Whether it’s trade school, college, or an advanced degree, continuing education can be an excellent way to further your career or make a career change. It can also be profitable: the most recent data from the National Center for Education Statistics shows that, on average, employees with a four-year college degree can earn $20,000 to $25,000 more than employees with a high school-only education. However, tuition and other expenses can quickly add up, so budgeting for continuing education is essential.
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2020 was an unusual and volatile one with the S&P 500 Index’s 34% decline in 30 days in March followed by a retracement and rise of over 16% by..
On Our Minds
Estate planning is an important subject that almost everyone—but especially older people—needs to address. Many believe that estate planning is for those with substantial means. However, estate planning determines how an individual’s assets are preserved, distributed, and managed, so even people with assets limited to a residence, bank accounts, and a retirement plan need to form a plan.
Cybercriminals are targeting small businesses with increasingly sophisticated attacks. “Corporate account takeover” is a form of identity theft of a business. Criminals phony emails pretending to be someone you know to trick you into clicking on links or attachments that can lead to malicious software being installed on your computer. Once this happens, they will ask you to enter credentials where they will gain access to your email account. At that point, they will send emails to the bank appearing to be from you to initiate ACH and wire transactions.
The S&P 500 Index was down 1% in January based on investors’ revised expectations of corporate revenue growth and earnings. First, the COVID-19 vaccine distribution and inoculation process is proceeding slowly while the virus is mutating. The new strains appear to be slightly more virulent and the vaccination timeline will take longer and delay economic normalization.
2020 was an unusual and volatile one with the S&P 500 Index’s 34% decline in 30 days in March followed by a retracement and rise of over 16% by year-end. This proved once again that a longer-term outlook is required in successful equity investing.
The S&P 500 and Nasdaq index had wonderful performance during the third quarter, with returns of 8.5% and 11%, respectively. However, pre-election politics obstructing a new federal stimulus package and an escalation in COVID cases caused both indexes to decline in September.
Back in the day, when your father or mother would give you a dollar, they might offer this cautionary advice: “Don’t spend it all at once,” or “don’t spend it all in one place.”
Well, that certainly can be applied to the stimulus payments the government has promised millions of Americans due to the harsh economic times created by the coronavirus pandemic. The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service announced that the payments will begin in mid-April and will be distributed automatically, with no action required for most people.
Samuel A. Kiburz, who serves as Scoutmaster for a Boy Scout Troop in Punta Gorda and Chief Financial Officer for Crews Bank & Trust, sees several similarities between the two callings. He described those parallels in a column he wrote after taking his troop to a summer camp in the Ocala National Forest.
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