Finding the cash to pay a larger-than-expected tax bill can be tricky, but tax pros say there are ways to deal with the surprise without having to pawn the family heirlooms.
Tax preparers do a big chunk of America’s tax returns — more than 80 million a year, according to the IRS — but if you’re nervous about handing confidential information to someone in a largely unregulated field, you’re not alone. Here are some tips to help you find a good tax preparer and reduce the risk of expensive errors and exposing your finances.
As the tax clock counts down, people may hope to delay the inevitable by filing for an extension. But an extension may not get you as much breathing room as you might like. Here’s why.
A whopping 95% of married couples file taxes jointly, and for good reason: It’s almost always cheaper than filing separately. But what about the other 5% of the time? Here are a few cases where splitting up those returns might make more sense.
Millennials may be marked by their confidence, but a new survey by NerdWallet and Harris Poll reveals one thing they aren’t so sure about: filing taxes.
It doesn’t take the Panama Papers to expose tax cheats — plenty of people report questionable tax behavior to the IRS every year. Here’s what you need to know if you want to report a possible tax crook and perhaps get a reward.
Doling out financial advice at credit unions could soon look a lot different if controversial new rules proposed in April by the Department of Labor take effect.
The "Your Money" section of the November-December issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including an interview with celebrity chef Joe Bastianich.
Companies dread poor web design because it reduces the amount of time and money customers spend on their sites. The underlying problem is oftentimes poor UI and UX design. If your company is an offender, watch out. Here's what you need to know.
Even though The Great Recession is largely behind us, pulling their clients out of the rubble remains a grueling task for most investment advisors. This article shows how advisors are doing just that.
Credit unions may find themselves in court more often if the CFPB acts on its proposed ban on class action waivers in arbitration clauses - a change some industry experts said could inflate compliance costs and eliminate products and services.
The "Your Money" section of the January-February issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including an interview with EXTRA host Maria Menounos.
Some members of the card industry are questioning the Department of Education's recent proposal to regulate certain debit and prepaid cards. After July 2 - the deadline for public comments - they might have some answers.
Many of the country’s best athletes have given the United States big wins at this year’s Olympics, and the United States is going to give them something right back: a tax bill.
An overview of what advisors need to know before selling life settlements.
With consumers sill worried about their finances, it is not easy to get them to buy yet another insurance policy. Read this article to find out what some advisors are doing to sell lots of supplemental insurance to their prospects and clients.
We're taking the side of the broken-hearted and taking a breather from worshipping at the candy-coated, Pinterest-hyped altar of Valentine's Day. Behold our list of the most heartbroken cities.
An overview of VC's return to the alternative energy industry. Part of a weekly overview of energy industry topics for Bandersnatch subscribers.
Start on the wrong foot, in an area where the jobs are scarce and the pay is pathetic, and you could end up on a one-way path to being in debt forever. To avoid such a plight, we've gathered a list of U.S. cities that show the most promise for young couples getting started.
Whether you're planning to retire or you're already there, missing deadlines will cost you. Use this checklist to avoid disaster.
Life changes with the times, and it's in major metropolitan areas that real change becomes evident. With this in mind, CreditDonkey.com wanted to find out where we can see the future happening now by looking for cities that are embracing change the most. Where are the cities of the future?
Researchers might write enough about sales to fill
a thousand bookshelves, but their conclusions often don’t resonate with everyday advisors looking for practical ideas to boost their production
levels. So to separate the steak from the sizzle, we asked some top performers for the most effective ideas they have used in their quest for more sales. Here’s what we learned.
Last year, Americans spent $129 billion on individual annuities--down more than 38 percent from 2008. Yet, with a retirement boom on the horizon and millions of market-ravaged consumers seeking security, some of your clients are probably asking about annuities again. Here's what to do about that.
Demand for locally grown food is soaring, particularly in the Pacific Northwest, and that means economic opportunities in Lane County, according to a new study by the University of Oregon.
A discussion of FFO excerpted from Street Authority's Investor Update newsletter. StreetAuthority.com is a research-intensive financial publishing firm offering a variety of subscribers-only newsletters. I've written dozens of similar pieces for them. Click on section eleven or scroll down.
