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Personal Finance

Four Essentials Your Financial Advisor Should Have

The Client-Advisor Relationship Must NOT Be Overlooked, Says Industry Veteran

Shocking stats continue to make news regarding America's preparedness for retirement, including the fact that one of five citizens near retirement age have zero money put away for the golden years, according to statistics recently released from the Federal Reserve.

About 20 percent of pre-retirees have nothing stocked away, and 31 percent of the total population also has no money for retirement.

"This issue is making news regularly, and financial planning for retirement advertisements have spiked in recent years, in case you haven't noticed," says Rodger Alan Friedman, author of "Forging Bonds of Steel," (www.forgingbondsofsteel.com/).

"If nothing else, I hope the increased focus is lighting a fire under those who are near retirement, and I hope future generations are taking notes."

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Estate Planning Terminology

African American news from Pasadena - Personal Finance - Estate planning terminologyTopics in this column include the need for estate planning, what estate planning consists of, and what happens when there is no plan. Following are a few of the basic concepts and definitions:

Advance Health Care Directive - A written document in which one person (the principal) designates another person (the agent) to make medical decisions on the principal's behalf when the principal is unable to make medical decisions for him or herself. The principal may also direct which decisions should be made in certain medical situations. This document was formerly known as a "Living Will."

Beneficiary - A person for whose benefit an estate plan is created.

Conservator - A person who has been appointed by the Court to make health care and/or financial decisions for an incapacitated adult.

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Having Good Credit Will Become Absolute Necessity in Near Future

African American news from Pasadena - Personal Finance - Good credit importance and tipsThe Internet — the Superhighway — is where billions of dollars are spent on the purchases of numerous products and services. Billions of dollars for payments of bills are also paid via the Internet. Spending money on the Internet via credit cards will become a way of life for many, however, not everyone has access to a traditional credit card due to poor credit (FICO). Most people who do not have a traditional credit card only have a debit card connected to their bank account. It is time to become proactive about credit because the time is coming — and that time is sooner than you think—when debit cards will no longer be an acceptable form of payment. Today, it can be challenging when attempting to use a debit card for a car rental or to pay for a hotel room.

Due to the economic depression, high unemployment rate, business failures at an alarming rate, unemployment benefits running out with no extensions . . . many will no longer have access to a bank account or debit card. Then, what are your options? You are back to keeping money under your mattress; you are cashing your checks at cash checking outlets and purchasing money orders and postage stamps to pay your bills.

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