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Get More from Your Groceries

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore
The Truth Network Radio
May 3, 2022 5:00 pm

Get More from Your Groceries

MoneyWise / Rob West and Steve Moore

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May 3, 2022 5:00 pm

What if you could save almost a third of your grocery budget? And what if the only thing you had to do is become a bit more familiar with some commonly used food safety terms? On today's MoneyWise Live, Rob West will share some tips on how to more accurately decipher the expiration dates of your groceries. Then he’ll answer your calls and questions on various financial topics. 

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What if you could save almost a third of your grocery budget, and all you have to do is nothing?

Hi, I'm Rob West. The truth is Americans are pretty picky when it comes to food freshness. If something even looks a little old, it goes right in the trash or garbage disposal.

But is it really bad? I'll talk about that first today, that it's on to your calls at 800-525-7000. That's 800-525-7000. This is MoneyWise Live, biblical wisdom for your financial decisions. A study a couple of years ago revealed that Americans waste almost 32% of the groceries they buy. Now, that seems a bit high to me, but there's no doubt that we throw out a lot of food. As believers, we never want to waste food, and Jesus himself set the example. John 6 12 reads, And when they had eaten their fill, he told the disciples, Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost. Now, for sure, sometimes food really does go bad. But how much of it could be used just by rethinking what out of date really means? According to the USDA, the average family of four spends about $900 a month in groceries. That doesn't include eating out. If you could save just 10% of that by wasting less food, well, you'd be more than $1,000 ahead at the end of the year.

Now, how do you do that? Well, it starts with a better understanding of expiration dates. What do sell by and best by dates actually mean?

The definitions I'll give exclude infant formula and baby foods, by the way. When you see best if used by or before, well, it means the date when the product has the best quality or flavor. It's not referring to safety, so those foods can be consumed after those dates. A used by date means the last day the item is at its best.

In most cases, you still have time to use it. You might also see a sell by date on a package. In most states, that's just a suggestion, and the item can still be sold after that date, often at a reduced price. A freeze by date is another recommendation from the USDA, not a hard and fast rule, and it simply means the date by which the item should be frozen to maintain optimum quality. What this means, again with the exception of baby products, is that none of these labels is an indication of the safety of food items.

Now then, do you know when an item is safe? Well, the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service says that foods that are past their best if used by date but not showing signs of spoilage should be okay to use, but that depends on the individual item and the temperature where it's stored. Another possible exception to this is eggs. Some states prohibit sell by dates on eggs, and some require more restrictive expiration dates. In any case, it's probably best not to use eggs after any type of end date. So how long should items last once you get them home?

Well, here are some examples with common foods from the USDA. Fresh eggs in the shell should last three to five weeks in the fridge. Figure seven days for bacon or a month in the freezer. Raw hamburger, one to two days refrigerated or three to four months in the freezer. Steaks are at their peak for three to five days refrigerated and six to twelve months if frozen. Figure three to four days for cooked fish in the fridge or four to six months in the freezer. Raw chicken and turkey are safe for one to two days in the fridge but nine to twelve months in the freezer. And finally, fresh shrimp, scallops or squid, one to two days refrigerated or three to six months frozen. Now, would you believe that there are some foods that never go bad or at least take a very long time to spoil?

Well, it's true. Honey is a great example. It has antimicrobial properties, and if it's sealed and stored in a cool place out of sunlight, you could leave it to errors in your will.

I think they've found some in the ancient pyramids that still looked good. Canned goods also last indefinitely. As long as the can doesn't have rust, dents or swelling, it should be okay, says the USDA. Packaged foods like cereal are also good well past their best buy dates, although they can develop an off flavor. Factory sealed maple syrup will also last indefinitely, but once it's opened, you should keep it in the fridge. Salt is itself a preservative, but usually comes with a use-by date of five years. After that, it may pick up a bad taste. Dried beans are good for ten years if stored in a cool place, again out of sunlight, but they should be in factory packaging or sealed buckets with reduced oxygen levels.

