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March 2016

Are we ready for summer yet? I know I can't wait to get back out on the boat! Nothing "earth shattering" to report this month, other than that Kelly just got back from Nashville, where she attended another educational event with a group of our peers. As always, she learned a lot and there will be two or three more of these events that she'll be attending over the course of this year. Kelly and I are also scheduled to attend a few more events that will deal with advanced retirement planning strategies, new regulations in our industry, and tax planning moving forward. As strategies & products change, we want you to know that we're committed to educating ourselves on an ongoing basis to keep up with it all for the benefit of the people we meet. I always say that we're blessed to have such great teams of professionals that assist us, but it's our job to take advantage of the opportunities they present and make sure we keep improving ourselves. 

Also, we don't typically like to talk about specific products when speaking to groups of people, but here's one product that's been very popular that I thought I'd pass on to those that may not be aware that something like it even exists. It's a Fixed Index Annuity through Athene Life & Annuity Company*, some of the key details are below:

A) Receives a 12% premium bonus  (put in 100k, contract starts with 112k)
B) Strong "Safe Growth" opportunities with higher caps, participation rates, etc. than other similar products
C) 20% liquidity in any given year during the surrender period
D) Return of Premium option starting in year 4

The combination of these benefits have made this a popular choice for those that are looking for a safe place to growth their money with reasonable returns over time. If you'd like to learn more about this particular product, just let us know and we can give you all the details and help you decide if it would be a good piece of your overall portfolio. This is by no means something that will be a good fit for everyone, but again, we wanted you to know that things like it are out there. 

As always, remember that "applied knowledge is power" and "the purpose of the money dictates where you put it". 

Enjoy this month's articles and we'll see you next month,

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James D. Stillman

*Performance Elite Plus 15 offered by Athene Life & Annuity Company. Product brochure available upon request for full list of product specifics and features. 
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A Few Common Mistakes Most Retirees Make -   Part 2 
Lake Norman Magazine, March 2016
Last month we discussed the top two mistakes retirees make with their finances, in my opinion. They were:investing as though you're still working and not guaranteeing your basic income needs - so basically risk and income were the biggest problems we see on a regular basis.

Here are a few more of the biggest mistakes retirees make (we'll start off with #3 to keep things in order from last month):

3) Not paying attention to portfolio costs & fees: It's said that the average investor could accumulate an extra $150,000 by reducing portfolio fees by approximately 1% over their lifetime. The problem is that most folks don't even know how much they are actually paying in fees at any given time. We offer a free Cost & Risk Analysis, just in case you're interested in learning what your current portfolio is costing you in fees and expenses.There are "disclosed fees" and "undisclosed fees". Undisclosed fees are not typically put into all those fancy prospectuses you're supposed to read BEFORE you purchase any mutual fund or variable annuity. To be fair, a lot of these expenses/charges/fees are not necessarily set or predictable, so they can't really put them in writing. I don't have the ad space to go over all of the undisclosed fees, other than to say that when we do our Cost & Risk Analysis for folks, it isn't out of the ordinary to see total fees in the 3% - 4% range. And quite often those investors had no idea that their fees were that high. This is especially common with variable annuities. I've seen them as high as 7% - 8%. Ouch! That can be hard to stomach, not to mention how hard it can be to actually make enough on a consistent basis to not have those fees eat away at the investment. 

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The Strong Will Survive
GFPC Thought for the Week (377)

* The energy sector has been a major source of volatility in the equity market over the past 18 months. 

* Only the strong survive in the wild, and the same applies in the business world. Too many weak oil producers exist and must be eliminated. 

* Expect bankruptcies and acquisitions in the energy sector to ramp up, but keep in mind that it's a good outcome for the industry and our economy.

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A Home Is Not An Investment
GFPC Thought for the Week (378)

* One of the biggest financial misconceptions is that home ownership is a good investment over the long run. 

* Not all assets qualify as investments, and a primary residence almost always fails to meet the conditions necessary to carry this designation. 

* Homes are assets with intangible value, which offers far more than just the potential for financial profit.

All content is intended for informational purposes only. Any guarantees are for insured products only and are dependent on the claims paying abilities of the insurer. All investments carry some risk and you should be advised by your personal financial advidor before implementing any strategies discussed, as they are not suitable for everyone. James D. Stillman is an Investment Advisor Representative of JDS Wealth Management Corporation and Global Financial Private Capital.

JDS Wealth Management Corporation's outgoing and incoming e-mails are electronically archived and subject to review and/or disclosure to someone other than the recipient. We cannot accept requests for securities transactions or other similar instructions through e-mail. We cannot ensure the security of information e-mailed over the Internet, so you should be careful when transmitting confidential information such as account numbers and security holdings. If the reader of this message is not the intended recipient, or an employee or agent responsible for delivering this message to the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any dissemination, distribution or copying of this communication is strictly prohibited. If you have received this communication in error, please notify us immediately by replying to this message and deleting it from your computer."
This Month
A Few Common Mistakes Most Retirees Make - Part 2
The Strong Will Survive
A Home Is Not An Investment

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