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Business

Women and retirement investing

CharlesSimsJr-160Career opportunities for women have expanded greatly over the last couple of decades. Yet during their lifetimes, women still earn less money than men, primarily because they take time off from their jobs to care for children or aging parents.

Women also have longer life spans than men, so they may need to fund additional years in retirement with fewer financial resources. One study found that the average retirement savings for a woman aged 65 to 69 was about 22 percent less than that of a man of the same age.

Given the challenges, it's understandable that women are 42 percent more likely than men to express concern about having enough money for retirement (according to a 2012 survey). Focusing on saving for the future and managing retirement plan investments wisely could help many women improve their retirement prospects.

Where is the money? Don’t overlook the MAAG

CarleeMcCullough-160Business start-ups challenged by the need for funding should not overlook the Memphis Area Association of Governments – MAAG.

According to its website, MAAG was created to facilitate and support activities that stimulate economic and community development in the community.

Revolving Loan Fund

MAAG – in addition to serving in a supporting role for governments and non-profits – also provides loans through its Revolving Loan Fund (RLF). A tool specifically targeting small and medium-sized businesses, the RLF is used to "promote expansion and job retention" by offering gap financing.

Where is the money? Try ‘factoring’ this

CarleeMcCullough-160No matter the size of the firm, many businesses regularly face cash shortages. When small or new businesses face such a squeeze the options are more limited. But if the business has accounts receivables, which is an asset that can be sold, "factoring" may be an option.

Factoring entails the business selling its accounts receivables at a discount to a third party known as a factoring company. The discount is the incentive for the factoring company to take a risk by advancing money on the receivables.

In a normal factoring deal, there are three participating parties: the business selling the accounts receivable, the one buying the accounts receivable (the factoring company), and one who owes the accounts receivable (customer of the seller or the debtor). The accounts receivable usually have to be owed by a dependable verifiable source that has a credit rating worthy of the factoring company its money

How a pension could affect Social Security benefits

CharlesSimsJr-160If you expect retirement income from a pension and Social Security, congratulations! These two income streams, along with your retirement savings, could put you on a comfortable financial footing. However, you might not be aware that your pension could affect your Social Security benefits.

Eliminating windfalls

Private-sector workers who earn a pension typically pay Social Security payroll taxes, in which case the pension should not affect their Social Security benefits. However, an issue arises when someone receives a pension based on earnings in which Social Security taxes were not paid — typically from a federal, state, or local government, a nonprofit organization, or an employer in a foreign country — and the individual is also eligible for Social Security benefits based on employment from other jobs. In these situations the Social Security benefit may be reduced by the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP).

Long-term care: Evaluating the need

CharlesSimsJr-160Even though the possible need for long-term care is not something people enjoy thinking about, an estimated 70 percent of 65-year-olds will need this type of care at some point in their lives.

The average cost of a semi-private room in a nursing home was nearly $75,000 a year in 2012, and it's been projected that the annual cost could reach nearly $165,000 in 20 years due to inflation.

Some wealthy households can afford to pay for long-term care out of pocket. Many others with substantial financial assets might not be sure whether they have saved enough to meet their future needs. Thus, it may be wise to consider whether your financial resources would be adequate for a worst-case situation.

Where is the money?

CarleeMcCullough-160When moving forward in various businesses, often times there is a need for additional capital. Whether it is for the purpose of purchasing equipment, operating capital, or contract financing, most business can always use additional funding.

Unfortunately, many business owners wait until their backs are up against the wall in a desperate situation, which it is usually too late to ask for assistance. Most financing institutions want to know that you are stable and can repay the debt, not at the end of the road on the brink of bankruptcy unless you obtain more capital.

Where can you turn for assistance for loans?

Strategic help on tap for small business owners

sue malone-200Sue Malone, the SBA's number one volume-based loan provider and founder of "Strategies for Small Businesses" in San Francisco, CA, will facilitate a Small Business Loan Workshop at the Renaissance Business Center located at 555 Beale Street on Sept. 9.

Malone will discuss funding availability for startup businesses or expansion options for current businesses.

"Sue really has a niche for doing small business loans, particularly those for $25,000 and under," said Rory Thomas, executive director of the Tennessee Small Business Development Center (TSBDC) at Southwest Tennessee Community College.

Officially undercapitalized

CarleeMcCullough-160The day has come for the doors of your business to open. The paint is fresh on the walls, the business cards are professionally printed and the widgets are ready to be sold. There is a little money left in the bank but not enough to cover the rent for next month or payroll.

This means that the business is officially undercapitalized.

Undercapitalization means a business does not have and cannot obtain the funds required through equity or debt for current operational expenses or to pay creditors. With little money remaining to cover the operational costs, the business is exposed to risk and potentially bankruptcy.