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It’s Easier Than You Think: 3 Smart Moves That Will Allow You to Retire Rich

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As you’re nearing retirement, you might be feeling anxious about it or you’re excited at the possibility of what you’ll do when you finally retire. Ideally, you’re spending your time traveling and or your favorite hobbies when they retire and not worrying about paying the bills. Unfortunately, this is what many Americans are facing. According to a survey conducted by Fidelity Investments, they found that most people are not saving early enough. In addition, certified portfolio manager and financial planner with FBB Capital Partners, Kathleen Hastings, mentioned she never witnessed a soul complain about having “too much money” for retirement. She adds it sucks to be a senior, especially one with no money.

Even if you may not currently have enough for retirement, it doesn’t mean that you can’t retire. Here are a few strategies you can to if you wish to live rich enough to live comfortably.

Save More Now

If you want to retire wealthy, the first step is to start saving as much money as you can in your savings account. Thanks to compound interest, a little bit will go far no matter how small your monthly contributions may be. The longer you can contribute, the more you will have.

Let’s say you decide to put $400 away per month once you hit 25 then increased the amount by 2.5% annual and earned 7% each year. That person would have about $1.5 million by the time they are 67. Waiting a decade later to do this would mean they would only have about $66,000 at the same age.

Don’t think of savings as a choice, think of it more as a requirement. Michael Hard, certified financial planner at Mollot Hardy, says everyone should save on either a monthly or weekly basis through automation. Those that add funds to their retirement accounts can have their money taken from their paychecks or via a scheduled deposit plan. Hardy adds that setting it up like that will eliminate the chances that you stop putting money aside for your retirement. According to Fidelity’s retirement preparedness study, Americans on average, save only 8.5% percent of their earnings each year. It’s  recommended that you save at least 10% –ideally 15% — of what you earn. If you can do more than that, do it.

Reduce Unnecessary Spending

Some people may just believe that they do not have enough money to put on the side to retire, which is simply not true. You can save more than you think if you carefully comb through your budget. Tom Corely, author of “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals” states everyone should look at their statements monthly. He says you are likely to unveil payments for things you no longer use or want. It also helps to shop often for the internet, phone, and TV services for the most competitive rates.

Take Chances

Ken Weber, author of “Dear Investor, What the Hell Are You Doing?” and president of Weber Asset Management, believes in some risk. He mentioned that most individuals believe the key to investment success is to just save. Although this is true to a certain degree, he believes people should not just store their money in an in savings vault. Weber says you have to be willing to take some risk to get the reward later. He mentioned that for every stage of  life, they should be invested with as much risk as they can tolerate. Ideally, people would put a majority of their retirement savings into a stock mutual fund when you are in the 20s or 30s.

As you get older or are near retirement age, you have the choice to lower that risk by investing in fixed-income assets like bond funds or stocks. Alternatively, you can think about a target-date fund that will automatically fix your allocation of bonds and stocks.

Mollot Hardy also adds that a person should never put all of their retirement funds in one basket. The best thing you can do is to diversify your portfolio with a combination of bonds and stocks. Getting a hold of mutual funds would be even more ideal since they contain an array of bonds, stocks, or both.

If you decide you want to invest in mutual funds, monitor the expenses and fees companies charge. It is important to keep your eyes completely peeled on this one because they can eat into your returns and decrease the amount of money you can have saved for retirement. According to the US Department of Labor, if expenses and fees on your account are 1.5%, for example, you will have a balance that is 28% less once you hit retirement compared to somewhere else where the fees were only .50%. You will likely have several plans offered to you via your 401, which all have various fees, so think about switching to investments with lower rates.

