Broker Check

Blog

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Last week, the markets closed for Labor Day, and in the subsequent four trading days, all three domestic indexes gave back some recent gains. The S&P 500 declined 0.61%, the Dow lost 0.86%, and the NASDAQ slid 1.17%.[1] International...

 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Last week gave a number of things for both investors and non-investors to think - and worry - about. From North Korea's missiles to Hurricane Harvey's devastation to an unemployment uptick, the headlines were busy. Yet, despite these...

 

Monday, August 28, 2017

After several weekly losses, the major domestic indexes all ended in positive territory on Friday, August 25. The S&P 500 gained 0.72%, the Dow was up 0.64%, and the NASDAQ added 0.79% for the week.[1] International stocks in the MSCI...

 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

From domestic unrest to international terrorism, last week provided many headlines that could easily rattle the markets. While we did see days with volatility and declines, the major indexes remained relatively flat.[1]sup> For the...

 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Last week, rising tension between North Korea and the U.S. rattled the world's markets. As the two countries traded tough words, concerns escalated and markets reacted emotionally to the news.[1] Though stress is building...

 

Show All

Monday, August 7, 2017

Another week of economic performance brought more news that the markets continue their bullish streak. After eight consecutive record-high closings, the Dow rose above 22,000 for the first time ever and finished the week up 1.20%.[1]...

 

Monday, July 31, 2017

Last week, markets marched ahead within a busy reporting week. The Dow rose 1.16% to close Friday on another new high.[1] The S&P 500 notched a record high during the week, despite closing the week slightly down 0.02%.[2] Meanwhile,...

 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Last week, the Dow, S&P 500, and NASDAQ again hit record highs. The midweek peaks fell by Friday, though market performance remained strong.[1] By week's end, the Dow dropped 0.27%, and the S&P 500 and NASDAQ dipped on Friday but...

 

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Last Friday, stocks closed on more record highs. The S&P 500 rose 1.41% and the Dow climbed 1.04% - both closing at new peaks.[1] The NASDAQ reported a 2.58% gain and the MSCI EAFE posted a 2.38% increase.[2] Despite continuing...

 

Monday, July 10, 2017

As the country celebrated the Fourth of July last week, the markets experienced some volatility, though they finished a bit flat overall.[1] The Dow fell then rose to close the week up 0.30%.[2] The S&P 500 climbed a modest 0.07% for...

 

Monday, July 3, 2017

As Q2 ended, markets hit a six-week volatility high.[1] While the tech sector declined during the week, consumer discretionary and industrial sectors drove stocks higher on Friday.[2] On Friday, the tech-heavy NASDAQ slumped 1.99%.[3]...

 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Last week, markets kept relatively quiet despite the continuing drop in oil prices. The S&P 500 rose by 0.21%, the Dow increased by 0.05%, and the NASDAQ - the week's best performer - jumped 1.84%.[1] Internationally, the MSCI EAFE...

 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Last week, markets kept relatively quiet despite the continuing drop in oil prices. The S&P 500 rose by 0.21%, the Dow increased by 0.05%, and the NASDAQ - the week's best performer - jumped 1.84%.[1] Internationally, the MSCI EAFE...

 

Monday, June 19, 2017

Markets remained mixed last week as the Dow closed at another record high, while the NASDAQ fell and the S&P 500 held steady.[1] By Friday, the Dow gained 0.52%, the NASDAQ fell -0.92%, and the S&P 500 gained a slight 0.05%.[2]...

 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Markets last week were mixed with leading tech stocks falling dramatically as some investors pulled profits.[1] The NASDAQ took the biggest hit, finishing 1.55% down on the week - its worst week of the year.[2] Meanwhile, the Dow rose...

 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Last week, the S&P 500, Dow, and NASDAQ closed at all-time record highs.[1] The S&P 500 rose 0.96%, the Dow gained 0.6%, and the NASDAQ grew by 1.54%.[2] Meanwhile, the MSCI EAFE gained 1.64% for the week.[3] Despite strong equity...

