Stories Archive

Why the Menace of Mosquitos Will Only Get Worse

New York Times - The outbreak began so slowly that no one in Dallas perceived it at first. In June 2012, a trickle of people began showing up in emergency rooms broiling with fever, complaining that their necks were stiff and that bright lights hurt their eyes. The numbers were initially small; but by the middle of July, there were more than 50 victims each week, slumping in doctors´ offices or carried into hospitals comatose or paralyzed from inflammation in their brains. In early August, after nine people died, Dallas County declared a state of emergency: It was caught in an epidemic of what turned out to be West Nile virus, the worst ever experienced by a city in the United States. By the end of the year, 1,162 people had tested positive for the mosquito-borne virus; 216 had become sick enough to be hospitalized; and 19 were dead.

Q&A: Should I Pay Off Debt with IRA or Sell a Rental Property?

USA Today - Q: My wife and I plan to retire early this year. Our IRAs, which are worth about $500,000, are stagnant. They haven't gained anything over the years. On the other hand, our three rental properties are gaining (after deductions) 6%, 6% and 3% in rental income. Each property has about $120,000 in equity. One property is paid off. Unfortunately, with fortune there is debt; we also have a $100,000 home equity line of credit on our primary residence that needs to be paid off soon. With this said, we are considering a couple of decisions to secure our financial future: 1) Sell one property and pay off the equity line, income tax and real estate fees. 2) And draw $80,000 from an IRA and pay off one rental property since they are prone to gain more than an IRA. Do these decisions make sense or is there a better one? - Jim Johnson

Training and Succession Planning Needs an Overhaul

Financial Advisor IQ - Well-established concerns over the aging of the financial advisor community have led to much soul-searching by the industry, especially among those responsible for recruiting and training the next generation. But smart firms are not looking to replace today´s rainmakers on a like-for-like basis.