What if you wake up one day and realize you really want to retire early? Nay – you need to retire early. Your job is slowly killing you and you can’t take it much longer. Okay, that was me in 2010, but you get my drift. If you’re married, then your next step would be to announce the early retirement ...

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I apologize for the lengthy surprise interruption of posts at The Retirement Cafe. The disruption was the result of personal issues that are now largely resolved, so I can resume blogging. I will, however, be changing the focus of the posts somewhat. Previously, Retirement Cafe posts focused almost exclusively on retirement planning issues. Now that I have reached a later ...

For many of us trying to save for retirement, our 401(k) plan is our main retirement savings vehicle.  Much has been written about the pros and cons of 401(k) plans, but the truth is that if utilized correctly the 401(k) is a powerful retirement savings tool.  Here are six 401(k) investing mistakes to avoid. Not contributing enough  Many plans will ...

Variable annuities are often touted as an ideal retirement investing vehicle, especially by financial advisors who sell them.  Variable annuities can be a useful vehicle for retirement accumulation.  However variable annuities (and other types of annuities) are quite often misunderstood by those who are the targets of these sales pitches.  Is a variable annuity right for you?  Here are 7 ...

Regular readers here know that the inspiration for some of my blog posts comes from non-financial sources such as youth soccer fields and the Rolling Stones.  In that spirit the idea for this post popped into my head while waiting in line to pay for an item at a local gas station. I noticed the clerk behind the counter restocking ...

Hi Roger, Thank you for taking the time to reply to my comments. I’m glad to hear that you “use the services of a few trusted insurance agents… [who] are competent, qualified professionals whose knowledge and integrity benefit our mutual clients.” Have you discussed fixed index annuities with them? I’m just curious. Since they are trustworthy, perhaps they could show ...

I just read a very disturbing piece on 401(k) rollovers Retirees Suffer as $300 Billion 401(k) Rollover Boom Enriches Brokers via Bloomberg.  The piece described some of the tactics used by brokers to entice retirees from a number of major corporations into rolling over their 401(k) balances to an IRA with their firms.  It seems that often these IRA accounts ...

The topic of borrowing from one’s 401(k) account is always a bit controversial.  Regardless of your view, the folks at TIAA-CREF have compiled some interesting data on 401(k) loans. Key findings about 401(k) loans  In their study of 401(k) loans TIAA-CREF found: Getting Out of Debt – Paying off debt was cited as the top reason for taking out a ...

This is post was written by Ike Devji, a Phoenix, AZ-based asset protection attorney and one of my oldest online friends.  I have spoken with Ike many times for advice on client asset protection issues and had the pleasure of meeting him in person a couple of years ago when he spoke to my financial advisor study group during a meeting we ...

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