And finally, whole grains have a one-year shelf life if frozen or six months in a cool dry location, but they should be in airtight containers. Well, we hope this information helps you cut down on grocery waste. Your calls are next.

800-525-7000. We'll be right back. Thanks for joining us today on MoneyWise Live, biblical wisdom for your financial decisions. I'm Rob West, your host.

So glad you're along with us today. Hey, we started by talking about how you can cut costs, specifically in the grocery area. Well, we're all looking for ways to cut costs, especially now given the inflation we're experiencing, and a lot of that is being felt at the grocery store. If you're struggling under increased costs, and you've got some credit card debt that seems to be overwhelming, let me just remind you, one of our underwriters and trusted partners is Christian Credit Counselors. They offer a debt management program that can get you out of debt up to 80% faster while honoring your debt in full.

This is a Christian ministry staffed by believers, and we get just wonderful feedback from the work that they do. Debt management is my preferred way for you to get out of credit card debt if it's beyond the point where you can't do it yourself. You're just not making progress.

The snowball method is not working. Perhaps, you know, you've amassed more than three or five thousand dollars, and you just aren't getting it going in the right direction. Debt management can be a great way to do that. One fixed monthly payment that fits into your budget with reduced interest rates, and you'll get that debt paid off in no time. is the place to go. All right, looking forward to taking your calls and questions today on anything financial. The calls are coming in, but we've got some lines open.

Perhaps one of those is just for you. Whether it's investing or saving, maybe it's giving or your budget, your lifestyle, whatever it might be, we'd love to hear from you. The number to call is 800-525-7000. Gabby T. taking your calls today. 800-525-7000. We're going to begin in Princeton, New Jersey. Sarah, thank you for calling. Go right ahead.

Thank you for taking my call, Rob. So my mother is 79 years old. My dad passed on last year. She sold her primary residency, and she lives with my sister right now. She has $300,000 cash from the sale, and she also has a pension and Social Security that she uses to live off every day.

So our question is, what is the best way to keep that $300,000 without diminishing interest, if possible, so that she can have a secure fund if, God forbid, something happened in the future? Sure. Yeah, thank you for that question, Sarah. And let me just confirm, so she doesn't need any portion of this today to live on. She's able to live on the pension and Social Security in terms of covering her monthly obligations?

Correct. Okay, so this would be money for down the road. And I guess the question then is the level of risk you're willing to assume. Obviously, you're not wanting to take a lot of risk. Certainly, I wouldn't want to think you'd be aggressive in this portfolio.

You may not even want to be moderate. But I guess the question I would have is, are you willing to assume some risk in exchange for a better return over the long term? And here's what I mean by that. If you were to invest in a stock and bond portfolio with the the majority of it in income producing investments, we're talking about real estate investment trust, dividend paying stocks, short duration fixed income bonds, things that are not anywhere near the aggressive end of the spectrum, but they are at the risk of the stock or bond market. And as interest rates head up, the bond prices may fall a bit. And as the stock market, you know, has been quite volatile as of late. And let's say we had a recession a year or two from now.

But if you're looking out 10 or 20 years, I realize she's older, but at the same time with the Lord Terry's and she's in good health, this money needs to last a long time. And with inflation, the way that it is, the way we outpace that so she doesn't lose, lose earning power on this money or spending power is to invest it. But you've always got to work on finding the balance between between risk and reward. The more reward or return you're looking to get, the more risk you're willing to take. So it's all about finding the balance to take as little risk as possible for an appropriate level of return. So give me a sense of how you're thinking about that. So I was listening to one of your programs and I forget what you've mentioned about having a formula of how old you are minus, I think, one hundred and ten or something like that. And then a percentage of that and invest that more aggressively.

So in my mother's case, I was thinking, how about if we invest 30 percent and I don't know if I did this calculations correctly, 30 percent of that and invested in more aggressive investments and then take the 70 percent and maybe just do, I don't know, a CD or something a lot more conservative and get a little bit more than just a savings account, which, you know, is barely paying anything by now. Yeah, that's right. Yeah, I think that's right. And what is her age? Seventy nine. Seventy nine.

