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Nearly $1 billion in outstanding refunds remain unclaimed from 2012. That represents an estimated one million taxpayers who might have qualified for a refund but who did not file a federal income tax return for 2012.

If you are due a refund, you must file a federal income tax return in order to get your money. You typically have a three year window following the return due date to claim your tax refund. To claim your refund for the 2012 tax year, your return must be postmarked on or before April 18, 2016 (or April 19, 2016, for taxpayers in Maine and Massachusetts).

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“Where is growth coming from in this economy?”

Ironically, this question was posed to me a few days ago by a fellow financial journalist. I usually raise an eyebrow at such a question since I’m neither an economist nor market soothsayer. And I know people who make predictions about markets are often wrong. I don’t like to go there.

But if I want to approximate an answer, I know that it would involve dividends, that is, companies that regularly pay them and raise them over time. If you need growth in your portfolio, this is a great place to look, particularly if you’re saving for or in retirement.

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Americans of different ages tend to live in different places. This makes a great deal of sense; peoples’ needs when they are working are different from their needs in retirement. This map uses tax data to help show where Americans with retirement income tend to live. It does this by measuring the percentage of adjusted gross income that comes from retirement sources in each county. Retirement income, for purposes of this map, is defined as taxable pensions, social security, and IRA distributions. This is an important source of income that broadly benefits the middle class.

  

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