November 2016

FSA or HSA? Which will save you more money this open season?

Here’s a brief overview and comparison of the HCFSA (Health Care Flexible Spending Account) and HSA (Health Savings Account).  Both of these plans can help you save much on taxes and both are available to you this open season (November 14- December 12, 2016). What are the benefits of a HCFSA or HSA? If you spend any money on health/medical related products and services such as Doctor’s co-pays, chiropractic, dental, vision, prescriptions, etc, you could pay for those products and services with pre-tax dollars, thus reducing your taxable income. Surprisingly, many people don’t fully utilize this benefit.  They buy their contact lenses or lens solution with post-tax dollar.  They pay their insurance deductible or co-pay with post-tax dollars.  These types of expenses can be paid for with pre-tax dollars.  Let’s illustrate what that means. Suppose you earn $100,000.  You will have to pay taxes on those $100,000.  However, if you... View More

November 2016

TSP Report – November 2016

Election day is tomorrow.(!)   Although the outcome of the election is uncertain, the economic wheels are already in-motion, and this month’s report and recommended portfolios reflect that. TSP investors have asked me if any portfolio changes should be done ASAP or wait until after the election? Good question! I have been looking to see if any statistical metrics favor Trump or Hillary. There are too many metrics and none I feel comfortable relying upon. So, either way I answer this question I will be wrong. I will be guessing, which is the opposite of my whole strategy. Facts: GDP had notable growth for the 3rd Quarter 2016, rising to 2.9% in the preliminary estimate.  This is compared to the 1.4% growth in the 2nd quarter.  It has not risen above 3% nor fallen below 0.5% since the 3rd quarter of 2014. The S&P 500 was down 2.29%.  After breaking... View More

October 2016

Is Retirement Better at End or Beginning of Year?

I often hear people say “I’d rather retire sooner than later.”  But when the choice of retirement dates is just a matter of a few months, then people often assume there’s not much difference between sooner or later.  What difference does a few months make?  Here are some important differences to consider. Advantage of end-of-year retirement: Jump start on COLAs:  COLAs are payable on January 1stfor those who were effectively retired December 1st of the prior year.  In order to be effectively retired on December 1st, you must have your date of final separation before December 1st – i.e. by November 30th. To illustrate:  If two people are retiring in 2017 – one’s date of final separation will be on November 30th, the other on December 1st – the one who retires November 30th will have his COLAs start January 1st, 2018, while the other who retired December 1st will have his COLA start January... View More

September 2016

Life Insurance Webinar for Federal Employees

Life insurance ends up costing people more than they want. Either due to expensive premiums or the lost opportunity to grow these premiums into greater wealth. That is why I am offering a LIVE ONLINE WORKSHOP ON LIFE INSURANCE! Sign up here With FEGLI open season coming to a close on September 30, 2016, now is the time to make smart life insurance decisions that will have a long lasting impact on you & your family’s financial future. In this workshop you will: Compare the FIVE types of Life Insurances available to Federal Employees Learn the benefits to each policy and how they relate to new, mid-level or near retirement career Feds See which policy will help you save money and build wealth Have the opportunity to ask questions and get answers right away! Save me a spot! For only $20.00 this one hour workshop will save you hours of... View More

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