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Wages Haven’t Been This Crucial to U.S. Economy in Half Century

When it comes to U.S. economic growth, wages may never have been this important. The link between earnings and consumer spending has been tighter in this expansion than in any other since records began in the 1960s, according to calculations by Tom Porcelli, chief U.S.…

Investing: The Fed and unintended consequences

The Federal Reserve has been dealing with a number of unintended consequences of its low interest rate policy, which was intended to goose the economy. And, while low rates have indeed kept the economy from a complete disaster, they have unleashed a new series of…

Pre- and post-death estate planning tactics

Advisers can offer assistance as clients age by attending to a pre- and post-death checklist of issues, writes Martin Shenkman, CPA/PFS. Ensure that estate documents are updated, and keep an eye out for signs of diminishing mental capacity, he advises. (3/17)

Trusts offer advantages in transferring wealth

Advisers preparing to disburse an estate can turn to an old tool: trusts. Trusts provide advantages in terms of privacy and tax savings, and they can be used to benefit relatives or charitable causes. (U.S.) (3/17)

Fixed-income strategies for managing rate hikes

There appear to be two main strategies as investors await an interest rate hike, writes Bob Veres. Some advisers prefer to stay short, whereas others are creating bond ladders so they can reinvest once rates increase. But there are many ways of putting these strategies…