Other Options

If you work somewhere where your employer matches any contribution you make to your workplace retirement plan, ensure to contribute enough to get a complete match or else you are losing cash. Most will match 50 cents for every dollar. Continuing on the investment route, you can also get tax-free retirement income with a Roth when you contribute to a Roth IRA, which can help you with taxes when you’re retired. Another option is to create a side business to increase your income. You can also get a second job or start doing the hobbies you love while making money from it. One example is to think about purchasing income-generating real estate. Todd Tresidder, a financial coach and founder of FinancialMentor.com says that the trick is to buy and finance a place carefully and not rush through it. If you are thinking about working as a self-employed, you may be able to contribute to a Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) plan or solo 401k. Using either of the two will still be tax-deductible for you.

 

You might also want to consider downsizing your home when you’re ready to retire. Cutting costs from rent or mortgage to utility, insurance, and maintainable fees will be reduced. While you are thinking about that, you may want to relocate to a different city or state that is cheaper.

 

If you feel overwhelmed, find professional help from an advisor if you feel you need help creating a financial plan and want to stick with it. You should look for help from a Financial Analyst (CFA), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) or Certified Financial Planner (CFP)

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drugs

7 Blockbuster Drugs Expected To Be Launched In 2020

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Pills falling out of bottle. (Image via Shutterstock)
By Shanthi Rexaline

Biotech stocks had a fairly decent run in 2019, thanks to record deal flow, several path-breaking innovation in drug research & development and the positive broader market sentiment. New molecular entity approvals totaled 48 in 2019, less than the 59 NME approvals in 2018.

The new year is expected to be risk fraught, as lawmakers are expected to step up their rhetoric on drug pricing. Even as the outlook for drug companies remains not-so-promising, some key drug approvals could still impart some momentum to the sector.

The FDA could expedite the review of some drugs, Evaluate Pharma said, citing some approvals in 2019 that came about well ahead of the scheduled PDUFA date such as Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated’s (NASDAQ: VRTX) Trikafta. Trikafta, a treatment option for cystic fibrosis, was approved five months ahead of the PDUFA date.

The following are the drugs with blockbuster potential that could make their way from lab to the shelves, according to Evaluate Pharma.

Trastuzumab deruxtecan

  • Sponsor: Daiichi Sankyo Company, Limited (OTC: DSNKY) & AstraZeneca plc (NYSE: AZN)
  • Indication: Her2 positive breast cancer
  • Status: BLA accepted with priority review status in October and the PDUFA date has been fixed for second quarter of 2020

Palforzia

  • Sponsor: Aimmune Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: AIMT)
  • Indication: Peanut allergy
  • Status: PDUFA date of January; A FDA panel, which met in September, voted 7 to 2 that the efficacy data and 8 to 1 that the safety data in conjunction with additional safeguards are adequate to support the use of Palforzia

Ozanimod

  • Sponsor: Bristol-Myers Squibb Co (NYSE: BMY) (came into the company’s stable through its Celgene buy)
  • Indication: relapsing form of multiple sclerosis
  • Status: The FDA accepted for review the BLA in June and has set a PDUFA date of March 25

Inclisiran

  • Sponsor: Novartis AG (NYSE: NVS)(came into the company’s stable through its Medicines Company buy)
  • Indication: LDL-cholesterol lowering therapy
  • Status: NDA submitted in December for use in secondary prevention patients with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and familial hypercholesterolemia

Roxadustat

  • Sponsor: AstraZeneca/FibroGen Inc (NASDAQ: FGEN)
  • Indication: treating anemia associated with chronic kidney disease
  • Status: FibroGen, AstraZeneca’s partner in developing roxadustat, said it has submitted the NDA to the FDA in late December

Sacituzumab Govitecan

  • Sponsor: Immunomedics, Inc. (NASDAQ: IMMU)
  • Indication: treating metastatic triple-negative breast cancer
  • Status: After an initial snub, the company resubmitted the BLA and the FDA accepted the application for review Dec. 26, 2019, fixing a PDUFA action date of June 2

Filgotinib

  • Sponsor: Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD) and GALAPAGOS NV/S ADR (NASDAQ: GLPG)
  • Indication: rheumatoid arthritis
  • Status: The NDA was submitted Dec. 16, 2019, with the review period expected to be expedited due to a priority review voucher submitted along with the application

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Finance

Dow Jones Industrial Average Breaks 29,000 For The First Time in History

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Screenshot of Dow Jones Industrial chart taken January 15, 2020.
By ELAINE KURTENBACH, AP Business Writer

Slight gains send Dow Jones Industrial Average above 29,000!

