Financial Planning – Five Critical Steps in Financial Planning

1. Gather and Prepare Your Personal Financial Situation Status Quo

This kind of information can depend a lot on you as an individual, but it usually has to do with …

– Your investments,

– Your insurance policies (life, health, long-term care, property, liability, etc.),

– Your retirement benefits,

– Your tax situation (income tax, estate tax, gift taxes, etc.),

– Your will or trust,

– Your other estate planning information,

– Your powers of attorney,

– Any other financial information or documents you may need.

It's helpful for you to put together some simple personal financial statements. These can be much like those that are used in business. They might include your personal balance sheet, an income statement, and other relevant statements.

In the case of a balance sheet and income statement, the assets and liabilities, as well as your income and expenses, are included in the statements. These can be combined, for example in the case of husband and wife, or separate income statements and balance sheets could be put together for each person in your family.

If you are using a professional, they may have forms already made up that you can use for these purposes.

2. Identify Your Goals and Objectives

This will take some thought, and is one of the most important foundations to your financial planning.

Put some time and thought into it, and the rest will fall into place much better.

3. Compare Your Current Scenario With Alternative Ways To Handle Each Part of Your Financial Planning

Relate it to your goals and objectives. Get the advice and information you need from others, including professionals, and make decisions for changing what is the status quo.

4. Develop and Put Into Place Your Plan

Not someone else's plan, but YOUR plan.

Putting together the facts of your current situation, your potential future situation, your goals and objectives, and looking at those alternative ways of handling your case, you can lay down a plan that, while flexible, will act as a map for your future years in planning your finances.

5. Review and Revise Your Plan As Needed Periodically

Do not think of your plan as carved in stone. Things change. Circumstances change. YOU change.

There may be family occurrences like marriages, divorces, deaths, births, changes of occupation, varying economic conditions, and many other things that enter into making financial planning decisions.

Put these five steps into play, and you'll be glad they did. Read more. Absorb lots of information. But do not let it paralyze you. Information plus action will take you a long way.

Source by T. Lee Rayburn

Ballet Terms – Three Tips to Accelerate Your Class From Amateur to Pro

Through years of teaching dance at various studios across the country, I've noticed several not-so-good, but oh-so-common deficiencies in ballet training. Sometimes, they are things that are actually taught wrong, and sometimes, they are things that would elevate the training so much further if the teacher would just take a few minutes in each class to add this into the repertoire. Here are three simple, but major tips that will elevate our ballet classes from amateur to professional: 1) Understand when to use retire vs. passe, 2) Why use the term releve instead of eleve in ballet, and 3) Why teachers should regularly introduce students to ballet terms in their written form in ballet class.

Many teachers use passe as a blanket term , when often the correct ballet term to use is actually retire. So here's the difference between the two terms, and when each should be used in ballet. Think of a passe as actually passing through. It begins in one position, through retire position, to another position. For example, from fifth position, the working leg slides up the standing leg to retire position devant (in front of the knee), slides in a mini arc above the standing knee, to retire derriere, and then down the back of the leg to finish in fifth position in the back.

Retire can be a position, or an action. In the retire position, the working thigh is lifted to 90 degrees a la seconde (in Lehman's terms, that is to the side), with a bent knee, and the toes are extended to touch the front of the supporting knee. The retire action, means to draw up the working leg to the retire position, and return in back down to its original position. Retire action may also be executed as a petit retire, in which the dancer begins in first or fifth position, and the thigh of the working leg does not come all the way up to the retire position at 90 degrees, but rather to cou-de -pied (the "neck of the foot", with the toe of the working foot above the supporting leg ankle), and returns to its original position in first or fifth.

Eleve is also commonly used, when the term releve should be used. The French verb elever means "to raise up" or "to lift", as one can raise a child or lift a chair. However, the ballet term releve comes from the French reflexive verb "se relever," meaning to lift oneself. So when referring to rising up on the balls of the feet, the dancer is actually lifting himself / herself, thus the proper ballet term to use is releve.

When teaching ballet terms, teachers should get students familiar with the terms in their written form. This will help with their proper pronunciation, and help students identify and understand French words, and help them with identifying and learning other ballet steps. For example, take the term "sur le cou-de-pied." This is a long term. Plus, it's a foreign language! When a teacher spats this out at an English-speaking student who's never heard it, it sounds like a big slur. How is the student supposed to remember what to do? For all this student knows, you could be saying "shi lef beekempt". Huh? But if the teacher writes it out, and explains what each term is, it is not as overwhelming. "Sur" is "on", "le" is "the", "cou" is neck "," de "is" of the "," pied "is" foot ". Thus the entire term is" on the neck of the foot. "Now it is easier for the student to remember the position that accompanies the phrase. Two other fabulous things happen as well: 1) Now when the student hears the sound" pied "in another position or step, he or she can identify it as having to do with the feet, and 2) The student is learning proper French pronunciation and spelling. Magic! and it just took a few extra minutes of class time.

Source by Elle L. Baryshnikov

Time Value of Money

The following paper will explain how annuities affect TVM (Time Value of Money) problems and investigate outcomes. Starting with annuities, it came to light that annuities work best when based on longevity since the principal investment is broken down and distributed over the term of the annuity.

An annuity is a series of regular periodic payments comprising principal and interest. In the case of retirement, an annuity is usually purchased from an insurance company who then pays the purchaser a monthly amount while still alive. Annuities may have more complicated features such as indexing, guarantee periods and benefits payable to a spouse or other beneficiary after death. (Agents, 2006)

Annuities are used to preserve a cash investment and there are a few types of annuities which include CD, fixed, equity, and immediate. (Annuity Advantage, 2006) Since annuities are a safe place to keep money they offer a lower return than some of the more risky investment avenues such as stocks. When an individual purchases an annuity, they usually pay a lump sum to an insurer. The insurer then takes this (premium) and divides by an annuity factor based on mortality, current interest rates and payment features.

In this case the interest is the amount paid to the individual by the insurance company for the privilege of using the individual's money. Interest is usually calculated as a percentage of the principal balance of the loan, and the security comes from the interest rate being fixed. Regular savings accounts have an adjustable interest rate. However, a savings account compounds the interest and annuities do not. Compounded interest is interest that is paid on both the principal balance of the loan and on any accrued interest.

When looking at annuities compared to traditional stocks it is important to understand the present value of the payment received and the future value of the investment. The present value of a future payment is calculated by first determining how many years until the payment is received, and then using the interest rate to establish how much you would be paid on the money if you invested it from now until the future payment is received . That amount is deducted from the principal.

So, let's say that you inherited $ 100,000 and had the choice of collecting all of the money now, or all of the money in three years. Ignoring the obvious that you would want your money now, let's look at the present value of the future payment received. If we take the first option and invest it for three years, at an interest rate of 5%, after the first year the $ 100,000 would be worth $ 105,000. After the second year you would have $ 110,250 and at the end of the third year you would have $ 115,762.50. So working the numbers backward, if you waited three years for the $ 100,000 it would be the same as getting $ 84,237.50 right now. So the difference in three years is huge, and knowing this before you come into some cash is a huge advantage. I hear so many people say that if they won the lottery they would take the 20 year payment plan, and so many others say that they would take the lump sum. By looking at it with the scenario described above it is easier to make an educated decision about your money.

Now since we just invested the $ 100,000 for three years at 5% we may wonder if this investment was our best option. Opportunity cost is the value of the best alternative use of a resource (BioSociety, 2006); in this case the best alternative use of our $ 100,000. This basically means, how much could and would we have made if we had not invested the $ 100,000 the way we did which we know gave us $ X in return.

Considering a three year term we may have made more money by investing in an annuity, but if it were a three year term the annuity would expire in three years and we would have to deal with the $ 100,000 again if we had not spent it. If the annuity paid us 36 payments with all things being equal, we would have reeled in 36 payments of about $ 3,216. That amount would be pretty easy to spend and at the end of three years we might have nothing. Whereas the $ 100,000 in our other investment (wherever we put it earning the 5%) would still be there in three years. Life expectancy plays a big role in how we invest, and I guess if the doctor gave you three years to live it might be better to go with the annuity.

