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Mortgage industry seeks to revive most hated loan in America

March 13, 2019

Professor Chris Mayer has a lesson for homeowners: Reverse mortgages, which let older Americans tap their home equity without selling or moving, aren't as risky as some say. In an online video, he brushes aside "common misconceptions," including...

Baseball, taxes and retirement destinations

March 11, 2019

My husband is a huge baseball fan. Me, not so much. But I always appreciate it when he forwards articles about his favorite pastime that are relevant to my passion for retirement planning. Case in point: Bryce Harper's decision to sign a record-setting...

Pairing 401(k) and student loan benefits gains more traction

March 8, 2019

An increasing number of employers are adopting programs that pair 401(k) savings with student loan repayments, as the nation's cascading college debt has some workers deciding between paying off loans or building a retirement nest egg. The Travelers...

When clients work past 70, RMDs are still required — and begrudged

March 8, 2019

When Ron Strobel was an investment adviser in Seattle, many of his clients were Boeing engineers. They loved their jobs and wanted to keep working as long as they could. But when they reached age 70½, they had to take required minimum distributions...

The 401(k) 'stretch' match may work in reverse

March 7, 2019

Employers and their retirement plan advisers frequently employ a particular 401(k) feature called a "stretch" match to get their employees to save more money. There's only one problem: New research shows that the technique could actually have...

Future retirees ponder Social Security strategies

March 6, 2019

I often get questions from people who were born in 1960 or later about whether it would make sense for them to delay claiming Social Security benefits beyond their full retirement age of 67. My usual answer is I don't know. Much of that decision...

10 things to know about TDFs

March 6, 2019

Target-date funds are booming, with combined assets in mutual funds and collective investment trust funds approaching $1.8 trillion, according to Sway Research. The average 401(k) plan holds roughly 22% of its assets in TDFs, up from 8% a decade...

100% required minimum distributions

March 6, 2019

Can it ever be the case that an individual retirement account's required minimum distribution, or RMD, for a year equals the entire IRA balance? Yes, but that only happens if there is no designated beneficiary. A designated beneficiary means...

Lessons for advisers from 401(k) lawsuits

March 5, 2019

Perhaps nothing causes as much anxiety for retirement plan advisers as the potential for a client to be hauled into court to face accusations of fiduciary breaches. Even in the best-case scenario where the plan successfully defends itself, dealing...

I started a firm in 1993. Here's how I'd build one in 2019

March 5, 2019

A few weeks ago, I was talking to a group of advisers about how to grow their practices. One of them said, "Scott, it's different for you because you have such a large staff." Granted, maybe some business strategies are a little easier for me...

4 reasons 401(k) advisers should partner with a benefits broker

March 5, 2019

The employee benefits marketplace continues to evolve, with medical and retirement products continuing to merge. This trend is fantastic for the end consumer. But what is the best way for retirement plan advisers to partner with a benefits broker...

Fidelity faces Galvin inquiry over fees charged for 401(k) plans

March 4, 2019

Fidelity Investments is facing more scrutiny over fees it charges some mutual funds for using its platform to access retirement plan customers. The Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth said its securities division sent a letter last Wednesday...

Vanguard share of target-date fund market becoming 'obscene'

March 4, 2019

Vanguard Group extended its dominance over the target-date fund market last year as the flow of retirement assets into index funds continued unabated, with employers seeking to reduce the cost of their 401(k) plans. Vanguard swelled its target-date...

Making room for the next generation of advisers

March 4, 2019

Recently, I read an article in the November issue of the Harvard Business Review (What Happens to Younger Workers When Older Workers Don't Retire) that got me thinking. It focused on the world of symphony orchestras, where many principal oboists...

Help older clients facing a layoff realize their worth

March 2, 2019

Most advisers have had the experience of answering anxiety-ridden calls from clients saying they've been laid off, perhaps many during the early days of the Great Recession. What may surprise advisers is that more than half — 56% — of workers...

Financial literacy: An epic fail in America

March 2, 2019

For as long as he can remember, Zachary Beneda dreamed of joining the Air Force.

New Jersey poised to create auto-IRA program

February 28, 2019

New Jersey is poised to become the latest state to establish a so-called auto-IRA program to help residents save for retirement. New Jersey's state Assembly passed a bill this week that would create the New Jersey Secure Choice Savings Program,...

Are the economics of active management becoming unsustainable?

February 27, 2019

When one of the world's largest money managers calls the economics of a major fund platform into question, it raises a few eyebrows. Fidelity Investments, which manages $2.5 trillion for investors, said the ongoing movement to low-cost mutual...

Fidelity says it fully discloses fund fees in 401(k) plans

February 27, 2019

Fidelity Investments says it fully discloses fees that it charges some mutual funds for using the company's platform to access retirement plan customers. The fees and Fidelity's disclosure of them are being probed by the U.S. Labor Department,...

Democrats offer `Medicare for All' bill to transform health care

February 27, 2019

A leader of House Democrats' progressive wing introduced "Medicare for all" legislation Wednesday that would replace almost all private health insurance, an idea that's galvanizing the party's liberal base and winning endorsements from many...

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