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Time, Talent, Treasure Radio

 Is Your Financial Advisor More than an Account Manager?  Last week Taatjes Financial Group hosted our annual Fall Kick-off Open House. Not only was the open house a wonderful time of great wood-fired pizza and cupcakes, it was a reminder of the deep and meaningful relationships we have with our clients. In this episode, Ben Taatjes CKA® explains the role we desire to play during wonderful and difficult seasons of our clients' lives.

Investing Checklist: Things to Do by Now Autumn is Here.  Ben Taatjes CKA® share three to-do’s to check off your list as an investor now that fall is upon us.

September Stocks Open in Positive Territory.  Investor sentiment turned positive last week as signs of economic softness were interpreted as reason for the Fed to hold off on further rate hikes. A downward revision of Q2 economic growth and fresh signs of a cooling labor market reversed the recent rise in bond yield. They helped trigger a stock bounce back following Fed Chair Powell’s speech at Jackson Hole the previous Friday.

Stocks Weather Summer Storm of News and Indicators.  Rising bond yields, driven primarily by strong economic data and the release of the minutes from July’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting that pointed toward Fed officials’ potential need to raise rates further, weighed on stocks throughout the week. Ben Taatjes CKA® explains the side-effects of rising interest rates on an investors’ lives and their portfolios.

Risk Profiles and the Cruelty of Math on Portfolios.  In our experience, many investors tend to forgot how cruel math is on a portfolio when markets go down – meaning the more portfolio values go down, the greater the returns needed to regain those losses. Ben Taatjes CKA® explains the importance of having the proper risk tolerance and ways to self-manage emotions during turbulent market seasons.

Every Investor Needs to Know These Three Things About Their Portfolio.  The stock market is a complex world. While knowing of all the intricacies of investing and the global economic structure are unnecessary, Ben Taatjes, CKA® breaks-down the three key pieces of information you need to know about your own portfolio.

The Fed Raises Rates. Recession Dodged. Are We in the Clear? Even though The Fed raised interest rates by 0.25% last week, the market responded positively Friday with strong earnings data. So, we have dodged a recession yet again. Or, have we? Ben Taatjes, CKA® talks about the possible “lag-effect” when The Fed increases rates and what you need for your portfolio.

Is Inflation (Still) Stealing the Joy in Your Life and Retirement? Even though year-to-year inflation rate increases dropped to the lowest reading in over two years, price hikes are still affecting retirees. However, does paying more at grocery stores, restaurants and the gas pump have to derail the joy you experience in your life? Financial Advisor, Matt Hoekstra, not only says no, he also gives the key to battling inflation and a scarcity mindset.

What if Negative Market Predictions Actually Come True? After all the hubbub regarding an on-coming recession and out-of-control inflation at the beginning of 2023, a much more positive reality has transpired. This highlights the importance of a sound mind for investors not letting fear dominate your decision-making. Financial Advisor, Tim Mattern NSSA®, discusses the mindset you must have NOW even if bad market predictions come true.

Wasn't There Supposed to be a Recession? In advance of 2023, the recession drum beats were so loud it was deafening. Market pundits warned that as the Fed raised interest rates, it was just a matter of time before the economy entered a recession. But it’s July now, and so far, no recession. It appears that the economy is slipping into an expansion rather than moving toward a recession.

How to Make Every Day Count in Retirement. Retirement removes all guardrails in your schedule which used to tell you when to sleep, awake, eat, exercise and work. Ben Taatjes tells us how to make every day count by reconstructing these three rhythms to your day.

Retirement Should NOT be Primarily a Financial Conversation. One of the biggest lies we have seen in nearly two decades of helping people retire is the relentless focus on the financials. While having a sound retirement plan is absolutely vital, we believe the narrative on retirement planning should transcend just money.

The Conversation You Need to Have NOW with Family. Unfortunately, the wealth transfer process between a deceased parent and their children is often messier and more hurtful than expected. Financial Advisor, Matt Hoekstra has seen too many families’ relationships suffer due to unmet expectations. Matt explains how to approach this delicate conversation and ways to make sure your family dynamic doesn’t suffer when sifting-out the death of a parent.

Three Things you Need to Review this Summer. Summer is here and now is a great time to do a financial check-up. Financial Advisor, Kendra Peterson, talks about three areas of your financial plan that may need attention or updating.

Knowing Where Your Taxes Go. Today we talk about everyone’s favorite topic….taxes! Probably not the case. However, Ben Taatjes discusses this timely topic as government spending continues to increase and debt ceiling negotiations continue. Bottom line, do you know where your taxes are going?

The Company that Supports TFG. Ben Taatjes and Jerrid Sebesta reflect on a recent trip to Dallas, TX to visit TFG’s home office, Avantax. Avantax is a 1000+ employee company responsible for and dedicated to the smooth and quick financial transactions our clients are accustomed to experiencing.

How Much Cash Do You Have? This is a question we’re asking more than ever to clients for two reasons. First of all, for the first time in many years, cash is creating a solid rate of return. So, having an abundance of cash on-hand may not be the best strategy. And secondly, having large stores of cash may reveal possible red flags for people having too much of a “someday” mentality.

