15Nov
Facing the Realities and Adversities of Aging – Part 1 of 2
Issues of Aging

As you may already know, I am deeply concerned about the lack of preparation by the majority of Americans regarding the aging process.

In part one of this two-part blog, Thomas Day through the courtesy of the National Care Planning Council provides provocative information.  Part two of the blog will be released next week.

Part One of Two:

Getting older is definitely not a cakewalk.  If there is one thing that is true for every living person on this planet it is that everyone of us will get older and eventually die.  No one yet has ever figured out a way around this fact of life.  And it is also a given that as our bodies age every one of us will be more susceptible to developing one or more of the 3 D’s – disease, disability or dementia.  Chances are many individuals who are not even at retirement age have already developed one or more of these conditions.  In this message I’m going to address the myth that the so-called “Golden Years” are available to all seniors.  For many it really is a myth.  A large number of seniors are affected by what I will call here the realities and adversities of aging.  The dictionary defines adversity as: “an unfortunate event or circumstance.”

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04Oct
Life Insurance Can Provide Stability When Families Need It Most
Insurance

 

I found this Article to be of interest – I hope you do too!

Barb Culver

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24Sep
The Fed Calls Time for a Reality Check
Economy

I have written about the inverted yield curve in the past and find the reference to that in this coverage of the latest interest rate cut to be of interest.  Hope you do as well!

Click here to view the complete article.

Barb Culver

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24Sep
Were You Impacted by the Equifax Breach?
Cyber Security

Since the Equifax breach was massive, I wanted to share the latest information with you.

If you have spent time or money since September 2017 dealing with the breach, you can request reimbursement for up to 20 hours of time spent reclaiming your identity.  The hourly rate for reimbursement is $25.

If you incurred extra accounting fees, you may ask for up to $20,000 in restitution.

Of course, you will need to document damages and time invested in resolving this issue.

The other options involve credit monitoring.  One choice is to a reimbursement of up to $125 per person.  (Beware the actual amount could be much less).   The second is to ask for 10 years of free monitoring.  Since these breaches seem to be getting worse rather than better, you may want to consider the long-term credit monitoring option.

See this article link for complete details and contact information.

Barb Culver

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28Aug
Emerging Markets
Investing

Why should you invest in emerging markets?

Check out this article written by Ryan Gilmer from our strategic back-office partner.

4 Reasons to Invest in Emerging Markets

Barb Culver

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27Aug
Protection in a Digital Age
Cyber Security

As we are constantly concerned about keeping your data secure, a recent article in Fortune magazine titled “The Idiot Box Gets a Little Too Smart” written by Ashwin Rodrigues (August 2019) reminds us that smart TV’s are “essentially a big computer.”  Just like any other computer in our homes, this one collects data to allow providers to make more money.  Our television viewing habits are used to build a consumer profile on us which is used by advertisers, insurance companies and others.

This also means that the TV’s are vulnerable to hackers.  Samsung, for example, encourages that its customers scan their TV’s for malware!

Home security systems can also fall prey to hackers.  This Article may be of interest, as it provides some tips to, ironically, protect your home security system.

Voice-controlled devices such as Echo, Alexa and Nest are also a potential target for hackers.  See this Article relating to hackers exploiting home devices.

Sadly, our privacy and security are becoming increasingly vulnerable to hackers and cyber criminals.  Please be ever vigilant to reduce cyber threats when using your computers… and also with your mobile devices, smart phones and TV’s!

Barb Culver

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20Aug
Yield Curve
Economy

Indeed, we seem to be living in interesting times!  I know I have spoken with many of you in the past regarding the yield curve and past lessons we have learned from it.  I found the attached article written by Sonal Desai, Ph.D., Chief Investment Officer of Franklin Templeton Fixed Income to be of particular interest.  I hope you find it to be both timely and the value as well.

Yield Curve Article

Barb Culver

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22Jul
Do You Remember 1987?
Economy

(I give credit to a Motley Fool article called “Party like It’s 1987” written May 12, 2019 for much of the information in the following article.  Also, I am not making any recommendations to buy, sell or hold any particular positions.)

Through April 30, the S&P 500 index had earned 18.3%.  This is the best stretch for the first four months of the year since 1987!  Interestingly, most of us will not remember 1987 for the impressive performance of the S&P 500 in January.  Rather, we tend to remember the 20.5% drop on October 19 – which remains the biggest one-day decline in the history of the S&P 500 index.  Even with the decline, the S&P 500 ended up 5% for the year in 1987.
(Source: https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/)

Looking back even further, Ryan Dietrich of LPL Financial told CNBC that, until now, there have been only four years since World War II when the market earned 15% or more in the first four months.  Specifically, those years were 1967, 1975, 1983 and 1987.  However, please note that the months between May and October have been really volatile in the same years.

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22Jul
Do You Know Anyone Who is Moving?
uncategorized

As part of our concern for your overall well-being, I thought that some points about moving included in a recent insurance communication might be of value to you or someone you know.

  • If you are moving out of state, is your current property and casualty company licensed in the state you are moving to?
  • If you are hiring movers, it is usually a good idea to purchase the insurance coverage that is offered.
  • If it is a “do-it-yourself” move, be sure to have sufficient coverage through their auto insurance or purchase insurance coverage through the rental agreement with the truck you rent.
  • If you are moving and renting out the “old” home, note you will likely pay higher homeowners insurance.

Here is a link to the full article: https://www.naic.org/documents/consumer_alert_insurance_moving.htm

 

Barb Culver

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04Jun
Say Goodbye to Passwords!
uncategorized

Under the theme “Fraud Watch 2019” there is an article titled “Making Sure You Are You” in the April 2019 AARP bulletin.

I think that passwords can be frustrating to both young and old alike.  Soon, passwords will be obsolete as a body of science called a biometric authentication continues to advance.  Rather than typing in a password with those pesky upper and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols, technology companies are developing tools that instead will use fingerprints, voice recognition, eye scans, facial recognition and even a quick analysis of your physical behavior (the way we tap our keyboard or move the mouse) to serve as a gate to our accounts or as an alert that an unauthorized user has gained access to our confidential information.

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