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Pulling heartstrings and purse strings: Grandparents spend $179B annually on grandkids

Pulling heartstrings and purse strings: Grandparents spend $179B annually on grandkids
A study by AARP has found that grandparents spend $2,562 on average on their grandchildren, or $179 billion in aggregate very year, according to this article on CNBC. Grandparents are advised to give cash gifts without putting their future financial security at risk. “We try to make sure the gifts are small enough relative to our clients’ overall assets and income so it’s inconceivable that it would cause a reduction of lifestyle in later years,” says a CFP.

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An elderly man pushes a child on a baby stroller at the Lu Xun Park in Shanghai, China, on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015. The Chinese Communist Party will discuss the nation's economic and social policies for the next five years at its Fifth Plenum in Beijing this week. Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg

Fake Social Security calls can fool your aging parents
Baby boomers should be warned about the new fraudulent scheme targeting retirees who are receiving Social Security benefits, according to this article on Forbes. The scam involves a caller who would tell unsuspecting seniors that they cannot claim their retirement benefits because their Social Security account has been blocked, and that they need to pay a certain fee to unblock their account. The caller would also “verify” the seniors’ Social Security number, obtaining the information that scammers can use to commit identity theft.

Opinion: Why everyone should save like they’re going to retire early
Clients should build their nest egg as if they intend to have an early retirement, writes an expert on MarketWatch. That’s because it is possible that they would be forced to retire earlier than expected, explains the expert. Retirement could be “more like a natural disaster: something that can strike at almost any time, without warning.”

53% of Americans want to live to be 100 but are anxious about paying for a long retirement. Here’s one solution that could help
A survey by AIG Life and Retirement has found that 53% of Americans aimed to live through the age of 100, but only 9% voiced confidence that they would have enough savings to last through their golden years, according to this article on Money. Experts say that a longer life span could also increase unpredictability in retirement. To secure a longer retirement horizon, clients should consider annuitizing their retirement assets, as annuities offer guaranteed lifetime income stream.

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