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There is widespread misunderstanding about what credit ratings really mean, and how they affect the returns that you earn and the overall riskiness of your portfolio. Investors generally rely on bond ratings to evaluate the credit quality of specific bonds. Credit ratings indicate...

“Some people spend more time planning a two-week vacation than they do their retirement.” ~ Anonymous Retirement is a passage from one lifestyle to another. One way to think of the term “retire” is by placing a hyphen between the ‘e’ and the ‘t’...

Facing criticism from a colleague over modifications he made in his economic analysis, the famous British economist John Maynard Keynes once said: “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?” Keynes’ question is a relevant one for investors. Unless you...

Many people hop in and out of investments all too frequently. That’s due in part to the fact that mutual fund advice and information are so freely available that individuals often are persuaded to switch from their more prosaic funds to those that have been delivering more...

One theory of valuation is that a stock is worth the cash distributable to shareholders. An advantage to methodologies based on this concept is that cash distributions are not influenced by accounting adjustments. Cash is either returned to shareholders or it’s not. Investors...

Not all that long ago, “stock-picking” entailed tedious, relentless research. In order to get the complete financial picture of a firm and its shares, individual investors had to scour the pages of financial newspapers or pore over scores of thick, dull annual reports. You...

The Dow Jones industrial average finally crossed the 20,000 mark this morning. It took the blue-chip average 64 days to make the 5.1% leap from when it first crossed 19,000 on November 22, 2016. The big reason the move has received so much attention is 20,000 is a big, round number....

Financial advisors use a variety of investment strategies to replace retiree employment salaries or business income. These include bond ladders, systematic withdrawal programs (SWPs), guaranteed minimum withdrawal benefit (GMWB) products, and even strategies in the relatively...

Target date funds offer the premise of a one-stop solution for investors seeking professional allocation strategies. They are commonplace in 401(k) and other similar employer-sponsored retirement plans (aka, defined-contribution plans). According to Vanguard, 88% of defined-contribution...

In investing there are a few universal truths. One of them is that at some point, a stock’s price will fall. There are myriad reasons why a stock’s price falls and it is up to you to determine the cause. By identifying why the price is falling, you are far better equipped...