Highlights this week include a surprising PPACA prediction from one of the law's co-authors, why it might be time to worry about low inflation, and the growing number of advisors turning to technology to increase face time with clients.
Annuities are the new tax target
"Below are some basic points to be aware of when it comes to commercial annuities. This list is by no means "all inclusive" and just scratches the surface on all the rules and exceptions, but is a good foundation if you currently own an annuity or are considering the purchase of one. "
Face time with clients priority for wealth management firms
"Wealth management firms want advisors to spend more time with clients, and will be rolling out new technology to free them up to do just that, according to a survey by Ernst & Young."
Is giving the secret to getting ahead?
(New York Times)
""Plenty of people have made piles of money by promising the secrets to getting things done or working a four-hour week or figuring out what color your parachute is or how to be a brilliant one-minute manager. But in an academic field that is preoccupied with the study of efficiency and productivity, Grant would seem to be the most efficient and productive."
Retirement account cap with Obama budget buoys insurance
"A cap that President Barack Obama has proposed on the size of tax-advantaged retirement accounts is seen as potentially pushing savers to another product that limits payments to the government: life insurance. "
Co-author of Obama health care law sees ‘huge train wreck’ in implementation
"A senior Democratic senator who helped write President Barack Obama’s health care law stunned administration officials Wednesday, saying openly he thinks it’s headed for a “train wreck” because of bumbling implementation."
Inflation is very, very low. Time to worry?
"Prices aren't going up very much. Should we celebrate?"
Building wealth: Best moves if you're 55 to 64
"On the verge of retirement, bear markets and high living costs can cut into your nest egg. How to reduce those risks. "
Why you should care about your employees' retirement plans
"The popular press is wrong about the decreased importance of company retirement plans in an employee’s financial planning. The fact that defined benefit plans have become increasingly rare does not mean that company retirement plans are less important to employees. Two things this past weekend drove this home for me."
Long-term care expenses could swamp Medicaid, Medicare
"Once the money is gone, the family member can qualify for Medicaid, and Uncle Sam will pick up the tab for long-term care.
The only problem with this tale is that it isn't true for many people. A study of actual Medicaid spend-down patterns finds that it is overwhelmingly poorer households that qualify for Medicaid by exhausting their relatively meager financial assets."
How much life insurance do you need?
"While some agents use a formula to recommend a certain amount of coverage for each client, the amount may not be enough. Here are guidelines on how to review your income, calculate annual expenses and assess the needs of your family."