Phil Cannella on Age Discrimination

Phil Cannella on AGE DISCRIMINATION Each year, more and more seniors decide to suspend retirement and reenter the workforce. Should you find yourself in this situation, it is important to know and understand that there are federal laws to protect you from age discrimination on the job. Phil Cannella explains ADEA The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA) protects both employees and job applicants age 40 and over from discrimination based on age. Employers with 20 or more employees, including state and local Read More +

Phil Cannella on the Different Financial Phases of Life

Phil Cannella: The Accumuation Phase Vs. Retirement Phase The first half of your financial journey is the Accumulation Phase, the first half of your financial life. And the second half is the Retirement Phase, wherein the game will be won or lost for you and your family. Will your money last as long as you? Will you keep your current lifestyle in later years of retirement? Your working years are also known as the accumulation years, in which you need to grow a nest egg Read More +

Phil Cannella Explains Bankruptcy Vs Receivership

Phil Cannella: What retirees need to know about bankruptcy and receivership Financial news stations spout the words bankruptcy and receivership as if their definitions were common knowledge. There are important differences between the terms—especially where retirees are concerned. The most common option for bankruptcy is Chapter 11, or reorganization. Under this option a company continues, rearranges debts by postponing the paying of its bills or by reducing obligations, assets are sold, and proceeds go to creditors. Notice that the process does not necessarily include the Read More +

Phil Cannella on Municipal Bonds for IRAs

Are Municipal Bonds Right for Retirees? Retirees should not hold municipal bonds in an individual retirement account, according to Phil Cannella, IRA expert. The tax-free nature of municipal bonds serves as a major incentive for investors looking to hold long-term assets. However, IRAs are classified as “tax-deferred,” meaning investors must pay taxes when taking money out of an account. “If you place a municipal bond in an IRA, you’ll pay taxes when you cash out of your IRA,” says Phil Cannella. “Municipal bonds work best Read More +

Phil Cannella Warns Seniors about Internet Scams

Phil Cannella has maintained a stance on fighting for the everyday consumer his entire career. By default, that makes those who have made a career from scamming seniors his foes. Wouldn’t we all love to make vast sums of money with the absolute minimal amount of effort? Of course we would. Do we want money flowing into our bank accounts without having to work for it? Absolutely. This is the mantra of every scammer who ever lifted a phone, emailed a phony plea, or offered Read More +

Phil Cannella on the Baby Boomer Crisis

Phil Cannella: “A weak recovery likely, caused by Boomer retirement” It’s not just Phil Cannella saying this, we all know that Baby Boomers are retiring in droves—specifically, the leading edge of an estimated 78 million Boomers turned 65 late 2012. Couple that with a sputtering economic recovery and the news isn’t good for future generations. According to the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank, an already lethargic economy may be further slowed as the market becomes glutted with stocks that Boomers are dumping in order to Read More +

Phil Cannella Warns about a Coming Tax Hike

An exclusive interview with Phil Cannella. Phil Cannella, a recognized Senior Advocate and Retirement Expert, spoke with a Philadelphia-area reporter on numerous topics that are of vital interest to retirees. In this portion of the interview, Phil Cannella speaks on the “the looming tax wave,” and how retirees can best protect themselves from the consequences that are sure to follow. Q: Why do you say that the government eventually is going to “come after” retirement accounts? Phil Cannella: Simple—look at the situation. For all intents Read More +

Phil Cannella Shares his Philosophy on Retirement

Phil Cannella, who comes from a background of nearly four decades working with those in or near retirement, shares his unique philosophy on retirement, sculpted from countless hours of getting to know the everyday American and their dreams and views on retirement. Q: Why do you say that retirement funds aren’t just about money? Phil Cannella: It’s simple, and it’s true: The decades you have worked are moments of your time that you have sacrificed for your retirement accounts. They should be deeply personal to you and Read More +

Phil Cannella on the Relationship Between Life and Finances

Another installment of our reporter’s extended interview with noted retirement specialist Phil Cannella, founder and CEO of First Senior Financial Group and host of The Crash Proof Retirement Show™. Q: I’ve heard that you have interesting viewpoints on the relationship between finances and life itself. Phil Cannella: Well, it’s been said that all of life is a cycle. There’s the endless flow of the four seasons. Life newly emerges at springtime, representing a new beginning, like the birth of a child. In the spring of your Read More +

Phil Cannella on How to Avoid Probate Expenses

Recently, noted retirement specialist Phil Cannella, Founder of First Senior Financial Group and host of The Crash Proof Retirement Show™, spoke with a Philadelphia-area reporter on a number of topics that are vital for retirees. The current passage focuses on probate, and how to avoid becoming a victim of a complicated system. Reporter: Can you give me a succinct definition of probate? Phil Cannella: Probate is the legal process of assessing the assets one has accrued during their lifetime and distributing them amongst their charities, heirs Read More +

