May 1, 2016

Inflation Illustrated

stamp pile

We tracked the price of a first class stamp over the last 130 years, noting the changes, to show the steady erosion in buying power during that time.

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Fund Analyzer Shows Value Of Lower Fees

Fund Analyzer Shows Value Of Lower Fees

Continually curating a list of low cost funds is valuable for long term investors.

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Government Requires 2.5 Hours of Daily Work

Government Requires 2.5 Hours of Daily Work

Without the burden of federal, state, and local taxes, you could leave your job at 2:27pm every day and earn the same salary.

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Radio Interview: The Burden of Government Taxation

Radio Interview: The Burden of Government Taxation

David John Marotta was recently interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show, discussing taxation and the burden of government.

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Gifts, Taxes, and IRS Form 709

Gifts, Taxes, and IRS Form 709

Most people are unaware that giving a gift can be a taxable event because they themselves have not yet experienced the tax.

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Investing Strategies for an Irrational Brain

Investing Strategies for an Irrational Brain

Recency bias is perhaps the most difficult natural bias to overcome.

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A Year of Financially Healthy Habits

Perpetual Calendar

It is the season of spring cleaning, so here’s a calendar of ways to clean up your finances one step at a time.

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Mailbag: How Is Capital Gains Tax Calculated?

Mailbag: How Is Capital Gains Tax Calculated?

The IRS does not do a good job of helping people understand capital gains taxes. They provide a worksheet to help you calculate it, but it has so many steps that it’s nearly impossible to figure out what’s going on.

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Dimensional On: Staying in the Market

Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

“It is always a difficult experience for investors to stay in markets.”

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Financial Planning Beyond Your Wedding Day

hearthands

In addition to registering for a blender and picking floral arrangements, make sure that your marriage has the financial accounts and monetary habits necessary to meet your shared financial goals.

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How To Instill Good Financial Habits In Your Children

How To Instill Good Financial Habits In Your Children

Give your children experience spending their own money.

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Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

Dimensional On: Why Should We Invest Internationally?

“Historically there has been a wide variety of returns from US and International stocks, and when one does poorly often another does well.”

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The Complete Guide to Creating an Investment Plan

The Science of the Rebalancing Bonus

This is a summary of the six steps required to create a well-crafted investment plan.

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Can I Contribute to my Roth IRA?

Can I Contribute to my Roth IRA?

There are some cases that are not as straightforward and if you fall into these categories, you might not know whether or not you are allowed to contribute to a Roth IRA.

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Fund Your 401(k) If You Believe In Free Markets

Fund Your 401(k) If You Believe In Free Markets

I recently read a foolish article entitled “Call for a National Savings Plan” that assumed we haven’t tried a national savings plan already.

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Reasons to Keep a Local Bank Account

Reasons to Keep a Local Bank Account

Investment brokers like Schwab offer many services local banks offer but there are a few reasons why you might want to resist consolidating all of your accounts to a broker.

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Can’t All Advisors Make Trades On My Behalf?

Can't All Advisors Make Trades On My Behalf?

Only give someone who is required to honor your best interest the ability to trade in your account without talking to you.

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Ted Cruz’s Tax Plan

Ted Cruz's Tax Plan

More than many other candidates, Ted Cruz’s tax plan aims to fundamentally change our tax system.

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Radio: Three Investing Mistakes

three geese

David John Marotta was interviewed on radio 1070 WINA’s Schilling Show discussing three big investing mistakes.

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How to Send Schwab Notifications to Two Emails

How To Get Schwab Trade Confirmations Sent To Two Different Emails

A little extra work can ensure that both spouses receive important email notifications from their custodian.

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Mailbag: Why Doesn’t Everyone Want High-Yield Bonds?

Mailbag: Why Doesn't Everyone Want High-Yield Bonds?

We don’t recommend high yield bonds because they do nothing good for your overall portfolio.

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Millionaire Lifestyle: Drink Sodas at Home, Not Out

Millionaire Lifestyle: Drink Sodas at Home, Not Out

Changing where you drink soda is a small step, but enough small steps can make a huge difference in your savings.

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Start Early on Retirement Planning

Start Early on Retirement Planning

Retirement planning should begin the moment you receive your first paycheck.

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Radio: Market Returns for 2015

2015 Asset Class Returns

David John Marotta was interviewed on the Schilling Show discussing how the markets performed last year and lists 4 mistakes to avoid.

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Four Things You Can Do with Your Roth Before April 15

beach sprint

If you have not yet funded your Roth account for 2015, it is not too late!

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Why Gold Has Utterly Failed as a “Safe Haven”

Why Gold Has Utterly Failed as a "Safe Haven"

Gold sounds like it should provide a safe haven of your purchasing power much more than it has actually done so.

