Thu04242014

Overcoming retirement challenges

CharlesSimsJr-160In a 2013 survey of people aged 50 to 70 with $100,000 or more in investable assets, 90 percent reported that they had experienced at least one setback in saving for retirement. In fact, the average respondent had experienced four setbacks with an average loss or missed opportunity of $117,000.

The future is always uncertain, and as the saying goes, "Life happens." It would be wise to prepare for the unexpected and react logically rather than emotionally when faced with retirement challenges. Here are some obstacles you might need to overcome.

Surviving market downturns. More than half of those surveyed said their assets had been reduced by market losses during the Great Recession. Yet another survey suggested that about 50 percent of workers who were 32 to 51 when the recession started actually showed gains in their retirement accounts during the 2007 to 2009 period. This group may have had lower balances when the recession began, and it's likely that they continued saving throughout the downturn, which might have helped them benefit when the market started to improve. Remember that all investments are subject to market fluctuation and the potential for loss.

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About Regina and Kevin!

AboutLastNight 600Regina Hall and Kevin Hart discuss their new film, "About Last Night," a remake of the classic romantic comedy released back in 1986.

Kam Williams: Hi, Kevin and Regina, thanks for the interview. I'm grateful for the opportunity to speak with you. ...What interested you two in "About Last Night?"
Kevin Hart: What interested you, baby?
Regina Hall: Well, I loved the script. I'm always thrilled whenever I see a good script. And of course, when I then heard that Kevin was going to be my co-star... that sealed the deal. Need I say anything more? How about you, Kev?
Kevin: Like you, the script, first of all. I also liked that this was a different type of role for me, and that the original movie was so amazing!
Regina: A classic!

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Tax season means it’s time to focus

taxes 600As employees receive W-2s and independent contractors receive 1099s, many will be anticipating a refund and others may owe money. The connecting bottom line is that taxes must be filed in a timely manner.

Those expecting a refund usually will rush to file as soon as possible. While those expecting to owe the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will frequently wait until the April 15th deadline.

Many years ago, there were only a few major tax preparation firms, along with accountants, that prepared taxes. Now, small businesses dedicated solely to tax preparation have sprung up all over the Mid-South. These businesses are thriving and experiencing tremendous growth with a business model based on operating only a few months of the year.

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Spotlight Productions & the business of videography

FabianMatthews 600Even as businesses grow and expand, there is a never-ending need to connect with customers. One way to assist in that outreach is the strategic use of commercials.

When I first started a business in Memphis I used the services of Spotlight Productions to create my website and my very first commercial. The result was incredible for a new business. Over the years, Spotlight Productions – co-founded by Fabian Matthews – has become a major player in the video, commercial and web arena. This week Matthews shares his journey.

Carlee McCullough: Tell us about yourself.
Fabian Matthews: I'm a graduate of Arkansas State University in Jonesboro. I'm married, with 2 kids, Darion and Mia. I've won 3 Emmy Awards and 8 Telly Awards. My First job in TV was at KAIT in Jonesboro and then WMC-TV in Memphis. I started Spotlight Productions in 1999 with Isaac Singleton and Craten Armmer.

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Miss Sojourner’s ‘truth’ in 2014

st 600I listened to President Obama's recent State of the Union Address. Among many other concerns, he spoke to the now much repeated 77-cent gap between male and female wages. As an African-American female, I reflected on this "now" issue in light of history.

Economic disparities are nothing new in this world nor this country; neither is racial or gender disparity. I applaud Mr. Obama for calling this particular issue out.

For the sake of perspective and perhaps even for the sake of inspiration, I want to share a speech made by that noble, wise "Black Queen," Miss Sojourner Truth. She gave these remarks at a gathering of "feminists" in 1851 in Akron, Ohio. This was before the Civil War. The platform was to gain the vote for women in a world where only white men were considered worthy of voting.

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