OK, yeah. So if you do a and that's just a conventional kind of device where you'd say used to be one hundred minus your age, people are living longer. So a lot of folks will use one hundred and ten now. So, yeah, one hundred and ten minus seventy nine, roughly 30 percent in stocks. And then the other 70 percent you would typically put in fixed income type investments.

So bonds, CDs, bank products, which haven't been paying a whole lot, although that's going to improve as rates go up. And I think that's probably the right approach. I think the key would be just to recognize that even with that conservative approach in any given quarter, if the market's down significantly, if bond prices are falling, you could open your statement and she could be down 10 or 15 percent. But you'd have to look at it over the long haul, saying we're invested properly.

We're not overly aggressive. We're taking the long view and we think this is going to do well over time. As long as you could get to that place and recognize that you're going to have some paper losses, which means they're unrealized, it's not a realized loss until you sell it, then I would think that would be the right approach. And I'd use an investment advisor to help you build and manage that portfolio. I'd look for a certified kingdom advisor there in New Jersey on our website,

Just click find a CCA. I wouldn't try to do that yourself. I'd get some professional advice. The only other approach there that you could take, well, not the only one, but a more conventional approach that somebody might take in this situation is with an insurance product, what's called an annuity. I'm not a big fan of annuities, but it is a way to transfer the risk to an insurance company in exchange for a stated return, like a fixed income annuity would give you a guaranteed rate of return. Now you're going to tie up that money and you're going to have to pay surrender penalties to get it back. So if she needed it because she needed some major medical expenses or something like that, that's one of the reasons I'm not a fan of that approach because I'd rather you have access to the money while it's invested if she needs it. But I think you could consider both of those choices.

And again, I'd head to our website and find a certified kingdom advisor, perhaps two or three to interview and then pick the one that is the best match. Does that sound good? Yes. Thank you so much.

I appreciate your insight. Yes, ma'am. So glad you called today and God bless you.

Well, folks, we're going to pause for a break here, but when we come back, well, every line is full. We have some great questions coming up, one on Social Security, actually a couple of them, some folks wanting to talk about budgeting and how they get their finances in place, another wanting to deal with an emergency fund, all things that I think are critical as we think about how we manage God's money and make wise decisions, and it is about decision-making, but in light of our values and our priorities, what's most important to us. Much more to come on MoneyWise Live just around the corner.

Stay with us. Thanks for joining us today on MoneyWise Live, biblical wisdom for your financial decisions. Hey, have you checked out the MoneyWise website recently? We have some great articles there that I know you'll benefit from. We aggregate from 16 content partners, what I believe are some of the best and leading voices in biblical finance, and all of those articles, videos, and podcasts are there for you to learn from, grow from. We'd love for you to check it out,, and while you're there, create a free MoneyWise account, and that will ensure you receive our MoneyWise weekly wisdom email. It goes out each Thursday morning, and it's chock full of biblical financial wisdom.

Again,, and create a free account. All right, let's head back to the phones today. Tom is next up in Greenville, Illinois. Tom, go right ahead, sir. Hi, thanks for taking my call.

I have a quick question. My wife and I were self-employed for almost 39 years, and we sold our business a couple years ago. I drew my Social Security at age 64.

I'll be turning 70 this fall. My wife is now 65. She doesn't get to draw full Social Security till she's 66 and a half.

My question is, we actually never drew a paycheck while we were self-employed. We filed jointly, and we had to pay Social Security in when we filed our taxes, so she's not going to be eligible. She never drew a paycheck, so she's got some Social Security built up, but not very much. Is she going to be eligible to draw what I drew, or like half of mine?

How's that work? Yeah, so she would be able to earn the spousal benefit. A spouse who's never worked under Social Security is going to be eligible for benefits once they reach age 62. You can take reduced benefits at age 62, typically about 32 and a half percent of your spouse's full benefit, up to 50 percent of your spouse's full benefit if you wait until full retirement age, 66 or 67.

So given that you didn't take a paycheck, but you were self-employed, you paid the self-employment tax, the 12.4 percent plus the 2.9 for Medicare covering both the employee and the employer amount, if that all flowed through your tax return, then that would be attributed to you and your work record. Then that would be her opportunity is to perhaps wait as long as possible, at least until full retirement age, and then collect up to 50 percent of yours as a non-working spousal benefit. Now, over the years, she did work, you know, she drew a few paychecks, but, you know, what she's paid into Social Security isn't going to be anywhere, you know, anywhere near what she would get by. So she would still be able to draw the spousal one, right?

That's right. And I'd check with the Social Security Administration to see if, you know, she can take the higher of the two. If she is eligible for benefits, she would have had to have worked for 10 years to get 40 credits, 40 total credits, one per quarter for 10 years in order to be eligible. And then her benefit would be based on her highest 35 years of earnings.

Obviously, many of those would be at zero. So she's likely going to be better off even if she's eligible for her own benefits. She's likely going to be better off taking half of yours and she'll have the choice based on which is higher. Okay. Well, I was pretty sure how it worked, but I thought, well, before I called in the Social Security, I'd call and ask you. So I'm glad you call us first. Tom, you call us anytime, sir. We appreciate it. God bless you. Thanks for listening.

Spokane, Washington. Chris, how are you today, sir? Good.

Thank you very much for taking my call. Sure. My question is I have, when I retired, I had money in a deferred comp and I thought I've read that you can, and I started drawing Social Security. Now I heard that you can withdraw approximately 15,000 as income without it affecting your Social Security benefit. Hmm.

Yeah. Well, money typically flows into a deferred comp plan free of withheld taxes. And then the taxes come out when the income is eventually withdrawn. And it generally has to be paid either when the money comes out or when it becomes vested and is available for the employee to use. But because the tax gets paid, the income is applied to the account holder's eligibility for Social Security and will be used to eventually calculate your benefit. So, you know, Social Security recipients or those who receive benefits, if you're younger than full retirement age, you can earn up to $15,480 without having your benefits reduced.

That's probably the number you're looking at. But if you earn over that, you would withhold or they would withhold a dollar for every $2 you go over that $15,480. But here's the thing. Once you reach full retirement age, not only do you have no cap on that, you'll eventually get that back in increased payments until they reimburse you for whatever was withheld. Okay. So if I reach full retirement age, full retirement age in October of this year, if I was to withdraw the money now, would they know that I pulled it out before I reach full retirement age?

Yeah. So, no, it's in the year of your benefit. So if you take it out younger than full retirement age, you might have a slight reduction. But again, as soon as you reach full retirement age, that would start coming back to you. So I wouldn't be terribly concerned about it. I think you could check in with your CPA or accountant just to get the exact amount and the timing of all of that. But the bottom line is any reduction would be temporary, Chris. So I don't think you have a whole lot of issue there. I think the key is at what point is the right time for you to begin taking Social Security?

Because the longer you wait, the more that check grows, literally every month, one twelfth of eight percent, you're going to see an increase in that benefit amount. I hope that's helpful to you, sir. We appreciate you checking in with us and all the best to you in this next season of life. To South Bend, Indiana. Michael, thank you for calling today. Go right ahead.

Thank you so much for taking my call. I was listening to the program about $1,500 in emergency savings. And I was wondering if it's changed to $1,500 from $1,000 because of inflation and cost of living increases?

Yeah, it's a good question. I actually will tell you that you need to have three to six months expenses in your emergency saving. And obviously, that's more now than it was six months ago because of inflation. The $1,500 comes in if you have credit card debt. So if you have credit card debt, you're paying high interest rather than you paying that high interest and focusing on your emergency fund. I'd just say $1,500.

