Navigating the stock market, mid-year money checkup, and more…

By: Kimberly Lankford

July 10, 2020

Your 5-Step Guide to Navigating a Scary Stock Market

Helpful New York Times article with advice for dealing with stock market volatility — both financially and psychologically.

Experts’ tips for a midyear money checkup

This is the time of year when personal finance writers usually recommend that people do a mid-year money checkup. With this year’s coronavirus health issues and shutdowns, stock market volatility, job losses and other big changes, some of the strategies for reviewing your financial situation now are different than they had been in the past.

More employees want to combine some work and retirement. Four ways to get started.

Many people want to do some work even after they retire, which can help with your finances and your mental health. This CNBC article explains some great strategies for getting started with a phased retirement.

FICO will now score consumers’ readiness for a financial crisis. Here’s how it works.

Credit card issuers tend to reduce credit limits during an economic downturn when they worry that people who have financial trouble won’t be able to pay their bills. The Washington Post’s personal finance columnist, Michelle Singletary, writes that FICO, which created the most-common credit score, recently launched a “Resilience Index” that helps lenders assess which customers are best positioned to withstand a downturn.

A pandemic problem for older workers: Will they have to retire sooner?

Many people have are planning to work longer to improve their financial situation before retirement, especially because of stock-market volatility. But with such high unemployment numbers and health concerns, will they actually be able to keep working as long as they expected? This New York Times article explains how to deal with some of these complications if you plan to continue working as work as you get older or find a new job during this challenging time.

The pros and cons of claiming Social Security during the COVID-19 pandemic

Some people who are 62 or older and have lost their jobs are considering tapping Social Security early to pay their bills and replace lost income. But this decision can come with a significant cost, reducing your benefits for the rest of your life. This article in The Street discusses the pros and cons of several options when making your Social Security benefits decisions.

Did you work for a government and not pay Social Security taxes? Here’s how it affects your benefits

The “windfall elimination provision” reduces Social Security benefits for some people who have worked for a federal, state or local government or nonprofit agency and did not pay Social Security taxes. They’re often surprised to discover that their benefits are much lower than expected. This USA Today article explains who these complicated rules apply to and how to calculate what you’ll receive from Social Security.

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