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Thursday, September 13, 2018

I Get a Lesson In College Financial Planning: By My Hair Sylist. It is now almost universally accepted as truth that the days where a youngster could work their way through college are over, a victim of the relentless (and ridiculous)...

 

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Financial planners tend to be very debt averse. The best advice I can offer regarding consumer debt of any kind is just avoid it in the first place. Save up for future purchases, pay cash or use debt cards for most purchases, and never...

 

Friday, August 24, 2018

How You Think about the Process Is Key Determinant of Success Most people hate the idea of “Being on a Budget”. The very term implies some kind of failure. That there is failure in not having enough money to do and have...

 

Friday, July 27, 2018

Strong Growth in US Economy, Savings Rate Surprise Economic geeks will have a busy day today parsing data in an unusually detailed GDP report. In general, data show a strong economy, and in some ways, a populous that is somewhat more...

 

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Many financial planners don't like to get "dirty" with complicated issues such as student loans. They like to focus on managing large sums of money. OK, that's where the big $ are, so who can blame them. But we get excited about...

 

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Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Mixed Q2 Results Amid Increased Market Volatility Performance has been mixed over the last quarter. US stocks did well. Foreign stocks lagged. Bonds started off down as interest rates rose – then recovered somewhat. Diversified...

 

Monday, June 25, 2018

Financial Planning Will be Crucial as Baby Boomers Face a Host of Financial Challenges I just read a great (but depressing) article in the Wall Street Journal decrying the pitiful state my generation finds itself in as we approach (or...

 

Thursday, June 21, 2018

The Fall of General Electric Reinforces the Importance of Diversification What does that mean anyway, “blue chip” company? The term actually derives from poker. Poker chips are typically red, white, and blue – and the...

 

Friday, June 15, 2018

It looks as if Social Security benefits may be increasing at a faster rate in 2019. In this video, I discuss the implications for seniors (spoiler alert: don't start your happy dance just yet...), and the factors driving the increased...

 

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Oh Yeah, THAT’S Why I Wanted Bonds in the Portfolio It is so easy for investors to get caught up in the popular Wall Street chatter. Interest rates have nowhere to go but up. Bonds are doomed to ever increasing losses. Everyone...

 

Friday, May 25, 2018

Inflation is a Real, Persistent, but Underappreciated Threat to Retirement Success Driving with my dad the other day he said he needed to stop at a department store to buy some new pajamas. That led (somewhat invevitably when...

 

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Studies conclusively demonstrate that mathematical reasoning and financial acumen peak at around age 53, and then gradually begin to decline with age, accelerating as people age into the 70s and 80s. What are the implications for...

 

Monday, May 7, 2018

How We are Crushing Our Kids with Student Loans (and how to avoid doing so to YOUR kids!) “Don’t worry about it – There is Plenty of Financial Aid Available” That’s about the extent of financial advice...

 

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Higher Interest Rates: Bad News for Investors, Good News for Savers? The experts have been predicting it ever since the financial crisis. Higher inflation will result from all the government fiscal stimulus. Such inflation will force...

 

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Deadline for 2017 Retirement Contributions approaches Next Monday April 16th is the deadline for making your 2017 IRA / SEP / Roth contributions. If you haven't yet gotten around to it, consider making a contribution this week. Who can...

 

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Markets are being buffeted by fears of a trade war, as the US and China increase rhetoric on trade. Markets are up one way, down the next as markets try to figure out the long term implications of trade rhetoric. Let's try to cut past...

 

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Markets Deliver a Lesson in Stock Pricing and the Role of Investor Expectations. FAANG stocks (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Google) have been stock market darlings for the past year. Big tech stocks outperformed everything...

 

Friday, March 23, 2018

Stocks have been selling off the last few days. This time, unlike February, the move looks less like a computer generated frenzy, and more like a good old fashioned market correction. What is driving it? Well, the media blames it on...

 

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Information and misinformation over the tax bill is maddening. I have spent the last 2 hours researching the topic of how mortgage interest will be taxed under the new tax bill. I still can’t get a completely straight answer. The...

 

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Kudos to our financial planning software provider, Right Capital. Only 2 weeks into the year and they have managed to update the planning software with the new tax rules. As a reminder to folks, the tax law made significant changes...

 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Your identity is perhaps your most important financial asset. Despite all the press given to recent cybersecurity breaches and the issue of identity theft, it seems many people still don’t give the issue the attention it deserves...

 

Friday, January 5, 2018

Retirees may still be able to get a deduction for charitable donations under the new tax bill, even if they no longer itemize. The new tax law retains tax law provisions which allow individuals over age 70 ½ to make donations to...

 

Friday, December 29, 2017

A few last minute (really last minute) thoughts on tax planning for 2018. Prepaying Property Taxes. I had recommended in a previous post how most taxpayers – namely those who have property tax bills over $10,000 per year, as well...

 

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

I have held off commenting much on the new GOP tax code because, frankly, it was all noise until the final bill was drafted and released to the public. That happened on Friday. So, let’s look at how it benefits you. I am going...

 

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

I have held off commenting much on the new GOP tax code because, frankly, it was all noise until the final bill was drafted and released to the public. That happened on Friday. So, let’s look at how it benefits you. I am going...

 

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

It seems as though every time I see a financial article entitled "Worst 10 States for...", New Jersey is on the list. So it is quite refreshing to see that New Jersey is NOT included on Kiplingers Personal Finance just released ranking...

