You Lost $24 Billion In 16 Days Mr. Government?

According to the USA Today (10/18/2013), the 16 day Government shutdown cost the economy jobs, delayed mortgages, and lost retail sales.  The numbers aren’t fully in yet, but it is purported to be at least 12 billion dollars and possibly as much as 24 billion dollars for the stalemate that took place in Washington, D.C. over the past several weeks. As a 22 year veteran financial advisor, you don’t advise someone to take out a Target store card right after they have maxed out their Sears and Nordstrom store cards.   We all know that piling up lots and lots of credit card debt is simply an unsustainable way to manage a financial budget.  What we all don’t know today is when the balloon will burst. It’s not a smart money move to lose 12 billion, let alone 24 billion, but I’ve come up with my list of things that we could have done with 24 billion. We could have handed ...

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VIDEO | Do I Need A Store Credit Card? Your Smart Money Moves

Published on Jun 25, 2012 Your Smart Money Moves – The BEST Personal Finance Blog for Gen X and Y – http://yoursmartmoney.wpengine.com/ – If you have played a game of credit card poker with yourself it could surely be a sign that you have too many credit cards from too many places. I am a big advocate of having fewer credit cards and establishing a longer credit history with those creditors by upping your credit lines over the years and showing your ability to pay them off regularly. However, I often get asked about store credit cards from places like a Best Buy or a Target and whether it is a good idea to have one of these cards. Do you need a store credit card?   ...

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Do I Need A Store Credit Card?

If you have played a game of credit card poker with yourself it could surely be a sign that you have too many credit cards from too many places.    I am a big advocate of having fewer credit cards and establishing a longer credit history with those creditors by upping your credit lines over the years and showing your ability to pay them off regularly.   However, I often get asked about store credit cards from places like a Best Buy or a Target and whether it is a good idea to have one of these cards.  Do you need a store credit card? Most the store credit cards that get issued generally happen at the cash register.    The smiling face at the checkout counter tabs your bill up and then tells you that if you opened up a store card today that they will take 10%, 20%, or more off of your first purchase.     You quickly do the math in ...

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Does Your 401(k) Offer An “In Service” Distribution?

For Generation X clients, the majority of their retirement savings are in the company 401(k).   While you do have a multitude of options of what you can do with your 401(k) if you leave your employer, often people feel like they are stuck if they stay with the same employer for a long period of time.  This is especially true with larger companies as most of those plans offer a limited number of investment choices and several target retirement funds.     I’m amazed that many people I sit down have never heard of whether their company offers an in service withdrawal or an in service distribution which can give them greater investment control of their 401(k) assets.    Since we have had two major market meltdowns over the past 12 years, 401(k)’s offer limited power to help you risk mitigate against a market crash.   This is why you need ask your employer today, do we offer an in service distribution? So, just ...

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Not Even Thanksgiving Is Sacred?

How bad are things going in the economy today? Well, nobody knows for certain amidst fears in the United States and internationally around the stability of the dollar in many countries. Thanksgiving is supposed to be one of those special days where family, friends, and loved ones get together for some turkey, football, and pumpkin pie. As I spoke with some of my clients and friends over the past week leading up to today, it has become clear how disappointed people are in retailers and stores alike that not even Thanksgiving is a holiday anymore where we get to rest. For the first time, retailers by the droves are opening up their doors on Thanksgiving with the hopes of attracting more customers earlier to get in on Black Friday deals rather than have the typical 4 a.m. morning rush. When Target employees learned that they would have to be working on Turkey Day, they immediately began an online protest (www.crainsnewyork.com). ...

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