Scott Burns

Scott Burns by Scott Burns

August 31, 2014

How to Pay Handsomely to Get Your Own Money Back

Consider Michael Kitces as the thinking man's financial planner. He's smart. He's prolific. And he spends his best hours where the rubber meets the road, in the analysis of the actual financial products most of us encounter in real life. The results can be surprising. Here's an example:... continue

August 28, 2014

Taxation of Social Security Benefits: Painful, but Limited

Q: I am confused about the taxation of Social Security income. I have a pension of $88,000 a year. I am eligible for Social Security in two years -- about $1,900 monthly. Based on all other itemized deductions, my net income tax is about 16 percent. When I start to withdraw Social Security, will I pay 85... continue

August 24, 2014

The Five Secrets to 'Happy Money'

The nearest Starbucks to my house is 15 miles away. It is in the town of Bee Cave, Texas, which also happens to be the location of the West Pole. If you are thinking of visiting one of the poles, try the West Pole first. Unlike the North or South poles, shopping is close by. No special clothing required. Indeed, if you... continue

August 21, 2014

Closed-End Muni Funds Open You Up to Risk

Q: How about municipal bond funds rather than individual bonds? Do they make sense? I have money in a closed-end muni fund (MAV) that's paying over 7 percent. The interest income comes in at the end of the month, every month. I know that can't go on forever, and I would imagine when interest rates go up I will... continue

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