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Introduction to Municipal Bonds

| July 31, 2012 | 0 Comments
Introduction to Municipal Bonds

During the past quarter, three municipalities in California filed for bankruptcy protection. The City of Stockton, followed shortly by Mammoth Lakes, and most recently the city of San Bernardino. Each municipality has been rocked by a combination of economic stagnation, declining revenues (property and sales taxes) and, in the case of San Bernardino, (possibly criminal) […]

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How Secure Is Your Password?

| June 30, 2012 | 0 Comments

It seems that news reports about the hacking of some popular website, and the resulting compromising of millions of user names, passwords and other personal data, have become much too commonplace. Do you use a strong password? There’s a very amusing scene in the movie “Clear and Present Danger” in which Harrison Ford and a […]

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Disability Insurance Policies

| June 1, 2012 | 0 Comments

In April, I wrote about some of the factors to consider in whether or not to purchase disability insurance. This month, I thought I’d follow up with some of the policy terms, and some recommendations on what to look for. Before I begin, it’s important to set a framework. The whole point of disability insurance […]

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Safe Computing

| April 30, 2012 | 0 Comments

Originally, I was going to write about disability insurance, but another topic came up that seemed a bit more urgent to me, so I’ll pick that up again next month. I spent a good portion of Good Friday helping a family member fix her computer. Somehow, she had managed to contract a wicked case of […]

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Disability Insurance Basics

| April 5, 2012 | 0 Comments

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), more than half of Americans say they would be unable to pay their bills or meet their expenses if they became disabled and could not work for a year or longer. Research on the reasons for personal bankruptcy has shown that prolonged medical bills are often […]

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Investing With Discipline

| March 1, 2012 | 0 Comments

In my last article I discussed some of the behavioral aspects to investing that can create problems for long-term investors. These are deeply rooted, emotionally driven mental shortcuts that humans have learned to use over the millennia. They have helped us to survive as a species in the wild, but are less helpful in today’s […]

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Volatile Markets and Human Behavior

| January 31, 2012 | 0 Comments

Regret is a very complex emotion, but it is also one of the central emotions that drive our investing behavior. I was pondering the concept of regret the other day and thought I would share some of our thinking on the topic, to help you frame your own investment decisions. Generally, when people think about […]

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So You’re Thinking About Retirement

| December 28, 2011 | 0 Comments

The old “rule of thumb” for retirement is that you will need about 70 percent of your pre-retirement income during retirement. This may be true for some folks, but generally we’re seeing new retirees spend 100 percent or more of their pre-retirement income during retirement. A key reason for this is that people who retire […]

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Europe: Financial Crisis or Opportunity?

| November 29, 2011 | 0 Comments

By Rick Brooks I’m taking a risk with this column, because the rapid pace of change ‘across the pond’ means that everything could be different by the time you read this. Having said that, Europe’s problems are deeply seated, and to put it mildly, far deeper than a ‘mere’ banking crisis. Today’s European Union, the […]

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A Hard Decade or a Bad Century

| November 3, 2011 | 0 Comments

This is how Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times Columnist and Pulitzer Prize winning author of “The World is Flat: A Brief History of the 21st Century,” has framed our coming choices. Over the past three decades, we have, as a nation, been spending more than we’ve been earning. This has happened at every level […]

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