Shake Shack – Burger or Shares?

New York–based hamburger chain Shake Shack plans to go public soon by issuing stock in an initial public offering (IPO). Yahoo finance says it’s a hot offering, and the company has raised the price target to between $17 and $19 a share. Should you bite? It’s very tempting, especially when looking at other restaurant chains like Chipotle (CMG), which went public in 2006 at $22 a share and, as of Jan. 28, trades at about $712 a share. Shake Shack will trade on the New …

Social Security Expands Office Hours

Beginning March 16, Social Security field offices across the country will be open an extra hour on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Hours will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. This change is thanks in part to the agency’s new budget, which gave it the resources for the longer office hours. Previously, hours were reduced because of congressional budget cuts, along with a reduction in staff, amid a growing workload, the agency says. >> Sign up for the AARP Money newsletter Social Security offices …

Swiss Bank to Traders: Here’s Some Hot Cocoa in Your Face

The Swiss central bank sucker punched the financial community by unlinking the Swiss franc from the euro. As a result, those who trade in currency markets saw huge gains or losses. And while some blamed the bank’s move for the ensuing market volatility, both U.S. and international stocks gained that day. But there are some very important lessons to take from last week’s events, and those lessons are best learned before fortunes are lost. Foreign currency futures are contracts that allow you to buy …

Obama Proposes Middle-Class Tax Breaks

In his penultimate State of the Union address, President Barack Obama on Tuesday night announced wide-ranging proposals he said would improve the economic prospects of the middle class, including helping families pay for college and child care, while giving more workers access to retirement plans. To help pay for these expanded benefits, the president also wants to increase the taxes paid on inherited assets of higher-income households. Many agree that it’s a long shot the president will get his wish list — …

Coalition Urges Labor Department to Protect Retirees’ Nest Eggs

Public interest groups have joined forces in a coalition to prod the U.S. Department of Labor to revise rules requiring financial advisers to act in their clients’ best interests when offering retirement investment advice. SaveOurRetirement.com, a website created by the coalition, is urging the Labor Department to update the so-called fiduciary rule. Without that safeguard, advisers to retirement plans could sell financial products that pay large commissions yet hurt their clients with unnecessary fees, poor returns or excessive risks, the coalition said. >> Enter …

Non-Traded REITs – Warning, Danger Ahead

Are you looking for income? One solution often pitched is private and non-traded REITs (real estate investment trusts). REITs raise money to buy income-producing real estate. In this low-yield environment, they are touted as having high yields and no market risk, and as alternatives to bonds. These days, REITs are selling like hotcakes. According to Investment News, sales doubled to $20 billion in 2013 from a year earlier. Sales were likely to be robust for 2014 as well, though the Wall …