Economy

June 17, 2021

The Answers to 46 Frequently Asked Questions about Retirement

1. Where will my retirement income come from? Many retirees receive income from 4 main sources. 1 1) Personal savings and investments 2) Earned income 3) Company pension benefits 4) Social Security income 2. How much will my income need to increase to keep up with the cost of living? The annual increase in the cost of living (as measured by the Consumer Price Index 2 ) has fluctuated but has averaged between 2% and 3% over the past 30 years. Financial professionals recommend that retirees compensate for inflation when preparing retirement income projections. 3. If inflation averages 3%, how […]
June 17, 2021

How to Be 30% and 50% Happier in Your Retirement

It’s not all about the money.  Yes, money is important, but the quality of life determines how happy you are in retirement.  Seven things you can start on today to live a happier retirement. Zig Ziglar once said that “Money isn’t everything, but it sure ranks right up there with oxygen.”  While having more money than you need in retirement is comforting, more and more of the 80+ million boomers that are marching into retirement are realizing that it’s not all about the money that makes for a happy retirement.   This report will highlight six areas that you can target […]
July 16, 2020

Holding Colleges Accountable

A report from First Trust Advisors, L.P.: It’s time to think about something other than COVID, statues, the election, and defunding the police. How about higher education? Specifically, student loans and grants. Just like the bipartisan efforts to making housing more affordable, these programs were well-intentioned. But, also like the housing market, they have led to serious problems. The US has about $1.5 trillion in student debt outstanding, more than subprime mortgage loans in 2007. We’re not worried these loans will cause a collapse in the economy, but they are a major burden that must be dealt with at some […]
June 25, 2020

Saving and the Shutdown

A report from First Trust Advisors, L.P.: Turning off the global economic light-switch, and then turning it partially back on, has sent shockwaves through economic data that, while anticipated, have been jaw-dropping in both directions. For example, US retail sales plunged a combined 21.8% in March and April, before rising 17.7% in May. Manufacturing production fell 20.0% in March and April, before gaining 3.8% in May. Non-farm payrolls shrank 22.1 million in March and April, followed by a gain of 2.5 million in May. The savings rate surged to 33% in April, the highest rate ever recorded with current metrics. […]
June 18, 2020

The Fed is Committed to Low Rates

The one key takeaway from last week’s Fed meeting is that monetary policymakers are set to keep short-term interest rates near zero for as far as the eye can see. Not forever, but at least until 2023. Keep this in mind in the week ahead, as we get more reports confirming the economic recovery started back in May. The Federal Reserve conveyed that commitment in a few different ways. First, and most important, was the quote from Wednesday’s post-meeting press conference with Fed Chairman Jay Powell that the Fed is not even “thinking about thinking about raising rates.” In other […]
June 12, 2020

Loose and Staying Loose (a report from First Trust Advisors, L.P.)

The most important takeaway from today’s Fed meeting is that policymakers don’t expect to raise short-term interest rates until at least 2023.  The Federal Reserve’s “dot plot” shows where policymakers think short-term interest rates will be at the end of this year, 2021, and 2022 and these show that no members of the rate setting committee – literally, none – think rates will go up this year or in 2021 and that only a small minority thinks they’ll rise in 2022.  Moreover, the median estimate among policymakers is that the unemployment rate will finish 2022 at 5.5%. In the aftermath […]