“Free Lunch” Investing Takes Time to Cook

As the director of research for The BAM Alliance, I’ve been getting lots of calls recently from investors questioning their international equity investments. This hasn’t been a surprise, as any time an asset class does poorly, a significant number of investors will question why they own that asset. One particular inquiry I received addressed the […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing

Economic Growth Doesn’t Necessarily Mean Better Returns

Conventional wisdom can be defined as “ideas that are so ingrained in our belief system they go unchallenged.” Unfortunately, much of the “conventional wisdom” about investing is wrong. One example of erroneous conventional wisdom is that investors seeking higher returns should invest in countries that are forecasted to have high rates of economic growth, such […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing

No Free Lunch and No Free 401(k) Plans

Most of us understand that if somebody else picks up the check for lunch, there is probably a catch. The old adage about there being no such thing as a “free lunch” is true more often than not. Hopefully, though, the offset isn’t worth more than the cost of the meal. When it comes to […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing, Retirement

10 Things You Absolutely Need to Know About Life Insurance

  Life insurance is one of the pillars of personal finance, deserving of consideration by every household. I’d even go so far as to say it’s vital for most. Yet, despite its nearly universal applicability, there remains a great deal of confusion, and even skepticism, regarding life insurance. Perhaps this is due to life insurance’s […]

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Topics: Advice, Retirement

Tax-Loss Harvesting in Inclement Markets

In some alternate universe, there may be markets where nobody ever experiences any loss and every investment just keeps growing. In our world, we know better. While markets are expected to climb over time, periodic downturns happen. When they do, they can leave you feeling left out in the cold. That’s why it pays to […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing, Market Insights

The Top 10 Myths About 401(k) Plans

Regular pre-tax deductions toward a retirement plan balance figure into a lot of employees’ paychecks, but many people don’t fully understand how the fund they’re contributing to works. Tim Maurer debunks ten common myths about 401(k) plans. Find it on CNBC.com By clicking on any of the links, you acknowledge that they are solely for […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing, Retirement

Is Your Attitude Toward Work Killing Your Retirement Dreams?

Do you have a generally positive or negative impression of the word “retirement”? I ask because it dovetails nicely with a series of questions (inspired by Rick Kahler) that I use to begin most speaking engagements. These questions are designed to incite self-awareness, offering us clues about how our life experiences have shaped the (often unarticulated […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing, Investment Strategy, Retirement

The Irrelevance of Dividends

Research has established that dividend policy should be irrelevant to stock returns, yet investors have long demonstrated an irrational preference for them. Mutual fund providers are well-aware of this fact. Earlier this week, we reviewed a pair of studies showing that mutual fund managers exploit investors’ well-documented preference for cash dividends to attract assets by artificially “juicing” […]

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Topics: Advice, Investing, Retirement

Youth + Roth IRA/401(k) = Successful Retirement Planning

What makes youth and a Roth IRA such a great combination? Starting to plan for retirement early creates many possibilities for success. As young adults start their first job with retirement benefits, one of the initial questions they need to address is how to invest in the 401(k) or other defined contribution plan offered by […]

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Topics: Advice, Retirement