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Financial Essentials For Your 40s

Here are several financial steps you may want to consider taking right now:

1. Diversify investments.

Expand your investment options to provide a mix of higher-return and more secure investments according to your plans for retirement.

Diversification may help reduce, but cannot eliminate, risk of investment losses.  Historical performance relative to risk and return points to, but does not guarantee, the same relationship for future performance.  There is no assurance that by assuming more risk, you are guaranteed to achieve better results.

2. Develop an estate plan.

A plan for your property and assets can help ensure that more of the earnings you've accumulated will go to your children or beneficiaries.

3. Review your Will.

Changes in your family or other circumstances make it important to regularly review your plans for your property and your medical care.

4. Re-evaluate insurance needs.

Review your coverage for auto, life, universal liability and disability insurance. Can you save money by choosing a higher deductible?

5. Analyze employer benefits.

Make sure that you're using your benefits to your advantage, including retirement plans, insurance, health coverage and even group discounts.

6. Review business agreements and transfer plans.

If you have a business, you need to plan for a fair and predictable transfer of your business should you die or wish to move on.

7. Continue to build education funds.

Anticipate the cost of higher education for your children and evaluate your plans for building a fund to pay for their education.

8. Investigate a trust.

Planning now to establish trusts for your children or loved ones can be a way to pass along their inheritance with less of a tax burden.