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Friday Financial Five – November 13th, 2015

Friday, November 13, 2015


Gundlach still opposes a rate hike

Doubleline Capital’s Jeff Gundlach, considered by many to have assumed Bill Gross’ mantle as the leader in fixed income investment, doesn’t believe in a December rate hike. Aside from assessing that most bond managers aren’t ready for rise in rates, he made several other points against the Fed taking action. There is the absence of meaningful inflation, especially with the continuation of low oil prices. While the European Union continues economic stimulus, the U.S. would be cutting rates, a drastic disconnect between two regions with similar growth. Most important to Gundlach is the drop in the junk bond index, which is at four-year low.

Lew advocates for myRA

Jacob Lew, the Treasury Secretary, released a statement this week promoting the use of https://myra.gov/)" target="_blank">myRA as the “stepping stone” to greater savings. Workers may not have experience or options in terms of saving for retirement and some aren’t comfortable with investment markets they don’t understand. myRA provides a beginner’s experience for tax deferred savings for those that don’t have a retirement plan at work. As Lew points out, it’s a simple and safe way to begin the process of saving for retirement. It’s no longer feasible to think of Social Security as the sole source of retirement income.

House pushing a replacement fiduciary bill 

Raising fiduciary responsibility for retirement account advisers remains a priority and the House of Representatives is working on a bill separate from the Department of Labor’s. While the House bill also requires advisers to work in the client’s best interest and disclose compensation and fees, it’s an effort to reduce the DOL bill’s negative consequences on low and middle income families. The fight will continue between those that want complete fiduciary responsibility and an industry that simply wants full disclosure. 

Short window to file and suspend

‘File and suspend’ is the strategy for taking Social Security benefits where a higher earning spouse would file for benefits at full retirement age (FRA) and then suspend benefits to accrue retirement credits. The lower earning spouse subsequently claimed spousal benefits. This option is going away effective April 30, 2016 but remains an option to consider until then. Single people who are or will turn 66 within six months of November 2nd can also file and suspend at any point within that timeframe, once reaching full retirement age. This allows the banking of those benefits while earning roughly 8 percent annually until age 70, along with the option to request suspended benefits in a lump sum. 

Fantasy sports companies on the ropes

Daily fantasy sports companies are in the New York Attorney General’s crosshairs, with Draftkings and FanDuel receiving a cease-and-desist order to halt operations in the state. Furthermore, Marketwatch reports major financial institutions may wash their hands of the companies altogether. Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Visa, PayPal and MasterCard are all reviewing the ramifications of processing financial transactions that may be deemed illegal. 

Dan Forbes, a CFP Board Ambassador, is a regular contributor on financial issues. He leads the firm Forbes Financial Planning, Inc in East Greenwich, RI and can be reached at [email protected]


Related Slideshow: Oregon Business Rankings in US

See how Oregon stacked up against the other states in the U.S.

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Oregon gets a C+ for small business friendliness from Thumbtack, in conjunction with the Kauffman Foundation.

According to the ranking:

Overall friendliness C+

Ease of starting a business B
Ease of hiring D+
Regulations D
Health & safety D
Employment, labor & hiring D
Tax code D+
Licensing C-
Environmental D
Zoning D+
Training & networking programs B+

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CEO Magazine

CEO magazine was not kind to Oregon.

The state ranked in the bottom ten states at #42.

Oregon get lumped by CEO's as being California like - too much regulation.

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The 2015 rankings puts Oregon in the top 20. Oregon ranks #18 in the United States. 

NY ranks one spot ahead at #17 and Florida ranks after Oregon.

#1 in the United States: Utah

#50 in the United States: Mississippi

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Oregon has been ranked as the 2nd most eco-friendly state in the country, according to a recent study by WalletHub

Oregon ranks eighth in environmental quality and first in Eco-Friendly Behaviors landing them in second overall. 

Oregon is behind Vermont and ahead of New York and Minnesota who land in the third and fourth spots respectively. 

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The Economist

Small Business Friendliness Grade: C+

The Economist grades states on an A+ to F grading scale for its small business climate. Oregon is one of 4 states that earned a "C+"

Overbearing bureaucracy and excessive licensing is stifling small business in America. 

Read More About The Economist Grade Here

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#22 CNBC

CNBC ranks each state in cost of doing business, economy, technology and innovation.

Read More About CNBC Ranking Here

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Wallet Hub

#28 Wallet Hub

Wallet Hub ranks each state in ROI rank, state tax rank, and overall government services.

Read More About Wallet Hub Ranking Here

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#38 Kauffman Foundation

Kauffman Foundation ranks each state in entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurial activity generally is highest in Western and Southern states and lowest in Midwestern and Northeastern states.

Read More About Kauffman Ranking Here

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#19 Forbes in 2014

Forbes ranks each state in business costs, economic climate, and growth prospects.

Read More About Forbes Rankings Here


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