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Module 6:  The Academians’ Blog

The Retirement Academy

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Roth IRAs: The Simple and the Not-So-Simple

Roth IRAs:  The Basics and Not-So-Basics With the  tax increases that will almost inevitably happen, the entire world is talking about Roth IRA‘s.  So, I thought it would be good to give some basic and not-so basic information on Roth IRA‘s, Roth...

Why Only 4% Withdrawal Rates If the Market Has Averaged 10%?

Many years ago, I was sitting with a client who had a $500,000 portfolio and was about to retire.  He asked me how much I thought he could take in retirement income from his equity mutual funds that would allow his portfolio to last him and his wife their entire...

Reasons To Sharpen Your Estate Planning Axe

The Pig Through the Python Lately I have been conducting trainings for the agents of CG Financial Group on Estate Planning.  When I talk with folks to invite them to these webinars, I will occasionally have a few of them question just how useful estate planning...

LTC Annuities: A “Low-Friction” LTC Sale

As I discuss this particular product type as being a "low friction" LTC sale, I do not want the reader to gather that the main reason to sell it is because it's a “layup” sale whereas the client will give up value versus a better/higher friction product. After all, I...

Medicaid Planning in Plain English

Last year I had just finished a seminar to thirty pre-retirees on retirement strategies as I was approached by one of the attendees and her husband. For purposes of this article, I will call her Sarah and him John. Sarah and John were both 63 years of age and she...

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Why Only 4% Withdrawal Rates If the Market Has Averaged 10%?

Why Only 4% Withdrawal Rates If the Market Has Averaged 10%?

Many years ago, I was sitting with a client who had a $500,000 portfolio and was about to retire.  He asked me how much I thought he could take in retirement income from his equity mutual funds that would allow his portfolio to last him and his wife their entire...

read more
LTC Annuities:  A “Low-Friction” LTC Sale

LTC Annuities: A “Low-Friction” LTC Sale

As I discuss this particular product type as being a "low friction" LTC sale, I do not want the reader to gather that the main reason to sell it is because it's a “layup” sale whereas the client will give up value versus a better/higher friction product. After all, I...

read more
Medicaid Planning in Plain English

Medicaid Planning in Plain English

Last year I had just finished a seminar to thirty pre-retirees on retirement strategies as I was approached by one of the attendees and her husband. For purposes of this article, I will call her Sarah and him John. Sarah and John were both 63 years of age and she...

read more
Sequence of Returns and Sequence of Inflation Risks

Sequence of Returns and Sequence of Inflation Risks

This article is a bit of a preface to an article I am making for you that will come out next month. That article will explore various systematic withdrawal strategies versus GLWBs. Without letting the cat out of the bag on next month’s article, I wanted to write this...

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Webinar Recording:  An Interview With An Estate and Elder-Law Attorney

Webinar Recording: An Interview With An Estate and Elder-Law Attorney

Wednesday, October 20, 11:00 CST - Noon CST The Retirement Academy (www.retirement-academy.com) was joined by a very accomplished estate and elder-law attorney, Cynthia Letsch. Cynthia owns a law firm in Grimes, Iowa and is extremely accomplished (bio below). Charlie...

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“Opportunity For Improvement” In Independent Distribution

“Opportunity For Improvement” In Independent Distribution

I have written before about my son, Matthew, who is the most creative kid I have ever seen. So, I will start this article with a quick story about Matthew.  A couple of years ago he and his older brother were sent home from school to do a fundraising project...

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Case Study:  RMDs, 401ks, IRAs, and SPIAs

Case Study: RMDs, 401ks, IRAs, and SPIAs

Below is a video where I discuss RMDs and SPIAs with IRAs as well as 401ks. There is much more to this than meets the eye and if a financial professional errors, the cost to the client could be substantial. https://youtu.be/CN9rg5O9G5k

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Guaranteed Streams of Income Make For a Happier Retirement

Guaranteed Streams of Income Make For a Happier Retirement

It was a beautiful day, and because it was a weekday morning with no boats on the water - except for us - the water was like glass.  It was one of the most beautiful days that I had experienced at the Lake of the Ozarks as I drove my boat through the twists...