So let's say that I want to retire in 20 years and we want to use the $ 100,000 as my retirement fund. We would want to see if the $ 100,000 would be enough when we retire and one way to figure our sum is to use the rule of 72. The rule of 72 says that to find the number of years required to double your money at a given interest call is free.; you just divide the interest rate into 72 (MoneyChimp, 2006). For example, if you want to know how long it will take to double your money at eight percent interest, divide 8 into 72 and get 9 years. The rule of 72 is an approximation, but pretty accurate. So using our 5% interest rate from above we can determine that in 14.4 years the $ 100,000 will double. If we think we can make it on a little more than $ 200,000 when we retire in 20 years from now then this is a good route. Personally I think it would be best to find an interest rate that would double the money in 10 years or less, and then take the entire amount and double it again in 10 to 14 years. I would follow an aggressive investment strategy now with things tapering toward a more conservative strategy as I near retirement.

Annuities are more of a cash management tool (in my opinion) and less of an investment. Focusing on the time value of money it just makes more sense to invest money with the goal of growing rather than losing the principal.

More about investing Learn The while you enjoy a cup of the worlds best coffee found at The Augusta Roasting Company About enterprise |


Agents, Fiscal (2006). Fiscal Agents Financial Glossary. 4.29.06 Retrieved, from Fiscal Agents Financial Services Group Web site: Http://

Annuity Advantage, (2006). Annuity Advantage. 04.29.2006 Retrieved, from Research and Tripadvisor Tripadvisor over 300 Fixed and CD-Tipo Annuities Ranked by vBulletin® Highest Yield to Surrender Web site: Http://

BioSociety, B (2006). Bio-Glossary. 4.29.06 Retrieved, from BioSociety Research on-line Web site: Http://

MoneyChimp, M (2006). Money Chimp. 04.29.2006 Retrieved, from Rule of 72 Web site: Http://

Source by Stu Dalziel

Why is Financial Planning Important?

Personal financial planning is important because it provides you with a method of organising your financial tomorrows for yourself and is unreservedly about planning for the unforeseen and empowering you to have the independence to handle unpredicted events in your life. Successful personal financial planning is therefore, extremely important for anyone who wishes to stay ahead of their finances.

Doubtless personal finance is a demanding subject to grasp and comprehend fully and for that reason an individual as a matter of course is inclined to shy away from it, building defenses in an effort to avoid having to comprehend it's effectiveness. However, with everything in life effort will equal reward in your courageous attempt to rid yourself of financial constraints. For many persons, your objectives in finance are to achieve financial freedoms. Having a well developed financial plan is central to prosperous personal financial future.

The next action of personal finance planning is to determine where you are today such as how much money you have stored up, the value of your investments and what types of investment vehicles they are. This plan will give you a blueprint directing you towards achieving your goals, what products you should be investing in, for what time period you should invest for, whilst considering your constraints such as your attitude towards risk. Blueprints such as these will provide you with some great quick start methods on how you can begin to better manage your finances beginning today.

It is a reality that one of the largest factors of personal debt is the overuse, abuse and ill-treatment of the credit card. Nevertheless, if you come upon such a position, do not despair, considering with a personal finance schedule you can substantially curtail your liability in 3 simple steps. Firstly you can refinance your credit cards by combining your commitments, or you can even renegotiate your interest rates with your existing credit card institution. In getting ready for a further economical constriction, it is crucial that you take a number of personal financial planning steps. There are the bills you must settle each month, and accordingly, is part of your compulsory personal finance planning routine. Keep in mind that you should endeavor to buy everything 'on sale' for intelligent planning. Smart personal finance planning means restricting how frequently you consume food in a restaurant, or pay out money on recreation. For that reason, by acquiring conventional approaches with your personal finance planning now, you can even so set aside crisis funds that will assist your family if times are demanding.

Once you have an precise picture of where you are today, your personal finance planning project can proceed to the next level namely deciding where you wish to be, and how to arrive there. The difficulty is that most individuals compare personal finance budgeting with sacrifices. Target your personal finance planning exploits at liberating yourself to retrain for further satisfying and more financially profitable jobs, and you will turn out to be one of the world's most productive savers in no time. Debt management strategy tip – observe your interest rates when economical uncertainty is on the skyline given interest rates are the first to respond to making debt control crucial.

