How do you make decisions? Tools can be very helpful for simple situations — and potentially less useful for more complex cases when more data has to be considered, as in the case of someone transitioning into retirement.

Even though tax day was delayed this year to May 17 from April 15, I’m guessing you may be thinking about your tax return, or about proposed changes to the tax laws. So, I thought I’d share a few thoughts from influencers to put a few things into perspective. You may recognize some of these …

When the IRS changed the filing date for 2020 tax returns (from April 15 to May 17), it also adjusted some other important deadlines. It’s important to note that these deadlines have not been adjusted on the IRS website if you search by topic. Look instead at IRS Notice 2021-21 (tinyurl.com/…

The IRS has been busy. From a third round of stimulus payments, to a delayed tax filing date, to relief for taxpayers involved in disputes with the federal tax agency — just to name a few of the things everyone needs to know about.

Every now and then, people in the know share insights through this column. This week, Lauren Zajac, who is the chief legal officer at Workhuman (which provides human capital management software) and is an advocate for the empowerment of women, offered thoughts on how women make — or don’t ma…

Last week, we talked about “Ivan” and the challenges he faced 20 years after his grandparents gifted him stocks. If you recall, Ivan was thinking about selling the stocks, but first he had some hurdles to overcome. He had to find out his grandparents’ cost bases (the original prices) for the…

Little did “Ivan” know that it would have been a good idea to record the cost bases (the original prices) of the five stocks his grandparents gave him 20 years ago, along with the cost bases of the dividends he reinvested in those stocks after receiving the gift.

A reader expressed concern about her parents, who have not shared information about their financial affairs with any of their children. She and her two brothers don’t even know if their parents have wills. The children are uncomfortable about bringing up the subject to their parents, even th…

The COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 brought a halt to numerous activities, but it did not prevent a surge of new and experienced individual investors from getting involved in the stock market, according to a recent FINRA study. FINRA, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, regulates brokerag…

If you are looking at a heap of paperwork that represents your tax information and possible questions related to it, know this: The IRS has numerous tools that can be useful when it comes to tax time. This year in particular, you might need guidance on special rules that apply to 2020 IRA wi…

Now that it’s the start of a fresh new year, I’m hoping you have a few financial resolutions ready to go. If you’re resolving to save more, you are not alone. “Save more money” is the top financial resolution for next year among those considering a resolution, according to the recently relea…

The importance of having savings certainly has been brought to the forefront during the COVID-19 pandemic, as many people found themselves living on, and often exhausting, their emergency savings due to illness or job loss.

If it weren’t the year 2020, right around now, I would be cautioning IRA owners over 70 1/2 to make sure they withdrew their required minimum distributions (RMDs) from their individual retirement accounts.

When it comes to bills, do you prefer getting a printed statement in the mail over an electronic statement online? In a Consumer Action survey of a few years ago (tinyurl.com/yxq69wc3), 78% of those surveyed who received paper bills by mail said they actually reviewed their statements; only …

If you are participating in a retirement plan at work, are you changing your activity because of the pandemic? Most participants are not, even though the COVID-19 market was a roller coaster between Feb. 19 and March 23. One-day declines and advances in the S&P 500 index made it to the t…

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community. Let us know what's going on!