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Webinar Recording From September 8th:  The Financial Planning Process

Webinar Recording From September 8th: The Financial Planning Process

This Retirement Academy Webinar recording is of Charlie demonstrating Financial Planning ideas, Financial Planning technology, and also the process of "Financial Planning". As discussed in The Retirement Academy literature, "Financial Plans" are powerful tools and are...

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The Power of Financial Plans:  My Awakening

The Power of Financial Plans: My Awakening

About 15 years ago I had a “career awakening” moment. I was with ING life insurance at the time and was a Regional Vice President for ING Life Insurance. I was dealing with a client that was a large RIA firm out on the East Coast. This firm was doing a ton of...

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Retirement is on sale with annuities by 43%!!

Retirement is on sale with annuities by 43%!!

Many of you “Academians“ know of the 4% rule that I reference here. Some of you also know about the later-published 2.8% rule. Both of these rules I reference in The Retirement Academy quite regularly because I know that those studies from non-biased academics can be...

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Webinar Recording from August 10th, 2021:  Tom Hegna!!  Paychecks and Playchecks!!!

Webinar Recording from August 10th, 2021: Tom Hegna!! Paychecks and Playchecks!!!

August 10th (11:30 CST - 12:30 CDT) We all know Tom Hegna!!! We are honored to have him. He is one of the foremost speakers in the industry and has written several books on how to sell annuities, life, and LTC. His flagship book is "Paychecks and Playchecks" in which...

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Why Your Annuity Trumpet Should Get Louder As Interest Rates Decrease

Why Your Annuity Trumpet Should Get Louder As Interest Rates Decrease

I know the title of this article seems contrary to what you would think but hear me out as I discuss the “relativity game” that annuities play and play very well.  You may be thinking that this is year another conversation about how annuities usually pay more than...

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Washington State:  “We are the government and we are here to help”

Washington State: “We are the government and we are here to help”

Although many people, including me, were somewhat excited about the state of Washington mandating that Washingtonians get LTC coverage on their own or be taxed, there have been significant unintended consequences that policymakers should have been aware of. As a...

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Webinar Recording From July 7th:  Bobby Samuelson Discusses Various Life Insurance Topics.

Webinar Recording From July 7th: Bobby Samuelson Discusses Various Life Insurance Topics.

Recording from July 7th, 10:30 Central Standard Time - 11:30 Central Standard Time This is a "back and forth" between me and Bobby Samuelson. Bobby is a good friend of mine and one of the foremost experts on life insurance products throughout the industry. Below is is...

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Walkthrough of The Retirement Academy.  Webinar Recording

Walkthrough of The Retirement Academy. Webinar Recording

This webinar is a walkthrough of The Retirement Academy!!! Whether you are already a member or not, you will find this webinar valuable. The Retirement Academy was created to provide financial advisors, insurance agents, Broker Dealers, IMOs, and home office staff...

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Webinar Recording from June 3rd, 2021:  Luke Cosme Discusses The Life Industry, Regulations, and Opportunities

Webinar Recording from June 3rd, 2021: Luke Cosme Discusses The Life Industry, Regulations, and Opportunities

The Retirement Academy is thrilled to have Luke on this webinar. I have known Luke for about a decade now and there are very few people in the industry that I would trust more than Luke to present to the Retirement Academy members. You will see that he knows the life...

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Smoked Brisket, Google, and Reading Your Clients’ Minds

Smoked Brisket, Google, and Reading Your Clients’ Minds

A snapshot of Charlie’s mind:  Smoked Brisket During the peak of the Covid 19 pandemic where we were all looking for new things to do with our families, I decided to pick up another hobby - barbeque.  Not just barbeque, but barbeque of the smoked variety...

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Webinar Recording:  Heather Schreiber on The Future of Taxes and Opportunities for Financial Professionals.

Webinar Recording: Heather Schreiber on The Future of Taxes and Opportunities for Financial Professionals.

