May 29, 2017

Mailbag: How Do I Replenish A Bond Laddering Strategy?

Mailbag: How Do I Replenish A Bond Laddering Strategy?

When you use a bond laddering strategy with funds, rebalancing to your asset allocation naturally buys and sells bond funds as appropriate.

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Radio Interview: Health Savings Accounts

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David John Marotta was interviewed on radio’s The Schilling Show discussing Health Savings Accounts and the recent Healthcare bill.

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Not All Financial Advising Firms Rebalance Client Portfolios

Not All Financial Advising Firms Rebalance Client Portfolios

You would think that rebalancing a client’s portfolio would be standard in the industry. Unfortunately, it is not.

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How Your Tax Is Calculated: Understanding the Qualified Dividends and Capital Gains Worksheet

How Your Tax Is Calculated: Understanding the Qualified Dividends and Capital Gains Worksheet

The 27 lines, because they are so simplified, end up being difficult to follow what exactly they do. So, for those of you who are curious, here’s what they do.

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Q&A: Can you be my executor?

Q&A: Can you be my executor?

Sadly, we have to say no. Even though we won’t be your executor, we are still here to help your executor, trustee, and loved ones through the estate maintenance and settlement process.

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Five Things You Can Control: Taxes

Five Things You Can Control: Taxes

A dollar saved on taxes is worth more than an extra dollar of income because the extra dollar of income is in itself taxable.

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Asset Location Can Significantly Boost After-Tax Returns

Asset Location Can Significantly Boost After-Tax Returns

Exact asset location depends on the percentage of a portfolio held in each of the three types of accounts as well as the percentage of the portfolio which is to be allocated to each selected sector. But the boost in after-tax returns is well worth the effort.

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Five Things You Can Control: Investment Costs

Five Things You Can Control: Investment Costs

We do not believe that investing should be expensive.

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6 Ways To Prevent Your Estate Plan From Ruining Your Roth IRA

6 Ways To Prevent Your Estate Plan From Ruining Your Roth IRA

Many executors, trustees, or even estate plans make careless mistakes which end up in Roth IRAs being distributed too quickly. Here’s a list of ways to prevent your estate plan from ruining your Roth.

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Five Things You Can Control: Goals-Based Asset Allocation

Five Things You Can Control: Goals-Based Asset Allocation

An advisor’s job is to recommend the optimum asset allocation regardless of how the client might answer a survey about risk tolerance.

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Radio: Tax Planning Season

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When you finish your tax preparation, it is time to begin tax planning.

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Five Things You Can Control: Commitment to Saving

Five Things You Can Control: Commitment to Saving

Saving money is not enough. You need to save and invest.

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How to Calculate Your RMD: a Uniform, Inherited, and Joint Divisor Calculator

How to Calculate Your RMD: a Uniform, Inherited, and Joint Divisor Calculator

There are different tables and formulas used to calculate your RMD divisor based on your particular circumstances. Here is a calculator for the three most common.

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Five Things You Can Control: Spending Discipline

Five Things You Can Control: Spending Discipline

“Develop spending discipline. People too often forget that the real enemy of investment is consumption.”

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How You Take Your Inherited IRA RMD Is the Exception to the Rule

How You Take Your Inherited IRA RMD Is the Exception to the Rule

Inherited RMD rules demonstrates the power and importance of beneficiary designations and why it is so important to set them.

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What is the 5-Year Roth Rule?

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You can’t touch the earnings on your contributions until you’ve had an account open for 5 years and you’re either over age 59 ½ or you meet special exceptions.

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How to Deduct U.S. Debt Obligations on State Tax Returns

How to Deduct U.S. Debt Obligations on State Tax Returns

Dividends and interest received from U.S debt obligations can be deducted on many state tax returns.

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Radio: What Does “Trickle-Down Economics” Mean to Liberals and Conservatives?

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David John Marotta was interviewed on the Schilling Show discussing trickle-down economics and taxes.

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What Good Are Morningstar Stars?

What Good Are Morningstar Stars?

Do mutual funds with 5-star Morningstar ratings have better future returns?

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T-Share Class Mutual Funds Are Not “Fiduciary-Friendly”

T-Share Class Mutual Funds Are Not "Fiduciary-Friendly"

Less gouging doesn’t make T-shares meet the high principles-based fiduciary standard.

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RMD Mistake: Missing a Spousal Rollover

RMD Mistake: Missing a Spousal Rollover

When a spouse inherits retirement account assets, they have the right to do what is called a “Spousal Rollover” or “Spousal Transfer.” It is almost always the right option.

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Invest Your Health Savings Account For Appreciation

Invest Your Health Savings Account For Appreciation

HSAs have so many advantages over traditional IRAs that you should continue funding your HSA as long as possible and build as large an HSA investment balance as you can.

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RMD Mistake: Not Using the Joint Divisor

RMD Mistake: Not Using the Joint Divisor

If you are a mixed-decade couple, take advantage of the Joint divisor by making your spouse your primary and sole beneficiary for your IRA and use the Joint Life and Last Survivor Expectancy Table to find your RMD.

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Radio: What’s the Difference Between Obstruction and Resistance?

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David John Marotta was interviewed on the radio 1070′s Schilling Show discussing the difference between obstruction and resistance.