An interview with Umpqua Bank CEO Ray Davis. How Umpqua Bank used modern design to embrace one of banking's most cherished, old-fashioned strategies: The face-to-face relationship.
The long-term-care sector of the insurance business is booming, but some producers still have a difficult time selling the product. Here's how three top producers do it.
A school district becomes the middleman in allowing teachers and other employees to take hardship loans against their 403(b) retirement plans. Includes updates on two area charter schools.
The "Your Money" section of the July-August issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics.
The "Your Money" section of the March-April issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including an interview with HGTV's Carter Oosterhouse.
Travel is an $888 billion industry in the U.S., and if you've taken a trip recently, you know that booking online is the norm these days. Orbitz, the online travel-booking website, is the latest to try to capitalize on that with its April 2014 launch of the Orbtiz Rewards Visa Card.
A review of H&R Block's latest online tax-prep site.
American Express has added 4,100 Wal-Mart stores to its cash-reload network, making it the largest free cash-reload network in the United States.
The "Your Money" section of the May-June issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics.
The "Your Money" section of the March-April issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including an interview with Rachel Fox of Desperate Housewives.
The American Kennel Club launched its own Visa reward card on May 20. The card is a powered-up version of earlier cards the association has offered.
Here's what you have to know before you buy yourself the gift that keeps on giving.
The "Your Money" section of the May-June issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including an interview with NFL star Kurt Warner.
This feature article details how successful insurance producers have been able to keep their businesses afloat in the face of tremendous uncertainty about what health-care reform will do to the industry and its customers.
Maybe you wish you had never heard of bacon-flavored toothpaste, but the same can't be said about these little-known bonds. Find out what they are and how they work.
Sam's Club decided to capitalize on your bulk-buying high by announcing a cash-back credit card program on June 3. The card, called the Sam's Club 5-3-1 MasterCard, has perks that make those big-haul trips even more enticing.
An analysis of how pocketbook stress affects your marriage, your parenting, and your productivity.
A review of five prominent online tax-prep sites for 2008. TurboTax stands out with more features and the best site design, but TaxAct is the best value.
Also found at http://www.macworld.com/article/132273/2008/02/taxprep_online.html
In our search for successful NAIFA members under 40, we discovered these four advisors whose dedication to serving their clients has enriched their personal and professional lives. This is a profile of Joseph Tavernite, one of those four.
Cities typically don't have a lot of coin lying around for projects, so they often turn to munis, and you can benefit. Here's how.
People often overlook the need for disability insurance. They think their medical coverage, their life insurance, or their savings can cover the loss of income that often comes when they have to leave work due to injury. They're dead wrong. Here's how to get clients to see the light.
Yes, we are experiencing an economic downturn, but this has not prevented some producers from thriving. Find out what three of them are doing to successfully promote their services and reach hundreds of highly qualified prospects.
Not all stocks are created equal. Here's your guide to five of the most common types of stocks.
Many companies entice new employees -- and current ones -- with these offers. Here's what you need to know.
It isn't all about supply and demand. We'll show you how it really works.
Target's $19 million proposed settlement with MasterCard failed to receive the required 90% participation rate from issuers, meaning the settlement will not happen, according to an announcement from MasterCard and one of the attorneys representing five card issuers fighting the settlement.
Given the vast variety in economic conditions and demographics in this Land of Opportunity, we wanted to nail down the best states for entrepreneurs. Here's our list of the 10 best.
You could be headed down a dead-end street with your prospect or client and not even know it's happening. The next best thing to becoming a mind-reader is to know the six things they are probably thinking, but don't know how to tell you.
With almost three-fourths of Americans now saying their relationships with banks are primarily transactional, according to Accenture, having the right mobile offering isn't just trendy--it's a survival strategy. Here's what four experts say banks should do to stay relevant in mobile.
In time for Life Insurance Awareness Month, this article reviews how customers and producers look at life insurance these days, as well as how some producers sell the product more effectively.