It's pretty much an arbitrary number, but at least it gives you a cushion. So if the unexpected comes and it does, you've got something to fall back on to cut the cycle of using those credit cards. That's where that $1,500 comes in.

As soon as those credit card debts are paid off, then I'd focus on getting three to six months expenses saved up. Thanks for your call, Michael. We'll be right back on Money Wise Live.

Stay with us. We're delighted to have you along with us today on Money Wise Live as we apply God's wisdom to your financial decisions. Hey, I'd love for you to download the Money Wise app.

More than 26,000 of you already have, and we're so excited about what we're delivering through the app every day. The cornerstone of which is our money management system for you to set up your spending plan and track your expenses using one of three approaches, and I'm confident one will be just the right approach for you. There's one for those of you who are hands-off, more directional. You just want to connect to your institutions, download your transactions, and see them automatically categorized so you can keep up with it, but you don't want to do much more than that. Then there's the plan and track where you can set up your spending plan and track how you're doing against that every month, and then it starts over the next month. Or the third way, which is those of you who are really hands-on and detailed, we've got the digital envelope system where you actually fund your envelopes automatically against your budget. Your transactions download automatically categorized into each envelope, so you and perhaps your spouse will know exactly where you stand in each one of your spending categories, what we call digital envelopes, at any point during the month. You can even set up for some of them for savings goals and track your progress. It's all right there in the MoneyWise app. Download it today in your app store.

Just search for MoneyWise Biblical Finance. All right, let's head back to the phones. Next up, Wanda in Illinois. Wanda, go right ahead.

Hi, thank you so much for taking my call. So my question is, I'm selling my car and I'm going to get a profit from it after I pay off the loan. So I tithe regularly and I give offerings, so I'm just wondering, do I, you know, I just want to do the right thing. Do I give a tithe on this profit or do I give an offering on the profit?

Sure. Yeah, if you want to apply the principle of the tithe, Wanda, that we see in Scripture, you would give off of the increase. So it really doesn't matter what you do with the money, the increase is based on that profit that you attain. The challenge is with a car, you typically don't have a profit because it's a depreciating asset. So you bought it for a certain amount and then you sell it for something much lower than that and so therefore you don't have really a profit unless the car was given to you and then you sold it.

At that point, you'd have an increase. But tell me a bit more just about this situation and why you believe you have a profit in the first place. Well, I mean, I'm just saying because the car is worth more than what I owe, you know. I mean, it's like I owe $18,300 and I'm selling it for $23,000, so I'm coming out ahead. Yeah, but that really is only related to the loan on it, not the original purchase price. So when you bought it originally, you paid more than you're going to get for it when you sell it right now, correct? Yeah.

Yeah. So a car is a depreciating asset, unlike a home or an investment or something that might appreciate in value where we buy it, let's say a home for $300,000 and a couple of years later in this hot real estate market, we sell it for $400,000. It doesn't matter whether we had a mortgage on it or we bought it for cash, we sold it for $100,000 more than we bought it for, so that's our gain, $100,000.

And then if we want to tithe on that, we'd give a 10th. In the case of your car, you don't have a profit because you bought it for some price, you're going to sell it for some price lower than that, regardless of whether the sale is above or below the loan that you have, you've still not made a profit because you're selling it for something less than what you originally paid for it, which is consistent with a car. A car is a depreciating asset. So at the end of the day, regardless of that loan amount, you have lost money. Now you had use of the car and that's why you did it, but you didn't make a profit on it.

So only time you'd make a profit on a car would be if it was an antique, something that appreciated in value. Does that make sense? Yes, it does. I mean, does it matter, Rob, that I, because actually, so the car I leased it for three years and I was going to return it, but when I found out that the value of the car is worth more than what I owe, I decided to keep the car and then now I'm selling it. I mean, does that make a difference?

Yeah, it really doesn't. Not in terms of you having a profit. You're pretty much always going to have a loss on a car.