 

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

A Bitcoin purchased in January of this year for about $750 would have increased to over $8000. A tremendous run-up to be sure. With that kind of return, surely some are wondering if Bitcoin belongs in their investment portfolio. What...

 

Friday, November 17, 2017

Please join Luba and I in welcoming Jordan Coleman to the Financial Pathways family. Jordan is a business/finance student at Raritan Valley Community College and be interning with us over the next several months. She may be in touch...

 

Thursday, November 9, 2017

OK, this post isn't about any complicated financial strategy, and the advice herein won't make a bit of difference to your retirement plan. But it may come in useful someday anyway. As a complete financial geek, I've often wondered...

 

Monday, November 6, 2017

Up, Up, and Away! Investment clients will find October reports posted to the Morningstar portal today. The stock market has now set a new record of 12 straight months without recording a monthly loss. Meanwhile the S&P 500 is extending...

 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

No, not for my running career, although I keep trying. It’s a record for the stock market. In fact, we have set (or are about to set) two records of note this week. Big deal, the stock market is always setting records, you say?...

 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

We would like to remind all of our senior clients that Medicare open enrollment started on October 15, and continues through December 5. That means it is time to reconsider your Medicare health plan selections, and whether your current...

 

Friday, September 22, 2017

Lets Face it - Your Identity has been compromised. This is the topic of the week - I have already received numerous calls on the topic from clients worried about the latest high profile hack at Equifax. But even if you weren't affected...

 

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Income Based Repayment and Forgiveness programs are a minefield of tax and financial complexity! The foolishness that is the U.S. government's student loan policy gets crazier and crazier the more you study it and dig into the details....

 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Safeguards can protect aging parents (or an aging you!) from money mistakes As financial advisors, we have a unique insight into people’s lives. If something is amiss in a client’s life, we will usually be one of the first...

 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Jim and Laura Kinney to Host Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University Financial Peace University is a 9 week financial education program developed by radio talk show host and best selling author Dave Ramsey (Total Money Makeover). Jim...

 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

So July is in the books, and not much has changed. The stock market has continued its slow but steady grind higher. Good performance by the stock sleeve of the portfolio pulled our investor portfolios higher for July, the fifth...

 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Look Past Recent Performance To Include Dissimilar Markets Markets have been very strong of late. Stocks have done well since the election, and bonds have yet to react negatively to rising interest rates. International stocks in...

 

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

I have been getting more and more into running over the past few years. A few weeks ago, I joined my daughter in running a 1/2 marathon in Buffalo. I did some reflecting the other day on similarities between distance running and...

 

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Stability, Stability, Stability – Markets are Being so BORING. Nothing seems to frighten the markets anymore. Not a North Korean madman with nuclear weapons. Not a Chinese debt bubble that makes our mortgage debt crisis look like...

 

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

OK, this is a bit of technical advice, not financial advice. And I am not the most qualified person to advise on this. But since many of you may have personal data on your computers - including financial data, I figure it is at least...

 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

More Money is Not Always the Answer to Financial Problems! Anyone who is struggling to pay their bills and keep the household financial ship afloat can be forgiven for thinking that a little more money will solve their problems....

 

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Most of my financial planning clients, and almost everyone else I speak with, share the opinion that Social Security is doomed to failure. A deeper understanding of the program suggests that this most pessimistic view is not warranted.

 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Umbrella Insurance That Is. It's often overlooked, and in my experience, rarely even mentioned by insurance providers. But umbrella insurance is incredibly important to protecting your financial life in the event of a major legal...

 

Monday, May 1, 2017

This is an article that anyone thinking ahead to retirement ought to read / listen to. The CNBC piece (click here to view) makes many of the points I have made to clients in our financial planning sessions regarding the danger of...

 

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

According to an article in today's Wall Street Journal, consumers are voting with their money, and the vote is overwhelmingly in favor of the independent, fee-only advisory model. This is a vindication of sorts for Financial Pathways...

 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

How to Create and Manage a Household Budget The most important single step most people can make toward improving their financial lives is to begin living on a budget. Sound intimidating? It shouldn't be! A budget is about seizing...

 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

A Look at Living with Debt in Retirement A growing number of seniors are carrying debt with them into retirement. What are the implications? According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the percentage of homeowners 65 and...

 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Jim and Laura Kinney Trained and Certified by Financial Radio Host and Author Dave Ramsey Back in June Laura and I traveled to Nashville to be trained by radio talk show host Dave Ramsey. We learned how to coach people using the...

 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Rising Interest Rates are All Bad News for Income Investors The Federal Reserve made news today by raising interest rates ¼ of 1%. No big surprise there, but they did surprise the market by suggesting that Fed members were...

 

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Wow. Shocker. I can’t even get my head around the idea of Donald Trump as my president. In a recent email to our investment clients, I had noted that Hillary Clinton appeared to be the clear favorite of the markets, and that...

 

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Nothing is certain in life, they say, but death and taxes. And in New Jersey, death and taxes go together. But it looks as if dying in New Jersey may be a little less “taxing” in the future. We live in one of the few states...

 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Retirement Success is Part Planning…And Part Luck The First Few Years of Retirement Can Make or Break a Plan I often explain to clients how important investment returns during the first few years of retirement can be. Big losses...