Contact us at 913.451.7526
Contact us at 913.451.7526

May 2015

Is a Rollover Right for You?

If you’ve recently changed jobs — or maybe changed jobs a few times over the years — you may be juggling multiple retirement plan accounts. While it’s certainly acceptable to leave your money in your former employer’s plan (as long as your balance is over $5,000, your old employer can’t cash you out), in many instances it might be a better idea to consolidate your assets.

Consolidation can help make administering and allocating your assets much simpler.1 Having your entire retirement portfolio summarized on one statement makes it easier to track performance and make changes.

But before you initiate a rollover, be sure to compare the investment options and their associated fees in your old plan with those in your new plan.

  • Were you able to properly diversify your assets in your old plan?1 If your investment choices were limited, you probably want to move your old account into your new account.
  • Are the investment fees higher or lower than those in your current plan? If you were paying more at your old plan, it’s a good reason to move your assets to a plan with lower investment fees.
  • Are you satisfied with the investment choices and fees charged in your current plan? If you’re not happy with your current plan — and weren’t crazy about your old plan — you can always roll over your old plan assets into an IRA.

Initiating a roll over isn’t difficult. First, check your current plan rules to confirm that rollovers are permissible (the vast majority of plans accommodate this feature). Then contact the administrator of your old plan (you can find their information on your quarterly statement) to get the ball rolling. Some plan providers have a simple online request process, while others require completion of a paper-based rollover form. Your current plan provider or IRA provider may even furnish a rollover service for you.

It’s also important to know the difference between a rollover and a distribution. A rollover allows you to transfer your money from one qualified retirement account to another without incurring any tax consequences. A “qualified” account can be either your new employer’s plan or a rollover IRA.

A distribution is essentially a withdrawal from your account. If you request a distribution, the account administrator is required by law to withhold 20% of your account balance to pay federal taxes. State taxes, if applicable, are also due. If you are under age 59 1/2, you will probably be hit with an additional 10% federal early withdrawal penalty.
If you have specific questions about your retirement plan distribution options, contact your employer’s benefits coordinator or a qualified financial consultant.

1Asset allocation and diversification do not ensure a profit or protect against a loss in a declining market.

© 2012 S&P Capital IQ Financial Communications. All rights reserved.

Can You Afford Early Retirement?

Early retirement is a phrase many Americans wish they could turn into a reality. While retiring in your 50s or early 60s sounds enticing, it typically requires years of planning to make sure you’ve accumulated enough retirement assets to last for 20 or 30 years or more. It’s important to factor in how an early retirement could affect your Social Security benefits, options for health insurance, and the nest egg you plan to rely on for ongoing living expenses.

Social Security and Medicare
Those who collect Social Security at age 62, the earliest age when most retirees are eligible, face a permanent reduction in benefits. For example, if your full retirement age is 66, collecting benefits at age 62 will result in a 25% reduction in the monthly benefit you would have received by retiring at 66.1

Those born in 1960 or later will experience a permanent 30% benefit cut if they choose to begin collecting benefits at age 62 instead of their full retirement age of 67. In contrast, delaying benefits past full retirement age results in a higher benefit, with a maximum delayed retirement credit of 8% annually for those who were born in 1943 or later and wait until age 70 to retire.

Regardless of your age when you retire, Social Security is not likely to pay all of your living expenses. Social Security currently comprises 36% of the income of Americans aged 65 and older, with remaining income coming from employer-sponsored retirement plans, wages, and other sources.2

Finding health insurance is equally important if you plan to retire early. Eligibility for Medicare begins at age 65, and those who retire earlier typically must obtain health insurance on their own or through a former employer, which can cost thousands of dollars annually in premiums.

Saving and Budgeting
Early retirement typically requires a larger nest egg to finance living expenses over a longer period of time. Contributing as much as you can afford to qualified retirement accounts, such as an IRA or an employer-sponsored retirement plan, can help you build this nest egg.

Retiring early requires advance planning to make the situation work to your advantage. If you have the financial resources to do it, you may want to start the process at your earliest opportunity.
1Source: Social Security Administration.

2Source: Social Security Adminstration, Fast Facts & Figures About Social Security, August 2010.

© 2011 McGraw-Hill Financial Communications. All rights reserved.

De Soto Bass Team Goes to State Champs!

In 2013, B.A.S.S. launched a Bassmaster High School Series. This birth allowed High School Athletes to compete in State and National Bass Fishing Tournaments which offer prizes and scholarships. Although the De Soto School District has not yet accepted Bass Fishing into their program, this has not stamped out the enthusiasm and thirst for 6 young men to form the first De Soto (High School) Bass Fishing Team.

De Soto Bass Team

The members individually have many years of fishing experience including competing, and placing among top anglers in numerous local, state, regional, and national tournaments. The team participates in conservation projects and activities locally, serves as role models for youth interested in Bass Fishing, and competes in Bass Tournaments.

With the support of Personal Financial Group, this team had 2 out of 3 teams have qualify to compete in the State Championship at Perry Lake May 2nd.

The teams have been through the extremes with the weather, emotional ups and downs, and yes even physically hauling in lunkers for 8 hours each day on the water.  One courageous angler empathized with the bass so much that he tumbled into the water and hooked himself in the lip with his own bait!  True story, his dad was there to net him and pull the hook out, ouch!  Heck of a time trying to shove him into the live well.

De Soto Bass Team
De Soto Bass Team

After the State Championship the team begins their youth series for the summer.

Personal Financial Group is proud to support and encourage these young outdoorsmen!

