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75% of Americans agree they would benefit from having basic financial education and information.

Source: The 2016 Consumer Financial Literacy Survey, The National Foundation for Credit Counseling

Welcome to our research center! We've put together a library of information on important financial topics that we believe you'll find helpful.

Simply click on one of the general financial topics below and you'll find a selection of easy-to-understand information sheets about related financial concepts and strategies. This information is updated regularly to reflect the latest facts, figures, legislation, and economic trends.

Estates & Trusts

  • Paying Estate Taxes

    If you believe your estate will be subject to estate taxes, consider how your heirs will pay the bill.

  • Gifting Strategies

    Compare the advantages and disadvantages of different gifting strategies available for planned giving.

Retirement

  • Roth 401(k)

    A Roth 401k is funded w/after-tax money, allows for tax- and penalty-free withdrawal of earnings if req are met.

  • Why Purchase Annuities

    Annuities, an insurance-based financial vehicle, can provide many benefits that retirement investors might want.

  • Annuity Living Benefits

    Living benefits can help protect variable annuity owners from running out of money in retirement.

  • Unforgettable Birthdays

    There are key dates after you turn 59 that can impact your taxes, Medicare eligibility, and retirement benefits.

  • 401(k) Plans

    401(k) employer-sponsored retirements plans have many benefits, including that the funds accumulate tax-deferred.

  • Roth IRAs

    Qualified Roth IRA distributions in retirement are free of federal income tax and aren’t included in gross income.

Tax Planning

  • Capital Gain Tax

    Capital gains are profits realized from the sale of assets; a tax is triggered only when an asset is sold, not held.

  • Estate Tax

    Everything you own, whatever the form of ownership, is subject to federal, and possibly state, estate taxes.

  • Gift Tax

    The federal gift tax applies to gifts of property or money while the donor is living.

  • Retirement Plan Limits

    IRAs, employer-sponsored retirement plans are subject to annual contribution limits set by the federal government.

  • Required Minimum Distributions

    Required minimum distribution is the annual amount that must be withdrawn from a qualified retirement plan/account.

  • Charitable Trust Tax Benefits

    For the grantor, there are a few potential tax benefits that can come with setting up a charitable trust.

  • Retirement Plan Taxes

    With traditional IRAs and most employer-sponsored retirement plans, taxes are not payable until funds are withdrawn.

  • Withdrawing Before Age 59.5

    Tax-deferred retirement account withdrawals before age 59½ generally triggers a 10% federal income tax penalty.

  • Tax-Free Investments

    It’s important to understand tax-exempt vehicles when establishing a comprehensive tax planning strategy.

Investing

  • Mutual Fund Taxes

    Mutual fund taxes can be cumbersome, but there are ways to help mitigate the amount of taxes you may owe.

  • Types of Bonds

    Bonds are issued by many entities and share many characteristics, each type of bond has certain benefits and risks.

  • Closed-End Funds

    W/ closed-end funds, investors pool their money together to purchase a pro managed portfolio of stocks and/or bonds.

  • Annuities

Risk Management

  • Annuities as an Insurance Product

    An annuity is a contract between you and an insurance co. to pay you future income in exchange for premiums you pay.

  • Types of Life Insurance

    When selecting a life insurance policy, examine all your options, as well as the positives and negatives of each type.