First this week – Len Penzo takes out his Magic 8 Ball, and asks a series of questions about the economy in 2011. The success rate of the 2010 8-ball interview was 70%, so who am I to argue with Len’s The Magic 8 Ball Makes Its Predictions for 2011.
Next, one of my favorite financial writers, Scott Burns fielded a Roth IRA question in an article titled Roth conversion could be answer to IRA withdrawals. In his answer, he states “one option is to treat the Required Minimum Distribution as a Roth conversion.” Unfortunately, I believe this one got by his editor. An RMD from a traditional IRA can not be converted to a Roth IRA. In fact the RMD must be made first, based on prior year end balances and only then are you permitted to convert any funds.
At All Financial Matters, 2010: The Year That Was (A Look at the 2010 Performance of Various Indexes) a review of the monthly returns for the S&P, MidCap 400, SmallCap 600, and Bond Index. Also, a nice PDF to pull down which shows how each sector of the Dow Jones Total Market Index has performed since 1992, interesting to see the top performers each year.
At CafeTax, Joe Arsenault wrote A Guide to Roth Conversions 2010 Rules. A nice overview. Keep in mind, any conversions after 2010 are taxable in full the year they are made, the 2 year split was a one time deal.
Anyone who has been reading me for a while knows I am anti variable annuities, but not so again immediate annuities. The Oblivious Investor posted Single Premium Immediate Annuity: Why They’re Useful and When to Buy Them. A great help in understanding the immediate annuity product.
Last a bit of consumer news – Caller ID Spoofing Now Illegal. I’m surprised it took this long, it should have been illegal all along. About time.