Webinar From May 6th, 2021 The Retirement Academy was honored to have May's guest webinar speaker, Heather Schreiber, RICP®, Founder of HLS Retirement Consulting, LLC. Below are some highlights of her distinguished career as a tax and advanced sales industry-expert:•...

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Carrier Implementation of Section 7702 Changes.

Carrier Implementation of Section 7702 Changes.

As I was speaking with a few carriers recently about them signing up and contributing expertise to the Retirement Academy, I took advantage of the conversation and asked them about the changes to Section 7702 and their thoughts on implementation. If you are unaware of these changes, you can read my previous article here. You can also check out the actual 5 pages from the Consolidated Appropriations Act below.

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Hybrid LTC Products:  How Can The Carriers Afford It?

Hybrid LTC Products: How Can The Carriers Afford It?

As I was speaking with an agent today and singing the virtues of "hybrid LTC products" and their ability to solve multiple needs (like a swiss army knife), he said, "But some of these products have great benefits! How do I know the carriers can afford these benefits,...

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The 2.8% Withdrawal Rate Study

The 2.8% Withdrawal Rate Study

In 2013 Morningstar put out a report that sought to update what was once the 4% rule of thumb. There are some very credible researchers that put together this study - Wade Pfau for example. The old 4% rule of thumb study can be seen here, and below is the 2.8% study....

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Whitepaper:  Taxes and Annuities.  How Annuities are Taxed

Whitepaper: Taxes and Annuities. How Annuities are Taxed

A good friend of mine and somebody that I lean on a lot is an advanced sales mastermind, and her name is Heather Schreiber. She wrote this whitepaper on "How Annuities Are Taxed". Much of this you may already know but I bet there are a few things in here that will be...

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The Low Interest Rate’s Impact On Caps

The Low Interest Rate’s Impact On Caps

As you may have read in my other article on this topic that can be found here, I mentioned that the average general account yield today that insurance companies are getting is around 4.4% versus 6.1% in 2007. How does that affect caps on IUL?? Well, for the fun of it,...

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NOT recommending something that IS suitable can get you in as much trouble as recommending something that is NOT suitable.

As I was finishing up and article (click here) on Long-Term Care and how I believe addressing the LTC problem with clients is the foremost opportunity today for financial professionals, I was prompted to write an additional thought here about the importance of not...

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Caps, Dividends, Rates, Etc. Will Decrease

Caps, Dividends, Rates, Etc. Will Decrease

It’s not breaking news that life insurance carriers (and everybody else) have seen 40 years of dropping yields on bonds. At the time of this writing (February 2021), the Moody’s Baa Corporate Bond Yield sits right at 3.24 percent, which is almost 2% less than where we...

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The Bengen 4% Rule Includes Inflation Adjustments, Annuities Don’t

The Bengen 4% Rule Includes Inflation Adjustments, Annuities Don’t

For the rather studious financial professionals that observe my conversation around GLWBs versus the 4% Rule, they may be thinking to themselves that my example of GLWB income versus the income from the securities portfolio is an apples to oranges comparison. That is...

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Ned Ryerson is Just as Cool as Gordon Gekko

Ned Ryerson is Just as Cool as Gordon Gekko

There is a lot that can be learned from little kids.  They are unfiltered and say what is on their minds because they have not yet been “polluted” by political correctness.  For example, as my family was on our boat a year ago and I was dawning my swimming suit gear,...

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Four Traits Possessed by “The 21st Century Financial Professional”

Four Traits Possessed by “The 21st Century Financial Professional”

This article is basically an excerpt from the article here. This article is not necessarily focusing on the “marketing” that I discuss in this article , but rather about the “traits” that 21st Century Financial Professionals possess. In short, the 21st century...

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Annuities And GLWBs: How To Clear A Room At A Christmas Party

Annuities And GLWBs: How To Clear A Room At A Christmas Party

My wife, kids and I went to a Christmas party at a friend’s house a couple years ago with about eight other families were in attendance. As I was standing with a group of the “Dads” talking about sports, kids and other small talk, my friend Ryan, who was standing...