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 29,000 points for the first time and the S&P 500 index hit its second record high in three days Wednesday.

The milestones came on a day when the market traded in a narrow range as investors weighed the latest batch of corporate earnings reports and the widely anticipated signing of an initial trade deal between the U.S. and China.

President Donald Trump and China’s chief negotiator, Liu He, signed the “Phase 1″ deal before a group of corporate executives and reporters at the White House. The pact eases some sanctions on China. In return, Beijing has agreed to step up its purchases of U.S. farm products and other goods.

“This was telegraphed well enough that the market is kind of looking through it and toward the next phase and what that means,” said Keith Buchanan, portfolio manager at Globalt Investments.

Health care stocks accounted for much of the market’s gains. Utilities and makers of household goods also rose. Those gains outweighed losses in financial stocks, companies that rely on consumer spending and the energy sector.

The S&P 500 index rose 6.14 points, or 0.2%, to 3,289.29. The index also climbed to an all-time high on Monday.

The Dow gained 90.55 points, or 0.3%, to 29,030.22. The Nasdaq composite added 7.37 points, or 0.1%, to 9,258.70.

Smaller-company stocks fared better than the rest of the market. The Russell 2000 picked up 6.66 points, or 0-4%, to 1,682.40.

The benchmark S&P 500 index is on track for its second straight weekly gain.

Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.78% from 1.81% late Tuesday.

While limited in its scope, investors have welcomed the U.S.-China deal in hopes that it will prevent further escalation in the 18-month long trade conflict that has slowed global growth, hurt American manufacturers and weighed on the Chinese economy. The world’s two largest economies will now have to deal with more contentious trade issues as they move ahead with negotiations. And punitive tariffs will remain on about $360 billion in Chinese goods as talks continue.

With the “Phase 1” agreement now a done deal, investors have more reason to focus on the rollout of corporate earnings reports over the next few weeks. Earnings have been flat to down for the last three quarters, and if the fourth quarter meets expectations, it should be around the same.

However, analysts are projecting 2020 corporate earnings growth to jump around 9.5%, which is why traders will be listening this earnings reporting season for any clues management teams give about their business prospects in coming months.

“We’re expecting a reacceleration in the back end of the year, so any (company) guidance that brings any type of skepticism to that could threaten the recent rally we’ve had and the gains that we’ve accrued in the past few months,” Buchanan said.

Health care stocks powered much of the market’s gains Wednesday. Several health insurers climbed as investors cheered a solid fourth-quarter earnings report from UnitedHealth Group.

The nation’s largest health insurer, which covers more than 49 million people, said its revenue rose 4% on a mix of insurance premiums and growth from urgent care and surgery centers. Its stock rose 2.8%. Other health insurers also moved higher. Anthem gained 1.6%, Cigna added 1.5% and Humana climbed 1.9%.

Technology companies also rose. The sector is reliant on China for sales and supply chains and benefits from better trade relations. Microsoft gained 0.7% and Advanced Micro Devices gained 0.8%.

Utilities and consumer staples sector stocks also notched gains. Edison International climbed 2.5% and PepsiCo rose 1.7%.

Financial stocks fell the most. Bank of America slid 1.8% after reporting weaker profits due to the rapid decline of interest rates in late 2019.

Energy stocks also fell along with the price of crude oil. Valero Energy dropped 3.3%.

Homebuilders marched broadly higher on news that U.S. home loan applications surged 30.2% last week from a week earlier. The pickup in mortgage applications reflects heightened demand for homes and suggests many buyers are eager to purchase a home now, rather than waiting for the traditional late-February start of the spring homebuying season. Hovnanian Enterprises jumped 6.4%.

