Financial News from Kiplinger

  • Make Your Retirement Savings Last a Lifetime Kiplinger - Thu, Feb 26, 2015 4:40 AM AEDT

    To boost a nest egg's longevity, advisers and academics are increasingly turning to 'dynamic' drawdown strategies that adapt to changing circumstances.

  • 10 Costly Mistakes Shoppers Make at Supermarkets Kiplinger - Thu, Feb 26, 2015 2:42 AM AEDT
    10 Costly Mistakes Shoppers Make at Supermarkets

    You could easily save money on groceries by shopping smarter.

  • Money Mistakes Couples Make Kiplinger - Fri, Feb 13, 2015 3:40 AM AEDT
    Money Mistakes Couples Make

    Why it's a mistake: If your significant other's name is the only one listed, "you leave yourself open to being thrown out on the street at a moment's notice" if you break up, says Kevin Reardon, a certified financial planner and owner of the Pewaukee, Wis.-based financial planning firm Shakespeare Wealth Management. Couples should also consider drafting a cohabitation agreement that clearly states the living arrangements they've agreed to. You can seek out the help of a lawyer in writing a cohabitation agreement, but a basic agreement can cost up to $2,000, she says. How to avoid it: Early and frequent communication with your sweetheart is critical to help avoid fights down the road, says Cathy Pareto, a financial adviser in Coral Gables, Fla. Several crucial issues should be up for discussion before marriage, including how much money each person earns, where it comes from, where it has been and will be saved and invested, and where it's spent each month.

  • How 6 Types of Retirement Income Are Taxed Kiplinger - Wed, Feb 4, 2015 3:16 AM AEDT
    How 6 Types of Retirement Income Are Taxed

    Consider the tax tab your income sources will generate in retirement.

  • 8 Best Retirement Freebies Kiplinger - Sat, Jan 31, 2015 7:22 AM AEDT
    8 Best Retirement Freebies

    Older adults can take advantage of these retiree-friendly goods and services at no cost.

  • Believe-It-Or-Not Tax Deductions Kiplinger - Fri, Jan 30, 2015 4:03 AM AEDT

    On the other hand, your fellow taxpayers have successfully claimed write-offs for many things that most of us wouldn't even imagine, ranging from cat food to a casualty loss for a vehicle totaled by a drunk driver. He claimed he was entitled to a $9,000 casualty loss. The Tax Court said that most of the $160,000 was a deductible business expense because the firm obtained new business connections, favorable construction financing deals and other similar benefits from its sponsorship. Nevertheless, the Tax Court allowed him the write-off because he translated what he saw and heard in the music scene and taught it to his students.

  • Tax Breaks for the Middle Class Kiplinger - Fri, Jan 9, 2015 4:43 AM AEDT
    Tax Breaks for the Middle Class

    If you believe that tax breaks are for millionaires and companies with offshore subsidiaries, you're probably paying too much to the IRS. In recent years, lawmakers have enacted dozens of tax incentives targeted at middle-class families. Taking full advantage of these tax breaks is particularly important for dual-income couples because there's a good chance they'll get hit by the marriage penalty--when two individuals pay more in taxes as a married couple than they would pay if they were both single. Anyone with earned income (meaning income from work rather than investments) can contribute to a traditional IRA, but not everyone who contributes can claim a tax deduction.

  • Where Do You Rank as a Taxpayer? Kiplinger - Fri, Jan 9, 2015 3:27 AM AEDT
    Where Do You Rank as a Taxpayer?

    Do you know how you compare with your fellow taxpayers when it comes to the income you make and the taxes you pay? We have the answer.

  • Tax Savings for Older Families Kiplinger - Thu, Jan 8, 2015 7:57 AM AEDT
    Tax Savings for Older Families

    Time claiming Social Security benefits, keep careful records of necessary improvements to your home or car, and tote up out-of-pocket costs of doing good.

  • Tax Planning for Sending Your Kids to College Kiplinger - Thu, Jan 8, 2015 7:57 AM AEDT
    Tax Planning for Sending Your Kids to College

    Higher education comes with a higher and higher cost. Take advantage of tax breaks to ease the financial pain.

  • Tax Planning for Newlyweds Kiplinger - Thu, Jan 8, 2015 7:57 AM AEDT
    Tax Planning for Newlyweds

    Will getting married cut your tax bill or will you fall victim to the marriage tax penalty?

