14 Money Dates and Deadlines in December 2023

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Life moves quickly. It’s easy to get distracted. But that can be costly.

Miss an important financial date or deadline, and you could be on the hook for a penalty or lose out on a limited-time opportunity to save money.

Enter our “Money Calendar” series.

In this edition, we’ve rounded up the noteworthy money dates in December 2023. Take a look and mark your calendar with any dates that apply to you. And if you enjoy this series, sign up for the Money Talks Newsletter so you don’t miss the next edition. Look for it on the last weekday of every month.

Dec. 7 — Open enrollment ends for Medicare

The fall open enrollment period for Medicare — the federal health insurance program for seniors and people with certain disabilities — started Oct. 15 and runs until Dec. 7. If you’re on Medicare, this period is your opportunity to make changes to your health care plan and drug plan for next year.

If you haven’t already done your open enrollment homework, start by rounding up the following resources ASAP:

You should have received both of these documents from your current plan in September. If you haven’t received them, Medicare.gov advises that you contact your plan.

Dec. 9-20 — Holiday mailing deadlines

If you plan to mail packages that you want to arrive by Dec. 25, take note of the U.S. Postal Service’s 2023 holiday shipping deadlines.

While the first such deadline — for ground service to overseas military or diplomatic addresses — was in early November, all the others fall on Dec. 9 through Dec. 20, depending on the service and destination.

Dec. 12 — Green Monday

If you managed to miss both Black Friday and Cyber Monday, know that you will likely have another chance to snag a deal on the second Monday of December, aka Green Monday.

This retail holiday was started by eBay in 2007 because the second Monday of December was historically one of the company’s best days of the year for sales.

Last year, big names like Macy’s and Target were among the retailers that “celebrated” Green Monday with sales. To learn what to expect from this year’s Green Monday sales, check out our article on the best things to buy in December.

Dec. 12-13 — FOMC meeting

The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) generally meets eight times a year. On the second day of these two-day meetings, the committee votes on whether to change its target range for the federal funds rate. So Dec. 13 is the next time that they might change it.

If the committee votes on Nov. 1 to increase the rate, it will be the fifth hike so far this year.

Any change to the federal funds rate can affect everything from your savings account yield to your credit card interest. To learn more about what this means for you, check out “What Is ‘the Fed’ — and Why Should You Care?

Dec. 15 — Open enrollment deadline for ACA plans to start in January

The annual open enrollment period for Affordable Care Act health insurance policies started Nov. 1 and ends Jan. 15. But if you want your new plan coverage to start on Jan. 1, you must enroll by Dec. 15. (If you enroll in a plan between Dec. 16 and Jan. 15, your coverage will start Feb. 1 instead.)

If you buy coverage through one of the health insurance marketplaces created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010, this period is your opportunity to enroll or re-enroll in a plan for 2024.

For more information, or to apply for coverage or view plans, visit the federal government’s HealthCare.gov website.

Dec. 26 — Day after Christmas

We’ve seen the day after Christmas become a retail holiday of its own in recent years, generating sales on more than just holiday decorations.

So, keep an eye out. And again, check out our article on the best things to buy in December to find out what types of purchases to postpone until after Christmas.

Dec. 31 — 8 tax deadlines

April 15 might be the most notorious tax deadline, but Dec. 31 brings us more federal income tax deadlines than perhaps any other day of the year.

For example, Dec. 31 is technically the deadline to do the following tasks for the 2023 tax year.

Just keep in mind that Dec. 31 falls on a Sunday this year. So to be safe, you should aim to complete these tasks by Friday, Dec. 29 — the last business day of the year — at the latest:

  • Contribute to most employer-sponsored retirement accounts.
  • Contribute to 529 college savings plans. While this deadline varies from state to state, it’s often Dec. 31.
  • Make charitable contributions. Granted, charitable donations are an itemized deduction, meaning you can’t claim them unless you itemize your deductions rather than claim the standard deduction — and about 88% of people now do the latter.
  • Make Roth IRA conversions. This deadline is for converting traditional IRA money or pre-tax 401(k) money to a Roth IRA. You can learn more about Roth conversions in “7 Ways Retirees Can Lower Their Income Taxes.”
  • Withdraw your annual RMD. This deadline applies to anyone who turns 73 or older in 2023.
  • Make qualified charitable distributions. This deadline is an option for taxpayers who are at least 70½ years old and have certain types of retirement accounts. To learn more, check out “8 Income Tax Breaks That Retirees Often Overlook.”
  • Spend funds in health flexible spending accounts. Typically, people with an FSA have until the end of the plan year (which is often Dec. 31) to spend any money still in the account or else forfeit it. Employers may — but are not required to — offer a grace period or carryover.
  • Harvest tax losses. If you have the opportunity to lower your 2023 tax bill by selling underperforming investments — known as tax-loss harvesting — then Dec. 31 is your deadline. First make sure this tax move is in line with your longer-term financial goals, however.

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