Category: Retirement


Social Security

I read where some of our erudite congresspersons are once again floating around the idea of privatizing Social Security. Does anybody really want Wall Street meddling with our retirement money? Once upon a time the rationale was that allowing us to invest in markets would increase our retirement holdings. Financial advisors were salivating.

For many Americans, Social Security will provide virtually ALL of their retirement income. (Don’t forget it also includes disability income and Medicare.) Among all beneficiaries 65 and older, 42% of single persons and ...

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Equity Indexed Annuities: A Complex Choice

Sales of equity-indexed annuities (EIAs) have grown considerably in recent years. Although one insurance company at one time included the word “simple” in the name of their product, EIAs are anything but easy to understand. One of the most confusing features of an EIA is the method used to calculate the gain in the index to which the annuity is linked. To make matters worse, there is not one, but several different indexing methods. Because of the variety and complexity of the methods used to credit ...

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Reverse Mortgages

If you are in your sixties, and own your home, chances are you have heard about reverse mortgages—or will soon. Reverse mortgages can be helpful to homeowners who want to stay in their homes but are having trouble keeping up with their mortgage payments, or who have no other source of funds to pay bills or meet unexpected expenses. But as more Americans near retirement age, some financial institutions are aggressively marketing reverse mortgages as an easy, cost-free way
for retirees to finance lifestyles—or to ...

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Variable Annuities – Beyond the Hard Sell

The marketing efforts used by some variable annuity sellers deserve scrutiny—
especially when seniors are the targeted investors. Sales pitches for these products might attempt to scare or confuse investors. One scare tactic used with seniors is to claim that a variable annuity will protect them from lawsuits or seizures of their assets.

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Life Insurance Life Settlements

Lately, more and more seniors are hearing about opportunities to sell their existing life insurance for cash in transactions known as life settlements. A life settlement, or senior settlement, as they are sometimes called, involves selling an existing life insurance policy to a third party—a person or an entity other than the company that issued the policy—for more than the policy’s cash surrender value, but less than the net death benefit.

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