The loss of jobs is the main challenge of any economic downturn and the current recession is no exception. Rather than react to daily coronavirus headlines, investors should continue to stay disciplined. Here are the facts.
As August begins, the economic recovery is sending mixed signals. Last week's GDP data for the second quarter showed that the economy suffered its worst decline in history over those three months. What does this mean for Investors?
Once again, the stock market is back to where it started the year. This week, the S&P 500 notched flat year-to-date performance and rose to just less than 5% below its all-time high in February. However, the strong performance of the overall market hides differences between investment styles and sectors. What's driving the performance?
The U.S. stock market has almost fully recovered from its bear market decline. Since the bottom on March 23, the S&P 500 and NASDAQ have risen 43% while the Dow has jumped 46%. The S&P 500 is now only down about 1% year-to-date and is about 5% below its February high. Although it's important to not overly focus on any short-term period, recent market performance has much to say about the continuing recovery and long-term investing outcomes.
What's happening in the Market? In short, today's (06/05/2020) jobs report was a positive surprise and is evidence that the economy is slowly but surely recovering as COVID-19 cases fall and businesses reopen. We are not out of the woods yet, and there will be more bad economic data to come, but a clear light at the end of the tunnel can help investors stay on track and help to justify recent market performance. For my fellow nerds, read on. Here's the data:
If you’re like most of us, you’ve probably been thinking about your health quite a bit lately — especially if you’re approaching retirement. Anticipating your future medical costs can feel daunting. When it comes to your health, Medicare may be an important part of your retirement strategy. Read on for details.
Even in “normal” times, the news can be depressing. But these days, it can seem like there’s an awful lot to worry about. It’s easy to get gloomy reading/watching the news day in and day out. But if you look for good news, there’s a lot to be encouraged by. Here are some recent examples.
As of Friday, April 24, the Internal Revenue Service said it had issued 88 million payments to individuals across the country. Here are some of the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to review.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken up nearly every aspect of American life. To say it’s been a difficult time would be an understatement. However, difficult times may open doors to new possibilities. Here is an opportunity to consider.
If you're taking Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs), you have now have new options. Here are two key changes you should know about RMDs that are tucked into the gigantic “Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security” (“CARES”) Act in response to COVID-19.
Tired of the "Bad News" news cycle? The relentless headlines and sound bites can cause anxiety and negatively impact our general outlook. It's time to turn off the news and incorporate these 4 practices to boost your optimism and maybe add years to your life.
Air travel is stressful. While some stress may be unavoidable, dealing with stress from luggage check-in and baggage claim can be reduced. Here are 5 simple strategies that may help you make next getaway with only carry-on luggage.
Apps. We all love ‘em and there are millions available, but most aren't worth your attention. In this post, we've highlighted 5 that we’ve tested, regularly use and approve to help you get better organized, stay secure, save important info, and efficiently manage your finances.
The US markets have been setting records recently and are sitting near all time highs at the time of this post. Are you excited or concerned? Either way, if you’re led by your emotions when investing, you will more than likely fail.
If you’ve ever wondered why a molehill turned into a mountain on a simple task, it could be due to lack of process. Having a process makes tasks not only efficient, but in most instances, a process can create desired outcomes. If you want to simplify the Essential things in your life, whatever they may be, then continue reading about how a process can save you more time.
September is officially National Preparedness Month, and it is no coincidence that this national awareness month takes place during peak hurricane season. As I am writing this, tropical storm Gordon is quickly approaching the Gulf Coast. Even if you don’t live near the coast, it’s Essential that you and your family are prepared for emergencies. Follow these easy steps to get started!
Whether or not you have children back in school, this can be a great time of year for all of us to incorporate some discipline and focus into the routine. Maybe a new hobby, diet or fitness plan?
These 4 tips productivity tips can help you essentialize your weekly routine in any season of life.
Have you ever looked back the last 10 years and wondered how you got there? How you connected all the dots to make everything happen? You’re not alone! In today’s fast-paced world months and even years can blow by without a notice. As the saying goes, “failing to plan is planning to fail.”
The Essential Planning Approach will help you plan for success.
We're discussing Essentialism (again!) but this time we unpack it and take a more in depth look at how the Disciplined Pursuit of Less can impact your personal life.
Say "no" to good things; go big on THE great thing...
In today’s world of distractions, it is easy to take our liberty and the Fourth of July for granted. This year, I took some time to reflect on what it really meant and began with the Declaration of Independence. I wanted to share it with you in this post.
Enjoy, and God Bless America.
A budget is essential to attaining and maintaining a work-optional lifestyle. Hidden expenditures can potentially snowball into unwanted debt pushing your goals further away. Be sure to include these four items to your budget every year!
The four expenses are...
Critical Financial Events are any event that could potentially render a financial plan useless. These life events can be good, bad, or neutral. In this post we outline what they are and the steps we take to help our clients avoid these pitfalls.
Critical Financial Events are...
When we visit with the families we serve or those who’ve been introduced to us, there are a few common questions that always come up. To provide clarity, below are the answers to the four most frequently asked questions we receive.
The first question is...
Have you ever found a charge on one of your bank cards that wasn’t yours? Well, one of our team recently did, and this post gives you the process you should use to get your money back! We also outline a few strategies to being alerted as soon as the fraudulent charge happens.
Here is the process...
Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and if you struggle every year to find that perfect gift for your mother, grandmother, or spouse then this article is for you! Below is a list of the best items we’ve seen over the years to help you find that perfect gift.
Here are the 12 gift ideas...
Spring is here and it's one of our favorites. Everything snaps back to life, including things around the house. We have you covered with this list of six essential spring cleaning tips from our podcast, and there's even you can do from the couch!
Here are the six spring cleaning must-dos...
If you have visited my office, you have probably seen a copy of the book Essentialism on my desk. This book has been pivotal in helping me discover where my highest point of contribution should be. If you haven't read it, I highly recommend it.
Here is how essentialism can make an impact on your life...
The new year brings new resolutions and goals for everyone, Barko Financial is no different. This year we look to move our practice further into to a stewardship role for our clients and we will be adding additional valued services.
Here is what you can expect from us this year...