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    Certified financial planner Sean Fletcher of San Francisco knew his dad had an estate plan, complete with a health care directive detailing what medical treatment should be given in an emergency. When the father had a massive heart attack, though, no one knew where he kept those documents. Fletcher's family was lucky: An aunt found the paperwork in a closet. His mother was able to stop treatment according to his father's wishes so that he could die more peacefully. 'Despite her misgivings, I believe this minor miracle gave my mom the confidence to carry out what she had agreed to do,' Fletcher says. It's not enough to be organized and responsible. We need to think about who will be responsible next. Fortunately, there are several sites that can facilitate that transition for our aging parents — and also for ourselves. In fact, the best way to introduce these sites to your parents may be to use them yourself. That way, you'll be familiar with how they work and can vouch for their helpfulness in getting information to the people who will need it. WHEALTHCARE Whealthcare was co-founded by two people who specialize in the areas where health care meets finances: physician-turned-financial-planner Carolyn McClanahan and software developer Chris Heye, whose other company, Cogniscient, develops cognitive and behavioral assessments to aid older people in making sound financial decisions. Users answer questions on the Whealthcare site, and these assessments are used to create a 'financial caretaking plan' that identifies the issues they're likely to face as they age. The service also provides a transition plan that allows trusted people to take over and a customized to-do list to make sure crucial documents are in place. (Powers of attorney allow others to make vital decisions if we're incapacitated, for example, and health care directives spell out what life-prolonging measures we do and don't want.) Another assessment gauges a person's risk for fraud, exploitation and bad financial decision-making, and offers recommendations for protecting against those threats. A 'proactive aging plan' helps people prepare for transitions in living arrangements, driving and health care decisions, allowing them to document their wishes. A feature called WhealthcareConnect can match people to financial advisers who specialize in issues facing older adults. The annual cost is $39 for one individual plan, $69 for a couple and $149 for a family plan that includes up to five people. EVERPLANS Everplans is an online vault where you can store important documents, contacts, login credentials, instructions on what to do with your social media sites and anything else your family might need to know to handle your affairs. The site offers step-by-step guidance to identify and organize your important information, from insurance policies to pet care plans. If you're not comfortable uploading something to the site, you can leave instructions to help your family find what they need. You name 'trusted deputies' and decide what they can access on the site, and when. You might give one deputy (say, your spouse) access to all the documents while another (perhaps your executor) gets access only after your death. The service costs $75 per year. EVERSAFE EverSafe monitors financial accounts for unusual activity, large transactions and other potential problems. The site alerts you via email, text or automated phone call and can be set up to signal trusted others, as well. The basic service, which costs $7.49 per month after a 30-day free trial, monitors bank and credit card accounts and the dark web, where your personal information may be for sale. For $14.99 per month, you can add credit monitoring. For $24.99, the site will monitor investment accounts as well. An additional $4.99-per-month service monitors your home and other real estate for new liens or defaults on your property. I found the dark web monitoring particularly interesting and was surprised at how many of my passwords had been exposed in various breaches. It was good motivation to change my passwords — and to make sure my trusted deputies could access the new ones. Because protecting all my information and accounts won't do much good if my family can't find what they need when I'm gone. ______________________________________________ This column was provided to The Associated Press by the personal finance website NerdWallet. Liz Weston is a columnist at NerdWallet, a certified financial planner and author of 'Your Credit Score.' Email: lweston@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @lizweston. RELATED LINK: NerdWallet: What is a power of attorney? http://bit.ly/nerdwallet-explains-power-of-attorney
