Apprise Wealth Management’s Selected Readings for the Week of December 8, 2019

401(k) Vs. Roth 401(k)

At Apprise Wealth Management, we want to help people make better money-related decisions. We also read constantly and like sharing some of our favorite commentaries each week.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­We hope you will share our blog with your friends. If you are not a current subscriber, please sign up for our mailing list at the bottom of our blog page or use our Contact Us page. If you would like to discuss any of the ideas presented in these articles, please email You can also schedule a free 15-minute call.

On Saturday, January 4th, 2020,I will be giving a presentation on Behavioral Investing to the Baltimore Chapter of the American Association of Individual Investors. To learn more, check this link, or click here to register.

Here are this week’s articles as well as a brief description of each:

1.  Your Next Big 401(k) Decision: To Roth or Not? Does your company offer a Roth 401(k) option in its retirement plan? Many clients and prospects who have this option don’t know what to do. As a result, they often ask whether they should take advantage of this option. If you would like an overview of the basics, benefits, and risks associated with contributing, check out this article. An important consideration: Today’s tax rates appear low compared to historical levels. Holding accounts treated differently for tax purposes (such as 401(k)’s, Roth 401(k)’s, Health Savings Accounts, and taxable accounts) provides tax diversification. It can also provide a tax hedge.

2.  What I Learned From Jeff Bezos After Reading Every Amazon Shareholder Letter. Amazon’s annual report always includes a shareholder letter. It provides a broad overview of the company’s operations throughout the year. If you are working in tech, or interested in business, the letters are a worthwhile read. The first of the author’s key takeaways isn’t that surprising: It’s all about the long-term. Want to read all of Bezos’ shareholder letters? If so, click here. For some insights into why Bezos started Amazon with books, I recommend this short interview from 1997.

3.  Parents: How to Help Your Student With Their Scholarship Search. Most colleges cost a lot of money. Getting scholarship money can help. If you’d like to keep your student on track to attain scholarship assistance without doing the work yourself, read this article for some tips.

4. The Best Investment You Can Make. I have two reasons for sharing this article. First, it discusses the importance of family. As the article says, “good investing …is about optimally spending your time and money to reach your goals.” In other words, one benefit of positive investment returns can be more family time. Second, the article shares a story with a deep personal connection. Like the author, our children would not be here today if I wasn’t home when their mother called me on May 23, 1994. She called expecting me to be out watching the Rangers play the Devils in Game 5 of the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals in the hockey playoffs. I was, but the Devils took a big lead. Disappointed, I didn’t want to watch with Devils fans, so I came home early. She only planned to leave a message. Instead, I answered the call and convinced her to go out with me again. A little more than a year later we were married. I am truly fortunate that it worked out the way it did.

5.  6 Things to Know About Social Security Benefits and Working After Full Retirement Age. If you collect Social Security after reaching full retirement age, there are at least six things to keep in mind. The first: determining your full retirement age. Not sure when that is? Try this retirement calculator.


We hope you find the above posts valuable. If you would like to talk to us about financial topics including your investments, creating a financial plan, saving for college, or saving for retirement, please complete our contact form. We will be in touch. We can schedule a call, a virtual meeting via Zoom, or a meeting at Apprise Wealth Management’s office in Northern Baltimore County.

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