Reviews of the five major online tax-prep sites. TurboTax edges out the competition, but only by a hair. URL leads to five clips in one:
Diebold is in talks to acquire its Germany-based competitor Wincor Nixdorf for nearly $2 billion, according to announcements from both companies.
New Mexico often appears on national lists of "best places to retire," but for more and more workers in the Land of Enchantment, the days of heading home at 65 and playing golf all day are gone. These days, "retirement" often means moving from a full-time job to a second career.
Using a fingerprint as an "I was here" message is what Houston startup Epic One plans to capitalize on when it launches its line of credit cards. The cards contain fingerprint readers and microprocessors that create a dual-authentication process, which lowers the chances of fraudulent use.
In February 2014, Capital One purchased a stake in ClearXchange, which is a network formed in 2011 by Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. The network allows people to send money to each other without having to establish accounts outside of their primary banks.
This program offers a great escape from your homemade accounting system, but the software's simplicity and limitations make it easy to outgrow.
The "Your Money" section of the July-August issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including an interview with Melissa Rivers.
The two producers profi led in this article are honing the skills required to sell in today’s difficult business climate: willingness to adapt, ability to meet their clients’ ever-changing needs, a “can-do”
attitude and a healthy dose of optimism.
Profile of a Four under Forty award winner.
Successful prospecting still requires the same things it did during the California Gold Rush: time, effort, skill and knowing where to look.
In our search for successful NAIFA members under 40, we discovered these four advisors whose dedication to serving their clients has enriched their personal and professional lives. This is a profile of Ronco Johnson, one of those four.
Millennials may be marked by their confidence, but a new survey by NerdWallet and Harris Poll reveals one thing they aren’t so sure about: filing taxes.
About 43% of men and 36% of women ages 18 to 34 still live with parents or relatives, according to the Pew Research Center, but experts say there are a few things parents can do at tax time to help offset the costs of letting those adult children stay in the nest. As with parenting, though, it can be a tricky endeavor.
We ran the same tax situation through five popular tax-preparation sites and got totals that varied by almost $2000.
There are few things worse than spending hours preparing your tax return only to discover that identity thieves have already snatched your refund. If thieves come after your tax return, experts say there are a few steps you’ll need to take to deal with the damage.
Profile of entrepreneur Dwight Collins and his historic Eugene business, Newman's Fish Company.
Profile of local entrepreneur Sam Recinos and his local landmark, Plaza Latina.
Business development companies let you invest like the mega-rich. Here's what you must know before you jump in.
Profile of Jon Buerstatte, managing partner of Gleaves, Swearingen, Potter & Scott.
Despite the economy, employers are still trying to attract bodies and talent by offering benefits. But they're living in an uncertain world full of spiraling costs. This article profiles how four top worksite insurance producers are making benefits attractive and affordable to employers.
As with most things, cheapest almost never means best when it comes to financial planners. Here's how to make sure that your costs don't get too high.
The U.S. Treasury hopes new legislation could collect $8 billion in taxes from offshore accounts. Find out what that means for you.
The "Your Money" section of the March-April issue of Consumers Digest. The section includes 10 articles on a variety of personal finance topics, including interviews with Mark Cuban and Today Show financial editor Jean Chatzky.
Everyone claims to know where you should put your retirement money. Sort through all the noise by checking out these five plans.
Futures markets can be confusing. Here's what you need to know.
As you look for ways to improve your practice in this era of doing more with less, don’t overlook the relationship with your broker-dealer. The products and services your broker-dealer offers may go a long way in helping you enhance your client services—and stay ahead in today’s challenging marketplace.
Last summer, Cindy Hockenberry decided she’d had it with threatening phone calls claiming she was behind on her taxes.
“One day — I’m not kidding you — I got called three times,” she said.
The way health care is delivered is experiencing a major transformation. Your keys to success in whatever system is ultimately adopted? Flexibility and an unwavering commitment to customer service.
Americans spend about 37 billion hours a year waiting in line, and it takes a toll on their emotions. That problem is precisely why payments processor Square has moved into the online ordering business with its launch of Square Order.