Phil Cannella: Top Reasons Why Americans Can’t Retire

More than 40% of Americans believe they’ll have to work into their 70s in order to have a comfortable retirement. 1 in 10 people think they’ll have to work into their 80s. Here are some of the top reasons people feel that they won’t be able to retire when they planned: 1. Feeling Financially Insecure This isn’t just a retirement problem, but one that follows people their entire lives. When we don’t feel financially secure, it makes it more difficult to put away money for Read More +

Phil Cannella The Crash Proof Retirement™ Page on CBS Philly

by Phil Cannella For all the longtime listeners of the Crash Proof Retirement Show®, I wanted to direct you to our page on CBS Philly’s Website. Myself and Joann Small have always been pleased to work and broadcast our radio show on the CBS media family and we hope you enjoy listening to us. Now CBS Philly has given us our own personality page, so we hope you’ll take time out of your schedule to take a look and find out more about The Crash Read More +

Phil Cannella: Check Out Transamerica’s 13th Annual Retirement Survey

By Phil Cannella In my efforts to bring you the best, most useful information about retirement, I came across this annual survey conducted by Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.  This is a great survey that contains a treasure trove of information that can help anyone in or near retirement prepare for the future.  If you’re interested in reading the full survey, you can find it by clicking here.  I’m sure no matter who you are and what your retirement savings situation, you will find something Read More +

Phil Cannella Lawsuit: S&P, Moody’s Settle Lawsuit Without Admitting Wrongdoing – Phil Cannella Lawsuit

by Phil Cannella In a story that has become all too common these days, ratings agencies Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s settled a lawsuit accusing them of manipulating their ratings before the financial crisis of 2008.  Specifically, the two agencies are accused of giving good ratings to risky subprime mortgage products in order to make them more appealing to investors. The products in question were more of the complex derivative products made up of subprime mortgages that are credited with causing a great deal of Read More +

Twitter Causes Stock Market Crash

Photo Credit: Annette Shaff / by Phil Cannella If anyone out there is still not convinced that the stock market is too volatile for people in or near retirement, I give you this story: Tuesday afternoon, hackers took over the Twitter account of the Associated Press, an account that nearly one million followers count on to deliver the news in brief. The hackers then sent out a false tweet indicating that the White House had been attacked by bombers (it hadn’t) and that President Read More +

Follow Phil Cannella on Social Media

by Phil Cannella I maintain an active presence on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Pheed, so if you’re a fan of Phil Cannella, be sure to check out my Social Media Pages, which are updated every day with great new content. I like to post pictures from events, media coverage, videos from my Youtube channel. I also share news stories and other items that relate to retirees and retirement. I started in this business in the 70s, so it has been amazing to see how rapidly Read More +

New Retirement Blog at

by Phil Cannella I wanted to let everyone know about this great new blog at By visiting the site, you can stay up to date on the latest news that affects retirees. Here’s a link to the latest post: – New Budget Plan Takes Aim at Retirees In the future, you will see lots more great posts that will clue you in to the topics that are near and dear to retirees. The blog will cover tax law changes, changes in programs like Read More +

The Crash Proof Retirement Show® Outrage of the Week

Today we have a preview of this weekend’s “Outrage of the Week” segment that will air during our Saturday show (11 AM to 1 PM on 1210 WPHT). If you’d like to hear the segment read on the air, tune in on Saturday, when you’ll hear the Outrage of the Week, as well as some great commentary from Phil Cannella, Joann Small and Bob Bumbera on The Crash Proof Retirement Show® Revolving Door Revelations Last week we talked about a report released by the Project Read More +

A Clip from “Voice of Reason” with Larry Kane

by Phil Cannella My Crash Proof™ Production Crew at Retirement Media, Inc. put together this video for me the other day and I wanted to share it with you. As you may know, I was invited to appear on “Voice of Reason” with Larry Kane, which aired March 17th and 20th on the Comcast Network. On the show, I got the chance to speak to legendary journalist Larry Kane, as well as expert panelists Ryan Sweet, Senior Economist at Moody’s and Dr. Bruce Rader from Read More +

Phil Cannella and Joann Small in Profile Magazine

by Phil Cannella One of the dedicated employees at Retirement Media, Inc. passed this link along to me today, and needless to say I was ecstatic to see that myself, Joann Small, and Crash Proof Retirement™ were being recognized in the media once again. This time, Profile Magazine decided to cover Crash Proof Retirement™, First Senior Financial Group, Retirement Media, Inc. as well as myself and Joann Small. The article starts by talking about my upbringing and the medical emergency that led to me founding Read More +

New POGO Report Highlights Revolving Door Bonuses

by Phil Cannella Our friend Michael Smallberg with the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) is back again with another damning report of the Revolving Door between Washington regulators and Wall Street Financial Firms. It seems that not only is the Revolving Door still spinning, but that private firms are also offering their executives big bonuses for taking high-ranking government jobs, bonuses that would not be available to them if they took jobs at competing private sector firms. You may remember Mr. Smallberg from his appearance Read More +

