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Explainer: How healthcare for vets became a battle in Congress | government and politics

By Kevin Friking – The Associated Press

Washington (AFP) – A bill that would boost health care and disability benefits for millions of veterans who suffered toxic burns hit a snag in the Senate last week, angering advocates such as comedian Jon Stewart who said aid from the government is long overdue.

Lawmakers have been increasingly hearing from voters with respiratory illnesses and cancers they attribute to serving near burns in Iraq and Afghanistan. The military used pits to dispose of things like chemicals, cans, tires, plastic, and medical and human waste.

Veterans' groups say military veterans have waited long enough for enhanced health benefits, and lawmakers largely agree. The Senate is eventually expected to send the measure to President Joe Biden’s desk. It’s just a matter of when.

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How will the bill help veterans in Iraq and Afghanistan?

First, veterans who served near burn pits will receive 10 years of health care coverage through the Department of Veterans Affairs when separated from the military instead of five.

Second, the legislation directs the VA to assume that certain respiratory illnesses and cancers were associated with burn pit exposure. This removes the burden of proof on the veteran, allowing him to receive disability payments to compensate for his injury without having to prove that the illness was a result of their service.

Nearly 70% of disability claims related to burn pit exposure have been denied by the Department of Veterans Affairs due to a lack of evidence, scientific data, and information from the Department of Defense.

Is there help for other vegetarians? yes. For example, hundreds of thousands of Vietnam War-era veterans and survivors will also benefit. The bill adds hypertension, or high blood pressure, as a putative disease linked to exposure to Agent Orange. The Congressional Budget Office projected that about 600,000 of the 1.6 million veterinarians living in Vietnam would be eligible for increased compensation, although only about half of them would have diagnoses severe enough to warrant having one.

Also, veterans who served in Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Guam, American Samoa, and Johnston Atoll are presumed to have been exposed to Agent Orange. The CBO projected that 50,000 veterans and survivors of deceased veterans would be compensated for illnesses presumed to have resulted from their exposure to the herbicide.

How much will the bill cost?

The bill is expected to increase the federal deficit by about $277 billion over 10 years, the Central Bank of Oman said. Lawmakers haven’t included the formula for spending cuts or tax increases to help pay off spending.

Where do things stand in Congress? Both the House and Senate approved the bill by an overwhelming majority. The Senate did so in June, but the bill included a revenue clause that would have to arise in the House, and would require a reappointment for a technical overhaul.

The House of Representatives approved the fixed bill by 342 votes to 88. So, the measure is now back in the Senate, where the previous iteration passed by 84 votes to 14. Biden says he will sign it.

So why hasn’t the Senate approved this yet?

When the CBO scored the bill, it predicted that nearly $400 billion to be spent on health services would move from discretionary spending to mandatory spending, which is often shielded from the painful battles that occur each year over where the money in appropriations bills is spent.

The Committee on Responsible Federal Budget, a nonpartisan financial watchdog, said reclassifying nearly $400 billion from discretionary to mandatory would "reduce pressure to keep those costs under control and make it easier for financiers to spend more elsewhere in the budget without compensation." ."

Those dynamics also applied to the bill when the Senate approved it in June. However, senators voted in favor of the measure by an overwhelming majority.

But, last week, more than two dozen Republicans voted for the bill in June against introducing it this time around. They sided with Republican Senator Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, who is seeking a vote on an amendment that he says would not reduce spending on veterans but would prevent increased spending on other non-defense programs in the future.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer offered to allow the Senate to vote on the Tommy Amendment with the 60 votes needed to pass it, the same number needed to advance the bill itself.

It’s unclear how the delay will be resolved, though Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday predicted that the bill would pass this week.

Veterans Defense groups, a major voting bloc in the upcoming midterm elections, are outraged and are increasing political pressure on lawmakers to act. At a news conference on Capitol Hill the day after last week’s procedural vote, speakers used terms like "bad guys" and "reprehensible" to describe Republican senators who voted against advancing the measure last week but voted for nearly the same bill in June.

