Are You a Social Security Double-Dipper? Perhaps Not Much Longer

When and how you claim Social Security benefits has a huge financial impact on your retirement, although many older Americans aren’t aware of all their options and lose out on some serious money, according to a survey released today by Financial Engines. The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company found that single retirees potentially miss out on $100,000 or more over the course of their retirement, while for married couples the amount is $250,000 or higher. Financial Engines’ findings come from a recent …

4 Myths About Daylight Saving Time

Let’s hope you’ve recovered from Groggy Monday, the day after we turn our clocks ahead an hour (and lose an hour of sleep) for that  convoluted practice called daylight saving time. Even though studies show that this fiddling with our sleep schedule is a bad idea – a higher risk of car accidents from sleepy drivers during the Monday morning commute, workplace injuries because of tired workers, a spike in heart attack risk – we’re still somehow wedded to “springing …

Employers Shift More Health Care Costs to Workers

It’s not that your paycheck feels smaller. It is smaller, thanks to the bigger portion that health care costs are siphoning from your take-home pay. Employers year after year have shifted more of the burden for health insurance costs to workers. And it’s no different for this year. Employees’ premiums rose by nearly 7 percent to $2,975 for 2014, not counting out-of-pocket costs, according to a survey released this week by Towers Watson and the National Business Group on Health, …

Stock Gains Push 401(k)s to Record Highs

Last year’s gangbuster stock market pushed 401(k) savings account balances to record highs, according to two major retirement account providers. Fidelity Investments says the average account balance at the end of last year reached $89,300, a 15.5 percent increase over the year before. For workers age 55 and older, balances averaged $165,200. Many workers roll over their 401(k) into an individual retirement account when they leave a job.  Adding up the balances of those who have both a 401(k) and …

Facebook, Others Scale Back 401(k)s

It’s bad enough that employers are doing away with traditional pensions and adopting 401(k)s that foist all the investing decisions onto workers, leaving them vulnerable to the vagaries of the market. Now, according to an analysis by Bloomberg, it appears that many big companies have gotten stingier with their 401(k) matching contributions and vesting schedules. These include IBM, Hewlett-Packard Co., Oracle Corp., Caesars Entertainment Corp., JP Morgan Chase & Co., Whole Foods Market Inc.  and Facebook. (Facebook, Bloomberg reports, gave …

Women 50+: What to Wear to Get the Job

The economy is tough. The job market – especially for those of us over 50 – is even tougher. But if you want to rejoin the workforce or land a new opportunity, the tips below can help you put your best foot forward. It’s been said that it takes all of seven seconds for a stranger to size you up. So make the best first impression you can by sporting an interview outfit that will knock their socks off. Jacqui …