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You could have had the same 6%/year return from a low-fee generic mutual fund - indeed, data suggests you are more likely to get a higher return than from a manager. Anyway, you could have used mutual funds with a 0.25%/year expense ratio. In that case, you would have $930,000 in your retirement account.
The Money article (March, 2015) is by Robert Zagunis, who attributed the math to Jordan Ellenberg, author of How Not to be Wrong. Zagunis suggests that his readers go to bankrate.com and run the numbers themselves. So I went to bankrate.com and in the search window typed: Mutual Fund Fees Calculator. It popped up and I plugged in some numbers. That's the source for the graphic on this page (just click to enlarge). Better yet, go to bankrate.com and run your own numbers.
For more on how your investments leak away and what to do about it, click on Reduce Portfolio Leaks.
All the best,
God used the granite structure, and the 10 steps leading up to the sanctuary to teach a young girl about his stability, strength, and massiveness. Once inside, beautiful stained glass windows, illustrating stories of Jesus, revealed God's loving heart as he came to live among us.
Last fall we learned that the church was scheduled for demolition, so Robin went into action and purchased the windows. Now crated and stored in a warehouse in Minnesota, they are waiting for a church or Christian university purchase them as a way for God to enlighten their building or campus. For more on Robin's story and the windows themselves, click on Church Windows.
During the accumulation years, most of us routinely reinvest all dividends and capital gain distributions back into the investment that generated them. This is smart and results in a fast growing portfolio. In taxable accounts, this results in annual taxes as triggered by the 1099's we receive each January. So far, so good.
Then in retirement many of us hit a point where we need to extract a stream money from our taxable account. So we periodically sell shares - while continuing to reinvest distributions! This means we now we have 2 taxable things going on, the taxation on the reinvested distributions AND the capital gains taxation due to the shares we sell to generate living money!
There is a better way: stop reinvesting distributions and start diverting this stream of money into a money market fund or your checking account - and use it. You pay taxes on this distribution stream every year, whether you reinvest it or use spend it. So spend from the stream of distributions before selling shares.
I've added this concept to both Mutual Fund Distributions and Taxation (a refresher on what all those 1099's mean), and also to Retirement Funding (some advice on how to fund your retirement). Indeed, I've just revised both pages enough that even if you saw them a year ago when I posted them, they're worth another look.
All the best, Tim
Student loan debt is a major concern in the U.S., affecting many university graduates for years after they leave school. It is a particularly difficult problem for pastors and ministers because we expect them to have a masters degree (or equivalent) even though most ministry settings cannot pay enough to repay their student loans even in 5-10 years.
So I've spent some time assessing this ministers' student loan debt problem, especially searching for creative strategies to relieve or eliminate it. I circulated a Google Doc on this topic to several of my ministry colleagues for comments and edits. For a look at this research, and to collaborate about this topic, click on Ministers' Student Debt.
The most interesting part of the CNN article (to me, at least) is the requirement to make all guns "smart," meaning they cannot fire without the presence of a "key." For more perspective and the link to the CNN article, click on Firearm Keys & Liability.
Here's the link to my personal quotation file. It's not full of things I've written or said; it's full of quotes I've gathered from personal reading over many years. The file is over 60 pages long, and I'm sure I'll continue adding to it. You can view it, or download it and make it your own - for free.
When I need a shot of encouragement or clarity, reading a few entries gets me ready for another “run around the track.” I hope you will give this a try. If a quote triggers a question for you, feel free to contact me.
Here are some examples from the file:
Enjoy the file and, in the process, let its wisdom encourage and enlighten you.
Identity in Christ.
Sharon Rauenzahn, the author of 2 previous years' Advent Readings already on my site, is writing a new set for this year!
So if you're looking for extremely fresh material, check out "Preparing for Perfection." The readings for the first two Sundays are finished and ready for use. The ones for the remaining Sundays will be ready in a few days - well before you need them.
Or for links to all 5 reading sets, go to Advent Readings.
Tim (and Sharon)
Sainsbury's 2014 Christmas advertisement. Sainsbury is the third largest supermarket chain in the U.K. and they built this ad around a true story which has circulated among Christian preachers for years. I think I used it myself. But Sainsbury's 4-minute dramatization tells it far better than I ever did. The clip depicts the 1914 story of a 48-hour localized truce during WW1 between British and German troops to celebrate Christmas.
Sainsbury is receiving some criticism for commercializing this "war story." But the story is a good one, and (in my opinion) is not about commercializing or condoning war. Quite the opposite, it is about the Spirit of Christmas showing up, even in the worst of circumstances.
After all, Christmas is very much about God incarnate coming into the broken circumstances of our world. And Christmas offers much, much more than a temporary, localized truce. This clip will help some ministers make this point.
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If you've been intending to take a look at my site but haven't gotten around to it, here are some places to start. These are the 5 most visited pages over the last 30 days: