Briefly Noted Articles

A Telephone Call Is Not Enough to Change a Beneficiary Designation

May 2016
Merely calling to request a change in the beneficiary may not be enough to effectuate it. Rather, there must be compelling evidence proving a change was desired. Read more »

The First Five Things to Do at Retirement

May 2016
The American Grandparents Association asked 15 certified financial planners (CFPs) what five things should be done when a person retires. Read more »

Short Selling Found to Lead to Higher Returns

May 2016
Three researchers found that short interest (the percentage of shares sold short) is a better indicator of future returns than than many other financial metrics. Read more »

Delaying Planned Retirement Leads to Healthy Behaviors

May 2016
An analysis of middle-aged Italian men showed that even a one-year postponement of the planned retirement age increases the likelihood of exercising regularly as well as refraining from smoking and drinking regularly. Read more »

Eight Ways Women Can Take Charge of Their Retirement

April 2016
A survey conducted by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies found women tend to lag behind men in terms of saving and planning for retirement and offered eight suggestions for how women can take charge of their retirement plans. Read more »

New Proposed Reporting Rules for Estates

April 2016
The Internal Revenue Service issued proposed and temporary rules for the reporting of estate assets that require consistency between the recipient’s basis in certain property acquired from the decedent and the value determined for federal estate tax purposes. Read more »

Advisers With Records of Misconduct Often Rehired

April 2016
Close to half (44%) of advisers who left their job following a misconduct disclosure were able to find employment within the same year. And financial advisers who engaged in misconduct were five times as likely to do so again as the average adviser. Read more »

The Independence of the Board Chairman Affects CEO Pay

April 2016
A strong link exists between CEO pay and how independent the chair of the board is: Compensation for the chief executive officer is highest when an “insider” holds the board chairmanship. Read more »

Five Strategies for Withdrawing From Retirement Savings

March 2016
The 4% rule isn't the only approach to withdrawing retirement income. Mixing and matching different approaches may help to match the withdrawal strategy with each income need. Read more »

Be Wary of Offers for High-Yield CDs

March 2016
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a warning about advertisements promoting high-yielding certificates of deposit (CDs). Read more »

Online Retirement Calculators Called ‘Misleading’ by Researchers

March 2016
In a study of 36 online retirement planning tools, researchers found that just 11 succeeded in giving the correct analysis of whether a hypothetical couple could meet their retirement goals. Read more »

The Financial Literacy Quiz That Many Retirees Flunked

March 2016
In a survey of retirees, most flunked a quiz on retirement income, and nearly one of out of every four respondents gave the wrong answer on at least 70% of all questions. Read more »

No Long-Term Link Between Past and Future Fund Performance

February 2016
no-long-term-link-between-past-and-future-fund-performance Read more »

Contrarian Hedge Funds Outperform Momentum Mutual Funds

February 2016
Hedge funds following contrarian strategies tend to realize higher returns than hedge funds and mutual funds that follow momentum strategies. Read more »

Simplifying Investment Choices Helps Focus Decisions

February 2016
An analysis of a large U.S. nonprofit found that when the organization’s defined-contribution plan was streamlined, employees chose fewer funds, reduced their portfolio risk and lowered costs. Read more »

Smart Beta Funds Can Differ Significantly

February 2016
Smart beta strategies are promoted for being able to take advantage of specific return anomalies, however, approaches that focus on the same anomalies can vary significantly in their underlying construction. Read more »

A $5 Test Can Help Avoid Financial Problems

January 2016
Hearing loss has been linked to an accelerated decline in cognitive abilities, which directly and adversely impacts a person’s abilities to manage their finances. Read more »

Why Do People Retire Early?

January 2016
The most common assumptions of what causes a worker to retire early are valid, but they may play a smaller role than many suspect. Read more »

2015 Tax Guide Update

January 2016
In mid-December, Congress voted to renew many so-called tax extenders as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016 (H.R. 2029). Read more »

Wealth Stays Stable Until One Spouse Dies

January 2016
Being married is good for wealth, until one spouse dies. A study found retired couples experience stable to increasing assets, but near the time and after one of the two spouses dies, wealth declines. Read more »

Women Are Better Retirement Savers

December 2015
A study analyzing Vanguard’s recordkeeping systems for employer-sponsor retirement plans found that women are better savers and more likely to use professional advice regarding allocation strategies than men. Read more »

The U.S. Ranks Just 14th in Financial Literacy

December 2015
The S&P Global Finlit Survey asked adults in more than 140 economies to answer questions covering four key aspects of financial literacy and described the findings as “sobering.” Read more »

Two Social Security Claiming Strategies Ending

December 2015
The Social Security Administration announced it is ending “file and suspend” and restricted applications, strategies used by married and divorced couples to maximize benefits. Read more »

Finances and Cognitive Impairment Lead to Long-Term Care Insurance Lapses

December 2015
More than one-third of individuals with long-term care policies at age 65 will let their policies lapse before death, forfeiting the benefits they have previously paid for. Read more »



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