Saturday on The Crash Proof Retirement Show®: Temple University’s Dr. Bruce Rader

by Phil Cannella This Saturday, I have a very special Crash Proof Retirement Show® for my loyal listeners, so make sure to tune in. My guest will be Dr. Bruce Rader, Assistant Professor of Finance from Temple University’s Fox School of Business. For those of you who have been following me, Dr. Rader was one of the other expert panelists invited to appear on Larry Kane’s “Voice of Reason” along with myself and Ryan Sweet, Senior Economist with Moody’s Analytics. We were all invited onto Read More +

New Survey Shows Retirement Confidence is Low

by Phil Cannella The Employee Benefits Research Institute (EBRI) released its yearly Retirement Confidence Survey (RCS) on Tuesday this week, and the results were not exactly looking rosy. The survey found that retirement confidence took a dip this year, after rising slightly in 2012. It seems that retirees now are much less confident that they will have enough money in their savings to make it through retirement. The EBRI has been conducting the RCS since 1993, measuring confidence about retirement by surveying people in or Read More +

Phil Cannella on “Voice of Reason” with Larry Kane Re-Airing on Wednesday

by Phil Cannella I wanted to let all of my listeners, clients and fans know that “Voice of Reason” with Larry Kane will be re-airing this Wednesday, March 20th at 5:30 PM on the Comcast Network. That’s Channels 8 and 845 for Comcast subscribers; if you have a different provider, you should check your local listings. Once again, I was honored to be invited to speak to a journalist of Larry Kane’s caliber and also proud to be included in a panel with such respected Read More +

Phil Cannella to Appear on “Voice of Reason” with Larry Kane

by Phil Cannella I was ecstatic last week when I found out I was invited to appear on “Voice of Reason” with Larry Kane. Truly, I was honored to be invited to speak with such a legendary journalist for a panel discussion about the current state of the economy. I wanted to let all my readers (and listeners of the Crash Proof Retirement Show®) know about my appearance so they can tune in and watch this Sunday, March 17th at 9:30PM and again on Wednesday, Read More +

Dow Jones Reaches Record High, But Is Your Money Safe?

by Phil Cannella Many news outlets are reporting this morning that the Dow Jones Industrial Average has reached a record high (here’s the New York Times’ take on it).  Five years ago, the Dow Jones closed above 14,000, and today it has shattered that record.  But does that mean everything’s fine now, and that it’s safe to put your money at risk on the stock market again? I would say no. At times when the stock market is up, people tend to feel more confident investing Read More +

Will New SEC Chairman Get Tough on Financial Crimes?

by Phil Cannella Not long ago, I wrote about the appointment of Mary Jo White, the new chairman of the SEC.  At the time, I felt it would be good for the SEC to have a chairman at all, regardless of who it was, since the agency was left without a permanent leader for about a month after former Chairman Mary Schapiro resigned early this year.  I also expressed some trepidation, because of White’s background in the private sector as a lawyer working for Wall Read More +

JPMorgan CEO, “We Actually Benefit from Downturns”

You may remember JPMorgan as being one of the major players in the fiscal crisis of 2008.  It was big banks like JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, and the rest of Wall Street who engineered the subprime mortgage products that wreaked havoc on the housing market, the stock market, and the overall economy.  The CEOs of some of these banks would like to have you believe that they suffered through the recession just like everyone else.  Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, is a bit different Read More +

HSBC Study Shows Millions of Retirees Expect to Outlive Their Nest Eggs

by Phil Cannella I came across an interesting study today which I think is relevant to everyone in or near retirement.  The study, called The Future of Retirement: The Power of Planning (click here to read the report), was conducted by HSBC bank, and has been ongoing since 2005.  The report compiles statistics about retirees and retirement and so far has surveyed over 125,000 people all over the globe.  I wanted to share the report with you because it contains many statistics that reaffirms the things Read More +

A Transcript of Phil Cannella’s Interview with Michael Smallberg of POGO (Part 4)

Today I will be posting the final portion of my interview with Michael Smallberg of the Project on Government Oversight.  For those who haven’t been following along, Mr. Smallberg and I discussed the Revolving Door problem at the SEC, and how it has affected the agency’s ability to regulate effectively.   Phil Cannella: That’s great, I want to congratulate you, you’re saving money with the federal government and the Pentagon, in keeping with your mission.  What would be your mission statement? Michael Smallberg: Generally we Read More +

A Transcript of Phil Cannella’s Interview with Michael Smallberg of POGO (Part 3)

Today I’ve posted part 3 of the transcript of my interview with Michael Smallberg of the Project on Government Oversight (POGO).  POGO has released two reports over the past year or so regarding the Revolving Door problem at the SEC, where former SEC staffers take jobs in the private sector financial industry and use the knowledge they gained working at the SEC to help their new employers navigate around securities regulations.   Michael Smallberg: Its absolutely unfair that you have that kind of senior official Read More +

A Transcript of Phil Cannella’s Interview with Michael Smallberg of POGO (Part 2)

