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Levin: How to keep fear or greed out of your investment portfolio

In preparation for a client meeting, I e-mailed the client and said, “You can be greedy or afraid, but not both.” For a couple of years, this client basically said things like, “I am really worried about what is going to happen in the market; how can we get stock market returns without the risk?”

After a great 2019 in the markets, I suspect that many of you may be experiencing similar thoughts. You can’t get great returns without risk. It is not possible. Fuhgettaboudit. Fear and greed are consistent combatants in a tug-of-war that leaves you emotionally battered and more reactive than necessary. Rather than being ping-ponged with the news or market fluctuations, here is a better approach.

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Levin: You just might be better off by accepting financial planning mysteries

In his book, “What the Dog Saw,” Malcolm Gladwell talks about puzzles vs. mysteries. Regardless of how difficult it may be to understand, puzzles have solutions. If you work hard enough, you can solve them.

Mysteries have no answers because there are too many variables that affect outcomes. Mysteries are about uncertainty. In fact, we tend to overcomplicate them by absorbing too much information.

As the year comes to a close, I was thinking about how often we try to turn the mystery of financial planning into a solvable puzzle.

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Congress passes the SECURE ACT, what do the changes mean for me?

Attached to the large spending bills that Congress passed just before the end of the 2019 legislative session were some last-minute provisions that will have an impact on personal finances in 2020 and beyond. The “Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement” (SECURE) Act includes some important changes to the rules regarding Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), as well as some narrower changes to other aspects of the tax code. The following is a high-level update on a few of the items that are likely to have the widest and largest impact.

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Social Security Adjustments for 2020

Each year the Social Security Administration announces cost of living adjustments that impact the monthly benefit to recipients for the following calendar year. As the New Year approaches, you can expect the following changes to apply to those enrolled in Medicare and receiving benefits from Social Security in the 2020 calendar year.

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Levin: How to get tax benefits from giving in the post-tax reform world

In the movie “Knives Out,” an 85-year-old mystery author of enormous means has decided he no longer wants to financially support any of the adults in his family.

Needless to say, he doesn’t live much longer after he tells them (this is not a spoiler), and the question of whether it was a suicide or a whodunit colors the film.

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Levin: It’s a good time to notice those who are struggling

Soon we will gather around our Thanksgiving tables, expressing gratitude for the good things in our lives. We will probably be sitting with those who share with us more similarities than differences. For some reason, this Thanksgiving, I am thinking about “The Other.”

The Other are those who are socially, economically, politically, religiously or simply just different from us. Not only do we not connect with them, but we may make them bad in order for us to be good.

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Becky Krieger named as one of the 2019 Top Women in Finance in Minnesota

Accredited is thrilled to announce that Becky Krieger, Managing Director, Client and Community Outreach, has been named by Finance & Commerce as one of the 2019 Top Women in Finance in Minnesota.

Finance & Commerce has been honoring Minnesota’s Top Women in Finance each year since 2001. Per the publication, the Top Women in Finance honors program “recognizes women who are making an impact not only in their professions but also in their communities in Minnesota.”

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Choosing a Financial Advisor – Part 4

In the final installment of our four-part Choosing a Financial Advisor Series, we explain why the “right” fit when it comes to choosing an advisor can only be found after gaining an understanding of exactly what you want and need from an advisory relationship.

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