Friday, May 4, 2012

Graduation present of the year!

Wealth: What every high school graduate needs to know in the 21st century $19.95

Your tax refunds could be your future Tax-FREE retirement

What you do with your refund (average over $3,000) could determine your future financial life. Investing $3,000 a year can accumulate in a tax-FREE Wealth Reserve and provide you with a reserve to pay cash instead of giving up interest and in the future, a comfortable retirement. Use it for deductibles and pay fewer premiums for all contracts too. Consider: $3,000 a year can compound to $115,000 in 15 years, 215,000 in 20, and $700,000 in 30 years using 10 funds averaging over 11% a year. See

Did you receive a refund?

Why are you making a loan to the US government?

Take your refund up front and build a tax-free retirement. Increase your allowances so your boss takes out less in your paycheck. Use this form to increase allowances 1 or 2.

How much are you paying for college savings plans?

The Coalition of Mutual Fund Investors found that plans sold through financial advisers or brokers charge more than twice as much in annual fees than plans that parents choose directly through states and manage on their own. On average, the adviser-sold plans were 2.15 times as expensive. The difference was larger when the fund investor organization also included initial sales charges and account maintenance fees that an investor would pay over 10 years — the time span many parents spend building up a 529 account. That comparison found adviser-sold plans cost 2.73 times as much, on average. In dollar terms, the 10-year cost of a $10,000 investment was an average $1,944 for adviser-sold plans compared with $712 for direct-sold plans. Compare fees:

Unless your state gives you a tax break, low-cost leaders Vanguard and Fidelity are the best choices no matter where you live.

Students face big financial aid changes in 2012 unless our “Reps” work together

Starting July 1, 2012, interest rates on subsidized Stafford loans will jump from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent, reports the Department of Education. Unsubsidized Stafford loan and graduate Stafford loan rates will stay locked at 6.8 percent.

Another war?              Are your taxes paid?

Multiple stealth F-22 Raptors, which have never been combat-tested, are now in hangars at the United Arab Emirates. They cost an estimated $79 billion and the oxygen to pilots fails unexpectedly.

No matter. The Air Force says the F-22 is ready for war, should it be called.

A former Israeli spymaster has branded the country's leaders unfit to tackle the Iranian nuclear program because of what he called the "messianic feelings" behind their threats to launch a pre-emptive war on Iran.

Is ”asset-based” long-term care insurance right for you?

This name is really a misnomer. Insurers are reacting to the failure of long-term care insurance to thrive by adding a rider to their regular savings-plan life insurance. They are pitching expensive life insurance as long-term care insurance so younger buyers will feel better about buying life insurance. Now, they say, you get two for one. Sellers can now avoid the ‘use it or lose it’ risk of LTCi. Most of the new Life+LTC policies do NOT include a benefit increase option that bumps up available benefits to keep pace with inflationary growth of costs. Thus buyers are being misled to think this policy will cover their future needs. However, when they need care—perhaps 20-30 years hence—they will find that the benefit is so small as to be useless. An alternative, to invest in appreciating assets, will cover needs more appropriately AND retains value for heirs. Members craft their own care benefits/legacy using our Guide:

GOP gone over the edge?

FL Rep Allen West declares 81 of his colleagues are communists. McCarthyism?

Facts died Wednesday, April 18, after a long battle for relevancy with the 24-hour news cycle, blogs and the Internet. Though few expected Facts to pull out of its years-long downward spiral, the official cause of death was from injuries suffered last week when Florida Republican Rep. Allen West steadfastly declared that as many as 81 of his fellow members of theU.S. House of Representatives are communists.

GOP view of US future is not Christian, Bishops say!

There is something un-Christian about the Gospel According to Paul Ryan. So, at least, says Ryan's Catholic Church. The bishops, in opposing Ryan's budget, called for "shared sacrifice by all, including raising adequate revenues."

"Your budget," a group of Jesuit scholars and other Georgetown University faculty members wrote to Ryan last week, "appears to reflect the values of your favorite philosopher, Ayn Rand, rather than the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”

Even Jesus said to render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's. Ryan would rather give the rich a tax cut.

