Vanguard’s “How America Saves 2020” report is packed with lots of intriguing stats and findings about Americans and how they save for retirement in the crazy year that is 2020 (most of the recent data is technically from 2019 although some figures are current through the Spring of 2020). Let’s look at some of the top takeaways from the study and how you might compare to the “normal” savings behaviors of Americans.
1:14 - Main Topic: Statistics On How Americans Save
1:47 - 100 Million Americans Use A Defined Contribution Plan
4:00 - Average Number Of Funds Used In These Plans Are 2.4
5:36 - 34% Of Participants Didn’t Contribute Enough To Meet Their Employer’s Match
6:46 - Is There A Reason To Not Meet An Employer Match?
7:56 - 80% Of Participants Still Had Assets With A Previous Employer
9:26 - 96% Of Those Assets Are Able To Be Rolled Over Into Something Else
11:16 - Tristen Has Asks About How Divorcing Later In Life Might Affect Retirement
We get a lot of questions about how the house (or houses) fit into retirement plans. From downsizing to rental properties to interest rates, let’s explore some of the top retirement questions as it relates to all things housing.
2:03 - Main Topic: This One’s On The House
2:25 - Pay Off The House, Or Enjoy The Low Interest Rates?
3:30 - Is It Wise To Downsize?
5:14 - Is A Rental Property A Good Idea?
7:06 - What Complications Have You Seen When Handling Real Estate In An Estate, Or Legacy Plan?
8:53 - Taking Care Of Our Bodies As We age
9:57 - Life Is About Contribution
12:52 - Shelby Asks If Retirement Spending Starts To Decrease After The First 5 Years
Living a long time isn’t supposed to be a bad thing and it almost seems counterintuitive to categorize it as a risk. But it is. Let’s take a look at how longevity plays a role in a financial plan and have an honest conversation about how deal with the “problem” of living too long.
1:12 - Main Topic - Longevity Risk
2:25 - How Old Is Your Oldest Client?
2:39 - Oldest Person In Your Family?
3:20 - Who Is The Oldest Person You Have Personally Known?
4:00 - Why Is Living Long Risky?
7:02 - Have People Prepared For Longevity Appropriately?
9:10 - Client Story
11:00 - Starting The Conversation
15:07 - Millie Says She Was Going To Get Serious About Retirement Within The Next Year, But Wants Out Of Her Job Now
Many financial issues impact us all the same. But, of course, other challenges have varying impacts from person to person because our situations are all unique. Let’s take a look at some of the financial and retirement challenges that are unique to women. We also discuss some rules of thumb and get Charles' take on them.
2:00 - Main Topic - Financial Issues That Are Challenging For Women
3:29 - Level Of Engagement Women Have Throughout Retirement Planning Process
5:00 - Spouse That Handled Money Passes Away First
6:49 - Why Do Some Women Find Themselves In A Difficult Situation?
8:14 - Specific Challenges Faced By A Widowed Woman
9:50 - Piece Of Advice For The Husbands
10:42 - Second Topic - Retirement Rules
11:06 - The 10%, 4%, 25X, & The 80% Rule
13:13 - The Rule Of 72
14:06 - The Rule of 2.67
15:14 - The Rule Of 100
How complex should a financial plan be? On one hand, a single page plan sounds nice and easy to understand. But is that comprehensive enough if it can fit on one page?
2:07 - Headline: The Market Rebounding
5:44 - Main Topic: Are Complicated Portfolios Necessary?
6:19 - What Do You Typically See When It Comes To The Length Of The Financial Plan?
7:11 - Misconception Between Portfolio And The Plan
8:49 - The Rule Of 11
10:22 - Not Every Advisor Is The Right Fit
13:44 - Mailbag: Nancy Asks If She Should Invest In Her Employer’s Stock
There are some financial planning blunders that are interesting to talk about but are quite rare in reality. On the other hand, there are some financial planning mistakes that happen far too often. Let’s talk about the mistakes so many people have made in the past it has made them “classic”.
1:13 - Headline: 72% Of American Say They Will Prioritize Financial Planning Once Pandemic Is Over
3:15 - Classic Pre-Retiree Mistakes
4:03 - Mistake #1: Investing Like You’re In Your 20’s
5:09 - Mistake #2: Taking Social Security As Soon As Possible
6:49 - Mistake #3: Focusing On Tax Preparation Rather Than Tax Planning
8:10 - Mistake #4: Assuming The Majority Of Healthcare Expenses Will Be Covered By Medicare
9:15 - Mistake #5: Taking On Additional Risk To Make Up For Lost Time
11:20 - Mailbag: Rork Asks If His Is Getting All The Information He Needs From His Financial Advisor
Step into the classroom and let’s take a look at some financial terms, define them, and find out if they’re important for the typical investor and saver to know about them.
