December 3, 2016

Mailbag: Can I Contribute To An IRA The Year I Turn 70 1/2?

squirrel evergreen

Even though you are required to start taking RMDs you can still take advantage of significant tax planning savings.

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2017 Estate and Gift Tax Limits

ScottishEstate

Neither party has to pay taxes on gifts up to this gifting limit, and the limit remains unchanged from 2016.

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Can I Continue Retirement Saving Past Age 70 1/2?

snow squirrel

The rules for post-70 ½ IRA contributions depend upon whether the account is a traditional IRA, Roth IRA or SEP IRA.

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Radio: Why is the Media Liberal?

US Flag

Listen to a discussion on why journalists are usually liberal-leaning and what that means for reporting the news in America.

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How To Whitelist An Entire Domain In Gmail

floor cleaner

Since not receiving an important email can be even more dangerous as receiving too much spam, here is how to while list an email or an entire domain in Gmail.

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Healthcare Stocks And Asking “Relative To What?”

kiddoctor_t

Why do our portfolios systematically overweight healthcare stocks?

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2017 Employer-Sponsored Retirement Plan Limits

three horses

Here are the limits for how much you and your employer can contribute to retirement accounts on your behalf.

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How The Markets Moved After A Trump Victory

bluegreenfractal

Beware of reading too much into three days of market movements.

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Mailbag: Which Investment Fund Should I Purchase To Minimize Fees?

stethoscope

On the surface it seems like option 3 (VHT) is the best deal. Is there anything I am missing?

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The Minimalist Budget

zen stones

If you want to be really minimalist about your budgeting, here’s what we suggest: the 65-25-10 rule.

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The Finance of Crowdfunding

crowd

There are three types of crowdfunding each defined by what people receive in exchange for the money they pay: Reward-based, Donation-based, and Equity-based.

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Avoid Age Appropriate Money Mistakes

travelplans

Every decade of life brings new financial challenges. Try to avoid these common pitfalls.

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Interview of Dr. Randall Bell, Author of “Rich Habits, Rich Life”

rich habits rich life

Dr. Randall Bell develops strategies to overcome problems and maximize peak performance.

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How Can I Give Away Money from My IRA?

pile o' gifts

What if you do not need all the money from your RMD and you are also charitably inclined?

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Examples of the Narrative Fallacy

sad dog

To illustrate this principle, I analyzed a week’s worth of “Morning and Midday Market Views” provided by the Schwab Center for Financial Research.

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Radio: Should You Pay More Tax Than Legally Required?

man on the street

Is there morality that supersedes legally abiding by the tax code?

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The Case for Investing in Energy Companies

oilrig

Energy’s low correlation with nearly every other major asset class means even very conservative investors should consider over-weighting Energy stocks.

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How Much Can I Give Away to Charity This Year?

strawberries

If you give away more than 50% of this year’s income, you cannot deduct it this year, but you can carry it forward for up to 5 years.

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The Narrative Fallacy

reading upside down

No one would click on the headline, “Stocks went up today and we have no clue why.”

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Fixing 401(k) Rollover Mistakes

pen signging

The IRS has a rule that if you are doing a rollover for a 401(k), you have 60 days to complete that process. But what if you experience a tragedy and can’t finish on time?

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Investing In Hong Kong Has Lowered Risk and Boosted Returns

hong kong skyline

We allocate a portion of our managed portfolios to foreign stocks, and Hong Kong is the highest ranked country on the latest edition of the Index of Economic Freedom.

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Roth IRAs Make Great Estate Planning Tools

at the beach

Taking the smallest distribution each year will ensure the beneficiary achieves the maximum tax-free growth of tax-free income.

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How Does Compliance Differ Between Smaller Firms and Large Brokers?

tiger glare

It is relatively easy for an adviser who has a 400 lawyer compliance department to sit through some compliance continuing education and yet never understand what attitudes and behaviors need to be changed.

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Radio: Should the Government Use Force to Make College Education Free?

graduation caps

David John Marotta was interviewed on radio’s Schilling Show discussing the relationship between the government and college education.

