October 2013

25 Oct

Maximizing Your Social Security Benefit

When it comes to maximizing your Social Security income, you can take advantage of a number of claiming strategies. While single people have somewhat limited options, married couples have a variety of advanced strategies depending on their ages and incomes.

Because advanced Social Security strategies can be rather complex, today we're just going to discuss options for individuals. In a future post, we'll share some strategies for married couples.

15 Oct

Welcome to Taxifornia

This year marks the start of something beautiful—but only if you are the California state treasury. As of 2013, California now has the highest tax rates in the country, with a top income tax bracket of 13.3%.

You probably already knew about California's high income taxes, but the federal government has also made some changes to tax rates that you should know about.

Give the Gift of Lifelong Wealth
08 Oct

Give the Gift of Lifelong Wealth

Introducing Our "Best Start" Financial Planning Package A limited number of packages are available for 2014. Reserve yours today by filling out the form below or by calling Parkshore Wealth Management. {rsform 6} *Package intended for clients with less than $100,000. ...

03 Oct

Could Pension Reform Rile Investment Funds?

If implemented, privatization may have significant side effects.

On Capitol Hill and elsewhere, voices are calling for a major shift in public pension plan management—a shift toward privatization.

Underfunding of public pensions is all too common. The bankruptcies of Detroit, Stockton and San Bernardino have certainly cast light on the pension funding gaps in those cities, but the problem is widespread: A 2013 Pew Center for the States survey found more than $217 billion in unfunded pension and health care liabilities across 61 U.S. cities with populations of 500,000 or greater.1

03 Oct

Financial Considerations for 2014

What changes should we consider making for next year?

2014 is really not too far away. Fall is the time of year when the financially savvy start to look for ways to reduce their taxes and make year-end moves in pursuit of key financial objectives.

What might the big picture hold? Absent a crystal ball, let's turn to the September edition of the Wall Street Journal's Economic Forecasting Survey. The WSJ asks 52 economists for their take on things each month, and here is how they see 2014 shaping up for America: GDP of 2.8%, a jobless rate declining from the present 7.3% to 6.6% by the end of next year and consumer inflation of 2.5% or less through the end of 2015. These analysts also see the Federal Reserve keeping the benchmark interest rate at 0–0.25% for all of 2014. As for the yield on the 10-year note, their consensus projection has it hitting 3.28% in June 2014 and 3.57% in December 2014. They also see home prices rising 5.22% YOY in 2014 after a 7.85% gain across 2013. Oil, they think, will average $102.73 a barrel on the NYMEX this December, declining to $98.17 a barrel next December. For its part, the International Monetary Fund projects 3.8% inflation-adjusted global growth next year, and a 4.3% tumble for global non-fuel commodities in U.S. dollar terms. These are all macro forecasts worth keeping in mind.1,2

03 Oct

Should You Retire Now, Or Later?

Financially, there are reasons why you may want to work a bit longer.

The case for working past 65. Increasingly, baby boomers are urged to work until full retirement age or beyond. (Social Security defines "full" retirement age as 66 for those born from 1943-1954; it incrementally rises to 67 for those born in 1960 or later). If your health and workplace allow this, it may be a good idea for a few notable reasons.1

Your Social Security payments will be larger. Researchers from UCLA and Duke University jointly conducted a study and found that about 80% of Americans sign up for Social Security before full retirement age. In fact, 50% of Americans claim their federal retirement benefits either at age 62 or within two months of losing or quitting a job they hold at age 62 or older. The rush to get Social Security comes with a distinct penalty, though.2