3:06 - Main Topic: Financial Dictionary
3:35 - Accelerated Death Benefit
4:21 - AGI
5:28 - Fundamental Analysis
6:09 - Margin Account
7:11 - High Yield/Junk Bonds
9:31 - Sammantha Asks, “Should I Let The Kids Know About Our Plans To Leave An Inheritance?”
11:25 - What”s Buggin’ Charles?
It seems that most people don’t have a clear picture of whether they should contribute to a traditional IRA or a Roth. Let’s discuss how to determine what’s best for you.
1:23 - Headline: More Than 25% Of Americans Are Raiding Their Retirement Accounts Because Of COVID-19
4:16 - Traditional IRA Vs. Roth IRA - The Basic Definitions
5:10 - Why Are So Many In The Traditional Account?
6:11 - Is The Current Tax Environment We’re In A Catalyst For More People Wanting To Do Roth Conversions?
8:04 - Who Should Be Contributing To A Roth?
8:23 - Who Should Not Be Contributing To A Roth?
10:14 - Marshall Wonders If Paying The Penalty To Take Out His Variable Annuity Is Worth Avoiding The High Fees
12:37 - What’s Buggin’ Charles?
Let’s talk about some of the common mistakes that we see being made time and time again by retirees and pre-retirees.
2:24 - Bonds Are A Safe Investment
5:19 - Avoiding The Idea of Long Term Care Needs
8:43 - Guarding Against Market Declines
10:49 - Categorizing Different Investment Vehicles As Always Good, Or Always Bad
14:03 - Not Having A Plan In Place
16:06 - Beverly Asks If She Has Enough Diversification Between Her 33 Mutual Funds
If you really took inventory of your financial situation, you might find that you’ve been taking for granted some assets that make up a huge piece of your puzzle. Is it possible you should be putting a little more thought into some of these assets?
1:56 - Are you paying attention to your biggest assets?
2:32 - Should we be putting more thought into these assets?
3:32 - Asset #1: 401(k)
5:45 - Asset #2: House
8:54 - Asset #3: Social Security
11:15 - Asset #4: Smaller Accounts
13:38 - Mailbag: I have a lot of money in savings earning very little interest.
16:53 - Getting To Know Charles: What item would you want to be buried with?
Sometimes events happen in life that make it really important for you to carefully assess your financial situation. Let’s explain why each of these events is usually a good reason for a financial review.
2:32 - Will Rogers Quote
4:00 - Life Events Can Spark Major Changes
9:50 - Unplanned Events Of Jobs
7:31 - Serious Medical Issue
11:09 - Estate Planning
17:56 - Mailbag Rick Worries About Running Out Of Money With Recent Downturn In The Market
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is having a dramatic impact on our daily lives and many people are taking a huge financial hit from lost wages, a volatile stock market, and general economic uncertainty. Charles will talk about his thoughts on this situation and we will briefly mention a couple elements of the new CARES Act.
1:18 - How Business Has Been For Charles
3:27 - Being Able To Help A Client With The New CARES Act
6:03 - RMDs Are Not Required For 2020
8:51 - Taxes Will Have To Go Up, Which Is Why A Roth Conversion Might Be A Good Idea Right
12:00 - Great TP Shortage
13:49 - April Fools Story
15:53 - Mailbag Lucile Wonders What The Best Way To Save For Retirement Since She Cannot Contribute To A Roth
There are many "it depends" situations in financial and retirement planning. On today's show we look at some truths we can state with confidence.
2:07 - Financial Truths
3:17 - TV Can Be A Big Enemy
5:49 - The Market Moves In Cycles
8:10 - There’s No Magic Bullet
9:30 - Why Diversification Is Important
13:04 Mailbag Tim asks “My advisor is retiring and passing on the business. Should I Find A New Advisor?"
On today's episode Charles explains why people who give investment advice without a securities license are bugging him. We also talk about how past epidemics have affected the stock market and we answer a couple email questions that have come in.
1:46 - What's Bugging Charles?
