Reuters Money

Medicare will cut Social Security’s “raise” in 2012

October 12, 2011

A girl tries to climb a snow-packed wall in a labyrinth at the Sapporo Snow Festival in Sapporo in northern Japan February 5, 2008.  REUTERS/Yuriko Nakao (JAPAN)After two years without an inflation adjustment, the Social Security Administration is expected to announce a 2012 cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) of more than 3 percent next week. That would be a sizable raise in this economy, and very welcome news to seniors hit hard by rising costs, slumping home equity and very low returns on fixed-income investments.

5 ways to make a bond ladder work for you

October 11, 2011 mention of bond laddering often makes one think of retirees sitting on the sidelines of the market, buying individual bonds with staggered maturities to goose up their yields, but lately it’s not such a doddering strategy.

Hedging can end your retirement panic now

August 22, 2011

Even with the most recent market agita, there’s no reason for you to worry long-term about your retirement funds.

The case for financial repression: Mild inflation, low interest rates

August 1, 2011

Rick Ashburn is a chartered financial analyst and the founding Principal Chief Investment Officer of Creekside Partners, based in Lafayette, California. The opinions expressed here are his own.

Why Social Security COLA cuts will whip up a fight

June 30, 2011

If you want to tick off a senior, just mention Social Security’s cost-of-living adjustment (COLA). The COLA has been on auto-pilot since 1975, when the first automatically-adjusted benefit adjustment was made, using a formula tied to the Consumer Price Index. A COLA was awarded every year from that time until 2008, but since then — nada.

Investing: A little inflation isn’t such a bad thing

June 28, 2011

We’re in a three-headed hydra economy now. There’s the threat of burgeoning inflation, joblessness and a rotten housing market.

How to invest for long-term inflation

May 13, 2011

It’s no secret that food and energy prices are volatile and rising of late. Yet what’s missing from the latest inflation hand-wringing is what’s down the road. Some commodities are becoming scarcer and that will drive long-term inflation.

The next great threat: 5 ways to battle inflation

May 2, 2011

As the U.S. deals with one pernicious threat, another one looms: Inflation.

Consumer prices, led by food and energy increases, are the highest they’ve been in two and a half years.

Scary and scarier: rising prices and rising rates

April 12, 2011

Data expected out of Washington this week may raise anxiety levels of investors and consumers who are already worried about inflation and rising interest rates.A gasoline pump is seen hanging at a petrol station in central Seoul April 6, 2011. REUTERS/Lee Jae-Won

Why market-neutral funds may come up short

April 11, 2011

A trader works on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange, March 21, 2011.  REUTERS/Brendan McDermidDoes the prospect of inflation, higher oil prices and double-dip housing recession keep you up at night? Long-short or market-neutral funds seem ideal for nervous nellies. They attempt to blunt your downside risk by “shorting” stocks while giving you a piece of the upside.