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Helping Aging Parents Manage Finances

Helping aging parents manage financesHelping aging parents manage finances: it’s a sticky situation. As our parents age, we worry about their ability to make sound financial decisions. We know they’re targets for financial fraud. How do we protect them, while also respecting their desire to remain independent?

Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, CFP®, is president of the Charles Schwab Foundation and has served two White House administrations on financial capability policy. In a recent article, she offered the following insights.

Helping Aging Parents Manage Finances

Communicate: Talking about money can be hard, but it’s the most important first step. Let your parents know you are willing to help and why. Be upfront about the fact that seniors are targets for financial exploitation. Ask them if they have any concerns and in what areas they might welcome some help. Look for cues that might indicate they’re confused or vulnerable. The more two-way conversations you have about money, the easier it will become.

Collaborate: Offer to become part of their team. Beginning a dialogue with their financial advisors and health care professionals will help you spot any troubling signs as your parents age. If you establish clear roles and responsibilities before troubles arise, your parents will be less likely to feel you’re hovering or controlling them. Instead, they’ll know you’re available and informed to offer specific support when needed.

Evaluate: Offer to help assess their assets and liabilities, income and expenses, and insurance needs. If they already have a financial plan, suggest a review. Once you understand their needs, remember to check in with them regularly. Their needs may change. By laying the groundwork now, you’ll be better prepared to help them. And knowing that may make your parents more willing to let you.

Investment Lessons from the Pandemic

glass globe business. Global MarketExcerpted with permission from “5 Investment Lessons from the Pandemic” by Steve Watson, Equity Portfolio Manager at Capital Group. 

As a 30-year investing professional, the past 16 months stand out in my career as both intensely painful and incredibly instructive.  What has this most unusual time in history taught me?

  • Market crises are inevitable. The pandemic-driven stock market crisis led me to think of past market traumas I experienced. I counted 21, including the collapse of the Soviet Union, the bursting of the technology bubble, the global financial crisis, and now COVID-19. This list highlights the reality that market disruptions are a fact of life for investors. My list suggests we get one of these events every 18 months or so.
  • History doesn’t necessarily repeat itself in ways you might expect. For instance, I lived in Hong Kong through the dark days of the SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) epidemic in 2003. When COVID hit, I was quick to make comparisons between the two. Yet, while SARS was frightening to live through, relatively speaking, it was a fairly minor event. Drawing false conclusions about COVID based on the SARS experience left many investors unprepared for the extent and duration of this pandemic.
  • Diversification holds strong. While “growth” and “value” investment labels are overly broad, I’ll use them to make a point. I lean toward value, but I also have long-term growth-oriented investments. Many are tech-related (semiconductors, e-commerce, etc.) and I like to purchase shares when they’re down and out; I also hang on long enough to let the market catch up with what I think is the true value of the company. In hindsight, my selection of growth-oriented tech stocks saved my skin during the worst days of 2020.

Click here for a PDF of Watson’s full article. Investing Lessons Learned from the Pandemic

By |2021-08-16T13:03:34-07:00August 23rd, 2021|Current Affairs, Investing|

Major Economies Bouncing Back

Effective vaccines, record government support, and pent-up demand are fueling a historic turnaround for the global economy. Data shows major economies bouncing back. In June, the International Monetary Fund more than doubled its 2021 U.S. GDP estimate to 6.4 percent. The National Retail Federation (NRF) also revised its forecast, anticipating retail sales growth between 10.5 percent and 13.5 percent. NRF’s initial projection for 2021 was 6.5 percent.

“The economy and consumer spending have proven to be much more resilient than expected,” said NRF President Matthew Shay. “While there are still risks related to worker shortages, tax increases and over-regulation, households are healthier overall and consumers are demonstrating their ability and willingness to spend.”

Major Economies Bouncing Back

Major Economies Bouncing Back

By |2021-07-15T09:58:23-07:00July 15th, 2021|Current Affairs|

Timing Your Social Security Benefits

timing your social security benefitsThere are many factors to consider when timing your Social Security benefits. Every person’s situation is different.

If you’re thinking about early retirement and you have sufficient resources (investments, pension, and so on), you’ll have more flexibility in when you begin claiming Social Security. Your marital status, overall health, life expectancy, employment wishes and retirement goals are also key factors in timing your Social Security benefits.

Full retirement age (FRA) for Social Security is between 66 and 67 years (depending on the year you were born). Waiting until then guarantees your full monthly Social Security benefit, based on your employment history.

You can claim benefits up to five years early, though your Social Security income would be 30 percent less. Waiting to claim benefits after FRA will provide an additional 8 percent income per year, up to age 70 years.

Your Perspective advisor can help you evaluate your options and create a Social Security plan. It’s one of our Core Client Services. That’s the value of Perspective.

Schedule a Complimentary Meeting with a Perspective Advisor

 

To learn more about he many facets of retirement planning, click here for another article.

 

By |2021-06-11T16:55:20-07:00June 28th, 2021|Retirement|