Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

Archive for the ‘Finance’ Category

Life . . .

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. . .is just like money.

How you spend it

is what counts.

Sleeping Pills Hazardous

Getting a good night’s sleep may prove hazardous to your health if you use prescription sleeping pills every night, according to a recent study.

Men and women who used prescription sleeping pills daily were nearly 30 percent more likely to die within the six-year follow-up period than those who didn’t take pills, according to test results. The hazard associated with taking sleeping pills at least 30 times a month was similar to the hazard of smoking one to two packs of cigarettes per day.

Test officials said people often take sleeping pills to help them function better the next day. But research shows that people who rely on sleeping pills perform worse and have more accidents than those who don’t.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

November 22, 2022 at 2:00 am

Posted in Finance, Humor / Quote

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Whenever . . .

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. . .you think the world around you is crazy,

just remember those two guys

who tried making everyone believe we could fly.

They were Wright.

Not All Brokers On The Level

Brokers are no different than used-car salespeople — or butchers, baker and candlestick-makers.
They’re in business to make money.

That means they’re more interested in their own welfare than yours. The only way they make money is by selling stock. The more transactions they conduct, the more commissions they earn.

If you run into one with a larcenous heart, you’re in trouble because there also is little chance
that you’ll recoup your money.

A sad New York story is a simple example of what can go wrong.

A father of three in his 20s was paralyzed from the waist down in a traffic accident and received compensation of $2.1 million. He had never invested money before and was referred to a broker who was his brother’s doctor’s son.

The young man’s accountant instructed the broker to invest the money conservatively. The broker
sunk the money into some 20 mutual funds, which resulted in an array of commissions, and then
sold them to purchase high-tech stocks on margin for more commissions.

Ten months later, the brokerage house informed the paraplegic investor that there was less than $63,000 in his account and his broker had disappeared.

Check out your broker and keep in touch with them constantly. It’s your money.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

November 19, 2022 at 2:00 am

If The Head Of Ikea . . .

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. . . ever gets elected president of Sweden,

I wonder how long it will take

to put his cabinet together.

Move Quickly to Reclaim Identity

More than 9 million cases of identity theft are estimated to occur each year and adults older than 60 — married women especially — are among the most likely victims. You can minimize the consequences of identity fraud if you act quickly should your important
documents or numbers, such as Social Security, credit cards or bank accounts, fall into someone else’s hands.
Your first step is to call the police and ask for a crime report. Attach copies of the report to letters you will send to credit-card companies and banks.
Replace your credit and debit cards with news ones, with new numbers, and close your checking account, too, and open a new one.
Check your credit report with Equifax, Experian and TransUnion for unfamiliar charges and ask that you be contacted if anyone tries to establish credit in your name.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

November 18, 2022 at 2:00 am

Posted in A Musing, Aging, Finance

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Tablemate Was Wailing . . .

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. . . about weight gain since he’s moved here.

I told him he should just think of it as

becoming easier to see.

Quick Fix for ID Theft

 If someone has stolen your wallet or purse – or your Social Security, bank-account, or credit-card number – and is using the information to make fraudulent fiscal transactions, there’s a handy resource you can use to help thwart the identity thieves.

  Go to and follow the steps outlined at that Web site to notify all your creditors.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

November 14, 2022 at 2:00 am

Posted in Finance, Health

Tagged with ,

Lady At A Nearby Table . . .

with one comment

. . .announced

that her son just told her

he was born again

and the lady said

she didn’t feel a thing.

Penny Earned No Longer Possible

The penny will soon be in only our thoughts, to paraphrase an old adage.

Penny production is being phased out this year and the last batch will be available in proof sets next spring. The coin is being discontinued because it costs more than 2 cents to produce the 1 cent piece.

Canada quit making pennies a decade ago because it was costing too much to make them.

Almost 290 billion U.S. pennies have been produced and some 150 billion are still in circulation. The rest have been tossed into fountains, tucked into jars or loafers, made into jewelry or rolled onto a sidewalk somewhere.

Pragmatists predict business will round out prices for everyone to accommodate the loss of the penny. This might get complicated where prices are displayed before any sales taxes are added.

Relinquishing of the penny is a reminder of the pressures being exerted to do away with cash. Promoters of a cashless society argue that maintaining automated teller machines (currently paid for by the banks) is costly. Retailers and other businesses complain that taking cash takes more time and money than payments made by store card, debit card, credit card or cryptocurrency. And don’t forget your handy dandy contactless-payment tool in your hand – the cell phone.

The pressures for change are not going away. Next in the line of sight of those who want to abolish coins is the nickel. Their argument sounds familiar. It costs about 7 cents to make a nickel.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 26, 2022 at 2:00 am

The Folks Around Me . . .

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. . . are constant reminders that

going to church

doesn’t make you a Christian

anymore than standing in the kitchen

makes you a chef.

Crooks Steal From the Dead

Dead men may tell no tales but their obituaries can reveal volumes. Especially to thieves who study death notices to glean information they can use to pluck you clean.

It feels comforting to inform the world of the passing of a loved one and to include details of their life, including birthdate, address, hobbies, achievements, work and career highlights along with a list of surviving family members.

Scam artists gorge on this information. The more detail there is, the more steps you provide them to get closer to stealing your identity, the identity of the deceased, or both.

Listing the dead person’s age is okay, but don’t include their birthday. A death notice including the address of the deceased along the name of their surviving spouse along with other personal details provides a roadmap for scam artist to follow.

