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Mar 5, 2013

Column: For women, retirement planning woes start with economy

CHICAGO (Reuters) – It is time to stop blaming the victim when it comes to women and retirement planning.

An endless stream of studies and surveys all show women are less prepared for retirement than men. The typical story line: “Women aren’t interested in managing money, and they’re not good at it. They’re more interested in other things – family, friends, children.”

Feb 28, 2013

A new 401(k) success formula: Low cost plus advice

CHICAGO, Feb 28 (Reuters) – Would you like some investment
help with that 401(k)?

A growing number of employers are adding unbiased
third-party investment guidance options as they work to improve
their retirement plans. The advice can add to your investment
costs, but it’s coming from the best type of planner:
independent advisers who have the fiduciary responsibility to
put client interests first.

Feb 21, 2013

Medicare drug costs to fall in 2014, but donut hole widens

CHICAGO, Feb 21 (Reuters) – There will be good and bad news
next year for seniors using Medicare’s prescription drug

Overall, enrollees can expect a year of flat or decreasing
Medicare prescription drug costs, according to data released
last week by the federal government. The government said
Medicare’s per-beneficiary drug costs fell 4 percent last year.
As a result, some of the most important numbers in the program’s
2014 Part D will drop by roughly the same amounts.

Feb 14, 2013

Long-term care policies will soon cost more for women

CHICAGO, Feb 14 (Reuters) – The gender gap is about to get a
little wider as the formerly egalitarian long-term care
insurance market starts charging higher prices for women.

While life insurance has long been priced by sex, companies
that provide long-term care insurance (LTCI), mainly used to
cover healthcare expenses in old age or for severe illness, have
long avoided it. But for the first time this year, they will
introduce gender-based pricing, starting with policies from
Genworth Financial Inc, the nation’s largest seller.

Feb 7, 2013

Older women staying on the job to make up lost time

CHICAGO, Feb 7 (Reuters) – Susan Damour flunked retirement.
She tried it at age 64 in 2008 along with her husband, Tim, who
was 68. That lasted a year.

Overseas travel, cooking and knitting baby sweaters for the
grandchildren weren’t enough to satisfy her. Tim, a retired
attorney, was happy, but she hated it.

Feb 7, 2013

Don’t miss Uncle Sam’s credit on retirement saving

CHICAGO (Reuters) – If your household income last year was $57,500 or less, you could be leaving money on the table this tax season.

Uncle Sam offers a tax credit that can be worth up to half of what you contribute to a traditional individual retirement account (IRA), Roth or workplace retirement plan. The Retirement Savings Contribution Credit – a.k.a the Saver’s Credit – is only available to taxpayers with moderate or low income.

Feb 5, 2013

Seven ways boomers are rewriting the rules of retirement

CHICAGO, Feb 5 (Reuters) – The baby boom generation has
broken the mold at every stage of life, and it looks like old
age won’t be any different.

Boomers aren’t heading quietly into retirement. They’re
launching businesses, embracing digital technology and living
abroad in greater numbers than ever before. But in other ways
they are struggling more than the previous generation.

Jan 31, 2013

Americans are willing to pay more for Social Security

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Suppose a pollster asks you this question about Social Security reform:

“Social Security will only be able to pay 75 percent of benefits after 2033 if Congress fails to act. That can be fixed by cutting benefits or by increasing taxes. Which do you favor?”

Jan 24, 2013

Pros and cons of converting to a Roth 401(k)

CHICAGO (Reuters) – It was a small but important line item in the recent “fiscal cliff” deal. As part of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, Congress made it possible for all retirement savers to convert their 401(k) accounts to a Roth 401(k) without moving money out of the workplace plan.

The law permits all retirement savers to convert existing 401(k) retirement plan assets to a Roth 401(k), so long as their plan offers Roth options and adds the conversion feature. Previously, conversions could be done only by savers who also were eligible to take a distribution from the plan — in most cases, people age 59½ or older.

Jan 15, 2013

How to get your retirement plan back on track

CHICAGO (Reuters) – Unemployment can throw a wrench into even the best retirement plan — especially for older workers in their peak earning and retirement saving years.

Now that the employment picture finally is starting to improve, older workers who have been through the wringer of joblessness face the task of getting those plans back on track.

    • About Mark

      "Mark Miller is a journalist and author who writes about trends in retirement and aging. He has a special focus on how the baby boomer generation is revising its approach to careers, money and lifestyle after age 50. Mark is the author of The Hard Times Guide to Retirement Security: Practical Strategies for Money, Work and Living (John Wiley & Sons/Bloomberg Press, 2010) and edits Mark is the former editor of Crain’s Chicago Business, and former Sunday editor of the Chicago Sun-Times. The opinions expressed here are his own."
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