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Three Strategies to Avoid Private Mortgage Insurance

trooper biking

Avoiding PMI, if possible, is better for your long term finances. Here are three strategies to avoid PMI.

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Hedge Funds and Long/Short Strategies

Ostrich Race

Long/short strategies use the money from the stocks they have shorted to purchase extra stocks that they hope will go up.

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Are You Paying for Your Fund’s Advertising?

sparrow feeding

If you own some mutual funds, chances are you are paying a hefty marketing price.

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Why the Ending Value on your Performance Report Differs from your Statement

DogTeam

Here’s what you need to know to understand why the numbers may not match.

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Most People Take Social Security At The Worst Possible Age

stacked eagles

While taking Social Security at age 70 is not optimal for everyone, age 62 is optimal for almost no one.

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Don’t Forget to Rebalance All Your Assets

stacked rocks

It can be easy to forget about your company’s 401(k) because you aren’t depositing the money yourself, your pre-tax contributions are deducted from your paycheck and are electronically deposited by your employer.

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What is Private Mortgage Insurance?

storm trooper race

PMI does not provide you, the borrower, any protection.

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Finding Someone You Can Trust

Trust

Those who believe that more regulation is the answer don’t understand how human nature works.

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How to Monitor Your Financial Advisor

trapeze jump

When seeking a financial advisor, you should find out if they are willing to sign a fiduciary oath putting your interests above those of their employer.

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What’s the Difference Between Time Weighted Return and Internal Rate of Return?

Abacus

There are 2 main types of returns you want to see on your performance report. What’s the difference?

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Economic Indicators: Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

basket of food

Under one theory, changes in GDP or the rate of GDP growth precede and could cause stock markets to react and move in response. This is usually not the case.

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How Much Can I Contribute to My Retirement Accounts?

potted flowers

With many types of retirement accounts available, it can be difficult to keep track of how much you can put away where, especially if you are eligible to contribute to multiple accounts.

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What NOT to Compare on Performance Reports

Odd Couple Dogs

By definition and design, different types of reports produce different numbers.

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Beware of Dire Market Crash Predictions

questioning chick

I receive dire predictions with such frequency that were I to act on even a fraction of them I would never be invested in the markets.

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Common Endowment Mistakes

Common Endowment Mistakes

Prudent investment practice is as much about knowing what not to do as it is about knowing what to do.

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Explain My Performance Report

TinkerbellShrug

Here’s a brief explanation of the basic terms you might find on your performance report.

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Where Should I Invest Money Which I Will Need in a Year or Two?

house money

Return comes with an element of risk. There is no safe investment which also pays a good rate of return.

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Why Would You Intentionally Realize Capital Gains?

handful of cherries

When you sell an investment that has appreciated, the IRS looks at your tax rate and taxes the gains accordingly.

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Selecting an Endowment’s Asset Allocation

Selecting an Endowment's Asset Allocation

Two rules of endowment investing: 1) Keep an equity bias and 2) diversify.

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The Golden Bear: The Bear Market of 1973

GoldenBear_w

This Bear market is considered one of the greatest challenges to retirement planning.

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How to Set Endowment Spending Rates

How to Set Endowment Spending Rates

Endowment spending rates can prove a catalyst for fulfilling or killing the life of the organization itself.

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Wealth Management Is In Your Control

latte

Many feel helpless to direct their own success, but nothing could be further from the truth.

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Billing Client Accounts to the Client’s Greatest Benefit

Billing Client Accounts to the Client's Greatest Benefit

Investment managers can bring clients greater savings by carefully considering how they bill different types of accounts.

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Planning for a Funeral

Planning for a Funeral

Funeral expenses are often a family’s fourth largest expense.

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Best Practices for Trusts, Foundations, and Endowments

Best Practices for Trusts, Foundations, and Endowments

Even if a committee has contracted with “prudent experts,” the Committee never delegates its fiduciary responsibility.

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Comparing Donor-Advised Funds

givingflower

Which company should you choose when you’re opening a donor-advised fund?

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