Now you had the use of it and that's great, but cars wear out and we sell them for a lot less than what we pay for them and the fact that you had a lease doesn't really change that. So at the end of the day, there's really not a tithe here. Now, if out of this money and this asset that you're converting to cash by selling this car, you wanted to give unto the Lord, well, that's great. And that would be an offering. I would say you give as the Lord leads.

I love that, but it's not a tithe because there's not an increase here. Okay. All right, good. Then fine. Yes, I will give.

I always do because he's been very good to me. All right. Well, thank you so much for your time. I appreciate it. You're very welcome. I appreciate your giving spirit and thanks for sharing with us today. God bless you.

To Chicago, Illinois. Hey Raymond, thanks for your patience. Go right ahead.

Thank you for your ministry. We have $100,000 in savings in addition to our six months emergency fund and I have a mortgage of $390,000. My question is, should we utilize $100,000 to pay down the mortgage or should we invest it?

Yeah, yeah. Well, that's always a tough one. I mean, for me, I would typically prioritize paying down or paying off the mortgage. And I think the question is over what period of time and are we depleting too much of our cash reserves?

Because there's something to be said about having cash reserves to fall back on. Now, $100,000 may be more than you need. And so then your question is, well, should we invest it? I suspect you have a fairly low interest rate. Is that right?

Yes, it's 3.4%. Okay. And how far are you from retirement, let's say? Well, I'm early 60. I'm 61.

Okay. So how much do you owe on the mortgage today? $390,000.

$390,000, you have $100,000. Yeah, so the challenge here is obviously, you know, even if you were to put 100% on this mortgage, you know, you're still going to have that mortgage around for quite a while. And so it's not like you can get to the place where you could reduce your overall expenses because until that mortgage is paid off completely or refinance, which is not a good option in this market with rates now over 5%, you know, it probably doesn't make a whole lot of sense. But I do like the idea of you moving increasingly toward being debt free.

And obviously, you can get a lot closer. It's obviously a risk and reward type of thing. There's the opportunity cost of you being able to invest this and get more than 3.4% after tax over time, although you have the risk of loss at the same time.

As you and your wife talk about this, Raymond, is there one option that really is more compelling to you? Do you all have a sense that you'd like to, you know, be debt free as soon as possible, and therefore that's more attractive? Or do you kind of like the idea of this working for you even though you could lose some money? I think just from the, we like the idea of being debt free, but just in this market that we're seeing with inflation, I just, and there still would be somewhat of a debt left, as you pointed out. But we like the idea of being debt free. But as you said, this doesn't really get us there, gets us closer but not fully there.

And I think that's the key. I think the other thing is, are you on track with your retirement savings? You know, are you saving enough in retirement accounts that you feel like you're headed toward your ultimate retirement savings goal through company sponsored plans and other vehicles, and therefore this really is extra that could be used to get you closer to that debt free mark? If you're on track with your retirement, I'd say I'd prioritize the paying off of the mortgage. But ultimately, it's a decision you and your wife need to make prayerfully. I could support either one. I'd love for you to have some peace of mind. So take a week.

You guys pray independently and then come back together and compare what the Lord's teaching you. We'll be right back on MoneyWise Live. Stay with us. Hey, thanks for joining us today on MoneyWise Live. In just a moment, we'll head back to the phones.

Mary in Chicago, Jerry in Indianapolis, Sue in Arlington Heights. You stay right there. We'll be coming your way momentarily. But first, it's, well, Tuesday. Normally, Bob Dahl joins us in this segment of the broadcast on Mondays. He was traveling yesterday, but we're grateful for his insights and market commentary each week. Bob is chief investment officer at Crossmark Global Investments. And Bob, good afternoon, sir.

And same to you, Rob. First quarter real GDP, it was a negative number, a little different than this time last year, huh? Sure was, but we had, well, last year to refresh, we have the strongest economy in the United States in 34 years, including a good first quarter last year. And we did have a slowdown. Now, the bulls want to say, and I have to take their word for it here, that it was trade and inventories that caused the weakness. They're the most variable, least predictable parts of GDP, and they both came in weaker than expected. So I wouldn't read a whole lot into that weak number, Rob.

