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Mark Cussen

Mark Cussen


Recent articles

tax return IRS form 1040

Here's When You Should File Separately

In most cases, married couples should file jointly in order to minimize their tax bill, but in others, filing separately is smarter -- or even necessary.

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Pick the Right IRA for Your Retirement Savings

There are several types of IRAs to choose from, so you should learn the pros and cons of each.

piggy bank white saving

Figure Out How Much You Need to Save for Retirement

Figuring out how much money you need for retirement is easier than you think. A financial calculator and a simple cash-flow analysis will give you a pretty good idea whether your retirement plan will cover your expenses after you stop working.

check to IRS for all my money tax

Avoid These Tax Mistakes During Retirement

Here are some simple tips that could save you big time.

tax return 1040 and refund check

Know Your Rights as a Taxpayer

Knowing your rights under the tax code can help you to deal with the IRS and ensure that you're treated fairly.

money under umbrella fund

Withdraw Retirement Savings Early Without Penalties

If you want to take money out of your retirement accounts before age 59-1/2, this rule may allow you to avoid the early-withdrawal penalty.

compound interest growth

The Pros and Cons of Target-Date Funds

Target-date funds can be a convenient way to save money for the future, but investors need to understand the potential disadvantages as well.

Federal Reserve Building

How to Profit From Rising Interest Rates

The general consensus on the Street is that interest rates will probably continue to rise in 2017. Here's what you can do to profit from this trend.

man looking at paper document concentrating confused

Could You Retire in 5 Years?

If you plan to retire five years from now, then you need to have your finances in order. Review this checklist to see whether your retirement plan is on track.

elderly senior woman looking out window smiling

Protect Your Elderly Loved Ones From Financial Abuse

Elder financial abuse is a growing problem. Here's what you can to do prevent your elderly loved ones from being swindled.

taxes - alamr clock on blocks spelling TAX

What Trump's Tax Plan Could Mean for You

Trump's tax plan will mean more taxes for some filers and less taxes for others. Here's how you can expect to fare if Trump is able to get his tax plan through Congress in its current form.

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Think You Can't Save in a Roth IRA? Think Again

If your income exceeds a certain threshold, then you're not allowed to directly contribute to a Roth IRA. Fortunately, there is a loophole.

Form 1040

How Investors Can Turn Losses Into Tax Breaks

Smart investors know how to turn their losing investment holdings into tax deductions -- as long as they follow the rules.

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Buying an Annuity for Retirement Makes Sense -- Sometimes

Funding a tax-deferred retirement account or plan with another tax-deferred vehicle can be the right choice in some cases, but investors need to understand what they are getting and what they are paying in order to make an informed decision.

man holding out hand to take money

Annuities: Guaranteed Income Comes at a Price

Annuities can provide you with a lifetime stream of income based upon a guaranteed rate of growth -- but this type of income protection does not come for free.

senior couple sitting on sailboat

Protect Your Estate Plan With a "Titanic" Clause

Even the most carefully crafted estate plan can go awry in certain circumstances. Here's what you can do to ensure that your assets are handled according to your wishes.


One More Reason to Consider a Retirement Advisor

If you've ever felt like retirement advisors have their own best interest in mind more than yours, you now have a new level of protection

social security calculator getty

Simple Ways to Maximize Your Social Security Benefits

Don't file for Social Security without knowing the smartest strategy for you.