Aphria may be wining pick of the cannabis industry

Dear Mr. Berko: I’ve invested off and on in about a dozen pot stocks and lost money each time. I’ve been looking at Aphria for three months and can’t make up my mind. What do you think? — H.L., Wilmington, North Carolina Dear H.L.: I don’t know enough about the cannabis industry to pick a […]

Navigating the World of Student Loans

Q: I’m collegebound and beginning to look at financing options. Given the sometimes alarming headlines about student-debt levels, should I be worried about overextending myself? A: The headlines are indeed alarming: • “The Student Loan Debt Crisis Is About to Get Worse” (Bloomberg). • “Student Loan Debt Statistics in 2018: A $1.5 Trillion Crisis” (Forbes). […]

Washington Prime is risky bet that could pay off

Dear Mr. Berko: I had bad luck last year buying various high-yielding issues you and my two top brokers recommended. The brokers lost over 70% and did embarrassingly worse than you. According to my wife, who’s my business partner and bookkeeper, I had a net return of minus 3.6% in 2018, including interest and dividends. […]

Regional banks benefit from economy, reform, regulation

Dear Mr. Berko: If you think it’s a good idea, we’d like to invest $25,000 each in three regional banks for our self-managed retirement account. During the last 14 years we earned an average annual return of 8.2%. I think continued improvement in the economy warrants this purchase. We’ve selected PNC, and I would like […]

What money values are you passing on to your kids?

Mother’s Day had me feeling a bit wistful about the fact that my kids are now in their 20s, and like so many of us, I wonder where the time has gone. As I’ve been thinking about what it is to be a mom, I’ve been doing some soul-searching about what I’ve tried to teach […]

Replace a shower mixing valve with a new one

Dear James: Whenever one of the kids flushes a toilet while I am showering, the water gets very hot. Would installing a new type of shower valve help, and can you give me some do-it-yourself tips? — Melissa B. Dear Melissa: This is a very common problem when your bathtub has the old two-handle (hot […]

B&G foods delivers good taste, long-term investment

Dear Mr. Berko: Your buy, sell or hold thoughts on B&G Foods and why. Do directors of public corporations earn their pay? — N.L., Jonesboro, Arkansas Dear N.L.: Cream of Wheat is one of my favorite morning foods, and so is McCann’s Irish oatmeal when I toss a fistful of raisins in the bowl. B&G’s […]

Blank check companies offer more risk than return

Dear Mr. Berko: I’m close to retirement and my $400,000 IRA didn’t do well under my previous broker. Over the last 11 years, it’s averaged 7.23%. I asked him to be more aggressive, and it’s just not his style. So I moved to another firm, using a broker I’ve known for 20 years who told […]