With all the crazy amounts of analysis about the recently passed health care plan, I thought you might find this interesting. It does a decent job showing the multitude of phases the plan will begin to affect your life.
Infographic by HealthInsuranceProviders.com: Compare health insurance options from many different providers!

Continue reading about A brief summary (by someone else) of health care reform

Michael on September 25th, 2009
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You: Wait a second. This is a personal finance blog. Why are you weighing in on health care reform?
First, I’m not actually weigh in on what plan should be followed.  Rather, I am reporting some observations about our behavior. Second, health care reform is very much a financial planning topic.
You: How so?
In several ways. Here [...]

Continue reading about Health care reform and rude behavior

On Friday, I blogged about the importance of maximizing your match in December.  Year-end tip number two concerns flexible spending accounts (FSAs).  Like a 401(k) match, paying attention to your FSA makes sense 12 months of the year, yet still presents some critical opportunities as the year winds down.
Here’s a refresher on the benefits (and [...]

Continue reading about Year-End Financial Planning Tip #2: Flexible Spending Accounts

The American Payroll Association founded National Payroll Week in 1996.
You: There’s a week for everything.  What about National Paid-Off Week?
Looking forward to that one, eh?
You: Who isn’t?
Easy: those who are already living Beyond Paycheck to Paycheck.  To that end, I had the opportunity to chat with Robert Wagner, Direct of Communication for the American Payroll [...]

Continue reading about National Payroll Week: Featured Interview with Robert Wagner

Michael on August 20th, 2008
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You: Which funds should I pick?
You: In my 401(k) account. . .I have like a dozen funds to choose from. Which ones should I pick?
I can’t give you specific investment advice.
You: Right. I knew that. Well, then, how can I pick the right funds?
There aren’t any “right” funds.
You: Okay, I think you’ve got [...]

Continue reading about Making intelligent 401(k) investment decisions

Although I am often asked to speak to recent grads, I have never been asked to speak at any graduations. But if I were, I imagine I would deliver something along the lines of this speech.
Today is part 7. To see the entire speech released so far, click here and read from the bottom [...]

Continue reading about Graduation Speech Part 7: Take advantage of your benefits or you’re being kind of dumb.

Michael on January 8th, 2008
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Yesterday, I posted a question about the Roth 401(k) plan. While this follow-up question was written about a Roth 401(k), the truth is that the same logic holds for both Roth 401(k) and a regular 401(k):
You: I have another question. Or maybe it’s just a matter of ethics. I’m not sure how much longer [...]

Continue reading about Follow up on 401(k) contributions

Michael on January 7th, 2008
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Entering 2008, the “new” Roth 401(k) is a hot topic lots of people want to talk about. Although this plan has been around for a couple of years, most employers did not decide to make it available to their employees until some recent additional Congressional tinkering made its existence permanent. I recently had [...]

Continue reading about Roth 401(k)

Michael on December 5th, 2007
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Even if your employer doesn’t match your contributions to your 401(k) plan, saving money in your retirement plan is still a solid financial move. First, there are the well-documented advantages of an automatic savings program (Saving Strategy # 9: You won’t spend what you don’t see!)
In addition, the moment you make a contribution, your [...]

Continue reading about A 401(k) without a match still rocks

Michael on November 28th, 2007
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Most employers now allow you to make changes to your 401(k) plans throughout the year. Still, annual enrollment is one of the precious few times people tend to review (even if briefly) their benefit decisions.
In addition, it’s also nearly the end of the year.
You: I knew there was a reason I read this blog. [...]

Continue reading about Annual Enrollment & 401(k) Plans