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In its annual Retirement Confidence Survey of current workers and retirees, the Employee Benefit Research Institute found that workers’ confidence in their ability to fund retirement fell by the largest extent since the financial crisis of 2008, to levels not seen since 2018. Retirees’ confidence also took a substantial hit. Overall, just 20% of respondents felt very confident they will be able to afford a comfortable retirement. The percentage of workers who felt at least...
On June 8, 2023, the S&P 500 index closed at 4,293.93, just over 20% higher than its lowest recent closing value of 3,577.03 reached on October 12, 2022.1 According to a common definition of market cycles, this indicated that the benchmark index was officially in a bull market after a bear market that began in January 2022. By this definition, the current bull market began on October 13, 2022, the day after the bear market ended...
In late May 2023, Congress sent a letter to U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and IRS Commissioner Daniel Werfel saying that it will introduce legislation to correct several technical errors in the SECURE 2.0 Act. The letter, signed by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Mike Crapo (R-ID), chair and ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, respectively, and Representatives Jason Smith (R-MO) and Richard Neal (D-MA), chair and ranking member of the House Ways and...
On Monday, May 22, President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy met at the White House to discuss raising the statutory limit on U.S. government debt, generally called the debt ceiling. Although both leaders termed the discussion “productive,” there was no resolution, and their respective negotiating teams continued discussions.1 Here are some answers to questions you may have about the issues behind the current impasse. What is the debt ceiling? The debt ceiling is a statutory...
The use of mobile payment apps and person-to-person (P2P) payments are more popular than ever, giving businesses and consumers the ability to send and receive money instantly. According to a recent study, the share of P2P payments made with mobile apps nearly doubled in one year, increasing from 15% in 2020 to 29% in 2021.1 In response to the growing demand for these types of instant payments services, the Federal Reserve will be launching its own...
A March 2023 survey found that more than 90% of Americans worry about the Social Security program, and about half of those said they worry a great deal.1 A separate survey the same month found that more than 80% of Americans worry Medicare will not be able to provide the same level of benefits in the future.2 These concerns are well-founded, because both of these programs — the cornerstones of “America’s Safety Net” — face serious...
Approximately 78% of people who work for companies with fewer than 10 employees and about 65% of those who work for companies with 10 to 24 employees do not have access to a retirement plan at work.1 That’s unfortunate, because workers with a retirement plan are far more likely to save for retirement than those without a plan. In 2022, 62% of those without a retirement plan had accumulated less than $1,000 for retirement, compared with...
The SECURE 2.0 Act, passed as part of an omnibus spending bill in December 2022, added new exceptions to the 10% federal income tax penalty for early withdrawals from tax-advantaged retirement accounts. The Act also expanded an existing exception that applies specifically to employer plans. These exceptions are often called 72(t) exceptions, because they are listed in Section 72(t) of the Internal Revenue Code. The 10% penalty tax generally applies to withdrawals prior to age...
Financial markets reacted turbulently to the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) on March 10, 2023, followed two days later by the failure of Signature Bank of New York. With $209 billion in assets and $175 billion in deposits, SVB was the nation’s 16th largest bank and the second largest to fail in U.S. history.1-2 This news was alarming to savers who worried their own bank accounts could be at risk and investors who feared...
The tax filing deadline is fast approaching, which means time is running out to fund an IRA for 2022. If you had earned income last year, you may be able to contribute up to $6,000 for 2022 ($7,000 for those age 50 or older by December 31, 2022) up until your tax return due date, excluding extensions. For most people, that date is Tuesday, April 18, 2023. You can contribute to a traditional IRA, a...

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