2015’s ‘Sure Things’ At Halftime

2015’s ‘Sure Things’ At Halftime

By: Larry  Swedroe Every January, I put together a list of predictions that financial “gurus” have made for the upcoming year, especially the ones that gain consensus as “sure things.” Through a series of periodic updates, I keep track of whether these “sure thing” forecasts actually came to pass. The turn of the calendar into July means it’s now time for our second-quarter review. As is our practice, we give a score of +1 for a prediction that came true, a score of -1 for one that was wrong, and a score of 0 for one that was basically a tie. Interest Rates And Economic Growth Rising? Our first sure thing was that, with the announced end last year of the Federal Reserve’s program of quantitative easing, interest rates would rise. The fear surrounding rising rates often leads to the recommendation that investors limit their bond holdings to only the shortest maturities.  To continue reading, please click here.   By clicking on any of the links above, you acknowledge that they are solely for your convenience, and do not necessarily imply any affiliations, sponsorships, endorsements or representations whatsoever by us regarding third-party Web sites. We are not responsible for the content, availability or privacy policies of these sites, and shall not be responsible or liable for any information, opinions, advice, products or services available on or through them. The opinions expressed by featured authors are their own and may not accurately reflect those of the BAM ALLIANCE. This article is for general information only and is not intended to serve as specific financial, accounting or tax advice. © 2016,...
A Joyful Way to Look at Budgeting

A Joyful Way to Look at Budgeting

By: Manisha Thakor For most people the “B-Word” (budgeting) conjures up feelings of deprivation and self-denial. As such, when it comes to deciding how to allocate your hard-earned cash, I far prefer a concept I call “joy-based spending” to traditional budgeting. Here’s how it works. Instead of telling yourself all the things you shouldn’t spend money on, you focus on maximizing the amount of joy you get out of each dollar you do spend. Rather than allowing spending restraints to drain your will power and sap your serenity, you focus on deliberately increasing your happiness through targeted, deliberate spending. To try this approach, commit to jotting down everything on which you spend money for a set time period (a week, two weeks, a month–whatever you can stomach). At the end of the time period, pull out a highlighter and mark any spending that brought you extreme, authentic joy. Now take a look at what’s left over. That’s where you can start cutting back on your spending, without eliminating any joy from your life.  To continue reading, please click...
Protecting Your Family Against Identity Theft

Protecting Your Family Against Identity Theft

By: Brian Zdrowak Have you or a member of your family ever had your credit card information stolen? Have you ever worried that your personal financial data was somewhere on the Internet, up for grabs to the highest bidder? Would you know what to do, or what steps to take, if you suspected that you were a victim of identity theft? Several weeks ago, I received a call from my daughter. She told me our joint credit card had been hacked and there was a fraudulent charge on it. My first thought was that this all-to-frequently happens in today’s world. I anticipated our credit card company would do a fraud report, send new cards and we would not be responsible for the fraudulent activity. What made this situation a little scarier, however, was that in addition to a fraudulent charge on my daughter’s card, someone had gone into her online account with the credit card company and changed her address and login information. The bank had no idea how this happened and neither did we, though our worry was that her identity had been stolen. So my daughter filed a report with the bank, a police report and a report with the Federal Trade Commission. This took a lot of time, but it also made her feel safer and taught us both some life lessons along the way.  To continue reading, please click here.   By clicking on any of the links mentioned above, you acknowledge that they are solely for your convenience, not required to click. They do not necessarily imply any affiliations, sponsorships, endorsements or representations whatsoever...
An Investment Lifeboat Drill Now Can Help Weather Future Disaster

An Investment Lifeboat Drill Now Can Help Weather Future Disaster

By:  Carl Richards Calm water makes a lifeboat drill much easier. We aren’t fighting the waves or the fear we feel during an emergency. Still, if the worst happens, and the drill becomes reality, at least we’ve rehearsed. We’ll know exactly what we are supposed do. With the markets relatively calm, now is the perfect time for an investor lifeboat drill. But to get the most out of this drill we need to remember how we felt seven years ago when the markets were getting scary. Remember the days when even smart, reputable people shouted gloom and doom from the rooftops? If not (or if you’ve blocked it out), let me give you the abridged version: It was terrifying. The United States government was bailing out private companies that were “too big to fail.” We were reading shocking headlines on a regular basis:  To continue reading, please click here. By clicking on any of the links above, you acknowledge that they are solely for your convenience, and do not necessarily imply any affiliations, sponsorships, endorsements or representations whatsoever by us regarding third-party Web sites. We are not responsible for the content, availability or privacy policies of these sites, and shall not be responsible or liable for any information, opinions, advice, products or services available on or through them. The opinions expressed by featured authors are their own and may not accurately reflect those of the BAM ALLIANCE. This article is for general information only and is not intended to serve as specific financial, accounting or tax advice. © 2016, The BAM...
Why a “Wife Bonus” Won’t Help Your Marriage, but This Will

Why a “Wife Bonus” Won’t Help Your Marriage, but This Will

By: Manisha Thakor Feeling and acting like financial equals can be a big challenge when a couple’s incomes differ dramatically. But there are better ways to acknowledge the hard work a lower-earning or stay-at-home spouse does for the family than by doling out a “wife bonus.” In her new book, Primates of Park Avenue, writer Wednesday Martin reveals the practice by which finance executives, bankers, and other high-earning New York husbands reward their spouses with the aforementioned bonuses, “distributed on the basis of not only how well her husband’s fund had done but her own performance—how well she managed the home budget, whether the kids got into a ‘good’ school,” according to an excerpt that ran in the New York Times.  To continue reading, please click here.   By clicking on any of the links above, you acknowledge that they are solely for your convenience, and do not necessarily imply any affiliations, sponsorships, endorsements or representations whatsoever by us regarding third-party Web sites. We are not responsible for the content, availability or privacy policies of these sites, and shall not be responsible or liable for any information, opinions, advice, products or services available on or through them. The opinions expressed by featured authors are their own and may not accurately reflect those of the BAM ALLIANCE. This article is for general information only and is not intended to serve as specific financial, accounting or tax advice. © 2016, The BAM...
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