"Veterans are angry and confused at the sudden change of those who thought they had their backs," said Cory Titus of the American Military Officers Association.

"You screwed up veterans yesterday, and now we’re going to hold them accountable," added Tom Porter of the US Veterans Group for Iraq and Afghanistan.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

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3 Reasons You Should Wait To Get Social Security | Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Mark Blank)

Should you access Social Security benefits as soon as possible or wait to try to maximize your monthly benefit? Everyone’s situation is slightly different, but there are some really compelling reasons to delay taking advantage of the benefits you’re getting.

Let’s look at the top three reasons for delaying receiving your Social Security benefits until age 70.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. You have a high life expectancy

Life expectancy has a significant impact on this decision. The two main components to consider are:

  1. Your current health condition.
  2. The longevity of your family.

If you are healthy and your family has a history of living well into their 80s or 90s, it makes sense to increase your monthly benefits by waiting until age 70 to claim Social Security.

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average tie Waiting point for benefits is 70 years (assuming a full retirement age from 67). The break-even point is the age you would need to live, so the wait is worth it.

In other words, as long as you expect to live past the age of 81, you will receive more overall benefits. Larger and fewer checks will outweigh the number of smaller and more frequent checks you will receive if you order earlier.

This is also important because your health care costs after age 80 are likely to be higher, so the extra income can make a big difference.

2. You plan to continue working

Many Americans plan to continue working beyond their usual retirement age. A 2021 Cision survey found that nearly 33% of older Americans plan to continue working well into their 70s.

As life expectancy continues to rise, it is likely that many Americans plan to work throughout their 60s. In this case, it makes a lot of sense to delay getting Social Security benefits until 70 because your benefits can be penalized by continuing to work.

If you are below full retirement age, the Social Security Administration deducts $1 for every $2 of annual income you earn over $1,560. The minimum is $51,960 if you reach full retirement age that year, and the deduction is $1 for every $3 of earnings. Plus, you can pay higher taxes on Social Security benefits since you get temporary income You’ll be higher while you’re still working.

While there are times it might make sense to take it social Security While you’re still employed, in general, it’s best to wait until you retire fully or at least make less than $1,560 to claim your benefits.

3. You do not need additional income

In my opinion, the number one reason for taking Social Security benefits early is because you need the income. But if you don’t need the extra income to continue living comfortably, it’s probably best to delay getting your benefits.

If you plan appropriately for retirement, you probably have enough monthly income from retirement accounts like yours 401(k)And the pensionor Ruth Iran To cover your expenses and the lifestyle you want.

If this is the case, you should almost certainly wait until age 70 to maximize the monthly benefits (assuming you have a long life expectancy). After all, you can get approximately 60% more cash each month by waiting (assuming your full retirement age is $1,500, the benefit at age 62 would be 30% less or $1,050. Maturity at $70 would be 120% or $1,800, so $1,050 / $1,800 = 58%).

As your life slows down, this extra monthly income will provide a security blanket and peace of mind so you can focus on spending time doing the things that matter most to you, rather than focusing on finances.

The $18,984 Social Security bonus is totally overlooked by most retirees

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

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Don’t keep an HSA in cash – put it to work instead | Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Ryan Sze)

In 2020, the per capita GDP in the United States is $63,487. In the same year, per capita health care spending was $11,945, meaning that the country spent nearly 19% of its GDP per capita on health care.

This portion is twice what peer countries spend on health care. For comparison, Norway’s GDP per capita in 2020 was $68,359, but the Scandinavian country spent only $6,748 on healthcare per capita – just under 10% of GDP per capita.

It is not surprising, then, that health care in the United States is somewhat expensive. Fortunately, very sure tax advantages like Health Savings Account (HSA)It can help you offset some of these costs.

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And HSA is not strictly Saving account. While you can treat it like a fund for rainy days and keep it all in cash, it may be a good idea to put your HSA balance to work instead, especially if you don’t anticipate any health care expenses in the near future or you have a large account balance.

