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Financial Planning

The Freeze

 September 15 2017     Anna Pfaehler
Winter came – for my credit. In light of the Equifax data breach, I froze my credit with Equifax, Transunion, Experian and Innovis. It was not difficult, but it was not the smooth sailing some of my colleagues experienced. I thought I’d share my experience here in hopes it will be helpful and to encourage you to freeze yours too. For each bureau, you visit their website, enter m...

Equifax Breach - What You Need to Know

 September 14 2017     Anna Pfaehler
On September 11, Equifax made known that personal data of nearly half of the U.S. population was compromised this summer. The data breach gave thieves access to the identities (names, Social Security Numbers, addresses and dates of birth) of approximately 143 million Americans. Those affected are at increased risk for identity theft and fraud.  You can check if you are potentially impacted...

Planning FAQs

 September 11 2017     Anna Pfaehler
I field many questions from clients and colleagues every day. Here are a few recent ones from the trenches: 1. If I take all of the money out of my child’s 529 what happens? Qualified Educational Plans (AKA 529 Plans) are meant to fund qualified education expenses such as college tuition and fees. Distributions not used for qualified education expenses will incur income tax, at ordinary ra...

A Vampire Sequel

 August 21 2017     Anna Pfaehler
Can vampires go outside during a total eclipse? I have no idea. But my “Why Vampires are Wealthy” post from a few weeks ago has created some buzz. So while everyone is talking about the sun today, or lack of sun, I’m revisiting vampires and fulfilling a request to look at what would happen if you “got bit” while young and started saving at the beginning of your career...

Spending Time

 August 3 2017     Anna Pfaehler
We bought a Roomba. With a dog and a cat there are always tumbleweeds of pet fur rolling across the floors.  Agador Spartacus – we named our Roomba after Hank Azaria’s character from the classic film The Birdcage - works while we are away and we come home to a much more presentable home. We spent money to save time and it has been worth every cent. A recent study published in th...

Why Vampires Are Wealthy

 July 21 2017     Anna Pfaehler
One summer in high school I spent my lazy free-time reading vampire novels by Bram Stoker and Anne Rice. Years later I would read works by Charlaine Harris and, I am embarrassed to say, Stephanie Meyer. While I would not say I am a vampire fanatic, I find it an entertaining genre. I was therefore a bit too excited when a client said “that’s why vampires are so rich!” when discuss...

Spanning the Spousal Gap

 July 5 2017     Anna Pfaehler
My first day on my first job out of college, a colleague told me that if a certain client’s wife called to be very careful about what I told her because she wasn’t privy to all of their financial information. I have come to see this, for one reason or another, as very common.  There is no judgement in my office, even if I’d bristle at being an out-of-the loop as a spouse. I...

Student Loan Success

 June 19 2017     Anna Pfaehler
When I repaid my student loans, Navient asked me to share my success story. My success had little to do with me and everything to do with parents who did not let me go too deep into debt in the first place.  I realize that is of no use to those buried in debt looking for a way out. However, I do believe it is good advice for those helping children navigate paying for college. If student ...

May Market Review

 June 13 2017     Matt Woebkenberg
Markets in the month of May were positive around the globe with stocks and bonds overseas outperforming US markets. The advances came in a month where economic data was mixed and political headlines became numerous. The NASDAQ 100  was once again the standout in the US as the tech-heavy index reached another all-time high. An impressive run in technology stocks amidst somewhat elevated valuations ...

Investing for Cat People

 June 12 2017     Matt Woebkenberg
Factor investing has become very popular in the financial world.  It is basically rules based investing where trades are determined entirely by pre-determined factors.  For example, some value funds will buy if the P/E (Price to Earnings Ratio) drops below a certain point and sell once it rises above a certain point.  One Bloomberg columnist recently took this concept and did what the internet doe...
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