Mountain Money Blog

Options for Senior Living through the Spectrum of Aging

By Steven Smith | April 18, 2022

Planning for our senior years would be so much easier if we knew how long we will live and the state of our health toward the end of our lives. In my specialty of retirement planning, I have to ask my clients to ponder the imponderable: late-life care. In this article I share information about […]

1st Quarter Client Note

By Steven Smith | April 14, 2022

We finally turned the corner on Covid (hopefully) and now find our European allies facing the worst military crisis since World War II — and possibly on the precipice of a nuclear confrontation with the out-of-control Russian leader. After being down by over 10% mid-quarter, the S & P 500 (total return) Index ended the […]

Dealing with the Russian Invasion of Ukraine

By Steven Smith | February 25, 2022

On Wednesday night, Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin followed through on his threat to invade his neighbor, the sovereign nation of Ukraine. It is difficult to know his actual motivations and what his plan is. But this is obviously an affront to the post-WW War II international order. And a tragedy for the Ukrainian people. […]

Q4 Client Note – A Good Year for Stocks, If Nothing Else

By Steven Smith | January 14, 2022

For the second consecutive year the US stock market posted an extraordinary gain. This, in the midst of a once-in-a-century pandemic. The S & P 500 (Total Return) index was up 28.71% for the year, including a 11.2% increase in the fourth quarter. On top of the utterly surprising 18.4% increase in 2020. Other asset […]

Book Review: The One Page Financial Plan: A Simple Way to be Smart About Your Money, Carl Richards (Penguin 2015)

By Steven Smith | November 15, 2021

Running joke: If it’s a one-page financial plan, then why isn’t the book only one page? I first read Carl Richards’ novelty of a book, The One-Page Financial Plan,  when it was published in 2015. But I only recently grabbed it off the shelf to re-read and figure out ways to apply it in our […]

Choosing a Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC) – Advantages and Pitfalls

By Steven Smith | October 27, 2021

Managing life-stage transitions is an essential component of good financial planning. Late life planning – for a time when you need help with everyday tasks on account of either physical or cognitive decline – can be a special challenge. One increasingly popular choice is the Continuing Care Retirement Community (CCRC), which provides both housing and […]

Q3 Client Note – Change of Investment Seasons?

By Steven Smith | October 18, 2021

While the S&P 500 (Total Return) Index eked out a 0.58% gain for the quarter; that was on the heels of September’s worst one-month (-4.8%) performance since March 2020. The US market is still up 15% for the year. The International Developed Markets (MSCI World Ex-USA) index was down 0.66%. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index […]

Is Retirement a Dirty Word?

By Steven Smith | September 30, 2021

I made the mistake of asking a client when she wanted to retire. This is a common inquiry to my clients. Yet unwittingly, I opened a fraught subject for this couple. She loved her job and wanted to work forever. He was ready to retire now and see the world.  I learned a valuable lesson. […]

2nd Quarter Client Note – Will Inflation Rear Its Ugly Head?

By Steven Smith | July 19, 2021

The S & P 500 (total return) index closed the quarter at a record high; up 8.55% for the quarter and 15.25% for the first six months, setting all kinds of winning streaks in the process. The MSCI Developed Markets Index rose 5.65%, with Europe beginning to get more people vaccinated and its economy opening […]

1st Quarter Client Note – Still Standing

By Steven Smith | April 16, 2021

When writing my client note at this time last year, we were in the vortex of the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic. Cases were exploding around the world. Hospitals were overwhelmed – or nearly so. And deaths were mounting. Social distancing had been imposed. Businesses were shuttered. There were massive layoffs, particularly in the […]

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