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Commission-Based Firms Admit They Don’t Provide Advice

Commission-Based Firms Admit They Don't Provide Advice

Commission-based firms want either to be exempt from the Fiduciary standard or else given the title anyway.

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Are Democrats Or Republicans Better For The Stock Market?

Are Democrats Or Republicans Better For The Stock Market?

Politics matters less to our financial success than the ordinary decisions we face every day.

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Marotta’s 2017 Gone-Fishing Portfolios

Marotta’s 2017 Gone-Fishing Portfolios

A gone fishing portfolio is a portfolio of just a few stocks which should weather the ups and downs of the market fairly well while only rebalancing twice a year. Here are three hand-crafted gone-fishing portfolios for 2017.

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Marotta’s 2017 Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

Marotta's 2017 Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

A gone-fishing portfolio has a limited number of investments with a balanced asset allocation. This year I limited myself to 13 investment vehicles with two changes from 2016′s calculator.

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Marotta’s 2017 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

Marotta's 2017 Vanguard Mutual Fund Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

A gone-fishing portfolio has a limited number of investments with a balanced asset allocation. This portfolio uses all Vanguard mutual funds.

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Marotta’s 2017 Schwab Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

Marotta's 2017 Schwab No-Transaction Fee Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

A gone-fishing portfolio has a limited number of investments with a balanced asset allocation. This portfolio uses all Schwab no-transaction fee exchange traded funds.

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US Large-Cap Exchange-Traded Fund Choices

US Large-Cap Exchange-Traded Fund Choices

In anticipation of adjusting our yearly gone-fishing portfolios, I reviewed the performance of five US large-cap Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs).

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RMD Mistake: Failing to Take Your RMD

RMD Mistake: Failing to Take Your RMD

The key to getting the waiver though is showing that “you are taking reasonable steps to remedy the shortfall.”

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Bond Investing In 2016

Bond Investing In 2016

Bonds had positive returns for the year despite returns peaking at the end of July and falling for the rest of the year.

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RMD Mistake: Depositing to Your Checking Account

RMD Mistake: Depositing to Your Checking Account

Although legally fine, this strategy often causes you to accidentally increase your spending every year and decrease your savings. Don’t let the IRS rules about IRA withdrawals tempt you into spending money you had planned to save.

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Resource Stock Investing in 2016

Resource Stock Investing in 2016

In 2016, Energy and Materials had some of the best returns of the year.

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To What Benchmark Should I Compare My 2016 Returns?

To What Benchmark Should I Compare My 2016 Returns?

Investors always want to compare the return of their portfolio against some benchmark index. We suggest not using the S&P 500 for that purpose.

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Radio: The Politics of Kindness

Radio: The Politics of Kindness

David John Marotta was interviewed recently on the Schilling Show discussing the politics of kindness and the difference between intentions and outcomes.

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2016 In Review

2016 In Review

2016 was a good year for stocks in general with a number of noteworthy details. Resource stocks performed the best despite being the worst-performing asset class in 2015.

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Freedom Investing and Emerging Markets in 2016

Freedom Investing and Emerging Markets in 2016

In 2016, the average return of the best investment products of the Freedom Six outperformed the Vanguard FTSE Developed Markets ETF by 6.75%.

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US Stock Investing in 2016

US Stock Investing in 2016

The S&P 500 had another good year, ending up 11.96%. The S&P 500, however, only represents half of the US Stock asset class, and Small- and Mid-Cap stocks performed even better.

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RMD Mistake: Taking Out Too Much Just Because

RMD Mistake: Taking Out Too Much Just Because

Some people don’t stop at distributing just the required minimum. They think, “Well, while I’m at it, I may as well pull out a little bit more so we can fully cover the kitchen remodel…”

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Mailbag: What Do You Think About The Elliott Wave Principle?

Mailbag: What Do You Think About The Elliott Wave Principle?

It is difficult in investing theory to determine which narratives have the appropriate underlying evidence to support them and which narratives are not worth following. Often it is necessary to be both a mathematician and a skeptic to filter out what is even worth considering.

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Your Advisor’s Sports Car Personality Is Hurting Your Returns

Your Advisor's Sport Car Personality Is Hurting Your Returns

What does the car your advisor drives tell you about their investment and budgeting services?

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2017 Tax Tables

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If you’re doing some tax planning this year, here is a quick guide to the brackets.

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Benjamin Graham on Individual Stock Analysis

Benjamin Graham on Individual Stock Analysis

“I am no longer an advocate of elaborate techniques of security analysis in order to find superior value opportunities.”

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Q&A: What’s My Roth Conversion Limit?

Q&A: What’s My Roth Conversion Limit?

The legal answer to this question is: there is no limit. The practical answer is: it depends on a number of things.

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One Example Of What Is Wrong With Commission Based Investment Advice

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There is a large difference between the motives and incentives of the sales person and those of the service person.

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When Partial-Year HSA Contribution Limits Don’t Apply

When Partial-Year HSA Contribution Limits Don't Apply

Under the “last-month rule,” you can contribute the full amount even after a partial year assuming you meet the “testing period.”

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Using Factor Investing To Boost Country Specific Returns

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The rough idea is that the stock price of companies that are profitable are more likely to appreciate than companies which are not profitable.

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Radio: Why Corporate Tax Rates Should Be Lowered

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David John Marotta was interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show discussing corporate tax rates, and why they should be lowered.

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