Exactly one week ago, The Project on Government Oversight (POGO) released its second report on the Revolving Door at the Securities and Exchange Commission.  POGO found that former SEC employees had testified on behalf of the financial industry hundreds of times leading up to (and after) the financial crisis of 2008.  I felt the release of this report was the perfect time to revisit the groundbreaking interview I conducted with Michael Smallberg, an investigator with POGO, during which we discussed the Revolving Door and its Read More +

A Transcript of Phil Cannella’s Interview with Michael Smallberg of POGO

If you read my blog post yesterday, you’ll remember that I spoke to Michael Smallberg of the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) early in 2012 about the revolving door between the SEC and the private sector financial industry.  I wanted to give you a transcript of that interview in case you weren’t able to listen to it, or would rather read it in text form.  I’ll be posting the transcript in sections over the next few days to make it easier to read and digest. Read More +

Phil Cannella Interviews Michael Smallberg of POGO

With the release of a new report on Monday by the Project on Government Oversight (POGO), it only makes sense to revisit Phil Cannella’s interview with Michael Smallberg of POGO.  Mr. Smallberg is an investigator at the organization, which seeks to advocate for stricter regulations preventing the Revolving Door Between the SEC and the private sector financial industry.  The second of two POGO reports was released this week and outlines specific instances where the revolving door may have influenced the outcome of SEC matters. When Read More +

More Revolving Door Horror Stories

In yesterday’s post, we talked about a new report by the Project on Government Oversight that reveals the true extent of the revolving door from Wall Street to the SEC and vice-versa.  Well as I’ve dug further into the report, I’ve picked out some interesting anecdotes to share with you that really demonstrate how bad this problem is, and how it has influenced the outcomes of many investigations into the criminal activities of Wall Street. Mary Schapiro’s Money Market Investigation gets Derailed The POGO report Read More +

Phil Cannella Exposes the Revolving Door

Phil Cannella has made it his life’s work to investigate flaws within the systems that impact the lives of the everyday consumer. You’ve probably heard me talk about the revolving door before.  That’s when employees of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) leave their jobs to take new ones in the private sector financial industry.  It seems fine until you realize that the SEC is supposed to be regulating that very industry, and yet its employees routinely drop out and take up (usually higher-paying) jobs Read More +

Phil Cannella on

As part of the 98.1 WOGL Loves Our Kids Radiothon, Phil Cannella, Joann Small, and the Crash Proof Retirement™ Team once again made a big splash by being the largest single donors of the event.  Cannella and his team even managed to top their previous donations, made in 2010 and 2011, of $50,000 by donating a jaw-dropping $65,000 to benefit the kids at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). Philly Ad Club picked up the Radiothon story and posted it on their website (click here Read More +

Phil Cannella Warns: Watch Out for Identity Theft

Phil Cannella recognizes the dangers of identity theft, and hopes to bring awareness of this issue to seniors. I read an interesting blog post today, and it reminded me of a problem that’s becoming all too common these days:  Tax Refund Identity Fraud (click here to read the blog post). This occurs when someone files a fraudulent tax return using your information, and then collects the resulting refund.  The problem with this scam, and the reason it’s so hard to detect, is because the person Read More +

Cadillac Jack Speaks about Phil Cannella’s Donation

Phil Cannella, Joann Small, and the Crash Proof Retirement Team made a generous donation to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).  The difference this year?  They made an even larger donation than they have made in past years. The donation was made as part of the WOGL 98.1 Loves Our Kids Radiothon, which provides donations for CHOP every year, helping the kids there get the care they so desperately need.  The 2012 Radiothon brought in a total of $658,272 for a worthy cause, and the Read More +

Phil Cannella Warns About Ratings Agencies

Phillip Cannella warns investors to be cautious of investment rating agencies. Just five short years after Wall Street and ratings agencies worked together to defraud American investors, the U.S. government is finally getting around to doing something about it.  The government announced it will be suing the parent company of ratings agency Standard and Poor’s for fraud, a charge they absolutely deserve. You see, in 2008, Wall Street firms were working hard developing subprime mortgage products like Collateralized Debt Obligations.  These subprime products packaged risky Read More +

Phil Cannella in the Delco Times

Much was written about Phil Cannella, Joann Small, and Crash Proof Retirement after their participation in the 98.1 WOGL Loves Our Kids Radiothon that raised $658,272 for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.  Their generosity earned them a lot of attention from the local press, spawning several stories.  Follow the link below to see coverage of the event in the Delaware County Daily Times (Delco Times). Click here to see coverage of Phil Cannella and Joann Small in the Delco Times Cannella and Small have become Read More +

Phil Cannella on the Treasury Department

Phil Cannella Keeps a Watchful Eye on the Federal Agencies Governing the People he Stands to Defend. I came across this story today, and needless to say, I was not happy about what I found.  It seems that the U.S. Department of the Treasury, under the leadership of Tim Geithner, allowed executive pay raises and ridiculously large pay packages at several companies that got bailouts.  These companies included AIG, Ally Financial (previously known as GMAC), and our old pal General Motors. How could anyone justify Read More +