Image source: Getty Images

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In 2022, the HSA contribution limit was $3,650 for individuals and $7,300 for families. To qualify for an HSA, you or your family must be enrolled in a High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP), with deductible At least $1,400 for individuals or $2,800 for families.

While this contribution limit may not seem like much — and may not even cover a year’s worth of health care expenses in some cases — it can increase over time. If you go for several years without having to withdraw from HSA, you could have a large amount in the account.

For example, suppose you contribute an HSA limit each year for three years and have not made any withdrawals during that period. By the end of year three, you will have approximately $11,000 in the account.

However, this is assuming you leave your money in cash and earn no interest. What if you invested your money instead? If you put money in a stock index fund in a broad market like Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund ETF (NYSEMKT: VTI) And achieving a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10% (roughly equal to the long-term average annual return for the underlying index), you’ll have just over $12,000, or about $1,000 more than if you didn’t invest at all.

But what if you did this for a long period of time – for 10, 20, or even 30 years? Here are the numbers:

all the time

Cash Only (0% CAGR)

Bear portfolio (8% compound annual growth rate)

Base Case (10% CAGR)

Taurus Case (12% CAGR)

10 years

$36,500

$45,554

$49,537

$64,017

20 years

$73,000

$166,939

$208,939

$262,847

30 years

109,500 dollars

$413,257

$600,074

$88,381

As you can see, you end up with an extension Many HSA is greater if you Investing the balance instead of keeping the money in cash. As the amount of time increases, the gap between the fully cashed HSA and the HSA that is employed and invested increases.

For example, you will have $208,939 in your HSA after accruing 10% for 20 years — nearly three times the amount you would have made by keeping the money in cash. And over the course of 30 years, you’ll end up with over $600,000 – nearly half a million more than your total HSA in cash.

Make your HSA work for you

HSAs are first and foremost a tool for covering health care expenses. But these costs often come in sporadic fits, and it may be several years without spending much before you suddenly incur a major hospital or surgery bill.

During those years, he continued to make HSA contributions. And once the money is in your account, make sure it’s working hard for you. By investing this HSA money, you may end up with a significantly higher balance than if you kept your money in cash, especially over time. This way, you’ll be able to sleep peacefully at night knowing you can comfortably afford your healthcare, no matter how much the things you get.

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Seniors on Social Security expect big changes in 2023 | Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Katie Brockman)

It has been a difficult year for many seniors. Inflation was on the rise, the stock market was falling, and a recession seemed more and more likely.

Nearly 90% of current retirees say Social Security is either a primary or secondary source of income, according to a 2022 Gallup survey. It’s helpful, then, to understand upcoming changes to the program and how they might affect your retirement income.

It was a historic year for Social Security, and the changes in 2023 could be massive. While we won’t know all the details until later this year, here’s what you can expect.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. Record breaking COLA

A cost-of-living adjustment, or cost-of-living adjustment, is an annual increase in benefits to help Social Security keep pace with inflation. Typically, the value of COLA decreases between 2% and 4% per year. In 2021, seniors made a whopping 5.9% rise to explain higher inflation late in the year.

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Next year, the value of COLA will almost certainly be higher. Inflation is at its highest level in decades, which means recipients will likely experience one of the largest cash collections (COLA) on record.

Seniors will need to wait until October to see exactly how much they will get, which is when the Social Security Administration announces the new COLA. Some experts have predicted it could fall anywhere from 8.6% to 10.8%, though, based on inflation data so far this year.

2. Highest interest amount

High inflation affects almost all aspects of Social Security. Higher COLA rates result in more monthly checks for seniors, and this also means an increased maximum benefit amount.

The maximum benefit amount depends on your earnings history, the length of your career, and the age at which you begin claiming Social Security. In 2022, it $4,194 per month. But based on the record-breaking COLA we’ll likely see, there’s a good chance it will be even higher in 2023.

Exactly how much will change is uncertain. However, between 2021 and 2022, it increased by about $300 per month. With inflation rising, the increase next year is almost certain to be even greater.

