April 2007 Newsletter

April 11: Making Your Money Last for a Lifetime: Why You Need to Know About Annuities
Learn the difference between a deferred annuity (for accumulating savings for retirement) and an immediate annuity (for turning a lump sum into a life time income stream), how to evaluate and shop for an annuity, and the important role an annuity can play in ensuring you do not run out of money in retirement.
BUT this doesn't apply to me; why should I attend? Because deferred annuities are being aggressively (and inappropriately) sold to older persons; learn how to protect your (grand )parents from a major financial mistake.
Financial Planning for Women (FPW) is a monthly educational seminar that meets the second Wednesday of each month at two times: 12:30-1:30 p.m. in Family Life room 318 on the USU campus. Bring your lunch. The same program is repeated in the evening: 7-8:30 p.m. at the Family Life Center , 493 North 700 East, Logan (at bottom of Old Main Hill). The longer evening time slot allows for more discussion. Programs are free and registration is not required. Bring a friend! For further information: (435) 797-1569; jean.lown@cc.usu.edu
Bring a female friend or colleague with you who is attending FPW for the first time and you will receive a thank you gift. Please speak up at the meeting and let us know.
If you need to be convinced why you should attend FPW, read:
WOMEN AND MONEY III: RECKONING WITH RETIREMENT
"The statistics are dire. Studies suggest that around 75% of the baby boom generation is not prepared for retirement. But we've heard the numbers so often that they no longer seem to have much impact. It's like living along an earthquake fault. You know someday the Big One will come, but the warnings are so familiar - and that day seems so far off - that you hardly pay any attention. Well, the statistics on women and retirement are even more alarming than for baby boomers as a whole, and the first tremors of socio-economic crisis can already be felt."
(Emphasis added.) Read the article at: http://www.cfp.net/certificants/updates.asp#2
Fundamentals of Personal Financial Planning
This on-line course is ideal for motivated persons who want to learn more about financial planning. This open courseware (free; non-credit) online course was just released: http://ocw.uci.edu/courses/first/ffp.aspx
Upcoming:
May 9: Great Mutual Funds for Your Individual Retirement Account. Learn about IRAs: Roth vs. traditional, mutual funds, and target date retirement funds. Even if you already have an IRA there are some major new developments you need to know about. If you think you don't need an IRA because you've got a retirement plan at work, read http://www.cfp.net/certificants/updates.asp#2
Small Steps to Health and Wealth (follow up on January FPW program):
"This program is designed to motivate consumers to implement behavior change strategies that simultaneously improve their health and personal finances." Check out the resources and encouragement at: http://www.njaes.rutgers.edu/sshw/
Small Steps to Health and Wealth monthly financial message:
http://www.njaes.rutgers.edu/sshw/message/default.asp?p=Finance
Join the Small Steps to Health and Wealth Challenge! www.njaes.rutgers.edu/sshw/challenge /
News & Resources
"Federal Student Aid is pleased to announce our newest tool to help students and their families plan for college. The FAFSA4caster provides students with an early estimate of their eligibility for federal student financial assistance. Beginning April 1, 2007 , students considering furthering their education beyond high school can use this FREE tool to:
* Calculate their eligibility for federal financial aid, including grants
* Reduce the time it will take to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the qualifying form for all federal financial aid." Available at:
http://www.federalstudentaid.ed.gov/fafsa4caster.html
Financial Security for All: Personal Finance (Extension web resource)
http://www.extension.org/personal+finance
Read The Wall Street Journal Sunday in the Sunday Salt Lake Tribune Business Section or read it online: http://online.wsj.com/public/page/sundayjournal.html
Top 10 Investment Scams of 2007 - The Salt Lake Tribune, 1- 14-07 , E1 & 7
In recent years Utah has seen a large increase in the real estate market, which has led to the rise of real estate scams. In Bob Mim's article in the Salt Lake Tribune he tells the stories of several victims of real estate scams in Utah . The people that you think you can trust can easily be the ones stealing your money. The Utah legislature is trying to pass stricter laws to prevent these scams but consumers need to help themselves. Mim's article gives some very helpful hints on how to avoid becoming a victim of one of these scams. Consumers need to make sure to deal with reputable companies and licensed individuals. You can check out companies at Utah 's Better Business Bureau website (http://www.saltlakecity.bbb.org/) . When making financial decisions it is a good idea to talk to your financial advisor first. They will be aware of current scams and know reputable companies to work with. Wayne Klein, director of the Division of Securities, even gives his office phone number (801-530- 6600) and says, to call his office "as part of a wise investor's precautions." By contacting Klein, a consumer can learn if the person or company they want to work with has a record unlawful activity or if they are licensed. Klein has put together his list of top 10 investment scams of 2007 and real estate scams are number one on the list. Utah Division of Securities: http://www.securities.utah.gov/
This month's humor:
T-shirt: "Do it yourself, I'm retired."
Housing and Financial Counseling ( USU Family Life Center ) workshops:
Saturday April 14 Homeownership workshop 8:30-4:30 (registration required)
Call 797-7430 to register.
Smart Money education series for teenagers 14-18 years and their parents.
Wed. April 18, 6:30 p.m.
USU Charter Credit Union, 198 N. Main , Logan . In downstairs conference room (enter at rear of building). Workshops are free. To register: 753-4080, ext 3400 or moneyteacher@usuccu.org
Planning Ahead: Utah Retirement Systems Pre-Retirement Seminar comes to Logan on Thursday September 20, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. This seminar is designed for URS participants within 5 years of retirement. Free for members and spouses. Seminars will fill quickly so register now: 800-753-7750.
The USU Family Life Center , 797-7224, 493 N 700 East (bottom of Old Main Hill), provides individual financial counseling. This is the best source for basic money management and getting out of debt. They offer the PowerPay computer debt analysis. Counseling sessions cost $5 for first session with sliding scale charges based on family income and family size for subsequent counseling sessions.
Thanks to the Certified Financial Planner Board Grant for financial support of FPW.