Life. Priorities.

By Merrill Lynch | Get the latest thinking you need to pursue your goals.

The Journey of Caregiving

20 million Americans became unpaid caregivers last year.<p>Merrill Lynch and Age Wave interviewed<br>caregivers about the challenges they face.<br>Here’s what they found.

Merrill Lynch

Health Savings Accounts Explained

WHAT IF YOU COULD GET health insurance coverage and tax benefits, while being able to save for your future, all at the same time? A Health Savings Account (HSA) linked to a high-deductible health plan (HDHP) can do all that. Which may be why, increasingly, companies are offering these accounts as …


Market Decode: Why Should You Care About Emerging Markets?

If you’re not sure where emerging markets are, you’re not alone. There are 24 in all,1 and they’re scattered around the world. But what unites them is that their combined GDP is expected to grow at a rate double that of the U.S. — by 4.6% in 2017 and 4.9% in 2018, while U.S. GDP is projected to …

Stock Markets

Should You Give Cash As a Wedding Gift?

CHANCES ARE YOU’VE GOT A WEDDING on your calendar this year. What are you going to give the happy couple? Wedding registries, which make it easy to give gifts that couples <i>want</i> to receive, made their first appearance in the 1920s, when a major department store introduced the first one. The newest …


The Bulletin

Financial tips, trends and insights to help you plan for the priorities—like your health, home, family, work, even leisure—that matter most to you


Unlocking the Value of Your Home

A house is more than a place to live and raise your family. Here are some ways the equity you’ve built up could help you pursue other important goals

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Ensuring Your Family is Prepared Throughout Their Lives

Talking with your family about your financial future can be a difficult conversation. Whether it's teaching children about the meaning of money or planning for retirement, we can help.


The Rise of the Machines

AMONG THE MANY EMERGING TRENDS IN THE technology sector, the rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is likely to be one of the most significant over the coming years. AI refers to the ability of machines to perform tasks that would typically be associated with human cognition such as responding to …

Artificial Intelligence

Correlation Kookiness

When it comes to stock market correlations, investors may point to a number of long-standing “rules” that help guide their investing. Among them: Stock prices and bond prices move in opposite directions, — as do stock prices and oil prices — while stock prices and bond yields move in the same …


Getting a Bigger Bang for the Infrastructure Buck

IF THERE IS ONE POINT ON WHICH Republicans and Democrats can agree it is that the United States cannot generate strong, sustainable economic growth unless it modernizes its infrastructure. The Obama administration lobbied for a massive infrastructure program to heal the U.S. economy post-financial …


Are You The 'Family Bank'?

ALMOST EVERY FAMILY HAS ONE: the person family members call on when money is tight and they need a helping hand. The more financially responsible you are, the more likely you are to be considered "the family bank," according to a recent study conducted by Merrill Lynch in partnership with Age Wave. …

Personal Finance

Could Your Home Help You Fund Your Retirement?

FOR THOSE NEARING RETIREMENT, few questions loom larger than whether to sell or keep the family home. Will you remain in a house full of memories, where you may have raised your kids, celebrated holidays and lived the greater portion of your life? Or are you looking forward to setting up house …


The Basics Q&A: What Can—and Can’t—I Use a 529 College Savings Account for?

<b>A:</b> Assets in a 529 college savings plan have to be spent on higher education in order to come out of the account tax-free. Besides tuition and fees—the biggest educational bills you'll probably face—other eligible expenses include such things as room, board, books, the purchase of computer and …


Paternity Leave: An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Connect with an advisor and start a conversation about your goals.<p>Give us a call at<p>1.866.706.8321<p>9am - 9pm Eastern, Monday - Friday<p>Have questions for your financial advisor?<p>Connect with to continue the conversation.<p>Phone<p>Email<p>1<p>"Is Paid Leave Available to Mothers and Fathers of Infants?" World Policy …


