The recent data breach at Equifax seems to have brought to the forefront our new reality. A reality where hacks, data breaches and stolen Social Security numbers are going to be commonplace at least until we come up with a better system for personal identification and financial transactions. If this is true, then it’s important for all of us, whether we were potentially affected by the recent breach or not, to make personal credit monitoring a long-term habit. Unfortunately, there’s no silver bullet that can make us impervious to the activities of financial fraudsters but there are certainly things we
Some 241 years ago the United States of America became a sovereign nation simply by declaring it, knowing all too well that the prospect of actually winning it against the will of the most powerful nation in the world was smaller than scant. The men who signed that declaration knew quite well that they would be hanged for treason if the Continental Army and Navy failed to defend their new country’s declaration of independent sovereignty. Unmitigated audacity against all odds – that’s what July 4th represents in this country. What if we were to honor our bold forefathers and
This week I’ve been cleaning out my desk as I prepare for our move to our new offices on Glenwood Avenue. While organizing, I discovered that I have a paper copy of every single tax return I’ve filed since 1994. The financial nerd in me has thoroughly enjoyed reviewing copies of my old Schedule D tax forms. Schedule D is the form where you report all your capital gains, err losses, to the IRS. Having copies of mine has given me the gift of being able to reflect on almost all the investment decisions I’ve made over the years –
In the 1985 comedy film Brewster’s Millions Monty Brewster (Richard Prior) discovers that his deceased great uncle, Rupert Horn, has left him his entire fortune but with several conditions. Brewster can either take $1 million up front, or spend $30 million within 30 days to inherit $300 million. But, if he chooses the latter, after 30 days, he may not own any assets that are not already his, and he must get value for the services of anyone he hires. He may donate only 5% to charity and lose 5% by gambling, and he may not waste the money by
One of the major goals we often help clients plan for is financial independence. Imagine the freedom of knowing you do not have to work. You would be free to start the company you have always dreamed of, serve an organization you are passionate about regardless of pay or take an extended trip with your family or friends. Maybe you would worry less about money and the minutia of your daily finances.
It’s an interesting question isn’t it? Which is currently worth more money, your home or your 401(k)? It’s sort of a trick question. Sort of. The point is, if you had to tell someone what your two largest financial assets were, there’s a good chance you would list your home and your 401(k) in some order.
First the good news: the House and Senate passed a new budget deal last week that suspends the debt limit until 2017 and increases funding levels for a number of federal programs. President Obama signed the deal into law on Monday, avoiding a government debt default and reducing the risk of a government shutdown in December.
Have you seen how much movie tickets cost these days? Expensive enough that when I went to the movies last week, I felt very acutely what behavioral economists call the “pain of paying.” Ouch. As I handed my credit card to the cashier inside the plastic bubble, I wondered, “How much will these things cost in 24 years?”