In summary therefore, and to address the issue around why is financial planning important, if professions are becoming more unstable, then personal finance planning is becoming more significant than ever, and the earlier you start to get your finances in order, the better.

Source by Jonathan Grigson

Sports and Hobbies in Portugal

Called The Beautiful Game, the Portuguese are ardent futebol fans. From club matches to the national team, everyone has a favorite player and team that they follow with great devotion.


The game requires speed, dexterity, endurance and strategy. Portugal's Cristiano Renaldo is arguably the best player in the world and José Marinho is widely recognized as a gifted manager.

For pro players, making the national team is the pinnacle of success. Many professional footballers play internationally for other teams; for example Renaldo plays for Real Madrid. As qualifying for the quadrennial World Cup approaches, players are named for the national team. Below the national team is club play. Premeira Liga, with 14 teams, is the premier league and the Segunda Liga fields 22 teams.

Every town and region has a host of amateur leagues, as well as college and school teams ranging from five-a-side to full teams. Naturally you can find a group of kids (or adults) kicking the ball around wherever there's a bit of open space.


Futsal, 5-a-side indoor football, is played on a hard surface. There are several leagues divided into divisions. 1a Divis ã o is the top league .

All the rest

  • Athletics: Portugal has a number of top long-distance runners and has done well at recent Olympic Games in London and Beijing; there are also a number of top cross-country runners from Portugal
  • Canoeing: Portugal has many top Olympians in this sport; kayaking and canoeing are popular sports for tourists and locals alike
  • Cycling: Volta a Portugal is the annual professional long-distance race; cycling tours and mountain bike trails are widely available in all regions
  • Martial arts: Jogo do Pau is a traditional stick fighting martial art dating from the Middle Ages (fencing and judo are also popular)
  • Motorsports: Rallying, motorcycle racing and A1 Grand Prix are popular spectator sports with some races (Rally Madeira and Lisboa-Dakar) receiving international attention
  • Bullfights: Portuguese bullfights differ in style from the Spanish customs, notably the bull is not killed in the ring; running with the bulls, as in Pamplona, ​​Spain, is popular in the Azores
  • Golf: the Algarve has great courses and many of Portugal's top pros play in the region
  • Airsoft: known as paint ball in the US, the game is popular around the country
  • Watersports: surfing, windsurfing, kite surfing and sailing are all popular, especially in the Algarve
  • Portugal is considered to have some of the best waves in Europe, most notably around the central coastal town of Peniche. Recently, the largest wave ever surfed was recorded in Nazaré, about 30 minutes north of Peniche.



Portugal's traditional needlework and fiber arts began in nunneries and as cottage industries. The fine linens, rugs, lacework provided a livelihood for many families and grew to be celebrated for craftsmanship. Portuguese textiles are well known the world over.

  • Embroidery: Portuguese embroidery is highly sought after with its intricate stiches and rich colors; styles vary by region, with the best known examples coming from Madeira and Castelo Branco; white embroidery (white thread on white cloth) is also popular with modern needle workers
  • Rug making / tapestry: Arraiolos in southern Portugal is famous for its pure wool carpets; designs are similar in motif and style to Persian rugs; Portalegre is well known for its finely detailed tapestry with as many as 25,000 stitches per square meter
  • Knitting: Portuguese knitting is popular with knitters everywhere; also known as continental knitting
  • Crocheting / lacemaking: fine thread crochet lace and bobbin lace making developed as another way to make ends meet in poorer families; well known styles include secret, love secret and Loulé lace
  • Weaving: the region of Serra da Estrela is well known for its thick, dense waterproof blankets (mantas); 100% wool, the blankets are dye and chemical free

Folk dancing

Traditional Portuguese folk dances, typically slower-paced than those of their Spanish neighbors, reflect the courtship and marriage customs of their native regions. Well-known dances include: fandango, vira, corrinhdo, chula and viranda. To dance well, time, practice, stamina and instruction are needed.

Source by James E Harrison

Setting New Goals After 50

Setting personal goals at regular stages is the way we move forward and mark our progress. The third age is one of the key refocusing points in your life, so do not ignore it. For many, this time can turn into a mid-life crisis; a sense that time is slipping away when there are still many personal goals to reach.