To be fair, only a small percentage of seniors will be eligible for the maximum benefit amount. But if you aim for as many checks as possible, there will be more money available in 2023.

3. Maximum profit limit

If you continue to work after applying for Social Security, you may get more monthly checks in 2023.

During the years before you full retirement age (FRA), your income will be subject to the earnings limit. If your salary exceeds this limit, a portion of your Social Security benefits will be withheld until you reach your FRA. In some cases, the entire benefit amount will likely be deducted, depending on how much income you earn.

In 2022, that limit would be $5,660 per year (or $51,960 if you were to reach your HR assessment this year). Since inflation has been so high, these limits will likely increase significantly in 2023 – which means you’ll be able to earn more without withholding your benefits.

Inflation has been hard on everyone, and the elderly are no exception. Although we won’t know the details of next year’s Social Security changes until the coming months, they could help make higher costs more bearable.

The $18,984 Social Security bonus is totally overlooked by most retirees

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

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Should I invest in an automated advisor? | Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Javier Simon)

Want to jump into the investing world, but aren’t sure about picking out your stocks and managing your own portfolio? An automated advisor can do all of that for you.

A robo-advisor is a digital platform that uses computer algorithms to build and manage a diversified portfolio based on your risk tolerance, financial goals, and other personal factors. It also automatically rebalances your portfolio based on market conditions and your investment objectives. While this sounds neat, a bot advisor can pose some significant risks. Before you invest, you need to weigh the pros and cons.

Benefits of an automated advisor

The popularity of bot advisors continues to grow. According to a study by international consultancy Deloitte, assets under management with the support of robo advisors could grow to more than $16 trillion by 2025 — about three times that of BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager. In fact, robo-advisors may offer several features that will appeal to investors looking for a laissez-faire, no-hassle approach.

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costsA human financial advisor may charge a fee for assets under management (AUM) of 1% or higher. The Robo-Advisor’s AUM fee can range from 0% to 0.40%. To put that into perspective, the 1% annual AUM fee on an investment of $10,000 goes up to $100. The 0.25% AUM fee on an investment of $10,000 is just $25 per year.

diversification: Most of the bot advisors provide you with a questionnaire about your financial goals, risk tolerance and more. The algorithm uses these answers to recommend an investment mix.

Automatic rebalancingMarket conditions can shake up your investment mix, and may leave you too focused on one asset class — leaving you exposed to significant risks in the event of a downturn. When this happens, automated advisors rebalance your portfolio back to its original investment mix, sometimes by selling investments that have gone up and using the proceeds to buy those that have gone down.

Image source: Getty Images

The downside of robo-advisors

Despite the hype, bot consultants have their potential drawbacks:

hidden costs: Although bot advisors charge much lower management fees than traditional advisors, your money is still swallowed up by Expense ratios Or the fees charged by the funds in your wallet. Some may argue that you can simply open a file Discount brokerage account And invest in these funds yourself, completely avoiding AUM fees. There are plenty of online asset allocators that can recommend a customized investment mix, similar to how an automated advisor uses a survey.

fluctuating fees: Some bot advisors may increase their AUM fee as your balance increases. The more you invest with them, the larger the stake they take.

A little human interaction: If you’re on a paid plan or pay an extra fee, some bot advisors give you access to financial planners who can help you achieve other financial goals like paying off high-interest debt. But many plans do not provide access to human advisors at all. For those looking for a hybrid service that allows you to talk to a human consultant when you want to, your options may be limited.

Is an automated advisor right for me?

If you are comfortable with handing investment management over to advanced algorithms and specialists, and accepting limited investment options for potentially low fees, then an automated advisor may be in your pocket.

But if you are experienced or have little time to build your investment acumen, building and managing your own portfolio may be a better bet.

The $18,984 Social Security bonus is totally overlooked by most retirees

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

The fraudulent shareholder Javier Simon has no financial position in any of the companies mentioned. Motley Fool has a profile Disclosure Policy.

