The Quickest Way to Double Your Money is to Fold it Over and Put it Back in Your Pocket.

-Will Rogers

Welcome to the May Edition of Ryan’s Retirement Ramblings – The monthly newsletter that will bring you the latest developments from the qualified plan space & provide updates for the retirement team at Wheeler Retirement Plans.

On A Personal Note…

I know they say time flies but this is ridiculous. When I started at Wheeler, 17 years ago my oldest was beginning her first year of pre-school. Flash forward to May 4th, 2024 and Madison walked UMD Graduation Road as Summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in Biology. We couldn’t be more thrilled with her accomplishments and commitment to education. The ceremony was extra special for this group of graduates as their Senior year in High School was remote without the honor of walking down the stage. I’m sure she will do great things in the next chapter of her education and even better it will be in something I cannot help; No homework help from me. I’d like to tell her I’m still a little smarter but don’t think that is exactly true anymore…..HA

Cashing Out on Tomorrow: When Personal and Market Economies Diverge

You could say that the past year has been one for the record books. As of January 2024, total U.S. consumer debt reached a historic $17.33 trillion while credit card rates surged to unprecedented levels, topping more than 24%. An all-time-high number of American workers (3.6%) made hardship withdrawals from their 401(k)s in 2023, signaling escalating consumer distress within a persistent, near-record inflationary environment. Moreover, a 2023 study by revealed that nearly eight in 10 Americans are living paycheck to paycheck. So as the Dow and S&P celebrated all-time highs, boosting participants’ account balances, more Americans are — as The Wall Street Journal aptly put it — “treating their 401(k)s like cash machines……

Turning the Tide on Employee Engagement

A recent Gallup survey found that engagement at work has cratered among U.S. employees. According to the research, only 33% of workers were engaged in 2023, representing nearly $2 trillion in lost productivity. The findings show lack of engagement among nearly every group except Baby Boomers, with older millennials and Gen Zers described as being in “dramatic decline.” Compared to four years ago, employees report feeling more disconnected from — and less satisfied with — their employers. They also express feeling less connected to the organization’s mission and purpose…..

Millennials Redefining Retirement

According to a recent survey by retirement finance company IRALogix Inc., Millennials are changing the way people think about retirement. According to over 50% of Millennials surveyed, obtaining “financial independence” is a more significant indicator of retirement than simply turning 65.

While some Millennials hope to retire at age 65, many see retirement as a stage of greater freedom in their lives rather than a total absence from the workforce……

Participant Corner

Health savings accounts (HSAs) have surged in popularity over the years. You may have encountered them, possibly as part of the benefits offered by your workplace. This memo attempts to answer frequently asked questions about HSAs……

Mr. C’s Movie Review

Ladies and gentlemen, I’m back. I took a few months to widen my movie watching palate but my latest review goes back to my roots. Pure off the wall horror where the viewer is left wondering; did I just take 90 minutes out of my night to watch a child vampire? Abagail’s cast may not be a “who’s who in the Oscar race” but it works. A group of beginner criminals led by Acteur (the secretive Dan Stevens of Downtown Abbey fame) kidnap the 12-year-old ballerina daughter, the titular character, (up and coming Alisha Weir) of a powerful Russian mob family. The crews’ instructions are to hold Abagail in a secluded mansion until the father pays the ransom. Oh how well laid out plans come unraveled. Not only is their captive a blood thirsty, plie’, pirouetting vampire but the “mansion” is trap in its own. I warned you that the plot was not written to test our mettle as moviegoers but to entertain. Queue gore, Queue laughs. on a somber note, this was the last performance for Angus Cloud before his untimely death last July.

On a Scale of “Like It”, “Love It”, or “Gotta Have It”…..I give this show a “Love It”. It’s totally absurd and lacks any believability but boy is it fun. Their are some great laughs and even better gory takedowns. The director tries to sneak in some twists and turns to keep the audience guessing until the end. If you are looking to burn 90 minutes, there are worst ways. Enjoy.