BuzzsawDollar

The Real Reason Mutual Fund Fees Have Hit A 20-Year Low

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

[1/16/19: In honor of Vanguard Group founder John Bogle, who died today, I’ve re-posted this 2016 column. —Walter Updegrave] A recent report from the Investment Company Institute says that competition, asset growth and greater use of index funds has steadily pushed mutual fund fees to a 20-year low, from just over 1% a year on average for stock funds in 1995 to less than 0.70% today. True enough, as far it goes. But as someone who covered funds and investing during much of that period, I’d add that one man deserves a heaping share of the credit for the trend toward lower fees, not to mention the huge benefit today’s investors derive from slimmer costs: Vanguard founder and retired CEO John Bogle. More»

KEEP IT SIMPLE

How Can I Simplify My Retirement Investments?

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

Ask Real Deal Retirement

I’m retired and currently manage my IRA portfolio of 10 different funds. But I’m thinking I’d like to simplify my portfolio and my life. Short of hiring an adviser to oversee my investments, what do you recommend? More»

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3 Ways To Recover From A Late Start On Retirement Planning

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

Ask Real Deal Retirement

I haven’t made the best decisions when it comes to retirement planning. As a result, my wife and I are in our early 50s and have next to nothing saved for retirement. Do we have any hope of a secure retirement? More»

AdvisersinOffice

Do You Really Need A Financial Adviser?

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

Ask Real Deal Retirement 

If I just invest my money in some good low-cost mutual funds, do I really need to pay a financial adviser for help?

—Daniel

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OpenWallet

Is There A Low-Risk Way To Avoid Running Out Of Money In Retirement?

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

Ask Real Deal Retirement

I plan to invest half of my savings in a Standard & Poor’s 500 index fund, half in a total bond market index fund, withdraw 3.5% the first year of retirement and then adjust that amount annually for inflation. Is this a low-risk way to ensure my money will last throughout a long retirement?

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Overdiversifying-TooManyChoices

4 Tips For Investing A Big Windfall In Today’s Market

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

Ask Real Deal Retirement

I’m 53 years old and will soon come into a multi-million dollar sum that I need to manage properly for my retirement and for my children’s future. I’m not willing to just hand the reins over to anyone, but I also realize I’m not an experienced investor. I’d like to invest this money so it will continue to grow for all of us, but I don’t know where to begin. Any suggestions? More»

FLICKR-collegegrads

A Geezer Journalist’s Financial Advice For College Grads

By Walter Updegrave, RealDealRetirement @RealDealRetire

[Editor’s note: This column originally appeared a year ago. The advice still applies today, so I’ve re-published it for 2018 grads. Enjoy!]

It’s that time of year again, when politicians, activists, business honchos and other luminaries don cap and gown to dispense sage advice to newly minted college grads in the time-honored form of commencement speeches. Somehow I didn’t receive a request to speak. Maybe my less-than-cum laude record as a student at Penn more than 40 years ago scared schools off. But I’ve never been one to let the mere lack of an invitation stop me from weighing in. So here, from someone who’s spent the bulk of his career writing about personal finance, are five tips and observations designed to help recent grads get onto the right financial path. More»