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Investing Mistake: Forgetting About Inflation

Investing Mistake: Forgetting About Inflation

Taking inflation into account changes nearly everything about financial planning.

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What Counts as Wages for the Social Security Earnings Test?

What Counts as Wages for the Social Security Earnings Test?

Contrary to the normal way of things, this time what Uncle Sam gives with the IRS, he takes away with the SSA.

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A Case Study In Volatility

A Case Study In Volatility

While volatility can make a fund more attractive on the way up, it can also make a fund less attractive on the way down.

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Marotta’s 2016 UVA Fidelity 403(b) Calculator

University of Virginia's Serpentine Walls

Age appropriate asset allocation for 2016 using the choices available in the University of Virginia’s Fidelity 403(b) Tax Deferred Savings Plan (TDSP).

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Marotta’s 2016 UVA Fidelity 401(a) Plans Calculator

UVA Fidelity 401(a) Plans Calculator

Age appropriate asset allocation for 2016 using the choices available in several of the University of Virginia’s Fidelity Retirement Plans.

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What Are The Odds That The Stock Market Will Go Up This Year?

What Are The Odds That The Stock Market Will Go Up This Year?

The stock is more likely to go up than down, but how volatile are the markets really?

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Why You Should Give Appreciated Stock Instead of Cash

Gift and Lights

Giving appreciated stock not only allows you to support your favorite charity but also avoid paying capital gains tax on your gifted stock.

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Documentary: Farming in Fear

Farming in Fear

The story of Liberty Farm’s struggle to survive the regulatory attack by Fauquier County government.

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Marotta’s 2016 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

Marotta's 2015 Vanguard Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

If you are using Vanguard, we have created a gone fishing portfolio using only low-cost Vanguard mutual funds to help save money on transaction costs.

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What Counts as “Boot” in a 1031 Exchange?

What Counts as "Boot" in a 1031 Exchange?

1031 exchanges can include “boot,” which is an unofficial term for other property received in the exchange.

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Radio Interview: Wills, Estates, and Beneficiaries

Live Oak

David and host Rob Schilling discuss what estate planning is, why you want to do it, and explain some of the jargon.

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Marotta’s 2016 Gone-Fishing Portfolio Calculator

The fishes

A gone-fishing portfolio has a limited number of investments with a balanced asset allocation that should do well with dampened volatility.

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IRS Wants Charities To Collect And Report Sensitive Donor Identity Information

IRS Wants Charities To Collect And Report Sensitive Donor Identity Information

Late last year, the IRS proposed asking charities to collect sensitive donor identity information for any charitable gift of more than $250.

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2016 Employer-Sponsored Retirement Account Limits

Retirement Cash Jar

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

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Mailbag: Stop Before Using Stop Orders

Mailbag: Stop Before Using Stop Orders

We do not recommend using stop loss orders. Now, it appears that the New York Stock Exchange agrees.

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Mailbag: Unexpected Income and Estimated Taxes

Mailbag: Unexpected Income and Estimated Taxes

How do you handle unexpected income that happens late in the year?

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After-Tax IRA Contributions Must Be Reported On IRS Form 8606

After-Tax IRA Contributions Must Be Reported On IRS Form 8606

The backdoor Roth strategy involves contributing after-tax funds to a traditional IRA.

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Radio: Financial Planning for Buying a Home

Hobbit Hole

David John Marotta was interviewed on WINA’s “Real Estate Matters” show with Michael Guthrie, talking about how it is still a good time to buy a house.

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Overfunded College 529 plan? No Problem!

Overfunded College 529 plan? No Problem!

No need to worry. You have many great options when managing an overfunded 529 college savings plan.

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Investors Want Non-Correlated Assets Until They Experience Non-Correlation

Investors Want Non-Correlated Assets Until They Experience Non-Correlation

While many investors say they want a low-correlation portfolio, they don’t want to actually experience a low-correlation portfolio.

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2016 Retirement Plan Limits

Retirement Cash Jar

Knowing how much you can contribute to your retirement accounts is important.

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Is There A Christmas Rally In the Markets?

Is There A Christmas Rally In the Markets?

While Santa Claus usually brings something positive for the markets, it isn’t enough to worry about jumping in and out of your investments.

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Don’t Mistake Volatility For Loss

Don't Mistake Volatility For Loss

“Nothing has provided greater risk control over the long term than equities, which are historically without principal risk over 30-year periods…”

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What Games Can’t Teach You About Investing

What Games Can't Teach You About Investing

Many people are first exposed to investing in grade school through a very simple game. Unfortunately, this game teaches all the wrong lessons.

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