A lot of factors affect real estate prices, including interest rates, inventory, local foreclosure and short-sale rates, and even natural disasters. This year, as it was during the Great Recession, underwater mortgages and the potential foreclosure rate is a concern. Being “underwater” or “upside down” means that you owe more on your mortgage than the…

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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…

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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…

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Overview In 2020, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued an alert regarding a significant increase in investment scams. The sudden rise was attributed to the outbreak of the virus and subsequent market and economic declines. According to analysis of consumer complaint data by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), there was a 70% upsurge…

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