“It’s Greek to Me!” – Understanding Your Investment Statements

By Eve Kaplan, Certified Financial Planner™ Note: I recently gave a seminar at the Bernards Township Library in Basking Ridge, NJ. Here are a few points that we touched on. When you look at your monthly investment statement, do you think “this looks like Greek to me”? Do you ignore all but the first page, […]

Are You a Near-Sighted or a Far-Sighted Investor?

by Eve Kaplan, Certified Financial Planner(TM). Are you a Near-Sighted or a Far-Sighted investor? If you’re a near-sighted investor, you probably check your investment balances frequently (even several times a day) and you feel good when your investments are up. Your focus is short-term, even though you may live another 30-50 years. Conversely, you worry or feel regret when […]

Take a Quiz: Is Your Financial Advisor a “Broker” or a “Financial Planner”?

by Eve Kaplan, Certified Financial Planner (TM) Professional You have a financial advisor, but what kind is he/she? Take this brief quiz to see if you can tell the difference between a “Broker” and a “Financial Planner.” Receive 2 points for all “Yes” answers, and 1 point for all “No” answers: My financial advisor has […]

“Keep It Simple, Stupid” (KISS) Your Way to Financial Health

by Eve Kaplan, CFP(R) Professional Are you familiar with the KISS (“Keep it Simple, Stupid”) concept? KISS helps you refine your elevator speech, write concisely…and the KISS concept can boost your financial health. How? By helping you focus on essential ways to strengthen your financial well-being. After working with hundreds of financial planning and investment […]

Showdown in Retirement Planning: “The Wild West” vs. a Uniform Standard of Fiduciary Care

by Eve Kaplan, Certified Financial Planner (TM) Practitioner You might be stuck in “The Wild West” without realizing it. I’m referring to your retirement plan – be it an IRA, 401k, 403b or defined benefit plan. That’s because you likely are missing a Fiduciary Standard of Care. That’s a fancy way of saying your interests, […]

The 3 Main Investment Styles: Pros and Cons

By Eve Kaplan, CFP® There are pros and cons to investing in the three main investment styles: active, passive and “evidence-based investing.” The benefits of “evidence-based investing” will be clearer after reviewing “active” vs. “passive” investing styles. 1. Active Investing through Mutual Funds: “Active” investors aim to “beat the market” (or a portion of a […]

Which is Best: Lump Sum or Pension Annuity?

by Eve Kaplan, Certified Financial Planner(TM) Is a lump sum offer from an employer a better choice than a pension annuity for life? The former provides an immediate up-front amount (say $300,000), but the pension annuity gives you a stream of payments for life (example: $1,350 per month). A number of employers dangle a lump […]