Senior Editor, Money Team

Eileen Ambrose is a senior editor and writer for the Money Team. She previously was a personal finance columnist with the Baltimore Sun.

Obama Floats New Options for Retirement Savings

Small businesses would be able to band together to create a joint 401(k) retirement plan, and some part-time workers could participate in their employer’s plan, under proposals to be included in President Obama’s final budget to Congress. An outline of these and other proposals to expand access to retirement accounts to more than 30 million people was released Jan. 26. More details, along with cost figures, will be available when the president submits his budget next month. Some ideas are …

The 25 Worst Passwords: Is Yours on the List?

If you recently changed your password to “starwars” in honor of the blockbuster movie, congratulations. Your new password is among the world’s worst — or rather, one of the most hackable. That’s according to SplashData, a password management company, which studies millions of breaches to come up with an annual list of the most common and easily exploitable passwords. No. 1 on the list for two years in a row is “123456.” Again in second place: “password.” Other perennials on …

Tax Breaks Brought Back From the Dead

Federal lawmakers will simplify tax planning for many by making certain tax breaks permanent — including one for charitably inclined older investors. Many tax breaks expire after a year or so, requiring an act of Congress to briefly extend them again. That has made tax strategizing difficult, because people don’t know if Congress will let an expired deduction or credit lapse for good or revive it at the last minute. As part of the omnibus spending bill that the U.S. …

Uncle Sam Bolsters Support of State-Sponsored Retirement Plans

The U.S. Department of Labor is paving the way for states to sponsor retirement plans for millions of private-sector workers who don’t have such programs on the job. About 68 million U.S. workers don’t have access to a 401(k) or similar workplace account, according to the Labor Department, even though studies show that employees are more likely to save for retirement if their employer offers a savings plan. More than half of the 50 states are either developing retirement savings …

Federal Agencies Team Up to Help Workers Make Smarter Retirement Decisions

Workers are often confused about Social Security, which can lead them to shortchange themselves later when claiming benefits. A new report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) cites studies that find only 1 in 5 preretirees know their full retirement age for Social Security. (For anyone born after 1942, the age is 66 to 67 years old.) And only 1 in 8 understand how benefits would change if they claimed them before, at or after their full retirement age. Simple …