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Blog Posts

  • Self-Directed IRAs—A Retirement Tool, or a Retirement Time Bomb?

    January 30, 2012
    Last week the Minneapolis paper, StarTribune, had an article about a local man who lost some of his retirement money in a self-directed IRA to a Ponzi scheme. There may be more variables to this story, but it highlighted the flexibility of the self-directed IRA; and with flexibility comes ...
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  • Retirement Expenses Matter, Especially in Mutual Funds

    January 23, 2012
    I saw a cool graphic the other day from the U.S. Energy Information Administration. It showed a gasoline pump broken into pieces to represent where the costs are in a gallon of gas. While 77% of the cost is crude oil itself, the rest were taxes and marketing. It got ...
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  • Tolerating Retirement

    January 16, 2012
    My 10-year-old had a bad night last week when he did not have his homework done in time for basketball practice. In our house, your homework needs to be done prior to sports or you do not go. So he did not go. He was shocked that we would follow ...
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  • Your Retirement Fire Extinguisher―Liquidity

    January 9, 2012
    Not every home has a fire extinguisher, but it should. In New Orleans, residents go an extra step and keep an axe in the attic in case a flood or hurricane hits and people need to escape through the roof. The whole purpose of these extra tools is to make ...
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  • The Key to Retirement

    January 3, 2012
    Now is the time to think about what all of us might do differently in a new year to help us move forward in life. For some it is working out. For some it is eating less. And for some it might be saving more for their retirement. I have ...
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  • Four Tips if an Early Retirement Is Forced On You

    December 27, 2011
    Back in the late 1990s, many people planned on retiring in their mid-50s and living a long retirement of golf and idleness. Then the markets corrected in 2000, and again in 2008, and now I don’t meet many people who talk about retiring that early. Yet people do still retire ...
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  • Long-Term Care Insurance: A Hedge for Retirees

    December 19, 2011
    After my last post about how inflation can affect retirement, a reader contacted me with a question about using long-term-care insurance (i.e., nursing home, assisted living or in-home care) as a potential hedge against inflation. The question is interesting because it addresses a basic idea behind insurance outside of the ...
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