Target slumped 6.6% after a disappointing holiday shopping season prompted the retailer to cut its forecast for a key sales measure in the fourth quarter. The company said weak sales of electronics, toys and home goods crimped sales growth to just 1.4% in November and December.

Benchmark crude oil fell 42 cents to settle at $57.81 a barrel. Brent crude oil, the international standard, dropped 49 cents to close at $64 a barrel.

Wholesale gasoline fell 1 cent to $1.64 per gallon. Heating oil declined 3 cents to $1.88 per gallon. Natural gas fell 7 cents to $2.12 per 1,000 cubic feet.

Gold rose $9.70 to $1,552.10 per ounce, silver rose 25 cents to $17.92 per ounce and copper fell 1 cent to $2.87 per pound.

The dollar fell to 109.91 Japanese yen from 110.00 yen on Tuesday. The euro strengthened to $1.1150 from $1.1128.

Markets in Europe closed mostly lower.

AP Business Writer Damian J. Troise contributed.

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Automobiles

Pump Prices to Edge up After Attack on Iranian General, but Long-Term Effect Unclear

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By Jeff Ostrowski, The Palm Beach Post, Fla.

Motorists soon will see the effects of President Donald Trump’s decision to kill a prominent Iranian general. Whether pump prices rise a little or a lot depends on how quickly international tensions intensify.

Florida gas prices climbed an average of 7 cents a gallon in the past three days and could increase an additional 5 cents, AAA – The Auto Club Group said Monday.

The 7-cent increase was coming even before the U.S. air strike Thursday that killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani. That hike was a result of a rise in the price of crude oil in December.

News of the targeted killing of Soleimani sent crude oil surging nearly $2 per barrel on Friday. An increase of that magnitude typically translates to a 5-cent hike at the pump, AAA said.

The U.S. benchmark for crude oil traded Monday just above $63 per barrel, the highest level since May 2019. The price of oil makes up about half the price of a gallon of gas.

“What happens in the Middle East can have a direct impact on Americans’ daily lives by influencing what they pay at the pump,” said AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins. “Crude prices rise when there’s a threat of war, because of concerns over how the conflict could hamper supply and demand.”

Oil analyst Tom Kloza of energy firm OPIS agreed that pump prices in Florida likely will rise about 5 cents a gallon in the coming days.

“Then I have a hunch that things are going to calm down,” Kloza said Monday. “I don’t think we’re looking at $3 gas.”

The national average pump price Sunday was $2.585, while the Florida average was $2.526, AAA said.

Kloza expects only modest increases in part because of the timing of the attack. January is always a slow month for gas consumption in the United States.

There’s also the reality that sanctions leave Iran unable to export oil. Complicating the calculus is Iraq’s response to the U.S. attack. The drone strike on Soleimani took place in Baghdad, and some Iraqi politicians considered the assault an affront to Iraqi sovereignty.

While there’s no Iranian oil supply to be disrupted by a war, Iraq is an important producer.

Trump keenly watches oil prices and realizes that a price spike might erode his support in this year’s presidential election, Kloza said.

At the same time, Kloza added, “This president has proven to be unpredictable.”

Trump’s response has been typically uneven. Delivering an official statement at the Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Trump’s tone was measured. He said the targeted killing was designed to pre-empt Soleimani’s planned attacks on American diplomats and soldiers.

“We took action last night to stop a war,” Trump said Friday. “We did not take action to start a war.”

However, over the weekend, Trump took to Twitter to threaten attacks on Iranian cultural sites.

“The United States just spent Two Trillion Dollars on Military Equipment,” Trump wrote Sunday on Twitter. “We are the biggest and by far the BEST in the World! If Iran attacks an American Base, or any American, we will be sending some of that brand new beautiful equipment their way…and without hesitation!”

##IFRAME_1##Iran has vowed vengeance, but military experts say the nation isn’t powerful enough to wage a direct war against the U.S.

“It’s still far too early to know how much of an impact this conflict will have overall on prices at the pump,” AAA’s Jenkins said.

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