By Mike Allen ([email protected]; @mikeallen) and Daniel Lippman ([email protected]; @dlippman) NEXT YEAR’S NEWS -- “The coming wave of anti-abortion laws: New GOP state legislatures will make access to abortion harder than ever,” by Paige Winfield Cunningham, with Natalie Villacorta: “GOP victories in the statehouses and governor’s mansions ... are priming the ground for another round of legal restrictions on abortion [including action in Ark., W.Va. and Tenn.]. Abortion rights advocates have had setbacks in the states for several years, with a surge of legislative activity since 2011. Women seeking abortions may face mandatory waiting periods or ultrasound requirements. Clinics may face stricter building codes or hospital admitting privilege rules they can’t satisfy. Dozens of clinics have shut down in multiple states. Texas ... has fewer than 10 abortion clinics now. A year ago, it had 40. Story Continued Below “Republicans [will] … [Read more...] about DOORBUSTER EDITION – GOP TO PRESS ABORTION ACTION in legislatures, Senate – FACEBOOK TO PUSH BUSINESSES to pay for promotions rather than disguising as news
Using 401k to pay off house
Last Updated Feb 18, 2011 6:12 PM EST "Should I pay off my credit card debt or use the money to save for retirement?" I hear this question frequently from people in their 20s and 30s, and it's a good follow-up question to my earlier post, Retirement Planning Advice for My 20-Something Son. Some people even have a budget for their savings: "I can save $5,000 this year, so how should I prioritize my savings goals?" My first thought is, if you think you can save $5,000 per year, figure out how to save $6,000! I contend that most people can save more than they think they can by taking a hard look at their spending habits. Most people don't have enough money to meet all their savings needs, so you'll meet your goals faster if you can figure out how to save more. guidelines for prioritizing your savings depending on the choices you might face.First, save enough to build up an emergency fund that equals your living expenses for three to six months. This is just in case you get laid off from … [Read more...] about Should You Save for Retirement or Pay Off Credit Card Debt?
There are plenty of horror stories about people who borrow from their retirement plans -- the teacher who took a small distribution and forgot to pay it back until it ballooned to 10 times the original loan, for example, or the unemployed worker who ended up with a massive tax hit because he was unable to repay the loan within months of losing his job. But borrowing from a 401(k) isn't always a bad idea. For those with the right jobs and circumstances, borrowing from your company's retirement plan may actually be smart, said Christine Benz, director of personal finance at Morningstar in Chicago. "Many people are allergic to the idea of borrowing from their retirement plans, but when you look at the math, a 401k loan can sometimes add up to the right answer," she said. So when is it OK to borrow from a 401(k)? First, it's important to understand that all 401(k) loans are not alike. Although federal tax rules allow 401(k) loans of up to half the account balance or $50,000 (whichever is … [Read more...] about When is it OK to borrow from your 401(k)?
Did you ever need money and think about taking a loan or withdrawal from your 401(k) account -- but aren't sure how to do so or if it's ever a wise move? You've got lots of company. Representatives who take calls for retirement plans say withdrawal and loan requests and related questions consume the biggest portion of their time. But what it all boils down to when figuring if this is a good idea depends on what you'll do with the money. Most financial pundits say never take money from your 401(k) plan because you're reducing funds you'll need for retirement. Another good reason to avoid taking early withdrawals is that when you take money out, you'll pay more income taxes and penalties than you would otherwise. It's hard to argue against these reasons. But if the measure of your financial health is your net worth (assets less debts), taking cash from your 401(k) plan to pay off debt has no immediate impact on that. Less money in your 401(k) is offset by less debt. Look at this more … [Read more...] about Before you take money from your 401(k)
Colorado state lawmakers Wednesday introduced a long-awaited bill to cut public employee retirement benefits and boost contributions into the state pension fund to shore up its troubled balance sheet. But in an unusually candid acknowledgement of political reality, the lawmakers who sponsored it say they’re under no illusion that that proposal will become law without significant changes. To put it bluntly, Senate Bill 200, sponsored by Sen. Jack Tate, R-Centennial, and House Majority Leader KC Becker, D-Boulder, has something for everyone to hate. It would increase contributions from taxpayers and employees, while cutting benefits for current and future retirees. And it would phase in changes more rapidly, with a goal of paying off the unfunded debt sooner and reducing the financial risk of an economic downturn. It would also extend to all future public employees the choice of opting out of the pension to enroll in a 401(k)-like plan — an allowance long sought by … [Read more...] about PERA bill would cut benefits, boost contributions and give future public workers a 401(k)-style option