Phil Cannella at the 98.1 WOGL Loves Our Kids Radiothon

Pictured above:  Phil Cannella and Bob Pantano This year’s 98.1 WOGL Loves Our Kids Radiothon was a resounding success, thanks to the efforts of so many local personalities who lent their names to a great cause.  Members of WOGL’s morning show, “The Breakfast Club” were on hand to help out with the festivities, including hosts Ross Brittain and Valerie Knight.  Beloved radio personality Bob Pantano also helped out with the event, which benefits Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, by holding the event in conjunction with one Read More +

Phil Cannella Speaks on the New SEC Chair

Phil Cannella I’ve been saying for years how the SEC needs effective leadership to do the job that we as taxpayers pay them to do.  You may remember my groundbreaking interview with former SEC Inspector General H. David Kotz, in which he said that the SEC had management problems that made it difficult for them to regulate effectively. Of course, when he made that statement, he was referring to then SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro, who stepped down as of December 14th, 2012.  Since then, the Read More +

Phil Cannella Speaks at One of the Largest Educational Events Ever

After taking a brief hiatus over the holiday season, Phil Cannella burst back onto the scene with his usual vigor and flair for the dramatic.  He spoke at an educational event at the William Penn Inn in Lower Gwynedd, PA on Tuesday January 22nd to one of the largest crowds in the history of First Senior Financial Group’s educational event series. The William Penn event attracted retirees  from all over Montgomery County and surrounding areas, who showed up to hear Phil Cannella deliver a talk Read More +

Fiscal Cliff Delays Tax Season

by Phil Cannella For anyone who was wondering when they can file their taxes this year, wonder no more.  Tax season has been postponed slightly, due the battle over the fiscal cliff early in 2013. Since the IRS needed to time update their tax laws, they will not be accepting returns until January 30th this year.  This applies to anyone filing a 1040 EZ form; others may have to wait longer.  So if you’re one of those diligent folks who gets right to work on Read More +

Crash Proof Retirement Team Makes Donation to CHOP

Never one to take his success for granted, Phil Cannella is always looking for ways to give back to the community.  That’s why he teamed up with Joann Small, CEO of First Senior Financial Group, and the Crash Proof Retirement Team to contribute to 98.1 WOGL’s Loves Our Kids Radiothon.  To date, Phil Cannella and Joann Small are the leading single donors to the event, contributing $65,000 in 2012. The $65,000 donation for 2012 brings the grand total to $165,000 for the Crash Proof Retirement Read More +

Phil Cannella: JPMorgan CEO Gets a Pay Cut

by Phil Cannella For once in the history of Wall Street firms, a CEO is being taken to task for creating huge losses that cost investors billions.  In his years as a Senior Advocate, Phil Cannella has seen investment firm CEOs tank their own companies, and get huge bonuses for doing it.  Now, Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan will be taking a pay cut for failing to keep tabs on a trader who created $6  billion in losses. The rogue trader, known only as “the Read More +

Phil Cannella Participates in Charity Radiothon

Phil Cannella was once again a fixture at the 98.1 WOGL Loves Our Kids Radiothon when First Senior Financial Group and Crash Proof Retirement Teamed up to donate $65,000 to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).  On hand to receive the donation were CHOP employees and members of the CBS radio team, including WOGL FM’s Vice President and General Manager Jim Loftus. Phil Cannella and Joann Small are no strangers to CHOP events, as they have been the largest single donors to the charitable event Read More +

Phil Cannella: Taking Death Distributions from Inherited IRAs

We’re back again with more great tips from Phil Cannella on taking death distributions from Traditional IRAs. We talked last week about Required Minimum Distributions and how they can affect you if you have a Traditional IRA. We also talked a little bit about the Required Beginning Date (RBD), which is the date when you would be required to begin taking an RMD. The RBD falls on April 1st after the IRA owner reaches age 70½. That’s for an IRA that you own. But what Read More +

Regulators Finally Get Tough with Mortgage Lenders

Phil Cannella has been saying for years that the regulators aren’t regulating banks and financial firms, which is what allowed them to cause the mortgage bubble that crashed the U.S. economy in 2008.  Now, five years after the crisis began, regulators are finally putting requirements into place that will help stem the tide of faulty mortgages that brought the housing market to its knees.  These new restrictions, introduced by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), require banks to determine if the people to whom they Read More +

Phil Cannella on 6ABC Action News

  In keeping with his tradition of philanthropy, Phil Cannella and Joann Small teamed up with the Crash Proof Retirement Team to make a generous donation to the Red Cross.  The money will go towards helping those who lost so much during Hurricane Sandy. Phil Cannella has always called the Greater Philadelphia area his home, which is why the damage done in New Jersey and Pennsylvania affected him in a very personal way.  That’s why he and Joann Small took it upon themselves to come Read More +

Phil Cannella: Taking Death Distributions from Inherited IRAs

  Phil Cannella:  Master IRA Advisor Taking Death Distributions from Inherited IRAs In his 38 years as a Master IRA Advisor, Phil Cannella has seen it all.  People use many different methods to plan for retirement, but today one of the more common ways to save is by contributing money to an IRA.  If you’re in or near retirement, your spouse probably has some money in an IRA.  Have you ever thought about what you would do if your spouse passed away and left you Read More +

