AdviceIQ Articles

  • 3 Questions for Every Investor

    Some financial advisors try to bowl you over with fancy language. Disarm them – and arm yourself for your future – with a few simple questions.

    One complaint I hear as a financial advisor is that investment jargon – ETFs, P/E ratios, DRIP plans and other terms loaded with capital letters – bores, confuses and overwhelms people seeking advice.

  • The Smartest Bond Strategy

    Interest rates are up. If they continue to rise, how can you protect your bond portfolio? A good answer is to concentrate your holdings in intermediate maturities, with terms between three and 10 years.

    They will suffer less than longer-term bonds and give you flexibility. In fact, the intermediate strategy works in all seasons, even when rates are dropping. Bond prices rise or fall inversely with rates.

  • 401(k) or Roth IRA?

    Among the many questions I get about retirement, one of the most prevalent is: Should I use a 401(k) or a Roth individual retirement account? Can I do both?

    People also ask what’s a Roth 401(k)? How do they find out about their company match? They have a 403(b), what’s that?

    Let’s break down the different ways to save for retirement and which one (or two) ways might be the best for your situation.

  • 3 Gurus’ Timeless Wisdom

    Follow investment gurus to avoid investment mistakes. When things seem unsettled, a trio of these savants offer timeless advice you should heed.

    Such words of wisdom are especially appropriate amid current turbulent circumstances: a rocky bond market that perhaps signals the end of a 30-year bull run, U.S. stocks recently hitting new highs, troubling overseas developments such as Syria’s civil war and the ongoing fight in Congress.

    On the other hand, the variables change, but crises and problems always occur and always (at least temporarily) affect markets.

  • Joint Accounts: Pro and Con

    You two share your home, your bed, your hopes and dreams. Should you also share a bank account? The short answer: “It depends.”

    Combining accounts sometimes simplifies dealing with finances or results in one person turning money responsibilities over to their partner and no longer engaging in the family’s financial planning. Keeping separate accounts complicates tracking expenditures though allows two financially independent people to still control their pocketbook.

  • Your Own Health-Care Plan

    This fall, the pace of health-care change from Obamacare is dizzying. But beyond what’s going on in Washington, setting some simple priorities for the way you live your own life helps you keep straight what’s truly important – and most healthy.

  • Fed Debates, Market Yo-Yo’s

    Think the stock market doesn’t pack enough thrills? The surprise Federal Reserve announcement in mid-September to continue stimulus spending sent a hurrah through markets worldwide. How long will this market party last? And what’s coming next?

  • What RIAs Charge You

    People generally don’t understand that there are two different types of advisors. Broker-dealers are sales reps: They charge commissions for the stocks, bonds and funds they sell you. The second type, registered investment advisors, or RIAs, don’t get compensated for selling things. Investors pay RIAs a flat fee, or by the hour or as a share of assets.

  • Advisors and Compliance Costs

    One of the major costs of operating a financial planning firm is regulatory compliance. This is meant to keep clients safe. But sometimes advisors must curtail our services to clients as a result.

    “I’m the auditor, and I’m here to help you.”

    Now there’s a phrase to send cold chills down anyone’s spine. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a taxpayer, a company with government contracts, or a financial planning firm. Having an auditor show up feels a lot like being one of the Three Little Pigs and seeing the Big Bad Wolf on your doorstep.

  • Do the Math for Your Budget

    What’s the best method to sort out the twin barrage of messages chiding you to save more and urging you to spend more? Doing the math over the long term is a good start.

    How often do you see articles containing money-saving tips? Make dinner more often and eat out less, rent movies rather than go out to them, bring lunch to work rather than visit a restaurant, take advantage of coupons and brew your coffee rather than hitting Starbucks?


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