Now is the time to properly examine those concerns and make a personal development plan so that at least,

some of those new personal goals being identified are reached. Take a moment to look over the horizon. What does your future look like? What do you want it to look like?

  • Are you about to become an empty nester?
  • Are you going to continue to work full time?
  • Is it time to go back to school?
  • Is it time to try that small business you always wanted?
  • Is it time to redecorate the house?
  • Is it time to sell the house?

Start exploring and looking for the you that you left behind in your 20's and 30's. What were the things you wanted to do? How many of them are still options? At this stage everything is an option, a fact that can make the idea a little overwhelming. So break it down into something that's more manageable.

There are four key areas that will need your attention:


This is the biggie. This is what will determine whether you have a comfortable retirement, a semi-retirement or must continue working long past what is a traditional retirement age. If you set no other new personal goals, examine setting this one.


We live in a fabulous age where many ailments can be managed with a single tablet a day. But even in the face of medical advances, is not there at least some level of responsibility to take ownership of your own health and well-being? This is a critical personal goal to set.


It is generally at this stage of life that people make their last, big, STATEMENT on the relationship front. What statement are you preparing to make? Do you dig in, move on or determine a plan to make things different and maybe better?


Are you really going to maintain little Johnny's room just the way it is until he's 45? How about moving forward with your life? Downsize, redecorate, empty the cupboard, walk light, light, lighter on the earth. If you have not been using stuff, pitch it or give it away and make some space.

Change can be made slowly or quickly. Small goals may be a start or go big bang. Whatever you choose to do, at least make some decisions and keep moving forward. You will feel a lot better for it.

Source by Judy Williams

Business Plan – Purpose and Objectives

A detailed description of a new or existing business, including the company's product or service, marketing plan, financial statements and projections and management principles, require a plan to be implemented. A document that spells out a company's expected course of action for a specified period usually includes a detailed listing and analysis of risks and uncertainties. For the small business, it should examine the proposed products, the market, the industry, the management policies, the marketing policies, production needs and financial needs. Frequently, it is used as a prospectus for potential investors and lenders.

Think of it as a production line. What's go in the start are raw materials and unfinished assemblies. Here, the raw materials include:

-Talent And initiative from employees

-Capital -Market Position

-The Company's creditworthiness

-The Firm's earning capacity

-Assessment Of changes in the marketplace.

It should have four major aspects:

– Its contribution to purpose and objectives

– Its primacy among the manager's tasks

– Its pervasiveness

– The efficiency of resulting plans.

The Contribution of Planning to Purpose and Objectives: Every plan and all its supporting plans should contribute to the accomplishment of the purpose and objectives of the enterprise.

The Primacy of Planning Manager must plan in such a way that it leads to proper organizing, staffing, leading and controlling which support the accomplishment of enterprise objectives. Planning and controlling are inseparable. Any attempt to control without a plan is meaningless, since there is no way for people to tell whether they are going where they want to go. Plans thus furnish the standards of control.

The Pervasiveness of Planning: Planning is a function of all managers, which vary with each manager's authority and with the nature of the policies and plans assigned by superiors. If managers are not allowed to a certain degree of discretion and planning responsibility, they are not truly managers.

The Efficiency of Plans: The effectiveness of plan refers to its contribution to the purpose and objectives. Plan is efficient if it achieves its purpose at a reasonable cost, when cost is measured not only in terms of time or money or production but also in the degree of individual and group satisfaction.

Procedures: Procedures are plans that establish a required method of handling future activities. They are chronological sequences of required actions. They are guides to action rather than to thinking and they detail the exact manner in which certain activities must be accomplished.

Rules: Rules are unlike procedures in that they guide action without specifying a time sequence. In fact, a procedure might be looked upon as a sequence of rules. Rule may be a part of procedure.

Programs: Programs are a complex of goals, policies, procedures, rules, task assignments, steps to be taken, resources to be employed and other elements necessary to carry out a given course of action; further supported by budgets.

Budgets: Budget is a statement of expected results expressed in numerical terms. Financial operating budget is often called a "profit plan". This budget can be expressed in financial terms, in terms of labor- hours, units of product or machine hours or in any other numerically measurable term.