Key Financial Planning Ages. Since we’re celebrating Ben Taatjes’ birthday, we cover a number of key financial ages starting with 50 years-old when people can begin catch-up contributions – ending with 73 years-old, respectively, when RMDs begin and every significant age in between.

Latest Inflation Rates and Summer Projects. As summer quickly approaches, Ben Taatjes CKA® talks about ways investors can use this time to do "summer projects" along with updated inflation numbers from the U.S. Department of Labor.

Three Things Retirees Should Consider for Financial Literacy Month. In light of the final week of Financial Literacy Month, Ben Taatjes gives three specific things retirees can do to help their families and their retirement.

Tax Season Has Ended, Now What Do I Do? Even though tax season has officially ended, this is an important time for retirees and pre-retirees. Ben Taatjes CKA® gives three specific things you can do to utilize the remainder of 2023 and be better prepared for next year’s tax season.

Creating Meaningful Connections with Grandchildren. In lieu of our next online event, "Grand Connections: Creating Deep, Meaningful Connections with Grandchildren", Ben Taatjes shares two meaningful stories about his grandfather. He also explains the privilege and crucial role grandparents play in a family. 

Who's Who in Uncertain Times? Ben Taatjes CKA® talks about the protection and regulatory controls of Avantax and National Financial Services, LLC in these uncertain times and we announce our next online seminar, "Grand Connections: Creating Deep, Meaningful Connections with Grandchildren", coming up on April 12th at 11am Central.

Maximizing Each Tax Bracket. In light of the up-coming tax deadline, Ben Taatjes talks about tax brackets. Maximizing each tax bracket is an important strategy that needs to be a major part in your retirement plan. Retirement planning and tax planning go hand-in-hand. If you need help building a purposeful retirement plan that maximizes each tax bracket in the most tax-efficient way, we can help.

Retirement Tools: Fixed-Income Options. As interest rates have risen over the last year, so have rates-of-return on a number of fixed-income options including treasuries, fixed annuities and municipal bonds. If you are looking for a safe, short-term option, there are many to chose from with a wide variety of terms. Want more information to see if these fixed-rate options are right for you and your retirement plan? If so, please, reach out to us. We can help.

Retirement Tools: The National Social Security Advisor® Certification. Tim Mattern NSSA® shares how earning the National Social Security Advisor® certification has given him knowledge to counsel clients on the best way to claim Social Security benefits in order to optimize lifetime Social Security income.

Retirement Tools: The CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Certification. Claire Molden, CFP® shares how earning the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification has expanded her knowledge, confidence and ability to make purposeful retirement plans for our clients. For more than 30 years, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification has been the standard of excellence for financial planners.

Retirement Tools: The Certified Kingdom Advisor® Certification. Ben Taatjes discusses how earning the Certified Kingdom Advisor® Certification (CKA®) has helped shaped his interactions with clients and potential clients. He goes on the talk about how asking the right question with the right worldview is key. The Certified Kingdom Advisor designation recognizes individuals who have demonstrated their technical competence as a financial professional, provided evidence of their personal integrity and have committed to providing financial guidance influenced by their biblical worldview.

Retirement Tools: eMoney Planning Software. Ben Taatjes discusses how eMoney software helps us build purposeful retirement plans for our clients. eMoney is a robust program designed for high-end, complex situations. It helps clients see how their assets get turned into consistent cashflow for their retirement. In our experience, when we can help our clients steward their cashflow well, it gives them the confidence and freedom to steward their time and talents more efficiently.

Time, Talent or Treasure. What is Most Important? Ben Taatjes discusses his experience of asking retirees and pre-retirees the question "What is most important? Time, talent or treasure?" While the answer might be obvious to many people, it brings us a bigger conversation over stewardship and our roles as retirement planners.

Aired Live: January 31st, 2023: Ben Taatjes discusses the revisited Roth rules associated with SECURE Act 2.0. 529 to a Roth. Starting in 2024, pending certain conditions, individuals can roll a 529 education savings plan into a Roth IRA. So if your child gets a scholarship, goes to a less expensive school, or doesn't go to school, the money can get repositioned into a retirement account. However, rollovers are subject to the annual Roth IRA contribution limit. Roth IRA distributions must meet a five-year holding requirement and occur after age 59½ to qualify for the tax-free and penalty-free withdrawal of earnings. Tax-free and penalty-free withdrawals are allowed under certain other circumstances, such as the owner's death. The original Roth IRA owner is not required to take minimum annual withdrawals.

Aired Live: January 24th, 2023: Ben Taatjes discusses the new distribution rules associated with SECURE Act 2.0. Catch-Up Contributions. Starting January 1, 2025, investors aged 60 through 63 can make catch-up contributions of up to $10,000 annually to workplace retirement plans. The catch-up amount for people aged 50 and older in 2023 is $7,500. However, the law applies certain stipulations to individuals earning more than $145,000 annually.

Aired Live: January 17th, 2023: Ben Taatjes discusses the new distribution rules associated with SECURE Act 2.0. RMD age will rise to 73 in 2023. By far, one of the most critical changes was increasing the age at which owners of retirement accounts must begin taking required minimum distributions (RMDs). And starting in 2033, RMDs may begin at age 75. If you have already turned 72, you must continue taking distributions. But if you are turning 72 this year and have already scheduled your withdrawal, we may want to revisit your approach.