Advisors can play a valuable role in guiding wealthy clients who are considering making philanthropic donations, writes charitable giving expert Phil Cubeta. He offers five areas to explore with clients such as ensuring their donations will not jeopardize their financial well-being.
A survey by WellCare Health Plans shows less than half of seniors who qualify for Medicare review and compare the cost and coverage of their plans when it's time to renew them. Bart Astor notes this could be a costly mistake and offers five key points to consider when reviewing Medicare plans.
Financial expert Michael Kahn analyzes the investments best suited for an individual retirement account. He recommends stocks and most types of bonds but notes municipal bonds and annuities are not appropriate.
Financial expert Wade Pfau offers four tips for devising a retirement-spending plan that balances long-term needs with short-term satisfactions. "A retirement income plan should be based on planning to live, not planning to die," he writes.
More than a dozen cases alleging so-called Ponzi schemes are heard in US courts each month. Accountant David Wall points out that the swindlers often target people with limited incomes and assets, ultimately extracting their life savings from them.
Personal finance writer Suzanne Woolley looks at the cases for and against "Rothification" of 401(k) retirement savings plans. A report from the Joint Committee on Taxation says 401(k) tax breaks, as they stand now, will cost the federal government $583.6 billion through 2020.
Medical debt has been identified as the primary cause of US bankruptcy filings, which have risen marginally since 2008 among people age 65 and over. Attorney Bobby Wilbert argues that filing for bankruptcy protection can bring "emotional relief."
Recent surveys indicate a preference among millennials to make long-term investments in real estate rather than in vehicles such as stocks and bonds. Wealth-management analyst Elizabeth Sohmer, however, points out that real estate investments generally provide lower returns than the Standard & Poor's 500 index, except in times of extreme stock market volatility.
Senior citizens in the US have poorer health and more financial worries than their counterparts in 10 other wealthy Western countries, a Commonwealth Fund survey finds. Study author Robin Osborn says the situation is likely to worsen as a result of rising health care costs.
Financial fraud perpetrated against older Americans includes promises of cheaper, imported medication and people who pose as grandchildren in need of money. A conference advised accountants on how to spot unreported fraud and to prevent abuse.