Photo by Mathieu Turle on Unsplash
Roth IRAs were created 20 years ago to give investors a way to invest for retirement that allowed for tax-free distributions after age 59 ½.
But they came with a catch.
These new IRAs were to be funded with after-tax contributions. Unlike traditional, tax-deductible IRAs and workplace retirement plans like 401(k) accounts, contributions to Roth IRAs are not tax deductible.
Since then, investors have debated whether it’s best to fund a Roth IRA or a traditional, tax-deductible IRA. Strong arguments can be made for both, but most financial professionals agree: whenever possible, the Roth IRA should be part of your retirement income plan.
Photo by Anthony DELANOIX on Unsplash
This January marks the 20th anniversary of the Roth IRA. First made available to investors in January of 1998, a Roth IRA is an individual retirement account funded with after-tax dollars that provides tax-free growth and income for retirement.
Because Roth IRAs are such an important part of many people’s retirement income plan, I have decided to make 2018 The Year of The Roth.
Photo by Alexander Radelich on Unsplash
According to the National Philanthropic Trust (NPT), Americans donated over $389 billion in 2016. Most of that money, 72% to be exact, came from individual donors like you.
I imagine that most of those donations went directly to qualified 501(c)3 charitable organizations. However, more and more people are using donor advised funds as their charitable vehicle of choice.
If you plan to make a charitable gift before the end of the year, you may wish to consider a gift to a donor advised fund as well.
Photo credit: Simon Wijers. Unsplash.
In 2017 the first baby-boomers turned 70. Happy birthday! However, if you had your 70th birthday between January 1 and June 30 of this year, the IRS says you must take your first IRA “required minimum distribution” (aka RMD) this year as well.
Well, OK. Technically, you really have until next year. More about that below.
Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters on Unsplash
Prior to the Equifax breach, I admit to being lax in my personal cybersecurity. In my defense, it wasn’t so much that I was careless, I was just naïve to the risks that we face in our digital world.
Sure, I used passwords and followed all the basic rules. I assumed that big companies, the government and other stewards of my personal data, kept it secure in a way that I could count on.
In the past, that may have been enough, but after the recent Equifax breach, I decided to take a much more proactive approach to protecting my family’s personal information and reducing the risk of more serious problems down the road.
Your passwords – how you create them, how you manage them and how often you update them – are at the core of a strong cyber self-defense plan.