  • The leader of Georgia's ruling party said Monday that the ex-Soviet nation will hold the next parliamentary election based entirely on a proportionate system, fulfilling a key demand of anti-government protesters. The statement from Bidzina Ivanishvili, the founder of the Georgian Dream party, followed four days of protests in the capital. Thousands of demonstrators have rallied in front of parliament, demanding changes in the electoral law and the ouster of the interior minister whom they blame for a violent dispersal of a rally Thursday. Throngs of demonstrators tried to storm parliament that day, angered by a Russian lawmaker taking the speaker's seat during an international meeting of lawmakers. The protest reflected simmering anger against Russia, which routed Georgia in a 2008 war and maintained a military presence in Georgia's two breakaway provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The protesters consider Ivanishvili, Georgia's richest man who made his fortune in Russia, a conduit of Moscow's influence and see the ruling party as overly friendly to Russian interests. The protests have marked the largest outpouring of anger against the Georgian Dream since it took power in 2012. Officials said at least 240 people were injured when riot police used tear gas and water cannons and fired rubber bullets to disperse the protesters. More than 300 demonstrators have been arrested. Demonstrators have returned to parliament for daily rallies, demanding the release of those detained, the ouster of the nation's interior minister and changes in the electoral law to have legislators chosen fully proportionally rather than the current mix of party-list and single-mandate representatives. The opposition believes that single-mandate races favor the ruling party. Ivanishvili, in his first public appearance since the crisis erupted, said the Georgian Dream has agreed to change the election law earlier than planned and to hold next year's parliamentary election based on a fully proportional system. He also announced that the ruling party offered to drop the threshold of 5% of the vote for parties to get represented. 'We are seeing today that the society wants changes,' Ivanishvili said. 'Our initiative opens the way for large-scale political changes.' He also said that an investigation must determine those responsible for Thursday's violence. Moscow has responded to anti-Russian protests by ordering a ban on Russian flights to Georgia starting July 8. Russia's transportation ministry also banned Georgian airlines from flying to Russia, citing their debts and safety issues. Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said Monday the flight ban reflected concerns about the safety of Russian travelers amid what he described as 'Russophobic hysteria' in Georgia. He told reporters that the ban could be lifted after the tensions abate. The flight ban deals a serious economic blow to the Caucasus nation, which has annually hosted more than 1 million Russian tourists, attracted by its scenic mountains, lush sea coast and the renowned wine culture. It echoes bans that Russia imposed in 2006 on flights and imports of Georgian wine and mineral water as tensions rose between the countries. Air connections were restored in 2010 and Russia lifted the wine import ban in 2013. On Monday, the Russian consumer regulator Rospotrebnadzor hinted at a possible new ban, saying that it has registered a steady decline in the quality of imported Georgian wine. In the past, Russia often cited sanitary reasons for food imports bans widely seen as politically driven. ___ Vladimir Isachenkov in Moscow contributed to this report.
  • Eldorado Resorts will buy Caesars in a cash-and-stock deal valued at $17.3 billion, creating a casino giant. The acquisition Monday puts about 60 casinos and resorts in 16 states under a single name, one of the biggest gambling and entertainment ventures in the United States. 'Together, we will have an extremely powerful suite of iconic gaming and entertainment brands, as well as valuable strategic alliances with industry leaders in sports betting and online gaming,' Eldorado CEO Tom Reeg said in a prepared statement. The company, which will be called Caesars, will be led by Reeg, along with Eldorado Chairman Gary Carano. It will be based in Reno Nevada, where Eldorado is based, with a 'significant corporate presence' in Las Vegas, where Caesars is based. Eldorado will pay $8.40 per share in cash and 0.0899 shares of Eldorado stock for each Caesars share, or $12.75 per share. It will also assume Caesars' debt. Shareholders of Eldorado Resorts Inc. will hold about 51% of the company's outstanding stock, with Caesars Entertainment Corp. shareholders holding the remaining and 49%. Earlier this year, billionaire Carl Icahn to an enormous stake in Caesars and pushed for fundamental changes at the company. Caesars, which operates more than 35 casinos in the U.S., emerged from bankruptcy protection in late 2017, but it's been struggling since. Eldorado said Monday that it's also reached a real estate agreement with VICI Properties Inc. in which VICI will acquire the real estate associated with Harrah's Resort Atlantic City, Harrah's Laughlin Hotel & Casino, and Harrah's New Orleans Hotel & Casino for approximately $1.8 billion. Other terms of the deal include VICI being given right of first refusals for whole asset sale or sale-leaseback transactions on two Las Vegas Strip properties and the Horseshoe Casino Baltimore. The Eldorado-Caesars deal is targeted to close in the first half of next year if approved by gaming regulators and shareholders. Caesars' stock jumped 14.6% before the market open, while shares of Eldorado fell 4.3%.