AL health care structure may kill people

Alabama's leaders disagree on how to fund the state's Medicaid program should be properly funded, both sides agree on one thing: People will die if it isn't.

All sides agree that lives hang in the balance -- and not just the lives of people who rely on Medicaid for care. State health officials and lawmakers said a $400 million state Medicaid budget would trigger a chain reaction that would lead to care facilities closing and doctors leaving the state or going out of business.

American “job creators” leaving US to find demand

“We’re investing in India. We’re investing in Russia. We’re investing in Brazil. Not to ship products back here but because demand exists in those markets,” a Fortune 500 CEO said. “At the end of the day, this is really about responding to demand. We’re not going to go out and invest unless there’s demand.”

Are Inverse and leveraged ETFs for you?

Regulators fined four brokerage giants – Citigroup, Morgan Stanley, UBS, and Wells Fargo for selling complex ETFs to retail clients whose conservative portfolios shouldn't have contained the risky investments. The brokerages agreed to pay $7.3 million in fines and $1.8 in restitution to customers who bought unsuitable inverse and leveraged ETFs. The only reason brokers put these customers at risk is the commission. "What kind of deterrence does this serve if they can still keep (nearly all) of the profits from the trading...?" said Jill Gross, director of the Investor Rights Clinic at Pace Law School in New York.

EXAMPLE: A 65-year-old conservative customer of Wells Fargo with a stated net worth less than $50,000 held a non-traditional ETF for 43 days and sustained losses of more than $25,000.

Have you been denied health coverage?  See Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan.

•You must have been without health coverage for at least the last 6 months. Please note that if you currently have insurance coverage that doesn’t cover your medical condition or are enrolled in a state high risk pool, you are not eligible for the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan.

•You must have a pre-existing condition or have been denied health coverage because of your health condition. Information about what documents about your pre-existing condition you need to provide with your application is available here.

Are your brokerage fees excessive?

Find out by using a new service: SigFig. Some advisers charge customers “wildly different fees” — ranging from 70 basis points to 260 basis points — for the same services. For instance, some firms give a discount to large accounts, but the discounts don't necessarily line up with account size. “Basically, they charge you whatever they think they can get out of you,” Mr. Conrad said. Joe Duran, chief executive of United Capital, called SigFig a “revolutionary” product that will reward low-cost providers. Disclaimer: Insiders have not used this yet.

Do you know what Social Security will pay you each month?

“Our new online Social Security Statement, available at, is simple, easy-to-use and provides people with estimates they can use to plan for their retirement,” said Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security. Members make a spending plan so there are no surprises:

Have you shopped for auto coverage lately?

Insurers increase advertising to attract new customers.  You may be surprised by saving 30% on your premium because insurers are using more aggressive pricing. Use our Guide to save thousands of dollars over the next 10 years.

WA sued by women who want their health care

Dozens of women filed a lawsuit against Attorney General Rob McKenna, alleging that his participation in legal action to overturn federal health reform threatens access to comprehensive coverage for women. McKenna’s actions are not in the best interest of Washington state and its residents, which he is obligated by law to represent, the lawsuit says.

SCAMS                       Only the little people pay taxes.” Leona Helmsley

Which lobbyist is your “representative” hearing from today?

It will cost you to see your rep but you can let them know you need your tax benefits. See where and when to meet:

Another “too big to fail” bank/hedge fund

Wells Fargo will look more like its Wall Street counterparts after a deal announced Friday to buy Merlin Securities, a prime brokerage and technology provider. Wells announced the acquisition of LaCrosse Global Fund Services, a hedge fund administration and service provider, in September. Wells will set up a big trading operation to complement its retail bank like all the rest.

Former Fed banker warns oligopoly banks still can hurt us

“We cannot have a durable, competitive, dynamic banking system that facilitates economic growth if policy protects the franchises of oligopolies atop the financial sector,” Mr. Warsh told an audience at the Stanford.

Wealthy “Americans” line up to give up passports in Swiss capital

Rich Americans renouncing U.S. citizenship rose sevenfold since a UBS whistle-blower triggered a crackdown on tax evasion four years ago. Few have been prosecuted for hiding income however. They pay a fee of $450 to renounce!?!


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