Core Capital Solutions Blog
Lately I have been feeling like I have been coming off too negative in my blogs. This I believe has been caused by the duration of the negative markets and by becoming increasingly short term focused. We have been in a negative environment largely since 2000 when the Dot-Com market cracked. Sure there have been good periods, but the S&P 500 Price Index is still down 7% from its high of approximately 1450. The volume of bad news surrounding us each day draws our attention and crowds out any positive news. I find myself looking hard for people with a "glass half full" approach vs. "half empty" to offset the overwhelming gloom and piece together a long term view. So I thought I would talk about what I see that is positive and the longer term view for our country
According to Luise Warren, a Geriatric Care Manager (GCM), it happens every year just after the Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas holidays - a spike in calls to her offices in the western suburbs of Chicago. The reasons for the calls are simple – adult children coming home for a holiday notice their parents are struggling either physically, cognitively or both. These changes are not easy to miss especially if it’s been a long time between visits.
As an investment manager, I learned a long time ago that I do not have much control over the rate of return on an investment that is the markets role. The extent of my control over return is setting up the basic parameters of your portfolio – how much will go into stocks and how much into bonds and cash?
We've written about it before. Adult children find out their parents do not have a Medigap (Medicare Supplement) plan until it is too late. A recent client situation shows how a bad situation can be made much worse. Dan's 83 year old father had to endure 6 hours of emergency heart surgery. After a lengthy stay in the hospital, he was moved to a skilled nursing facility. It was only then that Dan found out his father had canceled his Medigap policy several months earlier. It had become "unaffordable" according to his dad. He didn't mention it because he was embarrassed to admit his financial difficulties to his children. This bad situation had now become much worse.
Health care reform made significant changes to the Medicare Part D prescription drug program. The annual coordinated election period will be October 15 through December 7 in 2011 and future years; in prior years the election period ran from November 15 through December 31. In addition, changes introduced in 2011 remain in place including higher monthly premiums for individuals with income over $85,000 and couples with income over $170,000.
Other changes in 2012 include...