The Navigoe Blog

Navigoe Quarterly Newsletter: Long Term Fiscal Status of the U.S., Tasty Tips for Your Spending Diet and More!

The Second Quarter Navigoe Newsletter is complete!

Here is a summary of some of the articles in this quarter’s newsletter:

The Long Term Fiscal Status of the U.S.

In the depths of the financial crisis in 2009, the U.S. Government deficit reached nearly 10% of GDP.  Fears that the U.S. was headed down the same fiscal path as Greece and Portugal were widespread.  Forced spending cuts, increased tax revenue and economic growth has brought the U.S. Government deficit on course to hit just 2.6% of GDP in 2015.  Long term concerns over entitlement spending and interest expense (brought about by all this deficit spending) still loom large.  Barring any changes over the next decade, projections are that government spending will be forced to rapidly increase to meet current obligations.

5 Tasty Tips For A Spending Diet

Readers of the Navigoe Blog know that Navigoe Partner, Eric Toya, compares the discipline and process of losing weight to saving money.  He has noted ways in which they are alike as well as how they differ.  This newsletter article plays on the same theme providing five tips for managing your spending using advice typically given for dieting.

Auto Enrollment: Boom or Bust?

Behavioral economists have taught us the importance of the “default” mode.  An interesting example is that countries in which citizens are assumed to be organ donors unless they opt-out have extremely high rates of participation.  Whereas countries in which organ donor status is a voluntary opt-in process have very low rates.  Using this idea to help Americans save more money, many companies are adding an automatic enrollment feature to their 401(k) plan.  New employees are automatically assumed to be participating unless they opt-out.  Research shows that auto enrollment has increased employee 401(k) participation rates, however, many employees are not increasing their salary deferrals above the initial default amount.

5 Strategies for Retirement Withdrawals

You have planned and saved for retirement, and the time is finally here to begin drawing on your savings rather than adding to it.  It turns out that the manner and order in which you withdraw funds can make a big difference.  This article provides tips to make your retirement withdrawals as effective and tax efficient as possible.

Don’t Chase After The Market News

It’s easier than ever to get up to the minute, up to the second, news about every earnings report, stock up tick/down tick, Federal Reserve Chairperson comment or analyst opinion.  Smartphones, iPads and the good old fashioned Internet make this information right at your fingertips.  Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should read it.

Consider a Personal Letter to Supplement your Will

In our letter to clients, we recommend considering a personal letter to supplement your formal estate planning documents.  Often, the estate planning documents covers your wishes in a broad and legal sense.  However, most of us have personal wishes and desires for our end of life planning, family heirlooms or other personal matters.  A personal letter would not be a legal document, but would help to communicate your desires to family members in your own voice rather than the legalese drafted by your attorney.

Our newsletter is mailed to clients and others who have asked to be included in our mailing list.  If you would like to be added to our mailing list, please contact our office at (310) 697-0400.

You can access this quarter’s complete newsletter here: Navigoe_2Q14_Newsletter