It’s been estimated that the identity of as many as 1 million dead people a year is co-opted by crooks who clean out existing accounts or obtain credit cards and apply for loans in the name of the deceased. Some scammers even file tax returns in the name of the dead to collect refunds.

Crooks also call survivors claiming the deceased must pay a debt they have. First of all, there is no legal obligation to pay any such a debt, unless you co-signed for it. So hang up. There’s also the fraudulent insurance scam: the caller claims the deceased took out a life insurance policy but before the benefits payment can be made there’s a final premium payment required for handling fees, taxes and whatever. Hang up.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 22, 2022 at 2:00 am

Posted in Finance, Humor / Quote, Viewpoint

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A Good Way . . .

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. . . to make a small fortune on Wall Street

is to start out with a large one.

Legs Support Your Health

Hockey Hall-of-Famer Gordie Howe reportedly said it years ago: “The legs go first.”

Maintaining leg strength and flexibility ranks high on the list of physical activities that will slow the aging process and ward off illness. Simple things, such as walking, swimming, jogging, hiking, and biking, not only lengthen one’s life but make those extended years more comfortable and enjoyable.

While watching television, stand up from the chair. If you can do this, and sit back down, without requiring any form of support, you’re doing OK.

Then sit on the edge of the chair and extend one leg out in front of you. Reach down with both hand and try to touch the toes on your extended leg without bending the knee. Now try it with the other leg. Work on this until you can get your fingers within four to six inches – or closer — from your toes.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 15, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Aging, Finance, Health

Tagged with ,

The People Here . . .

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. . .are treating me like one of the family,

but I’m not going to put up with that much longer.

Shredding Saves

If you don’t anticipate receiving a shredder for Christmas or your upcoming birthday, you might settle for scissors to cut up documents, cards and statements sought by identity thieves.
Or you might trot out and buy your own shredding machine to get rid of anything with your signature, Social Security and driver’s license numbers, PINs, birth date, and numbers of credit cards, insurance policies, and bank and credit union accounts.
And start shredding immediately.
Start with three-month-old credit-card statements you don’t need for taxes or proof of purchase. Do the same with credit-card receipts that have appeared on those monthly statements. If you have a computer with Internet connection, you can shred those receipts as soon as the transactions appear in your online statement. Don’t forget ATM , bank deposit and withdrawal slips.
What you must keep, however, are documents required for taxes, medical records, and papers linked with mortgage payments and home maintenance and repairs.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 13, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Finance, Humor / Quote

If There’s A Will . . .

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. . .you’ll find out

how many relatives you have.

A Rose by Any Other Name is – Who?

Remembering names is a lifelong thorn in most people’s side.

A co-worker years ago leaped over the remember-names hurdle by greeting everyone with, “Hello, Judge.” Another colleague made up his own name for people around him, claiming he never used names “your mother called you.”

The initial step to take to remember a name is to pay attention when you’re being introduced. This becomes difficult at a wedding, funeral, service club luncheon or any gathering with a lot of unfamiliar faces.

To help imprinting a name in your mind, repeat the name when you’re introduced. “Nice to meet you, Mike,” will help you remember his name. You may be able to link him to a childhood friend, relative or movie star with the same name. It can help if his or her name has a visual connection. Lily can be linked easily to the flower, Jay with a bird, and Rocky with the movie of the same name.

If you’ve forgotten their name, say so and tell them you’re name. 

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 10, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Aging, Finance, Humor / Quote

Tagged with ,

It Seems Like . . .

with one comment

. . .a million years ago,

but I recall being awakened one morning

by my neighbor mowing his lawn.

It was too early too get up,

so I just let him mow around me.

2 Can Live in Sin More Cheaply Than 1

It may not be entirely due to the fact that it’s no longer nec­essary to be married to be polit­ically correct, but the number of older couples living together without a marriage license has almost doubled over the past 2 1/2 decades, according to Census Bureau figures.

Taxes, divorce settlements, pro­bate laws and pension require­ments are all cited as possible sources of penalties if cohabit­ing couples decide to get mar­ried officially.

Elderly people who receive Supplemental Security Income can lose this benefit if they combine incomes through mar­riage. A partner with a sizeable estate can wreck a cozy finan­cial tax-shelter structure built over the years by the person he or she is living with if they decide to become legal spouses.

Latest figures indi­cate there are some 5 million couples older than 50 years of age living together without taking the trip to the altar or justice of the peace. This is almost 10 times more than the total at the turn of this century.

Among the reasons for remaining single while living together is the need to avoid tension among children that might re­sult when a parent — widowed or divorced – remarries. In many cases, couples who take up cohabitation discover their financial disparities early. The woman may still be work­ing and the man retired but ex­pects his spouse to support his champagne tastes on his beer-budget retirement income.

Many financial issues in­volve divorced individuals, es­pecially those who receive court-ordered benefits resulting from the split. Widows and widowers may lose Social Security benefits due their deceased spouse if they remarry before they turn 60.

Wills and other legal docu­ments can help in the disposi­tion of assets when one or both partners die. But all financial issues should be discussed with children so they — yours and your partner’s — will not be surprised when one of you dies.

Compounding all these rules and regulations are a tangle of federal, state and regional laws that you have to check. For example, some states don’t rec­ognize cohabitation as legal.

Written by Cecil Scaglione

October 7, 2022 at 3:00 am

Posted in Aging, Finance

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