The money-saving joys of being over 50

If you’re 50+, you can give your retirement nest egg a boost this year by making an annual catch-up contribution. This nifty deferral helps you "catch up" on retirement savings by allowing you to save an additional amount over and above the standard IRS contribution limits for 401(k) or 403(b) plans. For 2013 and 2014, you can contribute up to $5,500 over the IRS limit of $17,500 for a total of $23,000!

How much will Obamacare really cost you?

New findings show that the cost of employee health benefits will go up by about 9 percent, on average, for employers under the new Affordable Care Act. That equals $713 per worker, according to a series of employer actuarial studies done by benefits consulting firm Apex Benefits Group Inc.

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Survey says? Don’t be afraid to ask questions

Want to get more out of your employees? Get to know them better. Here are three popular surveys used by successful businesses today: 1) Onboarding surveys provide a view into a new hire’s perspective and give you a chance to shape their engagement. 2) Engagement surveys measure how passionate employees are about their work. 3) Exit surveys provide candid insight into what’s driving turnover.

Brother, can you spare a dime? Beware of lending to family

Your brother just lost another job. Your son and daughter-in-law need help with their down payment. Your nephew wants to expand his business. The question is, what should you do? Is it ever okay to lend money to family members? Here are a few precautions to keep in mind before writing that check.

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Corn vs, soybeans: Who will win in 2014?

The 2014 battle for acres between corn and soybeans may not be the fight it’s been in years past. Though soybeans are likely to lead the way in profitability in Illinois this year, a leading ag economist says corn could win the 2014 acreage battle because of the crop’s expected gains in profitability. But, don’t expect a huge shift.

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Contact Thom Obergfell at or call 260.iAB.BANK.