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“Why do I have to take a loan from myself??  That is my money!!!”

“Why do I have to take a loan from myself?? That is my money!!!”

If you have sold cash value life insurance for any period of time, you have been asked by the client, “Why do I have to take a loan from myself? That is my money I am taking out!” Here is my explanation: The client is not taking anything out of their policy. What is...

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The History of Annuities

The History of Annuities

Alittle over 2,000 years ago lived Julius Caesar.  This was around 50 BC.  Julius Caesar of course was the Roman Emperor that engaged in many battles and won many battles.  When a battle was won, there were usually “spoils of war”.  These are...

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The Pandemic That Killed The Communicator

The Pandemic That Killed The Communicator

Trillions of dollars of lost productivity. This pandemic has led to immeasurable harm to our industry and our economy. We will never know exactly how much this pandemic will shave off of our nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) because of its impact across multiple...

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Why “Overfund” A Life Insurance Policy?

Why “Overfund” A Life Insurance Policy?

As my company trains scores and scores of financial professionals every month on permanent life insurance, we always observe common questions and misperceptions that warrant a column or two. Lately I have observed some common questions around how to illustrate...

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Whitepaper:  Indexed Products:  How The Watch is Built

Whitepaper: Indexed Products: How The Watch is Built

Topics discussed in whitepaper:
Difference between UL and IUL,
Difference between IUL and Whole Life,
Unique actuarial information explained simply,
Options strategies that the carriers use,
Value proposition of IUL,
Decreasing caps and thoughts on if they will continue.

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Six Marketing Steps to Creating a “21st Century Agency”

Six Marketing Steps to Creating a “21st Century Agency”

Whether one is brand new to our industry or a veteran looking to optimize his/her practice, the below may be useful from a practice management and marketing standpoint. Following is a very high level version of a “Six-Step Roadmap” that we use to help new agents as...

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The Difference Between Universal Life and Indexed Universal Life

The Difference Between Universal Life and Indexed Universal Life

The major difference between current assumption universal life insurance and IUL is what the carrier does with the interest that is spun off from the general account. Below you will see that with fixed UL the carrier quite simply takes the client’s net premium—$10,000...

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Selling Life Insurance As “Investments”:  Stay Out of Jail!

Selling Life Insurance As “Investments”: Stay Out of Jail!

This message is prompted by hearing about yet another agent that got herself in trouble by selling cash value life insurance as an “investment” without regard to the actual death benefit need. As you may or may not know, prior to starting CG Financial Group, I spent...

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History of Modern Portfolio Theory and Asset Allocation

History of Modern Portfolio Theory and Asset Allocation

Post Great Depression Whether discussing life insurance, annuities, investments, etc, it is hard to imagine a financial world where we do not consider risk and diversification.  Prior to the 1950s, the theory of risk was very rarely considered.   ...

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Good News!  Changes To Section 7702

Good News! Changes To Section 7702

If you get shivers down your spine in excitement like I do when you think of things like CVAT, GPT, Modified Endowment Contracts, and Section 7702, then I hope you are sitting down.  If you are an insurance agent that sells (or wants to sell) accumulation focused...

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One of My Favorite Graphics

One of My Favorite Graphics

The above graphic is powerful to me because it shows that "risk is in the eye of the beholder".  Consumers that attempt to "play it safe" may find that they are actually guaranteeing themselves a loss in the purchasing power of their money by purchasing CDs.  As you...

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The Absent Insurance Agent I Needed 40 Years Ago

The Absent Insurance Agent I Needed 40 Years Ago

The below is actually from one of my most popular columns that I wrote for Broker World Magazine that I want to share via this blog: I was never going to write on this topic until today when I had a conversation with Joe Jordan. Some of you may know Joe, who has...

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The Problem With Bonds

The Problem With Bonds

Conventional Thinking and the 50/50 Portfolio For the longest time it was conventional thinking that a “balanced” portfolio was a 50/50 portfolio. That is, in the securities world it was widely recommended that a “balanced portfolio” had 50% of the portfolio in stocks...

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