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CCH Financial Planning Toolkit Gains Recognition, Honors, on the Web

(RIVERWOODS, ILL., May 18, 2005) – The CCH Financial Planning Toolkitfinance.cch.com – is gaining recognition across the web as an outstanding site for a wide variety of easy-to-use, reliable personal financial applications, from budgeting to taxes to retirement planning. Current honors for the Toolkit come from a prominent investors’ group and Forbes magazine. CCH is a leading provider of tax and business information for professionals.

The American Association of Independent Investors (AAII) currently rates the Toolkit as one of the best comprehensive sites for personal finance in its “Guide to the Top Investment Web Sites,” noting the Toolkit’s “extensive and very detailed discussions of all areas of personal finance. …Each section provides in-depth discussion of the topic, along with calculators, planning tools and worksheets.”

Forbes singled out the excellence of the Toolkit’s tax information in its “Best of the Web” listing for spring, 2005, noting that it “integrates a terrific Basic Tax Guide into a larger framework of lifetime financial planning.” As another plus, Forbes cited “up-to-date financial news reports by the site’s own staff.”

“We’re pleased that finance.cch.com is being recognized as a valuable resource by top-flight organizations such as the AAII and Forbes, as well as by financial journals, columnists and web sites,” said Drew Snider, publisher of the Toolkit. “We’ve even seen the Toolkit adopted as part of course materials for an accounting class,” Snider added.

Snider believes that the Toolkit’s roots of authoritative research and information from CCH has been key to the acceptance of the consumer-oriented site.

“The CCH name is highly respected among business professionals. It’s a name they’ve trusted for generations,” Snider noted. “Professionals are confident in the quality of the information we’re providing and its value in helping their clients make informed decisions.”

As with the CCH Business Owner’s Toolkit (toolkit.cch.com) – one of the leading web sites for small businesses – CCH Financial Planning Toolkit is a free resource for consumers that effectively takes complex detail and transforms it into user-friendly information. Additionally, CCH is licensing the content to third parties, such as financial services companies and insurance companies. For more content-licensing information, please visit finance.cch.com/licensing.asp.

Lifecycle Approach to Financial Planning

The CCH Financial Planning Toolkit is organized to help guide individuals through decisions that make sense at various life stages. This lifecycle approach provides the novice user with a logical place to start, while the detailed, drill-down table of contents provides more seasoned users with direct access to the particular detail they are seeking. Through more than 1,200 files, forms and tools, the key topics covered include:

  • Goal Setting – covering the basics, such as why a financial plan should be developed, what to include and how to monitor progress.
  • Investments – a roadmap to understanding the different types of investment vehicles, how age and risk tolerance play a role in financial planning, and the consequences of various investments, including home ownership.
  • Taxes – a definitive resource for understanding and reducing tax obligations, including exemptions, credits and deductions; how to report investment losses and gains and how to avoid an audit.
  • Insurance & Risk Management – offering a guide through the maze of different types of health, disability and life insurance policies as well as the ins and outs of annuities and the level of property, liability or business insurance individuals may require depending upon their situation.
  • Retirement Planning – a comprehensive examination of why and how to start planning and saving for retirement; understanding Social Security and retirement saving vehicles, such as 401(k) plans and IRAs, as well as non-qualified plans, including vested trusts and stock options. The site also provides a detailed discussion of special retirement planning situations, including the impact of divorce.
  • Estate Planning – beyond retirement, this section details the steps to consider in passing wealth to the next generation, including why to make a will and what to include as well as when to consider trusts in estate planning and how to minimize estate taxes.

Instant Access to Wealth of Planning Tools

In addition to fast access to easy-to-understand information, the CCH Financial Planning Toolkit includes more than 100 calculators and interactive tools — all at no cost. These include calculators for retirement planning, refinancing a loan or comparing possible investments, which are embedded into the editorial content, providing immediate access to the tools as well as the editorial context needed to make the most of their use.

Other tools include planning forms, such as simple wills, trusts and asset inventory sheets. Also via the site, users can access CompleteTax, CCH’s acclaimed online tax preparation and electronic filing solution.

Additionally, the site includes a comprehensive, fully searchable financial planning encyclopedia and thousands of hyperlinked documents and definitions designed to provide users with easy navigation and fingertip access to information. The site is continuously updated with the latest information and augmented by articles on consumer finance related topics written by CCH staff of business and finance professionals.

About CCH INCORPORATED

The CCH Financial Planning Toolkit (finance.cch.com) offers individual investors practical information and hundreds of interactive tools they need to help make finance decisions that make sense at various life stages and for various investment objectives. It is part of the CCH Tax and Accounting’s Consumer Media Group (CMG), which develops solutions for the financial and small business consumer markets. CCH Tax and Accounting is a Wolters Kluwer company.

Wolters Kluwer is a leading multinational publisher and information services company. Wolters Kluwer has annual revenues (2004) of €3.3 billion, employs approximately 18,400 people worldwide and maintains operations across Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. Wolters Kluwer is headquartered in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (www.wolterskluwer.com). Its depositary receipts of shares are quoted on the Euronext Amsterdam (WKL) and are included in the AEX and Euronext 100 indices.

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