 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The markets marched ahead last week with the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ reporting all-time records, albeit just slightly above previous highs.[1] The S&P rose 1.43% over last week, while the NASDAQ was up 2.08%.[2] The Dow gained 1.32%...

 

Monday, May 22, 2017

Early last week, both the S&P and NASDAQ recorded all time highs before tumbling along with the Dow as political concerns rose.[1] By Friday, though, the markets had largely rebounded and steadied. The S&P 500 closed the week down 0...

 

Monday, May 15, 2017

Markets tuned out noise from Washington last week and continued to focus on economic fundamentals. Mildly rebounding retail sales and strong consumer sentiment seem to point toward a modestly stronger second quarter.[1]After a...

 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Last week, stocks rose but floated within a narrow trading range. By Friday, however, both the S&P 500 and the NASDAQ reached record highs.[1] For the week, the S&P 500 gained 0.63%, the Dow finished up 0.32%, and the NASDAQ rose 0...

 

Monday, May 1, 2017

Stocks continued their advance on generally strong earnings reports this week despite the GDP report showing a slow first quarter economy. The S&P 500 rose 1.51%, the Dow gained 1.91%, and the NASDAQ added 2.32%.[1] On Tuesday, the...

 

Monday, April 24, 2017

Domestic stocks posted losses on Friday, April 21, largely due to investor concerns about the French election.[1] Despite these daily losses, U.S. indexes broke their two-week losing streak, with the S&P 500 adding 0.85%, the Dow...

 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Last week, major indexes experienced losses for the second week in a row, with the S&P 500 falling 1.21%, the Dow giving back 1.01%, the NASDAQ dropping 1.26%, and the MSCI EAFE declining 0.14%.[1] Markets closed on April 14 for the...

 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Maintain Your Standard of Living in Retirement Saving for retirement, and working to maintain your standard of living, is an ongoing responsibility so you don’t see your quality of life drop in your later years. Unfortunately, for...

 

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Last week, all four of the indexes we discuss in these market updates saw their performance stumble. The S&P 500 lost 1.44%, the Dow was down 1.52%, the NASDAQ gave back 1.22%, and the MSCI EAFE declined 0.07%. 1 On Tuesday, March 21,...

 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Being a small business owner is a unique life experience that can provide many personal and professional rewards, such as being in control of your career. But, this also brings specific financial challenges when creating a path to...

 

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Before you retired, you spent time creating strategies that could help you reach your goals in retirement. You might have invested for the income you need, minimized your debt, or protected yourself with long-term-care insurance,...

 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Life insurance policies and annuities can be a helpful tool for providing extra protection and income for yourself and your family. But, you can also receive deeper benefits thanks to certain tax advantages that each investment offers...

 

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Financial fraud is, unfortunately, a common practice in America that costs individuals and businesses billions of dollars each year. And research shows that people underreport financial fraud, which can also be difficult to...

 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Losing a spouse is never easy — and a difficult topic for many to think about. But when you become a widow or widower, moving beyond the grief to address important financial items in your life is essential. Whether you recently lost...

 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Financial lives are inherently complex and require thoughtful perspectives and strategies for yourself and your loved ones. And you have even more financial nuances to organize if your family has two or more adult generations living in...

 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Enjoying a comfortable retirement depends on how well you prepared ahead of time to support your desired lifestyle — and how well you keep a pulse on your financial wellbeing after your retire. You may need to periodically check in and...

 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Life insurance and annuities can bring protection and retirement income that is essential for many people’s financial needs and goals. And when you purchase these items, you gain the opportunity to name beneficiaries who will receive...

 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

When preparing for retirement, imagining the new lifestyle you’ll embark on can be exciting. From travel to family time to relaxation, a fulfilling retirement looks different to each individual. But preparing for the quality of life...

 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

The financial world is filled with confusing industry jargon and lingo. So, to help you get a hold of common terms you should know, we’ve put together a quick guide for your reference. From life insurance to annuities, use this...

 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

For most of your adult life, you’ve had the protection of life insurance to help safeguard you and your family. But as your life evolves, your family's needs and financial goals will inevitably change, too. With every transition and...