Phil Cannella and Joann Small Present Check to Red Cross

  Phil Cannella presented a check for $12,500 to the Red Cross South Jersey Chapter to aid in the relief efforts for those affected by Hurricane Sandy.  New Jersey was particularly hard hit by the storm, which left residents without power for long periods of time and caused many to lose their homes and businesses. The check presentation was made at a Crash Proof Retirement educational event held at Adelphia Restaurant in Deptford, New Jersey.  Phil Cannella speaks at these weekly events, educating people in or Read More +

Phil Cannella and Crash Proof Retirement Make Donation to CHOP

As part of his work with the 98.1 WOGL Loves Our Kids Radiothon chartiable event, Phil Cannella was on hand with his radio show co-host Joann Small to present a check for $65,000 to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) on behalf of First Senior Financial Group, the company he founded, and of the Crash Proof Retirement Show.  This donation marks the biggest donation yet for Crash Proof Retirement, and continues their three-year tradition of being the largest single donor ever for the WOGL Radiothon. Read More +

How to Fight Your Health Insurer – Reports & Recourse

Phil Cannella: You CAN fight your health insurer! According to the Government Accountability Office, patients who receive a health insurance claim denial have a 39% to 59% chance of getting it reversed if they appeal directly to their insurer and a 23% to 54% chance if they appeal to a third party authorized to hear such appeals. If you want to maximize your chances of getting the denial revised or reversed, take the following approach:” Check for errors. According to the American Medical Association, 19% Read More +

Will My Money Last Me Through Retirement?

Is the American Dream slipping away? We all work years and years dreaming that the fruits of our labor will pay dividends in our retired years. But the truth is, according to noted retirement specialist Phil Cannella, that an increasing number of are not realizing that dream. According to AARP public policy Institute, which surveyed 5,000 Americans age 50 and over, 67% of respondents say their retirement savings have shrunk in the past three years, with 25% admitting their savings have been exhausted altogether since Read More +

How to Tell if Your Financial Advisor is Honest

Is Your Advisor Looking out for You? Nowadays, the last thing you need is an unscrupulous financial advisor. With the twists and turns of today’s economy, a retiree needs an advocate, not a con artist. Phil Cannella offers some red flags to watch out for: • Avoid stockbrokers who claim to have a “secret method” that yields good returns even in bear markets. Listen with your head, not your wallet. • Avoid advisors who use overly complex language or ask you to “just trust” them Read More +

The Difference Between Bankruptcy and Receivership

What retirees need to know about bankruptcy and receivership Financial news stations spout the words bankruptcy and receivership as if their definitions were common knowledge. There are important differences between the terms—especially where retirees are concerned. Bankruptcy vs. Receivership The most common option for bankruptcy is Chapter 11, or reorganization. Under this option a company continues, rearranges debts by postponing the paying of its bills or by reducing obligations, assets are sold, and proceeds go to creditors. Notice that the process does not necessarily include Read More +

Investment Bank CEO salaries: Are they getting YOUR money’s worth?

Do Investment Bank CEOs Deserve Their Huge Payouts? We’ve all heard that the banking industry is “too big to fail.” But should the same apply to bank exec’s salaries? Over the past decade, CEOs of “too big to fail” banks have collected $1.15 trillion in cash and stock—or an average of $19 million a year, according to regulatory findings. This sum easily eclipses the total return banking-industry investors would have received on the market. An investor who put $100 into a market-weighted basket of shares would Read More +

The SEC and the Gary Aguirre Case

Does the SEC fire its investigators when they get too close to the truth?  Gary Aguirre was one of the SEC’s best investigators, but when he tried to subpoena one of Wall Street’s major players in a fraud investigation, he found out the hard way that it’s not a good idea to rattle too many cages in Washington.   Gary Aguirre was the SEC’s Rising Star Throughout his career, Gary Aguirre became know as a competent attorney who tackled big cases and won. He won Read More +

Living Wills & Banks Too Big to Fail

The FDIC has announced new rules for major (or “systemically important” as the FDIC calls them) U.S. banks and financial institutions beginning in 2012. These institutions are now required to submit detailed plans on how their assets should be handled in the event of another financial meltdown like the one that occurred in 2008.  The rules would also extend to foreign banks with a significant presence in the U.S.  The new rules are intended to allow the FDIC to quickly sell off assets when a Read More +

The Millionaire Tax: Could it Work on a Federal Level?