Okay. Now, all eyes right now on the Federal Reserve. Of course, they're meeting tomorrow. We'll hear what's going to happen with interest rates. If, in fact, they raise rates 50 basis points or a half of 1%, that would be pretty significant. That doesn't happen very often, does it, Bob?

It sure doesn't. In fact, the last time it happened, Rob, 22 years ago, if you can believe it, we've had a lot of quarter basis points, but not a half. And that just says and underscores one more time how far behind the curve this central bank is, Rob.

Yeah. Give us a sense of that, Bob. How would you rate the job the Fed is doing right now? And are they doing everything they can, given the levers they have to pull, or should they be doing more? Well, given where they are, they're probably doing the right thing by going 50.

And I'm sure the press conference afterwards, Chairman Powell, will have a hawkish tone. The criticism, if I can be Monday morning quarterback, is they waited so long to get started. You remember, we talked, you and I, back in the fall that inflation was a problem, and they just kept using this transitory word thinking it was going to go away. But that's water under the bridge. They have a lot of confidence to restore in what it is they do.

Yeah. Bob, obviously a lot of volatility in the markets, much of that because this rhetoric around potentially a recession continues to seem like it's growing. Talk about the implications of a possible recession amid the job market we're currently in right now. Well, therein lies the dilemma and the reason, I think, a recession, probably, but not yet.

My guess is second half of next year, Rob. And there are three reasons why not today. One, you just said it, the job market.

We've never had a recession with a healthy job market. Two, the health of the US consumer. Consumers still have trillions, two and a half to three, of excess cash on their balance sheet stored up during COVID. And number three, the corporate sector is in pretty good shape.

Cash flow, cash on the balance sheet, profit margins. Now, the world's chipping away at all that with the inflation that's going on here, but I think a recession gets delayed until next year. But that's not going to prevent people from worrying about it. Yeah. And obviously you're prepared for a lot of volatility.

This is certainly a market to be picking the right sectors to be in because not all stocks are created equal, especially right now. Here, Rob, as you know, we said coming into the year, this is going to be year we frustrate the bulls and the bears. Well, we frustrated the bulls. It wouldn't be nice for a little while to frustrate the bears and have a bit of a rally here. Many people forget that in March, we had a three week period when the stock market went up more than 10%. Let's hope we get another one of those. What it's going to take is a pause in the rise in interest rates out the curve and the bond market. That 10 year treasury touching 3%, that's up from one and a half on December 31st.

That's got to slow down for stocks to have a chance to have a recovery rally. Yeah, very good. All right, Bob. Well, we always appreciate your insights, sir, and we'll look forward to having you back again next week.

Keep your seatbelt on, okay? Have a great week. Bye bye. All right. God bless you, my friend. That was Bob Dahl, Chief Investment Officer at Crossmark Global Investments. You can learn more at By the way, while you're there, sign up for his weekly dolls deliberations.

I know I rely on it each week to get my updates on the market and the economy. All right, let's head back to the phones. Sue has been waiting patiently in Arlington Heights, Indiana. Sue, you go right ahead. Thanks, Rob, and thank you for taking my call. I married and we lived in our house going on nine years, but it's only under my husband's name because he received it. But lately, I'm 52, and so I'm thinking about a lot of stuff. And what happens when he passes down the road and to the house that was under his name only?

Sure, sure. Well, obviously, you can retitle this property, and that could be done with a real estate attorney. You also need to make sure you have a valid will that could handle that as well through the probate process. Have you all taken some time to update these documents?

And have you considered perhaps a tenancy in common or joint ownership with right of survivorship? Perhaps, you know, that related to the deed of the home? No, you know, it's just recently have we thought about all these stuff. And so we're kind of late bloomers here. But, okay, you know, something to think about.

