The Uncommon Average

by Mary Suplee on Mar 2, 2018

The U.S. stock market has delivered an average annual return of around 10% since 1926. But short-term results may vary, and in any given period stock returns can be positive, negative or flat. When setting expectations, it's helpful to understand the range of outcomes experienced by investors historically. For example, how often have the stock market's annual returns actually aligned with its long-term average?

Is Your Classic/Collector Car Underinsured?

by Mary Suplee on Nov 27, 2017

Property, Risk Management, Insurance
In the wake of hurricanes Harvey and Irma, two of the worst storms to make landfall in the U.S., the fate of thousands of homeowners is still up in the air. So, it may seem a bit trivial to point out that the storms also destroyed thousands of luxury and classic cars. While the dollar amount of damages pales in comparison to the loss of homes, estimates put the total at somewhere between $100 million and $300 million for luxury and classic car damages alone, which is not a trivial amount.

Protect Yourself from Identity Theft

by Mary Suplee on Sep 15, 2017

Equifax recently announced a massive data security breach, exposing personal identification information on as many as 143 million Americans. They have set up a website ( where you can check to see if you've been affected and enroll in one free year of credit monitoring and identity theft protection.

Enhance Lifetime Income with These Essential Steps Before Retirement

by Mary Suplee on Sep 8, 2017

Regardless of your planning method or process, it would be a mistake to succumb to standard formulas or a generalized approach to retirement planning.  Right now, your retirement vision is based on your specific needs, wants, attitudes and beliefs, and it will undoubtedly change as your outlook and priorities change, but you should always base your income needs on realistic assumptions.

RMDs: Requirement Not Choice

by Mary Suplee on Aug 25, 2017

RMDs or Required Minimum Distributions are the amounts that the federal government requires individuals to withdraw from their retirement accounts annually after they reach the age of 70½. You can take out more than the minimum from your retirement account, but if you take out less, you will be subject to a federal penalty. This is to ensure that the retirement accounts aren't used to simply defer taxes on accumulated assets and then leave them as an inheritance. The RMDs are intended to spread out the distribution of your IRA or plan assets over your lifetime.

Is There a Right Approach to Retirement Spending?

by Mary Suplee on Aug 18, 2017

The solution to retirement spending isn’t easy. There isn't one perfect solution for everyone. Three potential approaches include immediate annuities, a total income approach or a total returns approach. While each of these solutions have their pros and cons, we strongly favor the total returns approach in most situations. Here's a look at each of these and their pros and cons.

Retirement Planning Challenges

by Mary Suplee on Aug 4, 2017

To follow up on my latest post regarding retirement and the importance of planning ahead, there are a number of things to consider. The biggest challenge is to create a lifelong paycheck, one that allows you to live the lifestyle you envision for yourself in retirement. To accomplish this, it should be structured so that it lasts your (or multiple) lifetime(s), is paid on a regular basis, takes inflation into account and is relatively stable. Each one of these factors could be a whole discussion on its own.

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