A proposed federal “Millionaire Tax” has  many of America’s wealthy elite bristling.  Often called the “Buffet Rule” (after multi-millionaire Warren Buffet, who is credited with conceiving the idea), the proposed tax would adjust the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT).  The AMT is usually adjusted every year to keep up with inflation, but many feel it has not been adjusted enough to reflect current economic conditions, or that a more permanent solution is needed.  When the present iteration of the AMT was introduced in 1982, it placed Read More +

The Financial Transaction Tax

In the face of a faltering European economy, France’s President Nicolas Sarkozy has proposed a new tax to yield some additional revenue, an unprecedented move for the conservative French leader.  The “Financial Transaction Tax” would affect financial institutions’ transactions on a day-to-day basis, returning some of that money to the government.  While European economists are divided on this issue, American economists are wondering if a similar tax could help rein in some of the unbridled Wall Street trading occurring in the United States.  If support Read More +

Employment for Workers 50 and Older

When you are at or near retirement, you may want to keep busy.  However, “pounding the pavement” and undergoing the daily grind of work may not be necessary as you approach, or are in, your golden years. You spent your youth advancing your career, and now it may be prudent to consider a less stressful use of your time. If you desire to dial down your work commitments, the following is a list of jobs recommended by websites including CNN Money, Bank Rate, and Associated Read More +

Google Changes Its Privacy Policy

My Privacy? Sure, Take It. If you are a little surprised sometimes about how much Google seems to know about you—get ready. In March, the internet giant began operating under new privacy policies that dig deeper into the lives of its users. As we all know, Google is more than just a search engine. The company has many services, including GoogleMaps, YouTube, Gmail and Google Voice. Each of these services has maintained their own rules concerning online information. Now, sixty of Google’s services will be Read More +

Self Directed IRAs

Although self-directed Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) have been around since 1975, many investors have just found out about them.  A self-directed IRA is the same as a traditional IRA, except that it allows investors to put their money into investments other than stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.  Though there are some exceptions, investors can put almost anything in a self-directed IRA, like certain precious metals, franchises, and real estate.  The flexibility of a self-directed IRA may appeal to some investors who want to have a Read More +

Costs of Living for Retirees

Rising Medical Costs Rip Into Retirees’ Savings First, the good news: Retirees now live longer. But they also have to pay for it. Staying healthy and sharp may cost the average retiree a huge chunk, if not all, of their retirement savings. For many, health care costs represent the great unknown. Retirees often overlook the real budget buster to their portfolios—the rising costs of healthcare basics like prescription drugs, tests, and emerging medical treatments. A report recently released by the American Association of Retired Persons Read More +

Exposes of the Area Code Scam

Judging from the menu of available scam operations, one thing is certain: the legions of con- artists prowling out there will never run out of scams. it’s a shame that today’s retirees are such a tempting target for this unscrupulous bunch; in particular scammers that target and rob those retirees with large disposable incomes. The newest scam to hit is the Area Code Scam. This particular scam can arrive by mail, email, or through a phone message. The messages urge people to call to claim Read More +

Water Fitness Programs Booming for Retirees

Remember  when the movie Cocoon packed theaters in the 1980s? In the film, a group of retirees swam in a pool which mysteriously granted them youthful exuberance. Today, thousands of older adults have flocked to swimming pools seeking the same healing powers the water can bring (and this time without a science fiction plot involved or actor Wilfred Brimley). Fitness centers across the country have added “water fitness” classes geared towards retirees, offering a chance for both physical therapy and fun. “It can be therapeutic Read More +

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a New Tool to Fight Fraud

In the run-up to the 2012 election, much has been made about the newly formed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and its Director, former Ohio Attorney General (and five-time Jeopardy champion) Richard Cordray. The CFPB was created to add another layer of regulation to the banking industry, as well as to regulate the practices of non-bank lenders, such as payday lenders. While most people agree Cordray is more than qualified to perform the duties of his new post, his appointment as Director of the new Read More +

Avoid These Six Winter Related Killers

By Kim Friel Our country faced record-breaking heat waves during the 2011 summer months, but an article posted this month by the Huffington Post warns those over 50 that the winter months pose the most danger.  For instance, the body’s reaction to cold weather can increase the chance of blood clots, which in turn can heighten the chances for heart attacks and strokes (Numbers 1 and 3, respectively, on the list of leading causes of death in the United States).  Also, the cold weather makes Read More +

Are CEOs Making More Than They Deserve?

Phil Cannella’s consumer-advocacy initiative has targeted bank CEOs the past few years—reason being that CEOs continue to demand seven and eight-figure pay even when their companies are in the tank. The worst part is their shareholders, for the most part, are more than happy to oblige them Take, for example, Ken Lewis, who was CEO of Bank of America (BofA) when it received $45 billion from the U.S. government in the first two rounds of the TARP bailouts. Obviously, the bank was so successful that Read More +

Financial Advisor Fees

This latest article from Phil Cannella’s well-known consumer advocacy initiative addresses the various fees retirees are often paying to financial advisors. The concept is simple: if an advisor’s income varies depending on where and for how long he/she invests your money, then your interests are most likely not being served. “Too often retirees lose large portions of their life savings to pay someone to put their money in investments that truly don’t benefit the client,” says Phil Cannella. “You have to make sure the person Read More +

Long Term Care Service Costs

Long-term care costs in the United States are so high that in theory, every retiree should be a multimillionaire when entering retirement.  With the costs of long-term care services skyrocketing over the years, retirees have become a source of sustainable wealth for much of the medical industry. Phil Cannella’s idea of retirement is one where all the financial headaches are behind you, leaving you free to focus on the sweeter things in life.  Although retirees should remain hopeful that they will never become fully dependent Read More +