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Claim Social Security at 62? You Might Regret That Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Selina Marangian)

One day, you’ll likely be among the tens of millions of Americans who collect Social Security (65 million, as of 2021). How much will you collect? Well, the answer to that is different for each of us, and it mostly depends on how much we’ve earned in our working lives – and also to a greater degree when we start collecting benefits.

We can start compiling as early as age 62, and most people start compiling around age 62 or 63. There are good reasons not to do this – as well as some arguments in favor of it. Here’s a closer look at why you might regret claiming at 62 — followed by some reasons that might make sense to you.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. You will end up with smaller checks

Most of us havefull retirement age“Where we can start to collect the full benefits that we are entitled to, based on our earnings history, and for most of us, it’s 66 or 67. For every year before the full retirement age that you get your benefits, it will shrink specifically, you’ll get About 70% to 75% of your full benefits if you start collecting at age 62.

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This isn’t ideal, but it’s also not as bad as it sounds – after all, while the checks may be smaller, you’ll collect a lot more in total. For those who live moderately long lives, there won’t be much difference in the total benefits received regardless of when benefits start to be provided.

2. Pretending too soon can ruin a smart matrimonial strategy

However, you should think about the bigger picture before deciding when to start collecting your benefits. For example, married people may benefit most from Social Security by coordinating when each of them begins. While both of you will enjoy two benefits checks each month, it’s possible that at some point, one of you will go — and then only one will be arriving. The rules allow you to collect any greater benefit. So it’s worth trying to check at least one of your benefits as closely as possible.

A good way to maximize your benefits is to delay the start of earning it – until age 70. If the spouse with the largest earnings delays until the age of 70, this can greatly help the lower-income earner, if he or she is a surviving spouse in the future.

3. If you plan to continue working, your benefits may diminish

Another consideration is if you Plan to continue working After age 62. If you start collecting Social Security and then also work, if you earn more than a certain amount, the Social Security Administration (SSA) may cut your benefits. As he explains:

If you’re under full retirement age for the entire year, we deduct $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. For 2022, that limit is $5,660.

In the year you reach full retirement age, we deduct $1 in benefits for every $3 you earn above a different threshold. In 2022, your maximum earnings are $51,960. We only calculate your earnings until the month before you reach your full retirement age, not your earnings for the entire year.

This may sound horrible, but once you reach your full retirement age, the SSA will stop withholding benefits and will recalculate your benefits, given what was withheld. So you will get at least some of the retained benefits. However, it may be best not to start collecting these benefits early if you plan to continue working for much longer.

on the other side…

Despite the above reasons, there be Some reasons why you might want to start collecting files Social Security benefits early. For example:

  • You don’t know how long you will live. If you end up waiting until age 70 to collect the money and then die at age 72, you won’t be out much of Social Security. Think a little about your health and how long your relatives lived. If you have a good chance of living a very long life, delaying as long as possible may be best.
  • Perhaps you can afford to retire early. Many people start reaping the benefits early because they have to. They may have lost their jobs or for whatever reason they simply need this income ASAP. Many of those who can afford to delay should start collecting their benefits, but if you do a great job saving and investing for retirement and can afford to retire early, starting early can make sense.

The decision on when to start collecting Social Security benefits will be different for most of us. Take some time to learn more and think about everything before taking any actions, so that you can get as much out of the program as possible.

The $18,984 Social Security bonus is totally overlooked by most retirees

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

Motley Fool has a profile Disclosure Policy.

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Earn $300 in Quarterly Retirement Profits in 3 Easy Steps | personal financing

Generating passive income through dividends is especially important these days, as the stock market has had negative returns for the better part of the year now. But perhaps it’s even more important in retirement, when that extra income can come in handy. It can definitely give you some money to spend to supplement retirement accounts or Social Security checks.

Here are three steps to earning about $300 per quarter, or $100 per month, in dividend income.

Step 1: Find high-yield stocks with stable dividends

Dividend yield is the percentage of the stock price that a company pays in dividends. The average dividend yield for the S&P 500 is around 1.7% right now. In general, the yield that exceeds that is considered very good. To determine if a dividend is sustainable, the payout ratio – the percentage of dividends used to pay dividends – must be less than 50% in most cases.

