Financial Resources & News

Markets in Review

All major market indices finished the quarter with positive returns. Equity markets, as measured by the S&P 500 Index, rose by 7.5% during the first quarter after finishing 2022 down 18.1%. Seven of the eleven S&P 500 sectors finished the first quarter with a positive return. The three top performers during the quarter were the three worst performing sectors in 2022. Communication...

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Plan Participants: The More They Know, The Better

As a plan sponsor, do you feel your employees have a clear understanding of the company’s retirement plan? Do most utilize it as a tool to save for retirement—and, if not, do they understand the benefit that they are missing? According to the 2022 PLANSPONSOR Participant Survey, 115 of 774 (14.9%) respondents opted not to participate in a workplace defined contribution plan for various reasons....

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Beneficiary on File?

As part of the enrollment process, participants are asked to elect a beneficiary. However, this step is often not completed or kept up to date as time goes on, which can make death distributions more complicated than they need to be. When a participant names a beneficiary, it helps to ensure their account balance will be distributed to the person intended. However, updating the designation is...

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News Flash!

Defined Contribution plans: Form 5500 news! Effective for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2023, the determination of a large or small plan will be based on the number of participants with an account balance as of the beginning of the year, rather than the number of participants eligible for the plan. This is welcome news for plans that required an accountant’s audit as a large plan...

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Upcoming Compliance Deadlines

May 2023 15th:  Quarterly Benefit Statement - Deadline for participant-directed plans to supply participants with the quarterly benefit/disclosure statement including a statement of plan fees and expenses charged to individual plan accounts during the first quarter of 2023. June 2023 30th:  EACA ADP/ACP Corrections - Deadline for processing corrective distributions for failed ADP/ACP...

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Budgeting Tools to Consider

By:  Paul Horn, CFP®, CPWA® Senior Financial Planner In our last blog post, we mentioned the importance of automating your budget. This blog post will look at some different tools and resources available to make managing your finances much easier and less scary! Take a look at the different options below. These are merely a starting point and by no means an exhaustive list. We do not have any...

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Most Things You Know About Budgeting are Wrong or Outdated

By:  Paul Horn, CFP®, CPWA® Senior Financial Planner One of the biggest challenges of working with individuals is discussing their budgets. The simple reality is people are busy and we are not taught how to budget. Another challenge is that budgeting is like doing taxes – it’s necessary but no one wants to do it! Let's take a look at some of the more common mistakes we see when helping people...

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SECURE 2.0 Helps Small Employers Help Their Employees

Approximately 78% of people who work for companies with fewer than 10 employees and about 65% of those who work for companies with 10 to 24 employees do not have access to a retirement plan at work.(1) That's unfortunate, because workers with a retirement plan are far more likely to save for retirement than those without a plan. In 2022, 62% of those without a retirement plan had accumulated...

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Monthly Market Update (April 2023): 3 Things You Need to Know

Wall Street closed out a winning April after more companies said their profits at the start of the year weren’t as bad as expected. Here are 3 things you need to know: US real GDP rose 1.1% annualized in the first quarter, 0.8% below consensus expectations. While below expectations on the surface, a deeper look reveals a degree of underlying resiliency. Much of the slowdown can be attributed to...

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SECURE 2.0 Adds New Early Withdrawal Exceptions

The SECURE 2.0 Act, passed as part of an omnibus spending bill in December 2022, added new exceptions to the 10% federal income tax penalty for early withdrawals from tax-advantaged retirement accounts. The Act also expanded an existing exception that applies specifically to employer plans. These exceptions are often called 72(t) exceptions, because they are listed in Section 72(t) of the...

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Does it Make Sense to Take Social Security Benefits at Age 62?

By:  Tina Schackman, CFA®, CFP®, Senior Retirement Plan Consultant With approximately 94% of American workers covered by Social Security and 65.2 million people currently receiving benefits, keeping Social Security healthy is a major concern.1 Social Security isn’t in danger of going broke since it’s financed primarily through payroll taxes, but the financial health of the Social Security...

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The Importance of a Pension Election

By:  Henry VanBuskirk, CFP®, Wealth Manager Most Americans know that the Defined Benefit Pension Plans are mostly a thing of yesteryear, usually something that only retired Teachers or Law Enforcement get now. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has been tracking this downward trend over time and it’s not a secret why pensions are starting to fade away from most Americans’ collective...

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Primer on Life Insurance

By:  Henry VanBuskirk, CFP®, Wealth Manager One of the most crucial financial planning topics that almost nobody likes to talk about is life insurance. In our line of work, it’s akin to discussing politics or religion. Don’t worry, I’m not going to discuss politics or religion here. There are enough outlets online that proselytize on those topics already and you are free to find your preachers...

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There’s Still Time to Fund an IRA for 2022

The tax filing deadline is fast approaching, which means time is running out to fund an IRA for 2022. If you had earned income last year, you may be able to contribute up to $6,000 for 2022 ($7,000 for those age 50 or older by December 31, 2022) up until your tax return due date, excluding extensions. For most people, that date is Tuesday, April 18, 2023. The IRS has postponed the deadline to...

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Monthly Market Update (March 2023): 3 Things You Need to Know

Despite the banking-sector turmoil seen in March, the S&P 500 rose in March, helped by strong returns from growth stocks that were buoyed by falling bond yields. Here are 3 things you need to know: The Federal Reserve continued to hike interest rates by 25 bps in March bringing the Federal funds rate range to 4.75% to 5.00%. U.S. Fed Chair Jerome Powell admitted, the current bank stress will...

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