Benchmark Bulletin – June 2013

Your Personal CFOs

“Sell in May and go away?”, not this time.  The equity markets notched yet another monthly gain in spite of pressure from the global economy and lackluster domestic economic reports.  We are proceding with caution through the summer: the Fed plans to “taper” their bond buying program, Q1 GDP was revised slightly downward, unemployment remains stubbornly around 7.5%, consumer spending fell in April and personal incomes were stagnant.  Consolidation or perhaps a correction may be in store.

“Things turn out the best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out.” – John Wooden

Just How Risky Is Your Portfolio?
As we were all reminded in 2008, return isn’t the only factor you should consider when determining whether your portfolio is allocated appropriately. Also important is the level of risk you take in pursuing those returns.
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Coordinating Social Security Benefits with Other Retirement Assets
Social Security probably won’t meet all of your retirement income needs, so you’ll have to factor in other retirement assets as well.
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Understanding 401(k) Plan Fees and Expenses
If you direct your own 401(k) plan investments you’ll need to consider the investment objectives, the risk and return characteristics, and the performance over time of each investment option offered by your plan in order to make sound investment decisions. Fees and expenses are factors that may affect your investment returns, and therefore impact your retirement income.
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What is a payable on death (POD) account?
A bank account can be designated as payable on death to someone of your choice. The bank pays these funds to this person immediately at your death, and the funds will generally not be subject to probate.
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What is a joint bank account?
A joint bank account lets you name a co-owner for your bank account. Funds in the account transfer to your co-owner automatically if you die. Your estate generally avoids the expenses and delays of probate.
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