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Often Best Dividends They are those of large, well-established firms that are among the leaders in their industries. Many of these companies have stable profits and a commitment to maintain or increase their profits. A good place to look for these stocks is on the Dividend Aristocrats list, which are companies that have increased annual dividends at least 25 years in a row. It’s not the only source, but it’s definitely a good place to start.

Step 2: Build your portfolio of dividend stocks

So, with these metrics in mind, the next step is to develop a portfolio of stocks that are poised to generate consistent, high-return passive income in retirement. For the purpose of this assumption, let’s extract from a list Distributed Aristocrats And identify some solid dividend stocks.

One is the asset manager T. Rowe Price Group (NASDAQ: TROW), which has a return of 3.99% and a quarterly dividend of $1.20, with a payout ratio of 36%. Its dividend has increased for 36 consecutive years. Another company is the pharmaceutical company Abvi (NYSE: ABBV), which has a return of 3.75% and a quarterly dividend of $1.41, with a payout ratio of 42%. AbbVie has increased its dividend for 50 consecutive years.

Each of these stocks have above-average returns, manageable payout ratios, and a long history of supporting their dividends, as well as being leaders in their industries. It should also be noted that AbbVie is up 12% year-to-date and has posted an average annual return of 16% over the past 10 years. T. Rowe’s price is down 40% since the start of the year, but all asset managers are struggling in this bear market. However, T. Rowe Price has generated an average annual return of 7% over the past 10 years and has virtually no debt, making it a reliable dividend payer.

Step 3: Make a plan

If your idea is born passive income When you retire, it’s important to have a strategy for getting there. How much do you need to invest in these stocks to make a significant portion of the income? Let’s say you invest $15,000 in both of these stocks. T. Rowe Price is trading at around $117 per share, so you can buy approximately 130 shares for just over $15,000. AbbVie is trading for $153 per share, so you can get 98 shares for as little as $15,000.

For T. Rowe Price, 130 shares at $1.20 per share would generate approximately $156 per quarter, while for AbbVie, 98 shares at $1.41 per share would earn approximately $138 per quarter. That calculates to about $294 per quarter, and $98 per month.

Keep in mind that these stocks will also generate increased capital, not just dividend income, so that the investment grows over time. T. Rowe Price has posted an annual return of 7% for the past 10 years, while AbbVie has posted an average annual return of 16%. So, you are not only getting passive income, but you are also getting solid returns that you can utilize when you need it.

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Dave Kowalski He has no position in any of the mentioned shares. The Motley Fool does not have a position in any of the stocks mentioned. Motley Fool has a profile Disclosure Policy.

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Claim Social Security at 62? You may regret it Personal Finance

(Selina Marangian)

One day, you’ll likely be among the tens of millions of Americans who collect Social Security (65 million, as of 2021). How much will you collect? Well, the answer to that is different for each of us, and it mostly depends on how much we’ve earned in our working lives – and also to a greater degree when we start collecting our benefits.

We can start compiling as early as age 62, and most people start compiling around age 62 or 63. There are good reasons not to do this – as well as some arguments in favor of it. Here’s a closer look at why you might regret claiming at 62 — followed by some reasons that might make sense to you.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. You will end up with smaller checks

Most of us havefull retirement age“Where we can start to collect the full benefits that we are entitled to, based on our earnings history, and for most of us, it’s 66 or 67. For every year before the full retirement age that you get your benefits, it will shrink specifically, you’ll get About 70% to 75% of your full benefits if you start collecting at age 62.

People also read…

This isn’t ideal, but it’s also not as bad as it sounds – after all, while the checks may be smaller, you’ll collect a lot more in total. For those who live moderately long lives, there won’t be much difference in the total benefits received regardless of when benefits start to be provided.