Steps in Planning: Being aware of opportunities, a manager should take a preliminary look at possible future opportunities and see them clearly and completely know where they stand in light of their strengths and weaknesses, understand what problems they wish to solve, and why and know what they expect to gain. Planning requires a realistic diagnosis of the opportunity situation.

Establishing objectives: This is to be done for the long term as well as for the short term. Objectives specify the expected results and indicate the end points of what is to be done, where the primary emphasis is to be placed and what is to be accomplished by the network of strategies, policies, procedures, rules, budgets and programs. Objectives form a hierarchy.

Developing premises: There are assumptions about the environment in which the plan is to be carried out. It is important for all managers involved in planning to agree on the premises. Forecasting is important in premising: what kind of markets will there be? What volume of sales? What prices? What products? What technical developments? What costs? What wage rates? What tax rates and policies? What new plans? How will expansion be financed? What are the long-term trends? Because the future is so complex, it would not be profitable or realistic to make assumption about every detail of the future environment of a plan.

Determining alternative courses: The more common problem is not finding alternatives but reducing the number of alternatives so that the most promising may be analyzed. The planner must usually make a preliminary examination to discover the most fruitful possibilities.

Evaluating alternative courses: From the various alternatives available proper evaluation should be done which may involve ash flow.

Selecting a course: The best alternative should be selected.

Numbering plans by budgeting Final step is giving them meaning by converting them into budgets. The overall budgets of an enterprise represent the sum total of income and expenses, with resultant profit or surplus and the budgets of major balance sheet items such as cash and capital expenditures.

Source by Michael Russell

8 Steps to Become a Master Day Trader

Success in any form of trading implies that you are betting your wits against every other person in the market. Every penny you make is on the back of someone else's losses. This is also true for day, future and forex trading.

Day trading is full time job and you want to make your living on day trading in stock or currency, you need to follow followings:

1. It is unrealistic to make profit from day one in stock or currency trading. You will make mistakes and you need to learn from your mistakes. Do not get depressed if you loose money during your initial period.

2. You need to be ready while market is trending. These are great opportunity to make big profits.

3. You need to work hard to limit your losses while day trading. This is more important than make big profits.

4. You should always set yourself a limit on how much you are prepared to lose on any particular trade, and set your stop loss at that level.

5. You should have 100% confidence on your chosen method of trading. Remember that success is nothing but strong desire.

6. It's your success so learn to hold yourself accountable if things do not go the way you want them to. You should be disciplined, determined, persistent, and most of all enjoy day trading in your chosen market like currency, stock or commodity.

7. You need to do intensive study and master all the tools like charting, Fibonacci sequence, and technical analysis to become a consistent trader.

8. Best day trading tips are to manage your fear and greed.

Let's discuss more on trading psychology

The fear of loss and the fear of missing out are two fears for all traders.

If you sell stocks out of fear probably, you will fail to capitalize and recover fully on the trade.

The fear of missing out forces people to abandon their rules so that they do not lose out on another major stock move.

The best suggestion to mitigate these risks is to have a defined entry and exit criteria as a part of your trading strategy.

Other side of fear is greed. Greed comes from overconfidence. Traders need to teach themselves on how not to loss focus from their trading rules.

Source by Arindam Chattopadhyaya

Great Things About Turning 60

If 40 is the new 50 the 60 must be the new 50, right? Whatever. Turning sixty has some definite advantages and your sixties can be some of the best years of your life.

Let's see what we can look forward to in our sixties.

1. Most people retire when they are in their sixties. Retirement brings with it a whole new lifestyle that can be fabulous and a welcome relief from the working years.

2. Many people are grandparents in their sixties. This is a time to really enjoy your grandkids. You can play with them and get away with acting like a kid again yourself. You can also get them all riled up and send them home to their parents as sort of payback for the years you spent raising them.

3. You get to cash in on social security and you better do so when you can because it is not going to be around too long.

4. You can travel. You will not have to worry about things like vacation leave and blackout dates. You can go to all those places you never had time to before.

5. You can take advantage of early-bird dinners and prices. It's you right – do it.

6. You can be a card carrying AARPer and can get all those senior citizen discounts.

7. You can play golf or tennis any time you want. You will not have to get up at the crack of dawn or wait until after work anymore.

