After dropping the benchmark federal funds rate to a range of 0%–0.25% early in the pandemic, the Federal Open Market Committee of the Federal Reserve has begun raising the rate aggressively in response to high inflation and a stronger economy. Following 0.25% and 0.50% increases in March and May 2022, the Committee implemented successive 0.75% […]
Passive, Active, or Both?
Index funds, which try to match the performance of a particular market index, have drawn increasing interest from investors, but traditional actively managed funds still hold more assets (see chart). There is ongoing discussion in the financial media about which approach is most effective, but there may be good reasons to hold both in a […]
How Much Life Insurance Do You Need?
Throughout your life, your financial needs will change and life insurance can help you meet some of those needs. But how much life insurance do you need? There are a number of approaches to help determine how much life insurance you should have. Here are three of those methods. Family Needs Approach With this approach, […]
Building Financial Resilience
Inflation, roller-coaster markets, global events, and life circumstances can test anyone’s fortitude. You may not feel ready to handle these pressure-filled times and might worry about the potential effects on your financial well-being. Fortunately, you can take steps to build the resilience you need to help handle the turbulence and hopefully emerge even stronger. Focus […]
Planning to Quit Your Job? What to Know Before You Go
About 4.3 million U.S. workers quit their jobs voluntarily in December 2021, after a record 4.5 million quit in November — the largest number since the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) began recording voluntary job separations in December 2020.1 There are plenty of theories about why people are quitting in droves, including a strong job […]
Adjusting Your Tax Withholding
Now that you’ve seen last year’s tax results and can see where this year is heading, it may be a good time to consider adjustments to your income tax withholding. Getting It Right If you have too much tax withheld, you will receive a refund when you file your income tax return, but it might […]
Should You Consider Tapping the Equity in Your Home?
With home values skyrocketing recently, your home may be one of your largest assets. Using home equity to help finance other financial objectives is a strategy many people consider, but before doing so be sure you understand the risks as well as the potential benefits. Home equity is the difference between how much your home […]
401(k) and IRA: A Combined Savings Strategy
Contributing to an employer-sponsored retirement plan or an IRA is a big step on the road to retirement, but contributing to both can significantly boost your retirement assets. A recent study found that, on average, individuals who owned both a 401(k) and an IRA at some point during the six-year period of the study had […]
Four Basic Principles of Financial Literacy
It is widely recognized that financial literacy impacts a person’s overall economic success. In fact, studies have shown that individuals who are exposed to economic and financial education at an early age are more likely to exhibit positive financial behaviors when they are older (e.g., maintaining high credit scores, accumulating wealth). As a result, many […]
P/E Ratios Offer Multiple Perspectives on Value
Many factors go into decisions on buying or selling shares of a particular stock, but the price/earnings (P/E) ratio can be a helpful starting point for evaluating whether a company’s stock is under- or overpriced. The P/E ratio is calculated by dividing a stock’s current price per share by the company’s earnings per share over […]