6:25 - How Past Epidemics Have Affected The Stock Market
7:46 - You Need A Plan To Help During These Pullbacks
9:35 - Mailbag Question from Conner: "How To Pay For College In Retirement?'
13:07 - Mailbag Question from Denver: "How Much Long Term Care Is Recommended?"
With the national elections in November, the parties have VERY different opinions regarding who should be paying their fair share of income taxes. But do we really know who pays what? You certainly can’t rely on either political party to give you the straight information. We also dive into a discussion on how to reasonably incorporate emotions into your financial plan.
1:32 - Who Pays Income Tax?
2:20 - Income Tax Statistics From 2016
5:12 - Top Wage Earners
7:01 - Emotions In Financial Planning
7:29 - Fear And Greed
9:59 - Invest For The Long Term
10:55 - Using Emotions For A Good Cause
12:23 - Taking Clients' Emotions Into Consideration
16:49 - Mailbag Question from Frank: "My 401 (k) got rolled over into American Funds, is this a good thing?"
After it simmered in Congress for a year, the SECURE Act is now law. If you have a retirement account of any kind, or will one day inherit a retirement account, this will affect you. Matt will hit the main points of this new bill and how it will change retirement planning.
0:58 - The SECURE Act
1:23 - Death Of The Stretch IRA
2:14 - Small Businesses And Retirement Plans
2:48 - Required Minimum Distribution Change
3:38 - 10 Year Window Eliminated
5:36 - Multiple Beneficiaries
6:41 - Trusts Cannot Be A Contingent Beneficiary For An IRA
8:49 - Life Insurance As An Alternative Solution
14:17 - Mailbag Question from Emily: "Did 401 (k) Contributions Go Up?"
Mutual funds have long been the most popular way for people to invest, but is that landscape changing?
1:45 - Financial Dictionary: Tax Loss Harvesting
5:06 - Ins And Outs Of Mutual Funds
5:19 - Point #1: What Percentage Of Clients Have Mutual Funds When They First Come To See You?
6:24 - Point #2: Expense Ratios
7:58 - Point #3: Front Load, Back Load, No Load
9:20 - Point #4: Tax Issues Mutual Funds Can Create
11:07 - Point #5: Should Mutual Funds Be Eliminated?
12:59 - Mailbag Question from Confused: "How to consolidate multiple investment accounts?"
Trustworthy. Likable. Problem-solving. Good listener. We should be describing your financial advisor or a potential advisor if you’re in the process of finding one. On today’s show, we’ll talk about why it’s so important for your advisor to embrace these kinds of characteristics. That’s the easy part. But we’ll also tackle the harder part and discuss some tangible ways how you can determine if an advisor has these characteristics or not.
1:38 - Headline: Rand Paul Bill
6:45 - Traits A Financial Advisor Must Have
7:12 - Trait #1: Trust
8:56 - Trait #2: Likability
10:03 - Trait #3: Area Of Expertise
11:17 - Trait #4: Listening Ability
13:00 - Trait #5: Problem Solver
14:58 - Mailbag Question from Norm: "How much risk to take now that I'm in retirement?"
Myths, rumors, and misunderstandings are pervasive in the world of Social Security. On this show, we’ll look to clear up the top 5 misunderstandings about Social Security.
1:33 - Mailbag Question from Randall: "Places to start investing in for retirement."
5:21 - Top 5 Social Security Misunderstandings
5:42 - Misunderstanding #1: Social Security Is Going Broke
6:43 - Misunderstanding #2: You Should Start Social Security As Early As Possible
7:31 - Misunderstanding #3: You Should Start Social Security As Late As Possible
9:25 - Misunderstanding #4: The SSA Can Help You Choose The Best Strategy When You Go And See Them
11:37 - Misunderstanding #5: You Don't Pay Taxes On Social Security Benefits
14:48 - Do You See People Often Overestimating Their Risk Tolerance?
There are some people who don’t care at all about leaving a financial legacy, but for those who do, it’s important to eliminate some of the common estate planning mistakes.
0:56 - In The News: How the stock market might react to the result of the upcoming election
5:27 - Avoiding Critical Estate Planning Mistakes
5:43 - Mistake #1: Not Planning Your Expenses In Retirement
7:17 - Mistake #2: Beneficiary Designations
10:01 - Mistake #3: Not Considering The Tax Implications Of Your Estate
13:25 - Mailbag Question from Helen: "Are there really no tax implications to rolling over the 401 (k)?"