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IRA

Facts About IRAs

While an IRA may have a lower annual contribution limit (2017: $5,500; $6,500 age 50 or older) than a workplace-sponsored retirement plan, opening an IRA can provide an opportunity to help diversify your retirement assets. An IRA offers certain benefits that are generally not available in a 401(k), such as: Lower cost Larger spectrum of…

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Strategies for Paying for College

Even as college tuition continues to rise, more and more American families are paying less out of pocket than in previous years. During the 2015-16 academic year, grants and scholarships paid the largest portion of college expenses — 34 percent, compared to 30 percent the year before. In addition to grants and scholarships, parent income…

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Retirement: Spending vs. Income Planning

One common rule of thumb for retirement savings is to replace 80 percent of your pre-retirement income — or an even higher percentage. But what if you currently spend more than you earn? Or what if you spend much less than you earn? Perhaps a better measure would be to base your retirement income on your…

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Planning for Tax-Efficient Retirement Income

If you expect to be in a high tax bracket in retirement, you may consider allocating your retirement assets in a variety of different types of financial products to help reduce your tax liability. The growth potential of tax-deferred annuities may be appealing to those who have invested in safe, low-yielding strategies and are concerned…

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Why Convert a Roth IRA?

Investing in a traditional IRA while earning a paycheck is a good way to defer income taxes on the money you contribute. Currently, taxpayers who aren’t covered by a retirement plan at work may deduct the full amount of their annual contributions to a traditional IRA. Those who do participate in a work plan may…

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Legacy Planning Tip: POD

Not all wealth is distributed according to a will. Life insurance, annuities, pensions, IRAs and 401(k)s are distributed according to the beneficiary designation assigned in your contract or policy. Another way to transfer assets is to assign a beneficiary through a payable on death (POD) account designation. Some states allow bank account owners to assign…

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Retirement Account Withdrawal Order Matters

When and which account you draw money from matters during retirement. One reason is because assets are taxed differently. For example: Roth IRA funds (if held for more than five years and you are past age 59 ½) are tax-free Municipal bonds and muni bond funds are tax-free Taxable accounts are taxed as capital gains…

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Louisiana Rain Relief

Unfortunately, extenuating circumstances sometimes arise that may require the withdrawal of money from a retirement fund before retirement. For instance, damages due to a natural disaster, such as the recent flooding in Louisiana. In response to the widespread damage caused by the flooding, the IRS has relaxed a few rules to help individuals — and…

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