Mortgage Refinancing Scams

To Crash Proof Retirement creator Phil Cannella, scams involving mortgage refinancing are some of the most heinous.  With the millions of pending foreclosures stemming from the great recession, many destitute homeowners are reaching out to anyone who can help them avoid losing their homes; but for some, that “helping” hand can also reach right into their pockets, leaving homeowners in an even worse situation than before. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Better Business Bureau (BBB) warn consumers to be wary of anyone Read More +

The Cell Phone Cram Scam

“Remember the good old days when your phone bill was just one page long?” asks Phil Cannella. Scams can come in many forms, but the great number of charges found on the average cell phone bill have made things easier for scammers.  As telecom consumers have made the move from landlines to smart phones, the accompanying bills have become longer and more complex, loaded up with service fees, regulatory fees and other esoteric charges.  But consumer advocacy watchdogs are warning you to keep an eye Read More +

Phil Cannela says Watch out for Fake Charities

To Phil Cannella, scams that rip you off in the name of charity are a special class of atrocity. According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, over 1.5 million non-profit organizations exist in the United States and individual donors gave $211.77 billion in 2010.  Charitable donations are a great way to give to those in need, but Phil Cannella warns that not all charitable organizations are legitimate.  The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) advises donors not to donate to an inefficient organization, or even worse, Read More +

Retirees Beware of Bogus Employment Offers

Many retirees seek part-time work to keep busy, earn extra income, or for a variety of personal reasons, but there’s one troubling aspect that people definitely need to keep in mind, says prominent Senior Advocate Phil Cannella: scams. Although it has been found that part-time work can help keep retirees mentally sharp and provide more overall fulfillment in their lives, “work-at-home” job opportunities in particular too often turn out to be scams. This is one key reason why Phil Cannella invited FBI Special Agent and Read More +

Phil Cannella Debt Reduction Scams

Phil Cannella senior advocate daily occurrence Complaints from consumers about debt-reduction services are a near-daily occurrence for senior advocate Phil Cannella, and it’s not hard to see why. After all, the ads are everywhere: “Be debt free in two years!” “Cut your debt by half!” Even “Get your debt down to zero!”It all sounds so easy, but Phil Cannella, originator of Crash Proof Retirement and the  Philadelphia area’s leading retiree advocate, says debt-reduction companies seldom deliver on those lofty promises.”This is an industry where deception and abuse Read More +

SEC Crackdown Continues

2011 was a good year for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). It brought a record number of enforcement actions against Wall Street firms and dispelled some of the doubt many have had about the organization’s fitness to regulate the financial industry.  The SEC has come under fire in recent years for several major gaffes, including its failure to detect Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, its destruction of documents, and a leasing scandal that cost taxpayers $550 million.  Since the appointment of [former] SEC Inspector General Read More +

Phil Cannella Reveals The Truth About the SEC

Phil Cannella made a huge splash in Washington after interviewing the Inspector General of the SEC. Former SEC Inspector General H. David Kotz had a reputation for demanding aggressive action from the SEC’s enforcement division against financial firms who engage in unethical or illegal activities. Kotz’s tenure at the Office of Inspector General has been marked by tough investigations into the SEC’s enforcement against unethical trading practices. One such investigation occurred when a probe into the activities of the now defunct financial giant Bear Stearns Read More +

Retirement Years at Home

The term “aging in place” has become popular for baby boomers who would rather live out their retirement years in their own home than move into a nursing home.  A 2007 study by The EAR Foundation, a nationwide, non-profit organization which provides services to persons who are deaf, have a hearing loss, or balance impairment, showed that the vast majority of retirees want to age in place. The study even showed that retirees fear moving into a nursing home more than death.  If boomers decide Read More +

Phil Cannella and H. David Kotz – SEC Interview

The SEC and Bloomberg would rather talk about football tickets than about fixing a broken system. Bloomberg writer Rob Schmidt‘s December 15 follow-up to his November 23 article about the fallout from Crash Proof Retirement’s landmark interview with SEC Inspector General H. David Kotz is revealing on two levels. [dropcap color=”black”]F[/dropcap]irst, it shows that the SEC is more interested in discrediting Mr. Kotz  than in meaningfully addressing the many key issues the hard-hitting questions of Crash Proof Retirement Show™ founder and host Phil Cannella brought to Read More +

Phil Cannella Financial – Too Much Safety

Recently, noted retirement specialist Phil Cannella, founder of First Senior Financial Group and host of The Crash Proof Retirement Show™, spoke with a Philadelphia-area reporter on numerous topics that are of vital interest to retirees. In this series we’ll be presenting excerpts from those talks. The current passage is on “too much safety.” Q: You say there’s such a thing as “too much safety.” I think you’re being facetious, but what do you mean by that? Phil Cannella: You’re right, I’m being partly facetious, because Read More +