are wondering, “Why is the stock market doing so well when the economy is doing so poorly?” Ever heard of economic indicators?
Your car insurance premium is based on more than your driving history. The amount you pay for auto insurance is determined by a complicated algorithm that takes many factors into consideration. Your driving history is just one variable used to calculate your rate. Read on to learn more about what auto insurance carriers look at … Continue reading “What Determines Car Insurance Rates?”
As Americans adjust their spending habits in a rapidly changing economy, they are building cash reserves at an unprecedented rate. The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported on May 29th that the personal savings rate hit a historic 33% in April. To put that into perspective, it’s the highest number since the Bureau started tracking personal … Continue reading “An Unprecedented Rush to Cash”
The Fourth of July holiday will be very different this year. Although it’s a time to enjoy family and friends, and maybe even watch some fireworks, social distancing and a new wave of COVID-19 cases also may take a seat at the picnic table. We all continue to believe our doctors and medical community will … Continue reading “Fourth of July Optimism”
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