8. You can hone your bridge skills as often as you can get up a game. You can play any day or night of the week if you want to.

9. You might be able to get a disabled parking pass so you can legally snag those close and convenient parking places. Or, you can ride with someone who has a disabled parking pass and get the same benefit.

10. You can move to a smaller house and give your kids all your unwanted furniture just like your parents did to you. Maybe you still have some of their stuff you can pass on …

11. You can spend the winter someplace warm and spend the summer someplace cool. What a life!

12. You can pretend your hearing is going and only listen to the things and people you want to hear.

13. You can legitimately talk about your health and pharmaceutical supply to anyone who will listen. It is always good for dinner table conversation.

14. You can become an official "Snow Bird" when you go off to that warm place in the winter. You might even move there and graduate to become a "local".

15. You can join the senior division in any sport you want. It has a certain cache and ring to it, right?

There you have it. Turning sixty is great is not it? There are so many wonderful things to look forward to. It's going to be an exhilarating ten years. Make it the best decade yet!

Source by Lynn Banis

What is the Purpose of Social Security?

Exactly what is the purpose of Social Security and how did it start?

Let me address that question with a general answer, then give a background. Social Security is a form of social insurance that is meant to provide basic protection against financial hardship due to significant events, such as, death, disability and aging.


To provide an understanding on why we get Social Security benefits, we should start in England.

The early colonist brought the concept of "Poor Laws" with them from England. This idea included taxation to help the destitute. It was done on a local basis, that is, the village or small town would help its own. As colonies grew, it became more difficult to handle locally. A public arrangement on a wider scale to assist those in need really did not develop. According to the IRS, even as late as 1915, public funds only provided up to 25% of the money spent on relief for citizens.

Later during the Revolutionary War period, Thomas Payne proposed the establishment of a public system of economic security. It called for a way to give a person a start in life by providing a one time payment of 15 pounds sterling when that person reached age 21. It also provided a way to protect against poverty in old age by annual payments of 10 pounds sterling to be paid to every person age 50 or older. Although proposed, these elements were never enacted.

After the Civil War, we began seeing the development of a pension program to help the many widows, orphans and disabled veterans. Later service-connected disability was not required for the veteran to receive a pension. Any disabled veteran of the Civil War could qualify. Subsequently, a veteran qualified if he reached old age, even without a disability. By 1910, veterans and surviving widows were receiving benefits.

Due to the Great Depression poverty grew dramatically, especially among the elderly. A number of states developed some form of old age pension to help, but were not significantly effective.


The Great Depression caused our political leaders to focus on ways to improve security as our nation grew. On June 8, 1934, Franklin Roosevelt announced his intention to provide a program for the social security of the citizens. It was later signed into law on August 14, 1935. The main provisions were:

Provide for general welfare Provide social insurance program to pay workers age 65 or older after retirement Unemployment insurance Old age assistance Aid to dependent children Grants to states to provide various forms of medical care.


In 1939 amendments provided for 1) payments to spouses and minor children of a worker and 2) survivors benefits paid to a family in the event of premature death of a covered worker. This changed the program to a family based economic security program from a program for retired workers.

The Cost of Living Adjustment ( "COLA") started in 1950 and was adjusted periodically by special acts of Congress until 1972 when legislation called for automatic annual adjustments.

The Disability Insurance program was added in 1954 to eventually allow payments to disabled workers of any age and to their dependents.

In 1964 a new social insurance program was added that extended health coverage to all Americans age 65 or older, ie Medicare.

Supplement Security Income became the responsibility of the Social Security Administration in 1972. It was designed to 1) help aged, blind or disabled people who have little or no income, and 2) provide cash to meet basic needs for food, clothes, and shelter .


The end result today is a program that provides some benefit due to old age – for the worker's retirement, spouse's benefits, and child's benefits. It also provides survivor benefits after the death of a worker. Disability Insurance provides benefits to the worker and perhaps to the spouse or child of the disable worker.

The concept has evolved from that of assisting the destitute and old aged to a retired worker program to a security program for families on a national level. Undoubtedly, it will continue to change.

Source by Don D'Armond