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Financial Conversations with Fitz #72 - Midyear Review of Finance and Goals - 07/12/2010

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It is summer!!!!     Ground temp above 70 degree.  Corn and beans are growing.  Saw a pickup with sweet corn.  Didn’t stop this time, but will next.   Great fair in Thompson!!!!!   Livestock numbers were actually up this year.   Pleasant surprise…..   Still a couple of farrow to finish farmers out there.

Now that it is midyear, I need to review my goals at work and personal.  Have I accomplished half what I said I was going to do?   Have I read those books I put down?  Am I staying on track with my expenses???   When you get your statement this week, be sure to take a look at what you have spent.  One should probably review where your investment or retirement is at.   I finally looked at mine after a year.   I didn’t check at year end…….The figures tell me that Feb/March ’10  was the highest  the dow has been for some time…..Was it the top for a while.   Has been slowly edging down with a little strength last week…..Stay the course if you are in for the long haul.  Be careful bailing out unless you will need the cash shortly.   If you are healthy and 65 you have a long haul coming up.  That is a plus.  The last downturn we took out about $275 billion.   Timing the market is rarely successful for the long term.   Market could still be volatile!!!!!   Now is the time to review your program with your counselor.  If you don’t have one, be sure to review your portfolio..  You can increase your investment input if your employer allows.   This will let you make up for the increase while the price is still lower.   This is also a good time to review your spread between equities, bonds, and cash funds.   Remember at 65 you still have a lot of years for growth with life expectancy at 87.  There are several neat calculators out there that can help you figure how long it might take to rebuild 401 (k) retirement accounts that were reduced by the stock market crash from ‘ 09.   The calculator can help you see how increased contributions reduce the amount of time needed to return to pre-crash levels.   One of those calculators can be found at www.principal.com/rebuild or you can visit with us sometime.   If you have some surplus cash at these low rates, check to see if you have room to increase your contributions.  Of course remember that equities are not covered by the FDIC insurance.   Give us a call or stop in, we can visit.   We are reporting from the Winnebago County Fair auction this morning.    TSB served a breakfast this morning for the vendors, students and their parents or anyone hungry for breakfast.   We are just getting ready to start the ribbon auction for the young people.

Give any of us a call if you want to see how to review your midyear figures.

Where to go for help …..Local banker

Remember that you should deal with people in community banks and organizations that when they put something together for you that they will be sitting with them at ball games, church or community events.  So, if in doubt give us a call.