Yeah. Well, I think it really is important for you to have all of these up to date. You know, if you have a valid will that that document will say who gets a person's property after that person dies and it to be valid, it has to be, you know, follow certain rules. And so what I would do is visit with an estate planning attorney who can just look over everything and not only deal with a making sure you have an up to date will, but that all of your assets are titled properly, including your home, making sure your beneficiary designations are up to date with any banking accounts or investment or brokerage accounts. You can also tackle some of the other non-financial type instruments as well, like a health care surrogate who will make decisions related to health care. If one of you is incapacitated, your living will, your wishes about end of life decisions, even a durable power of attorney. So somebody can act on your behalf legally if you are incapacitated or your husband is.

So I think having all of these up to date and valid would be really important and it will give you some peace of mind related to the home specifically. So Sue, I'd recommend you connect with a godly estate planning attorney. You could, if you don't know of one, you could contact a certified kingdom advisor there in Arlington Heights and ask for a referral. All CKAs will have a estate planning attorney they work with that they could refer you out to. And you'll find a CKA near you when you go to our website and just click the button that says find a CKA and all the best to you. We appreciate your call today. Jerry in Indianapolis, go right ahead, sir.

I very much appreciate you and your ministry. My question is I'm in my mid 70s. My wife and I own our home free and clear. We have separate accounts because my credit rating is poor due to tax problems and bankruptcy that's way beyond 10 years ago. My question is how can I begin at my age as I live within my income to raise my credit score so it's up at a normal range in case I would need to borrow money for some reason? Well, Jerry, I certainly understand how that can happen.

The good news is, as you said, this was a long time ago and the impact of that is much less than it obviously was 10 years ago. The problem you have now is likely a lack of credit. And so what you probably need to do is focus on how you can get some good on-time credit being reported to your credit report.

Now, I don't want you for a minute to pay even a nickel of interest. So I'm not talking about you taking out a loan or anything like that. I think the key would be for you to perhaps open a secured credit card either with your bank or you could go to or and find who has the best secured credit cards right now. But essentially, you'd put a few hundred dollars on deposit, they'd issue you a credit card against that, collateralized by that deposit that you've made, and then you could start charging. I'd use that for budgeted items only.

Could be a very small recurring charge that you have every month. You know, $10 or $15 or $20, you'd pay it off and then every month that card issuer would report to the bureaus that you're an on-time payer. Well, that's going to establish you as having some positive current credit history that is going to help you rebuild that score. I think that's probably one of the best things you could do other than if you have any negative information that's inaccurate. You paid some things off and it's not showing that.

You could dispute that and get that up to date. But if everything's correct, you could use that secured credit card. The other approach would be to get credit for utility payments. So, Experian just came out with something called Experian Boost. B-O-O-T. And essentially, it scans for payments to streaming services, phone companies, utility bills, where you wouldn't typically get credit for that. Experian Boost pulls that into your credit file and then that begins to factor into your credit score. So, that would be one other option to consider.

Do those make sense? They do. And that was one of the questions I had was about utilities. I do have a very long history with at least two companies. So, I may do that. And I also want to get a hold of my credit reporting agencies to make sure there's errors. But I find that to be a very challenging event. I have a hard time getting a hold of anybody at the credit bureaus.

Yeah. Well, the best way to do that is through the online system. So, I think what I would do is request a copy of those credit reports at And then on their website, you'll see how you can dispute that information.

And according to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, they have 30 days to either verify that it's right or delete it. So, if you're comfortable on the internet, I'd probably do it that way. I think it's a little more efficient than trying to do it over the phone.

But I think cleaning up that credit report, Experian Boost, and a secured credit card will give you exactly what you're looking for. Mary, I am so sorry we're not going to get to your question. I would hope that you would call back tomorrow. We'll try to get you first in line. Thanks for calling today.

MoneyWise Live is a partnership between Moody Radio, MoneyWise Media. Thank you to Gabby T, Robert, Dan, and Amy. I couldn't do it without them. Thank you for being here as well. Come back and join us tomorrow. We'll see you then. Bye-bye.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-20 23:29:36 / 2023-04-20 23:46:31 / 17

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