This week's picks include pieces on how insurance agents can drive sales with social media, the continuing confusion over health care, an opinion about what's wrong with retirement policy, what advisors might not know about annuities and long-term care, and more. Chime in with your thoughts and your own recommendations below.
Advisor Pulse: Female advisors, clients ‘leaning in’
"With the market going up, clients are naturally going to shift their focus from risk to 'getting back what they lost.' With marginal tax rates higher than they were in the recent past, tax advantaged investing is going to be a critical strategy to assist your client achieve that goal. Here are a few important things to remember."
Uncertainty still clouds health care law
(New York Times)
"Once those benefits become realities, the percentage of Americans who approve of the law may rise. But if the law’s rollout is messy, there may be a dip in approval before it has a chance to become more popular."
Washington’s backward retirement policy: So wrong, and yet so easy to fix
"All of these options are preferable to what we're doing today: handing out free money to people who would save plenty for retirement anyway. Furthermore, bolstering the Social Security trust funds would eliminate--at least for most of our lifetimes--the argument that we have to cut benefits because we can't afford them. We do have the money. It's just going to the wrong people."
Tired of financial advisor fees? Try going it alone
" Time to pull the curtain back on how financial professionals earn their keep—and what their words of wisdom cost you. The following five questions, aimed squarely at your advisor, can help ensure you get the biggest bang for your buck."
3 ways to drive sales via agent social media
"Successful agents differentiate themselves by building social media best practices into their regular routine to prospect, connect, and grow their customer base — and reap the rewards of earned loyalty."
What we don’t know about long-term care… is a lot
"Americans over 40 — in other words, us — are dangerously unaware of our likely need for long-term care when we age and woefully ignorant about the costs, according to a new poll of adults in midlife and beyond."
What advisors don’t know about variable annuities: How VAs fit into a client’s portfolio
"Yes, this process is complicated, but by looking at these kinds of statistics the advisor can combine a VA with living benefits and a regular asset-allocated portfolio and, using Monte Carlo, can measure how well the combinations do along those dimensions."
Time to wake from the American Dream and face the retirement reality
(Los Angeles Times)
"There will be many alarm bells ahead as this plays out. Expect to hear a rising din as more and more Americans reach retirement age without a realistic way to support themselves for an additional 25 years. That’s when we might wake from our dream and finally have to face reality."
Term Vs. Perm (life insurance) in 90 seconds
"The battle over term versus permanent life insurance need not be a battle—there are appropriate uses for both of them. BUT, permanent life insurance is likely over-sold because of the handsome commissions received by selling agents."