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Financial and Lifestyle Resources for Vermont

VSECU Blog

In the VSECU Blog you'll find financial and lifestyle resources to help empower possibilities for your personal success.

Brian Bristow

Brian Bristow is the program manager and financial advisor with MEMBERS Financial Services located at VSECU

By: Brian Bristow

March 5th, 2019

How to Overcome the Retirement Gender Pay Gap

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future

The gender pay gap has been a topic of conversation and concern for years. Statistically, women make about 80 cents for every dollar earned by a man (20% less). Once they hit 65, they tend to make about 25% less than men and make increasingly less than men as they age. There are a lot of reasons for the gender pay gap, which we won’t get into here, but the sad truth is that the gap continues into retirement, leaving women with a lower retirement income than men.

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By: Brian Bristow

February 26th, 2019

How to Invest in a Bear Market

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future

There’s no denying that the markets have become more turbulent. In fact, the major market indexes in the United States entered a bear market on Christmas Eve of 2018. In a bear market, prices for stocks and other securities fall, which can lead investors to panic and sell off their securities. As more and more people sell, securities prices continue to fall. In general, a bear market will eventually come to an end, hopefully leading to a bull market that brings the markets back up to their former glory, but in the meantime, your portfolios, mutual funds, IRAs, 401ks, and other securities-based accounts may lose value. Determining how to invest in a bear market can help protect your investments from the long-term effects of stormy markets.

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By: Brian Bristow

January 23rd, 2019

How to Start Investing on a Low Budget

Investing in the Future

It’s a new year—the best time of year to set resolutions and goals. If you don’t have savings or are living on a low budget, the idea of setting an investment goal might feel uncomfortable, but remember that discomfort often comes with growth. This is the time to challenge yourself to not just survive the year financially, but to come out ahead in the end. Even if you don’t have a lot of money, this is possible. Here’s how.

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By: Brian Bristow

January 9th, 2018

The Pros and Cons of Roth IRA Conversions

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future

If you have money in a traditional IRA, it is worthwhile to think about converting it to a Roth IRA. Not all people will benefit from Roth IRA conversions, but it’s good to consider the pros and cons to determine the best option for you. Here’s what you need to know.

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6 Tips for Improving Your Credit Score

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By: Brian Bristow

December 20th, 2017

Retirement Plan Contribution Limits to Rise in 2018

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future

Thanks to inflation, the federal government has increased the annual contribution limits and phase-out ranges on some of the most popular qualified retirement plans. This is a great shift, allowing you to save more in your workplace retirement account in 2018.

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By: Brian Bristow

November 14th, 2017

Should You Keep Working after Retirement?

Saving and Budgeting | Investing in the Future

There are many reasons why working after retirement might appeal to you. You may want to keep your mind active or stay socially active. You may just need more money to support your lifestyle. Either way, post-retirement work can affect your Social Security benefits. So, if you’re thinking of retiring soon or are already retired, here’s what you need to know before you settle into another job.

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Cultivate and Maintain an Excellent Credit Score

Sign up for our blog and get Six Tips for Improving Your Credit Score free!