Richard Ogg

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A civil war is going to destroy traditional banking

The interests of the world's central banks and commercial banks have been aligned since the financial crisis. Central banks looked after their commercial counterparts by making it easy for them to rebuild their balance sheets after Lehman Brothers went bust by keeping interest rates low and …

War

Are You Baking With the Right Chocolate?

Do you know your bittersweet from your semisweet from your dark from your milk from your…? The world of baking chocolate is confusing. Here's how to navigate it.<p>The baking aisle of your supermarket is a complicated place, stacked high with questions and more varieties of funfetti cake than you ever …

Dessert

China's middle class isn't what we thought it was

Lately, though, that growth has hit a snag as the Chinese economy slows and struggles to segue into a consumer-based model.<p>A new report from The Demand Institute — a collaboration between Nielsen and the Conference Board — examined the growth of the Chinese middle class by considering how much …

Middle-class

Trading was halted 1,200 times Monday

The selling on Wall Street was so dramatic Monday that it triggered unprecedented emergency freezes on stocks.<p>Stocks and exchange-traded funds were automatically halted more than 1,200 times, according to Nasdaq.<p>The high level of trading pauses highlights just how extreme the selloff was in a short …

Stock Markets

The worst hacks of all time

Experian unknowingly sold the personal data of millions of Americans to a fraudster, who then sold that to identity thieves around the globe, putting the information in a database that criminals accessed 3.1 million times.<p>Hieu Minh Ngo, a scam artist in Vietnam. posed as a private investigator in …

Hacking

Is saving money your biggest financial battle?

Saving money continues to be a losing battle for many Americans. Even though the Great Recession technically ended five years ago, just over one in four Americans have no emergency savings in their financial arsenal. Adding insult to injury, people in their prime earning years are in the worst …

Your Guide To The New Social Security Statements

Beginning this month, many workers will get Social Security benefit estimate statements in their mailboxes for the first time since 2011. But to get the most out of them, you need to know how to read them, fix mistakes in them and plot your retirement plans around them.<p>I’ve spoken to two experts …

Here's What Stocks Do Before And After The Fed Starts Hiking Rates

Sooner or later, the Federal Reserve will begin normalizing monetary policy, which means higher interest rates are coming.<p>This has investors rightfully worried because higher rates mean higher interest costs, which should be bad for profits and ultimately stocks.<p>Deutsche Bank Chief US Equity …

Stock Markets

Bill Gross really knows how to manage an ETF

It took years for PIMCO’s Bill Gross to jump into the ETF business. Perhaps he didn’t realize how good he would be at it.<p>Since launching in March …

Investing: Market timing is for the birds

If you're an investor, you probably think that market watching is more important than bird- watching. After all, it's better to know that the Dow Jones industrial average is down 200 points than to know that the slabsided goatknocker often winters south of Chicago, right?<p>Well, for most people, …

Russia's Latest Retaliation Against Sanctions Puts American Multinationals In Crosshairs

Russia is known for playing hard ball. A new bill announced on Thursday threatens the assets of multinationals doing business there.<p>The bill is part of an ongoing sanctions battle pitting Russia against the U.S. and E.U. The most recent round of sanctions, announced by Washington and Brussels in …

One Of The Biggest Bulls For The Past Few Years Has An Ominous New Tone

Is it different this time?<p>For years we've gotten accustomed to rising markets and dips always being bought. But the recent selloff in the market (which was driven home by Thursday's big 200+ down day in the Dow) is making some new folks nervous.<p>The fundamental reason? The end of ultra-easy Fed …

Interest Rates

The 5 Big Mistakes Older Investors Make

When it comes to investing, you’re doing it wrong. That’s the frank message in <i>The 5 Mistakes Every Investor Makes and How to Avoid Them</i>, the new book by noted financial adviser Peter Mallouk.<p>I spoke with Mallouk to find out where we’re going astray and, more importantly, how we can address the …

IRS Issues 401(k) After-Tax Rollover Rules

There are new rules for taking after-tax money out of your 401(k), and they are taxpayer-friendly. Basically, if you have after-tax money in your 401(k) retirement account, you can roll it into a Roth IRA where it will then grow tax-free (as opposed to tax-deferred). You don’t have to pay pro rata …

Stay On Track For Retirement The Easy Way

The big question hanging over the heads of most everyone over 40 is: “Will I ever retire?”<p>An alarming number of people seem set on the notion that retirement will be optional, as if the work they’ve done for years always will be available to them (downsizing won’t happen), their health will remain …

How to Balance a Fun Life With Your Financial Goals

When you're paying off a debt or reaching some other financial goal, you usually have to cut back on restaurants, movies and other fun stuff. After a …

5 Giant Myths Of Retirement Planning

(<i>This article was adapted from Retiring for the GENIUS</i> <i>by Marc S. Freedman</i>.)<p>Some myths become legend, and once they reach that level of status, it’s tough to shake them from their perch. The world of retirement planning is no different. These are five myths that still exist in retirement planning:<p><b>1.</b> …

Do I Have to Pay 'Nanny Tax' on a Babysitter?

For every parent that posts a panicked “In Search Of: Help with Nanny Taxes!” plea on parenting listservs, there are countless others who are looking the other way. And its not just the parents. Even though the taxes are in the caregiver’s long-term financial interest, the immediate loss of wages …

10 things Generation X won’t tell you

<b>1. We’re poorer than our parents were at our age</b><p>Few people have been through as many economic ups and downs as the members of Generation X. Born …

Demographics

It's The First Day Of The Rest Of Your Investing Life

You know the old grade-school joke, I’m sure.<p>“What day is it?” Answer: “The first day of the rest of your life.”<p>Corny, I know, but thought-provoking as well. The past really is the past. Whatever happens next in your life is about what you do or don’t do today and tomorrow and the next day. It’s a …

Advisors Can Actually Tell Some Investors To Take Social Security Benefits Early

<b>Why Some Investors Should Take Social Security Benefits Early (Wall Street Journal)</b><p>Social security benefits are currently "unsustainable", and overdue for change, Scott Hanson at Hanson McClain Advisors warns that. Therefore, investors that have done well in terms of savings would be better off …

Retirement