  • A senior Facebook executive says the social media site is in favor of regulation to address some of the dark problems of the internet. Nick Clegg, the former leader of the U.K. Liberal Democrat party who now heads global affairs for Facebook, says it is not 'for private companies' to decide how to balance free speech versus public harm. Clegg told the BBC on Monday that companies like Facebook are not 'shunning' government intervention but advocating a 'sensible way' forward in addressing issues such as cyberbullying or fake news. Lawmakers have been pushing tech companies to take down offensive content more quickly and to do more in general to halt internet harm. But Clegg says it is up to 'democratic politicians in the democratic world' to set the rules. ___ For all of AP's tech coverage, visit: https://apnews.com/apf-technology
  • A closely watched survey is showing that German business confidence has fallen to a near five-year low as managers' expectations for the coming six months have deteriorated. The Ifo institute said Monday that its monthly confidence index slipped to 97.4 points in June from 97.9 last month, in line with market expectations. The third straight monthly fall takes the index to its lowest since November 2014 and was entirely due to managers' waning views of future prospects. Their assessment of the current situation rose modestly from May. German growth forecasts have been cut repeatedly recently and the economy is expected to turn in a feeble performance in the second quarter after returning to growth in the winter. Ifo's survey is based on responses from some 9,000 firms.
  • Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt stepped up his attacks Monday on front-runner Boris Johnson in the race to become Britain's next prime minister, challenging him to face public scrutiny amid the fallout from a reported quarrel with his girlfriend that prompted a police visit. Writing in the Times of London, Hunt said Johnson needs to earn the public's trust by facing television debates before 160,000 Conservative Party members vote on which one of them should lead the party. The winner of the contest will replace Theresa May, who stepped down as party leader after failing to secure Parliament's approval for her European Union divorce deal. 'Don't be a coward, Boris,' Hunt wrote. 'Man up and show the nation you can cope with the intense scrutiny the most difficult job in the country will involve.' Sky News invited Johnson and Hunt to a debate on Tuesday, but cancelled the session because Johnson refused to take part. The broadcaster has invited both candidates to another debate on July 1. Johnson is the favorite in the race against Hunt but he has faced criticism for avoiding media appearances and debates. Such concerns have been heightened by Johnson's refusal to comment on the incident that brought officers to his door early Friday, when a neighbor reported hearing shouting, screaming and banging from the home that Johnson shares with partner, Carrie Symonds. Asked about the police visit several times during a Conservative forum on Saturday, Johnson said the public did not want to 'hear about that kind of thing.' Johnson, who is known for attention-getting antics and glibly offensive comments, said the public should judge his character from his track record as mayor of London and as Britain's former foreign secretary. The argument, first reported by the Guardian newspaper, was recorded by a neighbor, Tom Penn. In the recording, Symonds reportedly can be heard telling Johnson to 'get off me,' and to 'get out of my flat.' Penn said he was concerned for the welfare of those inside. 'Once clear that no one was harmed, I contacted the Guardian, as I felt it was of important public interest,' Penn said. 'I believe it is reasonable for someone who is likely to become our next prime minister to be held accountable for all of their words, actions and behaviors.' Johnson's supporters suggested that Penn was motivated by his opposition to Johnson's political views, a claim that Penn denies. 'I, along with a lot of my neighbors all across London, voted to remain within the EU. That is the extent of my involvement in politics,' Penn said. Leaping to Johnson's defense, supporters like former Cabinet minister Priti Patel told the BBC that the front-runner would not comment on his private life. 'The very prospect of someone taping someone in their private home quite frankly tells me that it is politically motivated and that is not the type of behavior that you'd expect in our country,' Patel said. The incident has dominated the nation's newspapers. The Daily Mail said Johnson's 'latest imbroglio' has 'all the hallmarks of a stitch-up.' But the paper said Johnson 'can't let it fester,' adding: 'The story is out there and millions are talking about it.' ___ Follow AP's full coverage of Brexit and the Conservative Party leadership race at: https://www.apnews.com/Brexit
  • Turkey's opposition supporters partied long into the night after their candidate for Istanbul mayor beat a rival backed by long-time President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The streets were transformed into an impromptu caravan of cars honking their horns, with overjoyed passengers leaning out of windows as they cheered and waved Turkish flags. The party eventually died down and the main question Monday is what political newcomer Ekrem Imamoglu's win in Turkey's biggest city means for Erdogan, and whether this is finally the opposition's moment for a serious challenge to his rule. The opposition has been spent nearly two decades in the shadows as Erdogan's strengthened his hold on power. Imamoglu narrowly won the vote for Istanbul mayor in March, but the vote was controversially canceled because of procedural irregularities. The repeat vote, however, was resoundingly in his favor: Imamoglu garnered 54%, beating the government candidate Binali Yildirim who tallied 45%. The landslide win fueled speculation that Erdogan and his Islamic-leaning Justice and Development Party, AKP, may be facing a real challenge after blitzing his opponents with successive election victories since it first came to power in 2002. 