A Swing and a Myth

January 14th, 2019|

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

The first full trading week of 2019 enjoyed a hearty and healthy continuation of the post-Christmas rally.  The major averages rang up gains of about 2 ½% to about 3 ½%.  The steep December skid left the market extremely over-sold with extremely negative sentiment as of the end of trading […]

Chitty-Chitty Bang! Bang!

January 7th, 2019|

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

As 2018 ended, last week began with the narrowest range day since late-November.  Perhaps the New Year would bring some relief to the wild, wide-ranging markets that characterized the fourth quarter of last year.  On Wednesday, the first trading session of the year began with a gap-down opening, which quickly […]

Take the Long Way Home

December 28th, 2018|

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

The road to wealth, for most of us, is not a quick blast down the freeway of high finance, but a bumpy, winding path that yields steady long-term progress sprinkled with occasional inconvenient detours.  We know that with discipline and planning, we have a better chance of reaching the destination […]

Year-End Financial To-Do: Holiday Hangover? – How You Can Recover from Too Much Holiday Debt

December 27th, 2018|

By Debbie Placke, Vice President, Manager, Financial Planning Tools and Marketing

If the cheer from your holiday celebrations has dissipated and you are feeling the after effects of overspending, you’re not alone. Americans in general are spending more than ever.  According to a 2018 holiday shopping survey by Deloitte, the total holiday retail sales are expected […]

Year-End Financial To-Do: Your IRA Checklist – Check it Twice!

December 20th, 2018|

By Theresa Fry, Senior Vice President and Manager, IRA’s and Retirement Planning

Have you been making your lists and checking them twice?  Here are some IRA “To-Dos” you may want to check off before this year is over.

Have You Made Your IRA Contributions? It’s not too late.

Anyone who is working and has earned income can […]

Year-End Financial To-Do: Should You Take or Defer Gains and Deductions?

December 18th, 2018|

By Jeffrey R. Wolfe, Senior Vice President, Manager of Wealth Planning Strategies

The end of the year is a wonderful time to review your tax situation for opportunities to pay less taxes or pay taxes at a lower rate.  Review your portfolio, other investments and your projected income to see where you may fall in the […]

Nice and Naughty

December 17th, 2018|

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

When the S&P 500 Index (SPX) survived a test of its 2600 level last Monday, it was looking like it would be a nice week for the market.  Coming out of an oversold condition with the big reversal that Monday, the Santa rally was cleared for takeoff.  The averages all […]

Year-End Financial To Do: QLACs-Longevity Insurance that Reduce RMDs

December 14th, 2018|

By Dan Schulte, Vice President and Manager, Annuities and Insurance

Tax-deferred investments interest and investment earnings accumulate tax-free, until an investor takes constructive receipt of the profits.  Qualified retirement plans such as traditional Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are tax-deferred, but investors should be aware they are not allowed to defer taxes forever.  Eventually, Uncle Sam is […]

Year-End Financial To-Do: Make a 529 Plan Contribution

December 13th, 2018|

By Debbie Placke, Vice President, Manager, Financial Planning Tools and Marketing

What is on your shopping list this year? How many of your children or grandchildren need more toys or gadgets? Looking for a new idea that will not only save you time and give you peace of mind, but will be the best Christmas present […]

The Dog Ate My Homework

December 10th, 2018|

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

Excuses, excuses.  Some are believable, some are laughable.  The past several weeks of unusual market volatility have inspired a need for excuses.  For the cable business shows, it seems that making excuses has become a full-time endeavor.  Perhaps the most incredulous of the popular excuses is, “Stocks are down because […]