2. Pretending too soon can ruin a smart matrimonial strategy

However, you should think about the bigger picture before deciding when to start collecting your benefits. For example, married people may benefit most from Social Security by coordinating when each of them begins. While both of you will enjoy two benefits checks each month, it’s possible that at some point, one of you will go — and then only one will be arriving. The rules allow you to collect any greater benefit. So it’s worth trying to check at least one of your benefits as closely as possible.

A good way to maximize your benefits is to delay the start of earning it – until age 70. If the spouse with the largest earnings delays until the age of 70, this can greatly help the lower-income earner, if he or she is a surviving spouse in the future.

3. If you plan to continue working, your benefits may diminish

Another consideration is if you Plan to continue working After age 62. If you start collecting Social Security and then also work, if you earn more than a certain amount, the Social Security Administration (SSA) may cut your benefits. As he explains:

If you’re under full retirement age for the entire year, we deduct $1 from your benefit payments for every $2 you earn above the annual limit. For 2022, that limit is $5,660.

In the year you reach full retirement age, we deduct $1 in benefits for every $3 you earn above a different threshold. In 2022, your maximum earnings are $51,960. We only count your earnings up to the month before you reach your full retirement age, not your earnings for the entire year.

This may sound horrible, but once you reach your full retirement age, the SSA will stop withholding benefits and will recalculate your benefits, given what was withheld. So you will get at least some of the retained benefits. However, it may be best not to start collecting these benefits early if you plan to continue working for much longer.

on the other side…

Despite the above reasons, there be Some reasons why you might want to start collecting files Social Security benefits early. For example:

  • You don’t know how long you will live. If you end up waiting until age 70 to collect the money and then die at age 72, you won’t be out much of Social Security. Think a little about your health and how long your relatives lived. If you have a good chance of living a very long life, delaying as long as possible may be best.
  • Perhaps you can afford to retire early. Many people start reaping the benefits early because they have to. They may have lost their jobs or for whatever reason they simply need this income ASAP. Many of those who can afford to delay should start collecting their benefits, but if you do a great job saving and investing for retirement and can afford to retire early, starting early can make sense.

The decision on when to start collecting Social Security benefits will be different for most of us. Take some time to learn more and think about everything before taking any actions, so that you can get as much out of the program as possible.

The $18,984 Social Security bonus is totally overlooked by most retirees

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

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Should you wait a year to start saving for retirement? | Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Kylie Hagen)

Retirement can take decades, but you know it’s an important goal. You were all ready to make 2022 the year I finally started saving, then came record inflation and the growing talk of an impending recession. Now you are wondering if it is a good idea to put your savings in the stock market right now.

The answer depends on a few factors, including your overall financial health. Below, we’ll talk about everything to consider so you can decide on the best move for you.

Image source: Getty Images.

Retirement shouldn’t be your top financial priority

the retirement Really important to a lot of people, but your daily financial security should come first. You need to make sure you have enough money set aside to cover your basic bills. This includes expected monthly expenses, as well as bills that appear once or twice a year.

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Then you need to build a file emergency fund If you don’t already have one. At a minimum, you should set aside at least three months of living expenses, and six or twelve months is better. It is up to you to decide what you feel comfortable with.

If you already have an emergency fund, review it now. With expenditure inflation rising, your current emergency fund may not be enough. Consider boosting it up a bit to account for the higher costs.

Make sure you do these things before allocating any money for retirement. Failure to do so could put you in serious trouble if an unexpected bill appears. You may have to transfer money from your retirement savings, and you may end up with long-term debt problems if you don’t have another way to cover these unexpected costs.

When you’re ready, don’t let the market intimidate you

After your bills and emergency fund are taken care of, you can turn your attention to it retirement savings. You may be wary of investing now with fears of an impending recession, but don’t let that stop you. There is always a risk in investing, even when times are good. And in the long run, most people see their wallets doing well.

Plus, postponing retirement can make your job harder when you’re starting out. Let’s say you’re 25 years old and want to save $1 million by 65. You can do that by saving $403 per month if you earn an annual rate of return of 7%. But delaying retirement savings by just one year means you’ll now have to set aside an extra $30 per month. This may not sound like much, but over the course of your career, you’ll have to save $14,000 more than you would if you started saving at 25.