'Erdogan is likely to face not only an emboldened opposition but also more open dissent within the AKP itself,' said Wolf Piccoli of the New York-based risk analysis firm Teneo Intelligence. 'The victory of Ekrem Imamoglu ... is the most serious setback for Erdogan since his Justice and Development Party first took office in November 2002 and will further fuel the already growing sense amongst both his opponents and many members of his own party that his career is now in irreversible decline.' The vote count was officially ratified Monday. But Yildirim conceded within minutes after the first returns were announced, and tens of thousands of opposition supporters flocked to a square in an Istanbul suburb late Sunday to greet Imamoglu, chanting his campaign slogan, 'Everything will be great!' Erdogan rose to prominence as the mayor of Istanbul in the mid-1990s and dominated national politics following a 2001 financial crisis that wiped out much of the political establishment. He presided over years of growth, but in the past year the economy has been in-and-out of recession, with the country plagued high borrowing costs and sovereign downgrades. The repeat election also heightened public anxiety over the style of government rule that critics describe has become increasingly authoritarian. Opposition supporter Banu Kirmizigul said he only voted in the repeat election, inspired by Imamoglu's campaign. 'I am really happy and my faith in this country has been restored,' he said. 'I saw that our people had awakened and I decided to wake up now, and I cast my vote. We (the opposition) got 800,000 more votes. We were successful and I am very happy.' Turkey's borrowing rates eased as the repeat election ended months of political uncertainty. The yield on Turkey's 10-year government bond eased to 15.3% after touching 20% in mid-May. A group of election monitors from the Council of Europe, a Strasbourg-France based organization aimed at holding members states accountable for their human rights commitments, said Sunday's election had been held 'competently and in compliance with the applicable rules.' ___ Ayse Wieting, Mehmet Guzel, and Bulut Emiroglu in Istanbul contributed to this report. ___ Follow Derek Gatopoulos at http://www.twitter.com/dgatopoulos and Bilginsoy http://twitter.com/zbilginsoy
  • New Zealand remains one of the few developed countries where people with bank savings have no recourse if their bank fails, but the government said Monday that's about to change. Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced plans for a program aimed at individual account holders that would guarantee bank deposits of up to 50,000 New Zealand dollars ($33,000). Robertson said the scheme would fully protect about 90% of savers, and would cover about 40% of the total NZ$352 billion kept in bank deposits. 'This is about tipping the balance in favor of the depositor, of the people who banks are there to serve,' Robertson said. He said some details are still being worked through and he expects the program to be finalized into legislation next year. The announcement came as part of a wider banking system review aimed at making banks and their executives more accountable. New Zealand was forced to introduce a temporary deposit protection program after the 2008 global financial crisis but never used it because no major banks failed.
  • Chinese and U.S. trade negotiators are in contact on ways of resolving disputes ahead of an expected meeting between their heads of state at the G-20 summit in Japan later this week, a Chinese official said Monday. The sides were seeking to 'consolidate the important consensus reached between the two leaders' in a telephone call last week, Wang Shouwen, a Commerce Ministry vice minister, told reporters. Wang gave no details about specific issues under discussion. This weekend's G-20 meeting in Osaka is the first opportunity presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping have had to thrash out the trade dispute face-to-face since Trump said he was preparing to target the $300 billion in Chinese imports that he hasn't already hit with tariffs, extending them to everything China ships to the United States. Trump has already imposed 25% tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports and China has retaliated with tariffs on U.S. goods. The sides are now in a stalemate after 11 rounds of talks that have failed to overcome U.S. concerns over China's acquisition of American technology and its massive trade surplus. China denies forcing U.S. companies to hand over trade secrets and says the surplus is much smaller than it appears once the trade in services and the value extracted by U.S. companies are taken into account. Stepping up the pressure on Beijing, the U.S. Commerce Department has effectively barred U.S. companies from selling or transferring technology to Huawei Technologies, the world's biggest maker of network gear, No. 2 smartphone manufacturer and a champion of Chinese industry. Washington claims Huawei poses a national security threat because it may be beholden to China's ruling Communist Party. However, American officials have presented no evidence of any Huawei equipment serving as intentional conduits for espionage by Beijing. Huawei's placement on the U.S. government's Entity List is widely seen as intended to persuade resistant U.S. allies in Europe to exclude Huawei equipment from their next-generation wireless networks, known as 5G. China has responded by saying it would issue a list of 'unreliable entities' targeting companies that 'violated market principles' and cut supplies of components to Chinese businesses for non-commercial reasons. Beijing has also suggested it might limit exports of rare earths, minerals such as lithium that are used in many products including cellphones, electric vehicles and the batteries that run them.