Snap Stat: The Big Chill-Out

<b>A pause that refreshes:</b> 68% of those surveyed mention relaxing and recharging as reasons for their career break, according to <b>Work in Retirement: Myths and Motivations</b>, a 2014 study by Merrill Lynch and Age Wave. After taking time off, many find work to be more flexible (80%), fun (53%) and …


The Caregiver’s Financial Guide

LIVING TILL YOU'RE 80 OR 90? A century ago the odds were decidedly against it, but today we take greater longevity almost for granted. The extra years can be a wonderful gift, providing more time for loved ones to spend with one another. But living longer also has added costs, among them a greater …


Checklist: Must-Reading for the Alzheimer’s Caregiver

<b>✔ Keep medical records and financial records close at hand.</b> These include an advance medical directive, which describes your loved one's treatment preferences, a durable power of attorney, which specifies who is allowed to make medical decisions for the patient, and an updated will.<p><b>✔ Prepare for</b> …


Are We on the Brink of an Eldercare Crisis?

AS WONDERFUL AS A long life can be, it also increases the likelihood that you or someone you love will develop serious health issues—and that you’ll struggle to find caregiving solutions.<p>In the U.S., more than 12 million people need long-term health care, according to the National Council on Aging. …

Health Care

Finances in Retirement: New Challenges, New Solutions

81% of Americans say they don't know how much money they'll need in retirement. Merrill Lynch partnered with Age Wave to study the realities of retirement. Our insights can help you prepare for what matters most.


The Basics Q&A: How Much Can We Spend on Travel in Retirement?

<b>A:</b> It's very common for people to spend more in the early years of retirement, and it's important to build that assumption into your planning. To avoid overspending, you and your wife should think through all of your goals and concerns for your retirement—everything from travel and leisure to where …


Elder Fraud Is on the Rise: Is a Con Artist Targeting Someone You Love?

SUPPOSE YOU HAVE A PARENT or grandparent who's living alone. She hires someone to replace the roof on her aging house and gives him half the money up front. And that's the last she sees of her roofer. No matter how close your relationship, can you be sure she'd let you know what happened?<p>Elder …

Identity Theft

ML Leisure, Beyond the Bucket List

Merrill Lynch

Renovate Your Home Without Wrecking Your Budget

HAVE ALL THOSE HOME IMPROVEMENT SHOWS got you thinking about renovating your kitchen, or knocking down some walls and expanding your living room? You’re not alone. In fact, in 2017, homeowners will spend an estimated $317 billion on home improvements and repairs, up 6.7% over last year. Their …

Home Improvement

Can China's Economy Bounce Back?

IN MID-2017, CHINA’S GROWTH RATE once again held steady, at just below 7% in the first quarter of the year. But that rate is far below what it once was, and concerns are mounting over whether China can sustain the momentum. This spring, Moody’s Investors Service downgraded the country’s long-term …

Merrill Lynch

Financial Etiquette: Who Pays for What on Vacation?

WE’VE ALL BEEN THERE: THAT AWKWARD MOMENT when the restaurant bill comes and it’s not clear who’s paying. Should you split it evenly—down to the decimal point? Or will one person magnanimously pick up the whole tab?<p>“The scene you want to avoid is having two or more people play tug-of-war with the …

Merrill Lynch

Checklist: 9 Questions Every Advisor Should Be Able to Answer

Whatever your priorities, this can help you find someone who understands you and has the resources to help you manage your financial life

Merrill Lynch

The Rise of High-Tech Healthcare: 5 Trends to Watch

THE SILICON CHIP AND THE STETHOSCOPE have long gone hand in hand. Indeed, Moore’s Law, a widely used forecast of rising computing power, can often seem to be nudging healthcare into the realm of science fiction, with life-saving high-tech innovations coming at a rapid rate today — and plenty more …

Medical Technology

4 Big Retirement Risks—and How to Prepare for Them

OVERSPENDING, INVESTING TOO CONSERVATIVELY and veering away from your plan—these are some of the most common traps people fall into on the way to their retirement. The good news is they’re easy to avoid with a little discipline and forethought.<p>Other risks—like a health crisis or a market …