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The Retirement Mindgame

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Feb 8, 2018 11:31:35 AM

Your outlook may influence your financial outcome.


What kind of retirement do you think you’ll have?

Qualitatively speaking, what if the success or failure of your retirement begins with your perception of retirement?

A whole field of study has emerged on the psychology of saving, spending, and investing: behavioral finance. Since retirement saving is a behavior (and since other behaviors influence it), it is worth considering ways to adjust behavior and presumptions to encourage a better retirement.

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Topics: Retirement Planning

Financial Planning | Weekly Economic Update  - January 30,2018

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Jan 30, 2018 9:23:17 AM



Before accepting a job offer, ask what maternity, paid leave, and short-term disability benefits are included.

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Topics: Weekly Economic Update

Think Total Return

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Jan 23, 2018 10:42:12 AM

Never touch your principal in retirement? Think again.

More than a century ago, an American financial archetype emerged – the household that lived on the interest earned by its investments, never touching its principal.

Times have changed.

While the Vanderbilts, Carnegies, and Rockefellers could do that back in the Gilded Age, you will likely face a tough challenge trying to do the same in retirement. The reason? Low interest rates.

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Topics: Retirement Planning

What Do You Have in Reserve for 2018?

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Jan 10, 2018 11:25:34 AM

Build your emergency fund this year.

How much does the average American household have in the bank?

Estimates vary, but the short answer to this question is “not enough.”

Last year, a GoBankingRates poll discovered that 57% of U.S. households had less than $1,000 in deposit accounts (although, 25% reported having at least $10,000). A 2017 analysis from Moebs Services, a research firm consulting banks and credit unions, noted that the average U.S. checking account contained around $3,600.1,2 

Eyeing these numbers, you get the sense that – in an emergency – most households have less than a month before their liquid savings run out. Is this true for your household? Hopefully, your cash reserve is much larger; if that is not the case, now is as good a time as any to bolster your emergency fund.

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Topics: Retirement Planning

Financial Planning | Weekly Economic Update  - January 1, 2018

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Jan 2, 2018 9:29:11 AM



Do you think you will have a 2018 tax refund? Consider using it to pay off a high-interest debt. If you have a debt at 18% interest, doing away with it is effectively like getting an 18% return.

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Topics: Weekly Economic Update

Comprehensive Financial Planning: What It Is, Why It Matters

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Dec 21, 2017 10:54:45 AM

Your approach to building wealth should be built around your goals & values.

Just what is comprehensive financial planning?

As you invest and save for retirement, you may hear or read about it – but what does that phrase really mean? Just what does comprehensive financial planning entail, and why do knowledgeable investors request this kind of approach?

While the phrase may seem ambiguous to some, it can be simply defined.

Comprehensive financial planning is about building wealth through a process, not a product.

Financial products are everywhere, and simply putting money into an investment is not a gateway to getting rich, nor a solution to your financial issues.

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Topics: Retirement Planning

Financial Planning | Weekly Economic Update  - Dec 4, 2018

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Dec 6, 2017 8:02:18 AM


Did you just get a great business idea? If you have a product or service offering that you sense your customers will find irresistible, perhaps they could help you finance it. Consider presenting it through a subscription model or have customers pay for the goods or services in advance.


A new factoid points out just how well the economy is doing: the federal government just upgraded its estimate of third-quarter growth to 3.3%. New data on consumer spending and confidence hints at fourth-quarter strength. Personal spending improved 0.3% in October following the 0.9% leap in September, and household wages were up 0.4% in October for a second straight month. At a mark of 129.5, the Conference Board’s consumer confidence index reached a YTD peak in November, having soared 9.1 points in two months.1,2

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Topics: Weekly Economic Update

Financial Planning | Weekly Economic Update  - Nov 27, 2017

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Nov 28, 2017 3:59:33 PM


Some investors play a guessing game: they watch Wall Street and try to pick future winners. Other investors recognize that diversification may improve their chances of holding shares in such companies without a lot of guessing.



The University of Michigan’s monthly gauge of how households perceive current and future economic conditions ended the month at a mark of 98.5. Compared to the 100.7 final October reading, this was a disappointment. Still, the index was up 5.0 points year-over-year. Richard Curtin, the economist in charge of the consumer survey, noted that the index has hovered near “the highest levels since 2004” since January.1

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Topics: Weekly Economic Update

Retirement Plan Contribution Limits Rise for 2018

Posted by Brower Financial Group on Nov 7, 2017 12:35:18 PM

Slight increases have been made due to mild inflation.

You will able to put a little more into your workplace retirement account in 2018.

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Topics: Client Newsletter


Posted by Brower Financial Group on Oct 25, 2017 4:17:47 PM

A Retirement Plan… or a College Plan?

Some parents feel they should pay for all or part of their children’s college education. They make it a financial priority and put saving for retirement further down on their to-do list. If their kids can graduate without any student loan debt, the thinking goes, they will be better positioned to provide financial support to mom and dad one day.

This assumption may be hazardous to retiree financial health. One, the kids may not be inclined to provide such support in the future. Cultural or familial expectations may not be realized. Two, students can receive financial aid; retirees cannot. Three, consider these numbers: a couple retiring today may have to pay $275,000 or more in future medical costs, the current average annual Social Security benefit is less than $16,000, and according to a recent PWC survey, half of baby boomers have less than $100,000 saved for retirement. The takeaway here? Unless you are impressively wealthy, you should be regularly funding retirement accounts first, without interruptions, reductions to contributions, or drawdowns to pay for college. Your young adult children should recognize that their college years mark the start of their financial lives, with attendant financial responsibilities.1,2

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Topics: Client Newsletter