"Sell in May and go away", one of stock market pundits' many quick quips, fortunately did not fare so well in May 2013. The MSCI World IMI Index appreciated 0.25% for the month, with U.S. large company stocks appreciating about 2% while foreign stocks fell about an equal 2%. U.S. small company stocks were strong performers, up about 4%. Bond investors got trumped by a surprising increase in interest rates, so broad bond market indices fell between about 1.25% to 1.75% for the month. Our long term view remains optimistic but given the strong stock market returns in late 2012 and early 2013, a correction or downturn would not be surprising and would hopefully be short-term in nature. Remember, the stock market is volatile both up and down; always has been and always will be! Important words for long term investors to live by.
Recently, Donna Ellis and Kathy Blain, Certified Financial Planners in our office, attended a two day seminar on Social Security planning by the National Social Security Association. Donna and Kathy are now National Social Security Advisors (SM) and look forward to offering Social Security planning to our clients.
Planning to begin claiming Social Security is much more complicated than reaching a certain age and calling the Social Security office. The earliest most people may be able to begin claiming Social Security benefits is age 62. However, if you claim Social Security benefits at age 62, before full retirement age, you may be locking yourself and your surviving spouse into a lifetime of lower benefits. By carefully examining all available strategies, you can avoid leaving money on the table. At full retirement age married couples may employ the "claim and suspend" strategy to allow a spouse to claim a spousal benefit while the other spouse can allow their Social Security worker benefit to increase up to 32% by age 70. Also, if both members of the couple have been employed and qualify for Social Security benefits, a "restricted application" strategy can be employed to generate a spousal benefit while both worker benefits increase 32% by age 70! Before you file for Social Security benefits, please contact our office so that we can help you review your strategies and help you make the best decision for you and your family.
SAVE THE DATE! We are pleased to celebrate our 20th Anniversary in July, 2013! On Saturday, July 13, 2013 you and your friends and children and grandchildren are invited to the Newport Aquarium in Newport, Kentucky for our 20th Anniversary Celebration. The Aquarium will be open from 9:00AM to 7:00PM and we will be hosting a buffet lunch in the Riverside Room, which offers a spectacular view of the Ohio River and downtown Cincinnati skyline.
Personal invitations and more details will be coming shortly.
A monthly publication for our firm's clients, prospective clients and friends.