  • The Most Overlooked Tax Deductions Kiplinger - Thu, Jan 8, 2015 2:56 AM AEDT
    The Most Overlooked Tax Deductions

    You see, Congress offers itemizers the choice between deducting the state income taxes or state sales taxes they paid. So if your state doesn't have an income tax, the sales tax write-off is clearly the way to go. In some cases, even filers who pay state income taxes can come out ahead with the sales tax choice. This isn't a tax deduction, but it is an important subtraction that can save you a bundle.

  • How to Help Your Aging Parents Kiplinger - Wed, Jan 7, 2015 4:43 AM AEDT
    How to Help Your Aging Parents

    Here are the basics of meeting the financial needs of mom and dad as they get older.

  • Five Steps to Hiring a Tax Pro Kiplinger - Wed, Jan 7, 2015 4:33 AM AEDT
    Five Steps to Hiring a Tax Pro

    Need professional help with your return? Here's how to find the right person for the job.

  • 10 Things You Must Know About Social Security Kiplinger - Fri, Jan 2, 2015 4:20 AM AEDT

    For many Americans, Social Security benefits are the bedrock of retirement income. Maximizing that stream of income is critical to funding your retirement dreams. By educating yourself about Social Security, you can ensure that you claim the maximum amount to which you are entitled. Your age when you collect Social Security has a big impact on the amount of money you ultimately get from the program.

  • Smart Ways to Lower Your Taxable Income Kiplinger - Fri, Dec 12, 2014 4:33 AM AEDT

    Reducing your taxable income is one of the most effective ways to lower your taxes, with some moves doing double duty as both deductions themselves and as a means to slide under income thresholds at which other taxes would kick in. While it's late in the year now, there's still time to take steps that will lower the amount of income you must report on your 2014 tax return. Money contributed to an employer-sponsored retirement plan, such as a traditional 401(k), isn't included in your taxable income. If you have self-employment income from a side job, you can sock away even more.

  • Figuring the Tax Bill on Social Security Benefits Kiplinger - Tue, Dec 9, 2014 5:22 AM AEDT
    Figuring the Tax Bill on Social Security Benefits

    If you know the formula for taxing benefits, you may be able to reduce what you pay.

  • 9 surprising things that are taxable Kiplinger - Thu, Dec 4, 2014 3:24 AM AEDT
    9 surprising things that are taxable

    If you've picked up some extra cash through luck, skill or criminal activities, there's a good chance you owe taxes on that money as well. Here are nine things you may not know are taxable.

  • Best strategies to boost your Social Security benefits Kiplinger - Thu, Dec 4, 2014 2:58 AM AEDT
    Best strategies to boost your Social Security benefits

    Follow our road map to the best strategies for claiming your benefits and boosting your retirement paycheck.

  • Best Doorbuster Deals for Black Friday at Toys "R" Us, Macy's, Walmart, Sam's Club, and More Kiplinger - Wed, Nov 26, 2014 2:09 AM AEDT
    Best Doorbuster Deals for Black Friday at Toys "R" Us, Macy's, Walmart, Sam's Club, and More

    These items will be deeply discounted the day after Thanksgiving.

  • Service Providers You Should Tip for the Holidays Kiplinger - Thu, Nov 13, 2014 7:42 AM AEDT
    Service Providers You Should Tip for the Holidays

    Also consider including a handwritten note, specifying what you appreciate about the person and her services, says Diane Gottsman, etiquette expert and founder of The Protocol School of Texas.

  • Great Places to Retire Kiplinger - Fri, Nov 7, 2014 3:49 AM AEDT
    Great Places to Retire

    Thinkstock As part of Kiplinger's annual best list , which rounds up the year's best financial products and services, we picked the five best destinations for retirees to spend their golden years. Depending ...

  • Guide to Picking the Best Health Insurance for 2015 Kiplinger - Thu, Nov 6, 2014 2:40 AM AEDT
    Guide to Picking the Best Health Insurance for 2015

    Whether you get coverage through your employer or buy it on your own, use our strategies to make smarter choices during open enrollment.

  • 6 Savvy Moves to Stretch Your Retirement Savings Kiplinger - Fri, Oct 31, 2014 1:21 AM AEDT
    6 Savvy Moves to Stretch Your Retirement Savings

    You set aside part of your paycheck in either an employer-sponsored retirement plan or a retirement account that you set up on your own, such as an IRA. In a recent Wells Fargo survey of middle-class Americans, who had a median household income of $63,000, 70% of respondents reported having a company retirement plan.