 

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

For most of your adult life, you’ve protected yourself and your family with life insurance. Having a back-up tool in place to help replace income for your family should you pass away is part of a sound wealth-preservation plan. For...

 

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

For many Americans, preparing to retire takes decades of investing and careful saving so you have the income you need to support your lifestyle. And once that retirement begins, you have to start collecting on your investments into...

 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

With 2016 ending in a handful of weeks, we’ve officially entered into the terrain of year-end tax planning. And if your assets include annuities, then you have specific details to be aware of when managing your taxes. A variety of...

 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Thanksgiving flew by, and now here we are, deep in the holiday season. And if you’re a grandparent, finding the perfect gift for your grandchildren can be challenging. While the hottest new toys and gadgets offer an exciting present...

 

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Your Beneficiary Planning — Life Insurance and Annuities Investing brings with it a world of planning complexities to navigate as you pursue your unique financial goals. And your beneficiary planning when you have life insurance and...

 

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

No matter what life stage you’re in, making sure you have the income you need for retirement is an ongoing planning need. However, fewer than half of Americans are prepared to afford at least 80% of retirement expenses1. Retirees have...

 

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Managing your family’s financial needs requires daily, ongoing oversight and planning if you want to uphold lifelong wellness. And for families who have loved ones with disabilities, the planning needs become even more intricate. You...

 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Owning a small business can be an incredibly rewarding experience. But, when you’re your own boss, you also control your business’ destiny — which can directly affect your own life outside of being a business owner. And in order to...

 

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

So, you’re looking to save more money to support the income you need in retirement and are considering or want to revisit your annuities. As a retirement-income investment, annuities can help you grow tax-deferred savings until you’re...

 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Growing older in America today isn’t what it used to be. Twenty years ago, the average person’s life expectancy was 76 years1. Fast forward to 2016, and a woman turning 65 today can expect to live until 87 years old and a man can...

 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Life with grandchildren means getting to spend your later years doting on your favorite little ones. For some, it also means a new chapter of raising a family in a “second parenthood.” In fact, across the U.S., 2.7 million people are...

 

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Retiring in America is how many people look to their futures. Saying goodbye to your working years and entering a stage of enjoying your life in new ways — often in ways you’ve dreamed of — is a rite of passage for most Americans. Of...

 

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

So, you’ve saved with your 401(k) and maxed out your IRA contributions and other traditional retirement-savings strategies. And you still have taxable money that should be helping you develop lasting retirement income, rather than...

 

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

We all know that life isn’t static. A constant ebb and flow of events like family developments, career changes, and retirement inevitably bring changes to your financial needs and lifestyle. When these events occur, they can often...

 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

For most people, life insurance is an essential tool for protecting your estate and loved ones should anything happen to you. When you take out a permanent life insurance policy — whole, universal, or variable — you gain another...

 

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Sending a child or grandchild to college comes with new insurance responsibilities. Whether they’re already in college or still have a few years to go, your family’s insurance needs change when your children go off to school....

 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

If you’ve ever had your credit card number stolen or found unauthorized activity on one of your financial accounts, you know what a headache financial fraud can cause. A 2016 study found that 13.1 Americans became the victims of...

 

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

You know you should be saving for retirement, but what about your other goals? Intermediate goals can be more challenging to plan for because they have a shorter timeframe ¬– three-to-seven years – and may be given short shrift by...

 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

We’ve all made financial mistakes. Whether it’s living beyond our means and accumulating debt, buying a too-expensive house, saving too little for the future, or any other blunder – we’ve all been there. Here are some tips for learning...

 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

If you are seeking to cut costs, reducing or dropping your life insurance may seem like a safe bet. In some cases, it might even be a good idea. However, think very carefully before making changes to your policy; once you drop...

 

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

There are many reasons to own an annuity and there are some situations in which using tax-deferred money to purchase an annuity can be a good idea. You want to turn some of your retirement savings into guaranteed income. Income that...

 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

How long do you plan to live? Ridiculous question, right? If we could know exactly how long we will live, it would make life (and retirement planning) so much simpler. But, we don’t know. We can look at many variables to come up with...