If you are worried about losing money in the near term, the best thing to do is to use a strategy called Average cost in dollars. This is where you set aside a certain dollar amount in a table, such as a percentage of your salary in each pay period. Sometimes you will buy when stock prices are high; Other times, you’ll buy when prices are low. In the end, you will pay the average amount.

Dollar cost averaging can also help you avoid making emotional decisions, which is helpful all the time but especially during a recession. You can often automate your contributions, and once you’ve done that, there’s usually no need to check your portfolio every day. Your daily ups and downs shouldn’t matter much anyway if you have contracts until retirement.

Focus on making regular contributions over time. Consistency is key to building an egg nest that will carry you through the rest of your life.

The $18,984 Social Security Bonus Most Retirees Totally Forgot

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

Motley Fool has a profile Disclosure Policy.

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How Private Equity Can Teach You To Resist Recessions | Smart Change: Personal Finance

(Caroline Hartley)

Private equity (PE) investments are not publicly traded. With money pooled from institutional and individual investors, groups buy private equity in companies they want to fix and reverse — and hopefully make a huge profit. Since this investment category became popular in the 1970s and 1980s, the long-term personal investment approach to investing has typically outperformed other sectors during the downturn, generating some of its best returns after the recession. Here’s how acting like a private equity can help you weather tough market spots.

How do private equity handle bad markets

Private equity firms stick to a long-term investment strategy, averaging around five years. They keep investing during turbulent times, and quickly do enough due diligence (will this company add value?) to work out the kind of short-term buying opportunities that economic bottoms create. By buying steadily when other investors are walking away, PE is getting promising assets at a deeper discount.

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Image source: Getty Images.

Like private equity firms, individual investors can also pursue long-term strategic decisions. Sticking to a regular investment schedule and staying diversified, even in a volatile market, provides investors with an opportunity to buy into solid companies that may have simply been dragged into tempting values ​​alongside the rest of the market.

Additionally, private equity groups cannot cash out their investments quickly or easily. This prevents private equity firms from selling out of panic; They tend to stick with their investments through tough markets. Public market investors may benefit from the same patience and discipline.

What private equity can and (maybe) not do

Private equity funds know how to keep cash on hand in a variety of economic climates, giving them plenty of "dry powder" to use for dealing deals. If they need the money to seize a short-term opportunity, they don’t necessarily have to worry about borrowing when interest rates are higher. This strategy can be difficult for individual investors to imitate, and it requires planning (tracking income, expenses, and savings). But if you have low debt, and set aside a cash fund that you can tap into when you need it, you can follow PE to act quickly when opportunity knocks.

Private equity firms also have access to experienced and experienced people. Focused teams, value creation and sector professionals who work exclusively in a portfolio can analyze market cycles and find opportunities that may not be obvious to the average investor. Investors, this is where they pay to access knowledge; It is important to do your research and due diligence before jumping into investing.

Why private equity may not always win

Recently, the number of private equity investment opportunities has dwindled, and the values ​​at which private equity groups sell companies have declined, with further declines likely in the coming months. It remains to be seen if PE will once again overcome this downturn, and maintain its overall outperformance compared to the general markets.

In the meantime, try not to act on your fears during the economic downturn. Instead, take the same steps that have seen private equity during previous stock market storms: focus on the long-term, stick to the investments you believe in, and look for new opportunities when the market is trading at a discount.

The $18,984 Social Security Bonus Most Retirees Totally Forgot

If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on retirement savings for a few years (or more). But a few little-known "Social Security secrets" can help ensure a higher retirement income. For example: One easy trick can pay you up to $18,984 extra…every year! Once you learn how to maximize your Social Security benefits, we believe you can retire with confidence with the peace of mind we all seek. Simply click here to discover how to learn more about these strategies.

Motley Fool has a profile Disclosure Policy.

.