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Investing

How to Close an E*TRADE Investing Account

by Luke Landes
How to close an E*TRADE investment account

Yesterday, I was motivated to further clean up my excess financial accounts. After a long delay, I moved my main accounts into a revocable living trust, a legal entity I created earlier this year to keep my finances in the best order possible. As I visited Wells Fargo yesterday to move my primary checking account ... Continue reading this article…

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4 Types of Retirement: Which Will You Choose?

by Luke Landes
Which retirement will you choose?

While every situation is different, there are only a few types of retirement for those of us in the working class. Before I get to the retirement concept, here’s what I mean by “working class.” The working class includes those who need to survive by trading their time and effort for an income. They could ... Continue reading this article…

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Four Excuses Prevent You From Investing

by William Cowie

This is a guest article by William Cowie, who writes at Bite the Bullet Investing. While I considered myself a late bloomer in the world investing, not doing much with my money besides spending it until I was about twenty-eight, William started much later in his life. In this article, William describes how certain attitudes ... Continue reading this article…

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Are Financial Planners Hurting Investors Approaching Retirement?

by Luke Landes

If you’ve watched the financial industry over the course of the last decade, you’ve probably noticed some important contradictions. It’s a good indication that taking generalized investment advice and applying it to your own situation is not a smart idea. Anyone who retired at the height of the recession is going to understand exactly what ... Continue reading this article…

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Check Your 401(k) Fees: Invest in Index Mutual Funds

by Luke Landes
401k

A few years ago, new regulations mandated that 401(k) retirement plan administrators change quarterly statements to include more information about expenses about each fund in which the employee is invested. This was a good move. I have mixed feelings about 401(k) plans. Today’s world of employment is different than that from a generation ago. For ... Continue reading this article…

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Accurate Prediction Market Intrade Shuts Down

by Luke Landes
Stop

I’ve mentioned Intrade here. Intrade, until recently, was an open prediction market. People from all over the world could place money — bet — on circumstances they expected to be true some time in the future. It was used to great effect during the recent presidential election here in the United States. Even as the ... Continue reading this article…

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Learning About Investing With the Stock Market Game

by Luke Landes
Stock Market Game

In my mind, no child is too young to learn about the basic concepts of personal finance. From using money to saving money and budgeting, youngest children learn as they watch their parents behave. These are the most important lessons because parents are the ultimate role models. Financial literacy programs that wait until high school ... Continue reading this article…

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Stock Market Reaching Highs: Time to Exit?

by Luke Landes
S&P Index from November 12

On November 12, the world was still reacting to the election of Barack Obama to a second term in the White House. The financial media began its relentless coverage of the fiscal cliff. Market confidence was down, and so were the stock market indexes, immediately following the election results. This seemed to me to be ... Continue reading this article…

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Stock Market: Time to Go All In

by Luke Landes
Donkey

I don’t advocate trying to time the market. It’s impossible to predict with any kind of consistent accuracy what the stock market will do, and the impossibility increases — regardless that the concept defies logic — as the time frame is shorter. I’m still looking at a horizon far enough in the distance that the ... Continue reading this article…

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How to Optimize Your Retirement Investing Priorities

by Luke Landes
Golf in Retirement?

The law in the United States is designed to encourage each working citizens to save for his or her own future. Through tax advantages, there are subtle incentives for investing in certain types of accounts. These incentives encourage financial literacy, boost use of the economic machine of the financial industry, and shift the burden of ... Continue reading this article…

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Traditional and Roth IRA Contribution Limits

by Luke Landes
Retirement savings IRA

You have more time than you might think to contribute to your 2012 traditional and Roth IRAs. Rather than an end-of-year deadline, you have until you file your 2012 taxes to make that contribution. Federal taxes for 2012 will be due on April 15, 2013, so this is the deadline for establishing and contributing to ... Continue reading this article…

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Betterment Gifts: A Better Gift Registry

by Luke Landes

I introduced Betterment to readers last year as an alternative method of maintaining a brokerage account. For an annual fee of 0.15 percent to 0.35 percent of your assets invested with Betterment, the company provides a goal-focused way of investing for retirement and saving for future financial goals. The service handles asset allocation automatically based on goals, ... Continue reading this article…

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Holding Old Company Stock, Still Waiting for Recovery

by Luke Landes

A few days ago, I asked if you were better off now than you were at the start of the recession. I mentioned that I considered myself in a better financial position today — overall, there wouldn’t even be an argument — but there are small details that still bother me. Not every piece of ... Continue reading this article…

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Stock Lock-Ups at Facebook Cause Falling Share Prices

by Luke Landes
Facebook

Today is the final day to vote for Consumerism Commentary and your favorite financial blogs in this year’s Plutus Awards. Take a moment — after reading this article, naturally — to show your appreciation for the best writing about money management and personal finance outside of mainstream media. Starting soon, voting will open for the ... Continue reading this article…

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Invest for the Future Without Wall Street

by Luke Landes
Future

Reminder: Time is running out to vote for Consumerism Commentary and your favorite financial blogs in this year’s Plutus Awards. Take a moment — after reading this article, naturally — to show your appreciation for the best writing about money management and personal finance outside of mainstream media. You can be forgiven if you’ve lost ... Continue reading this article…

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How to Choose Between a Traditional and Roth IRA

by Luke Landes
Gray's Sports Almanac

How are your prognostication skills? Do you have a direct connection to the spiritual world or an uncanny ability to predict the future? Someone with these skills and an individualistic drive, and perhaps an advance edition of Gray’s Sports Alamanac, could ensure the financial stability of his or her future. The rest of us without ... Continue reading this article…

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Planning to Work Into Retirement

by Luke Landes
Beach chair

In a world where employees can’t rely on long-term relationships with their employers, most of which no longer offer relatively safe retirement protection through pensions, planning for retirement, at least for the younger demographic in today’s workforce, is substandard. People do start thinking about their future as time goes by, but often, the appropriate planning ... Continue reading this article…

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Brokers Are Salespeople, Not Financial Advisers

by Luke Landes
Used car

Stockbrokers facing the general investing public, working for JP Morgan Chase, might have business cards with a title of “financial adviser,” but just like the people you meet when you walk into a car dealership, they are salespeople. They are rewarded when they meet their sales targets. Their bonuses are based on the clients they ... Continue reading this article…

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5 Ways to Convince Yourself to Increase Your Retirement Savings

by Luke Landes
Coin jar

The last few years have been nail-biting for anyone saving for retirement with investments in the stock market. The Great Recession and continued gloomy outlooks in the media have investors second-guessing their plans to save for the future. Maybe it’s better to spend more money now and avoid the Wall Street industry, which seems to ... Continue reading this article…

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Best Feature of a 401(k) Plan: Employer Contribution

by Luke Landes

A Reddit user recently posed this question to her fellow community members: Right now my fiancé and I have 2 student loans, 2 vehicle loans, small credit card debt, and a mortgage. We want to start the snowball debt payment method and want to apply a little more income to accelerate the process. My company ... Continue reading this article…

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