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Social Security Updates

By safeguard | December 11, 2020 |

The Social Security Administration (SSA) recently announced a new cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) starting in 2021. Beneficiaries can expect a 1.3% increase in their income payouts next year, which is actually smaller than the COLA increase was for this year.1 For single households, that’s an average increase of about $20 a month; $33 for married retirees.2…

Let’s Talk About Bankruptcy

By safeguard | December 4, 2020 |

According to a recent paper by a Wharton Business School professor, 1 in 10 U.S. households have filed for bankruptcy at some point. Moreover, approximately 1 million file for personal bankruptcy each year. Yet, even in the wake of total household debt soaring to a record $14.3 trillion in the first quarter of 2020, the…

Let’s Talk About… the 401(k)

By safeguard | November 18, 2020 |

 The 401(k) originally began as a company profit-sharing plan. Companies had been funding defined benefit pensions for years, but as their annual profits and stock prices experienced volatility, they looked for ways to share that burden with employees. Through profit sharing, workers made money when the company did and made less during down years. While…

Fixed Income vs. Stock Portfolio

By safeguard | November 13, 2020 |

Early this year, many stopped spending and began saving money. This wasn’t difficult as many areas of the economy were — and possibly still are — shut down. For some, vacation plans were canceled, and the normal level of entertainment activities and dining out have been curbed. If you’ve remained employed, chances are good you’ve…

The Millennial Economy

By safeguard | November 6, 2020 |

The millennial generation hasn’t had it so great. A recent economic analysis reports that since entering the workforce five to 20 years ago, the average millennial has experienced slower economic advancement than any other generation in U.S. history.1 It’s not just a matter of long periods of high unemployment. It’s also because getting that first…

How Climate Change Could Affect the Economy

By safeguard | October 30, 2020 |

Some people believe that climate change is exacerbated by human intervention, while others argue that humans are not a factor. Regardless of what may or may not influence extreme weather events, economists are predicting that the long-term results of climate change could affect more than just our homes and possessions.   In fact, the Congressional…

Preparing for Potential Pandemics

By safeguard | October 23, 2020 |

If you think the economic decline due to the pandemic has been difficult for you personally, the big picture numbers may be even worse. Analysts project that the total economic disruption could eventually cost between $9 trillion and $33 trillion. Many economists are advocating that the U.S. — and the world — make a concerted…

What To Expect From the Payroll Tax Holiday

By safeguard | October 15, 2020 |

Christmas came early this year. Well, sort of. In an effort to provide financial aid to millions of Americans in dire economic straits, President Trump declared a payroll tax holiday between September and the end of the year. Available to workers who earn $104,000 a year or less, this means that no FICA taxes will…

Americans and Their 401(k)s

By safeguard | September 25, 2020 |

A recent survey found that working households experiencing financial strain due to the pandemic have not been inclined to make withdrawals from their 401(k)s to help make ends meet. In fact, the vast majority haven’t even changed their rate of contributions. Instead, these households are relying on the “old standbys” of surviving during economic decline:…

Heat Wave: Power Bills and Power Options

By safeguard | September 18, 2020 |

During the U.S.’s initial spring lockdown, the weather was rather temperate in most areas of the country. By the time COVID-19 outbreaks started becoming more rampant nationwide, summer was in full swing. This made for uncomfortable conditions in terms of social distancing guidelines. For example, the pandemic forced hundreds of restaurants to seat more patrons…

Employers: Lessons From the Pandemic

By safeguard | September 11, 2020 |

We’ve learned a lot about infectious diseases this year, as well as how to adapt our lifestyles in response to a pandemic. It will be interesting to see if and how U.S. businesses adjust their operational models to account for the potential for future pandemics or other catastrophic events.   According to the employment-population ratio,…

What’s Going on in Real Estate?

By safeguard | September 4, 2020 |

Overall, the U.S. residential real estate market has held up fairly well so far during the global pandemic. Industry experts say that the current economic decline is expected to affect retirement a bit differently than the Great Recession, largely due to housing prices remaining strong in many areas of the country.1   One reason is…

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