 

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Traveling this summer? Save yourself a headache by using these tips to help keep your money safe while you’re away. Notify your financial institutions if you’ll be traveling abroad. Few things are more annoying than to have your cards...

 

Thursday, July 21, 2016

One of the best gifts you can give a grandchild is the gift of being financially savvy. Unfortunately, many children leave home without understanding basic financial skills such as how to set a budget, use a credit card, or invest for...

 

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Are you and your spouse on the same page about money? Do you talk regularly about your finances? If not, a monthly family finance meeting might help. I know, talking about money and budgets every month doesn’t sound like a lot of fun,...

 

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Many couples prefer to divide household tasks and take on separate family responsibilities. However, when one member of the couple handles all financial chores, the other spouse may find himself or herself in the dark about the family...

 

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

If you’ve been watching the news, you probably know that Britain voted to exit the European Union (EU) on June 23rd after being a member of the European community since 1973. The shocking news caused financial markets to whipsaw, and...

 

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Though it may be hard to imagine retiring early, many Americans manage to do it while still living comfortable lifestyles. If you’re serious about ending your career early, think carefully about the challenges you face: preparing for...

 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

If you’re like many Americans, the idea of spending your retirement on the couch isn’t all that attractive. The good news is that baby boomers are using their numbers and influence to redefine retirement. While some fill their time...

 

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Muhammad Ali, possibly one of the greatest boxers in history, passed away last week, leaving behind an incredible legacy of strength, perseverance, and vision. While we might not be world-class boxers, we can still take away some...

 

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Social Security is a major source of income for most retirees, and deciding when to claim your benefit is critical to maximizing your guaranteed government income. Social Security rules changed in 2015, taking away two claiming...

 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Grandparents are in a fantastic position to teach their grandchildren about money. Often, grandparents can more openly speak with grandchildren than their parents can. Grandparents often take on the role of family storyteller and...

 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Guaranteed acceptance life insurance can be a boon to people who can’t get term life insurance coverage because of age, medical history, or other issues. Applications don’t require medical exams or even detailed questionnaires and...

 

Friday, May 13, 2016

Most people have dozens of financial priorities competing for attention at any given time. Sitting down for an annual review can help you sift through those priorities and ensure that you are still on track to meet your goals. Though...

 

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

A recent survey found that 68% of women and 56% of men are losing sleep over at least one money issue. While most respondents were concerned about saving enough for retirement, many also worried about healthcare, debt, education...

 

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Even though you may not be thinking about your estate yet, there are a few practical matters you don’t want to leave unresolved. Lack of preparation can leave your family scrambling during an already traumatic period. Though it’s not...

 

Thursday, April 21, 2016

An Allianz survey showed that 61% of Americans fear outliving their retirement nest egg more than they fear death. With lifespans stretching to age 100 and beyond, many Americans may spend 30 years or more in retirement. This...

 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

A generation ago, retirement looked more or less the same for everyone: you left your job with a pension and transitioned into your golden years. But today, retirement looks quite different for everyone. One reason for that is that...

 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

All parents worry about what would happen to their children if something happened to them. Many people purchase life insurance to provide for their children, and it may seem like a natural choice to name them as beneficiaries on a...

 

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Dave Ramsey, Suze Orman, Jim Cramer, and other gurus have made their fortunes telling others what to do with their money. Should they tell you what to do with yours? One of the challenges of being an investor today is the overwhelming...

 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

One of the most important decisions you’ll have to make as a retiree is whether you’ll stay in your current home or move. Some people prefer to stay in their homes for financial or lifestyle reasons while others relish the...

 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Millions of homeowners are renting rooms (or even their entire house or apartment) to travelers and short-term tenants using Airbnb, VRBO, and many other online rental platforms. The income can help make real estate in expensive areas...

 

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Spring cleaning is the annual ritual of clearing out the accumulated dust and debris of winter for a fresh new spring. This year, as you sweep away the dust bunnies, do some spring cleaning on your insurance as well. 1. Give your auto...