  • Global shares were mixed on Monday as investors watched for movement in the China-U.S. trade dispute ahead of a meeting between Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping planned for this week in Osaka, Japan, at the Group of 20 summit. Oil prices rose as uncertainties over U.S. tensions with Iran mounted, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo saying he wants to build a global coalition against Tehran. That followed a week when Washington pulled back from the brink of a military strike on Iran. Germany's DAX slipped 0.6% to 12,263 after a closely-watched survey showed that German business confidence has fallen to a near five-year low. The CAC 40 in France lost almost 0.2% to 5,516 and London's FTSE fell 0.1% to 7,403. Wall Street looked poised to edge up, however, with the future contract for the Dow Jones Industrial Average picking up 0.2% to 26,739. That for the S&P 500 also gained 0.2%, to 2,955. In Asia, the biggest uncertainty looming over the market was the U.S. trade war with China. Stocks mostly have rallied since Trump said he planned to meet with Xi, though Wall Street finished a milestone-setting week on a downbeat note on Friday as a late flurry of selling nudged stocks lower and snapped a four-day winning streak. Japan's Nikkei 225 index gained 0.1% to 21,285.99, while in Hong Kong the Hang Seng also added 0.1% to 28,513.00. The Kospi in South Korea edged less than 0.1% higher to 2,126.33. Australia's S&P ASX 200 picked up 0.2% to 6,665.40 and the Shanghai Composite index added 0.2% to 3,008.15. Shares fell in Southeast Asia and Taiwan. Potentially complicating the talks with Xi, on Friday, the U.S. announced it was blacklisting five Chinese organizations involved in supercomputing with military-related applications, citing national security as justification for denying its Asian geopolitical rival access to critical U.S. technology. The five blacklisted organizations placed on the so-called Entity List include supercomputer maker Sugon, which is heavily dependent on U.S. suppliers including chipmakers Intel, Nvidia and Advanced Micro Devices. The other four are the Wuxi Jiangnan Institute of Computing Technology and three Sugon affiliates. The Commerce Department called their activities 'contrary to the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States.' This latest move has left market sentiment in limbo, analysts said. 'The Trump administration's further blacklisting of five Chinese tech companies ahead of the G-20 meeting had perhaps not been the best piece of news for markets with sentiment hinging on U.S.-China trade relations,' Jingyi Pan of IG said in a commentary. 'That said, neither had things taken any significant step for the worse within the market,' she said. On Wall Street, even with the modest losses Friday the market delivered its third straight weekly gain. The major U.S. stock indexes are up more than 7% so far this month and are holding on to gains of more than 14% for the year. Investors have been reassured by statements from the Federal Reserve this month that suggest the central bank is prepared to cut interest rates in response to a slowing global economy. At the same time, traders remain concerned that corporate profits might suffer should the kind of economic slowdown that would prompt the Fed to cut rates take hold. ENERGY: Benchmark crude oil picked up 41 cents to $57.84 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange as tensions around Iran kept investors monitoring for any disruption to energy supplies. The contract rose 0.6% to settle at $57.43 a barrel on Friday, ending with a 9.2% gain for the week, the biggest weekly gain in more than two years. Only a few weeks ago, the price of U.S. crude was in a correction, what Wall Street calls a drop of at least 20% from a recent peak. Brent crude oil, the international standard, lost 79 cents to $64.41 per barrel. CURRENCIES: The dollar fell slightly to 107.28 Japanese yen from 107.30 yen on Friday. The euro climbed to $1.1398 from $1.1371.