Go De Soto Bass Team!

Are You Prepared to Retire?

Retirement used to conjure up images of lazy days spent in a rocking chair. Today’s retirement is very different. You might plan to open a business of your own. Or perhaps you’ll return to school for that degree you never had the chance to complete. So what does this redefined retirement mean to you? There is no one answer. In the coming decades, “retirement” will mean something different to each of us. Regardless of your decision, you’ll need to design a financial plan suited to your specific vision of the future.

Income Is Key
A good starting point might be to examine your sources of retirement income. If you pay attention to the financial press, you’ve probably come across at least a few commentators who speak in gloom-and-doom terms about the future for American retirees, decrying a lack of savings and warning of the imminent growth of the elderly population.
True, there is widespread concern about at least one traditional source of income for retirees — Social Security. Under current conditions, Social Security funds could fall short of needs by 2033.1
This shift makes it even more important for individuals to understand their goals and have a well-thought-out financial plan that focuses on the key source of retirement income: personal savings and investments. Given the potential duration and changing nature of retirement, you may want to seek the assistance of a professional financial planner who can help you assess your needs and develop appropriate investment strategies.

As you move through the various stages of the new retirement, perhaps working at times and resting at others, your plan may require adjustments along the way. A professional advisor can help you monitor your plan and make changes when necessary. Among the factors you’ll need to consider:

  • Time: You can project periods of retirement, reeducation, and full employment. Then concentrate on a plan to fund each of the separate periods. The number of years until you retire will influence the types of investments you include in your portfolio. If retirement is a short-term goal, investments that provide liquidity and help preserve your principal may be most suitable. On the other hand, if retirement is many years away, you may be able to include more aggressive investments in your portfolio.
  • Inflation: While lower-risk fixed-income and money market investments may play an important role in your investment portfolio, if used alone they may leave you susceptible to the erosive effects of inflation. To help your portfolio keep pace with inflation, you may need to maintain some growth-oriented investments. Over the long-term, stocks have provided returns superior to other asset classes.2 But also keep in mind that stocks generally involve greater short-term volatility.
  • Taxes: Even after you retire, taxes will remain an important factor in your overall financial plan. If you return to work or open a business, for example, your tax bracket could change. In addition, should you move from one state to another, state or local taxes could affect your bottom line. Tax-advantaged investments, such as annuities and tax-free mutual funds, may be effective tools for meeting your retirement goals. Tax deferral offered by workplace plans — such as 401(k) and 403(b) plans — and IRAs may also help your retirement savings grow.

Prepare Today for the Retirement of Tomorrow
To ensure that retirement lives up to your expectations, begin establishing your plan as early as possible and consider consulting with a professional. With proper planning, you may be able to make your retirement whatever you want it to be.


1Source: Social Security Administration, Facts & Figures About Social Security, 2012.
2Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

© 2012 S&P Capital IQ Financial Communications. All rights reserved.

Saving for Short-Term Goals

Pursuing short-term financial goals — those that you’d like to achieve within one to five years, such as a down payment on a home or car — can require a different strategy than pursuing long-term goals. Here are some steps to help you save and invest when you’re going to need your money sooner rather than later.


Step 1:

Be specific about your goal. Setting a specific short-term goal will help you to evaluate your progress toward meeting it. For instance, the vague objective “I want to save money to buy a house” becomes “I want to save $25,000 over five years to put toward the down payment of a house in (town/city).”

Step 2:

Take steps to free up extra cash. How will you save the money that you need? Eating out less often, canceling a gym membership that you don’t use, or downgrading your cable from a premium to a basic plan could easily free up $100 per month or more toward your goal. There are probably many areas where you can save a few bucks. Make a detailed list of what you spend in an average month and see where you could afford to trim.

Step 3:

Match your investments or savings vehicles with your goal. Safety and liquidity will be priorities if you need the money within a few years. Stocks can experience extreme fluctuations over short-term periods. You don’t want to be forced to sell your assets when the value of your investment has dropped. More appropriate choices for short-term needs may be conservative instruments that offer a more stable return, such as short-term bond funds and money market funds. Federally insured savings vehicles, such as certificates of deposit, could also play a role.

Understanding Short-Term Investments

Short-term bond funds primarily invest in U.S. government or corporate debt with maturities that range from one to three years. Money market funds pool investors’ dollars to buy money market instruments. These types of securities aim to produce current income, offer liquidity (how quickly you can sell an asset), and usually aren’t subject to the dramatic ups and downs of stocks. Certificates of deposit are interest-bearing debt instruments with a wide range of maturities. In exchange for purchasing a certificate of deposit, the investor will receive the return of principal plus interest at the maturity date.

Finally, remember that short-term financial objectives should not take away from investing for long-term goals.



Investors should carefully consider the fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses before investing. To obtain a prospectus, or if available, a summary prospectus containing this and other information, contact appropriate fund company or view the fund prospectus on Website of the appropriate fund company. Please carefully read the prospectus or the summary prospectus before investing.

Your investment is neither insured nor guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency.

Current performance maybe higher or lower than the past, which cannot guarantee future results.

Share price, principal value, yield and return will vary and you may have a gain or loss when you sell you shares.

An investment in money market funds is neither insured nor guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other government agency. Although money market funds seek to preserve the value of your investment at $1.00 per share, it is possible to lose money by investing in these funds.

Bonds are subject to interest and market rate risk if sold prior to maturity. Bond values will decline as interest rates rise and are subject to availability and change in price

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