  • 8 Things You Didn't Know About Saving for Retirement Kiplinger - Tue, Oct 28, 2014 1:00 AM AEDT
    8 Things You Didn't Know About Saving for Retirement

    Squeeze every dime possible into your tax-advantaged retirement accounts with these lesser-known strategies.

  • Worst Things to Buy at Walmart Kiplinger - Thu, Oct 23, 2014 5:37 AM AEDT
    Worst Things to Buy at Walmart

    Walmart is known for saving shoppers money -- often lots of money. You name it, and Walmart probably stocks it. We compared regular (non-sale) prices at two Walmart stores with several of its competitors' regular prices. After also taking into account price-comparison research conducted by Web sites that specialize in finding deals, we identified 11 types of items that are generally cheaper at retailers other than Walmart.

  • Most Affordable Big Cities in the U.S. Kiplinger - Wed, Oct 22, 2014 4:58 AM AEDT
    Most Affordable Big Cities in the U.S.

    Thinkstock Big cities offer more employment opportunities, more things to do and more people to meet than smaller towns. But they also have drawbacks, from congestion and crime to high costs. That's why ...

  • Best Cell-Phone Plans for Every Type of User Kiplinger - Fri, Oct 10, 2014 5:23 AM AEDT
    Best Cell-Phone Plans for Every Type of User

    As carriers battle for your business, we help you cut through the hype to find the right plan for you and your family.

  • 12 Smart Year-End Tax Moves to Make Now Kiplinger - Fri, Oct 10, 2014 4:07 AM AEDT
    12 Smart Year-End Tax Moves to Make Now

    2014 has been a prosperous year for taxpayers who own stock and mutual funds outside of their retirement accounts. If you're in the 15% tax bracket, you'll pay 0% on long-term capital gains. In 2014, you're eligible for the 0% capital-gains rate if your taxable income is $36,900 or less if you are single, or $73,800 or less if you are married filing jointly. Offsetting gains is particularly important to taxpayers in the 39.6% tax bracket (income over $406,751 for singles;

  • Least tax-friendly states for retirees Kiplinger - Tue, Sep 30, 2014 12:46 AM AEST
    Least tax-friendly states for retirees

    These states impose the highest taxes on retirees, according to Kiplinger's 2014 analysis of state taxes.

  • 10 Least Tax-Friendly States for Retirees Kiplinger - Fri, Sep 26, 2014 6:56 AM AEST

    These 10 states impose the highest taxes on retirees, according to Kiplinger's 2014 analysis of state taxes. Five of them treat Social Security benefits just like Uncle Sam--taxing up to 85%. Exemptions for other types of retirement income are limited or nonexistent. While investors typically pay lower federal tax rates on long-term capital gains, most states treat capital gains like ordinary income, notes Kyle Pomerleau, an economist for the Tax Foundation.

  • 10 Most Tax-Friendly States for Retirees Kiplinger - Fri, Sep 26, 2014 4:58 AM AEST
    10 Most Tax-Friendly States for Retirees

    These 10 states impose the lowest taxes on retirees, according to Kiplinger's 2014 analysis of state taxes. All of them exempt Social Security benefits from state taxes. This year, we also looked at states' capital gains tax rates because the six-year-long bull market has left many seniors with sizable gains in their taxable portfolios. Unlike the federal government, which applies lower rates to long-term gains (the profit from the sale of assets owned over one year), most states tax both short- and long-term gains at ordinary income tax rates.

  • 10 Best Jobs You Can Get Without a College Degree Kiplinger - Wed, Sep 17, 2014 12:50 AM AEST
    10 Best Jobs You Can Get Without a College Degree

    Thinkstock A bachelor's degree is often thought to be the key to financial success. After all, while the median salary of high school graduates 25 years and older is $29,766 a year, the typical college ...

  • Cheapest Cities You Will Want to Live In Kiplinger - Thu, Sep 4, 2014 1:57 AM AEST
    Cheapest Cities You Will Want to Live In

    Cities with super-low living costs can suffer from high unemployment, poverty and a lack of services. To do so, we required that each city have below-average living costs, high household incomes relative to the cost of living, and an unemployment rate that's below the national average.

  • The Best 529 College-Savings Plans Kiplinger - Wed, Sep 3, 2014 12:45 AM AEST
    The Best 529 College-Savings Plans

    State 529 plans usually trump other options. The right one for you depends on what kind of investor you are.