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This is the first year-end season when employees with stock compensation must consider the tax changes introduced in 2018 by the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (TCJA). Fortunately, the new tax law doesn’t make any huge changes in the usual year-end steps that you and your financial advisor should consider when you have stock options,...
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As I’ve mentioned before, the stock market was lifted to record highs by just a few stocks that have disproportionate weightings. We are talking about Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google and Microsoft, although there were others that helped along the way. Since those stocks are in nearly every technology index fund and major ETF, they...
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Another little-known fact to most is that an inherited IRA can be preyed upon by an inheriting child’s creditors, predators and divorcing spouse. There is a way however to prevent that from ever happening. The solution is to have a barrier between the retirement account and the beneficiary. This barrier is called a Standalone Retirement...
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Proposition 10 has failed at the ballot box, leaving the state’s limits on rent control intact. Proposition 10 would have repealed a California law that limits how cities enact rent control. Its defeat is a blow to tenant activists in Los Angeles, and a win for landlords. With the resurgence of cities as centers of...
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I often get this question when screening questions from prospects or during financial planning workshops. Like so many personal finance questions, these are unanswerable without more information provided by the questioner. Should I retire? Should I get married this year? Should I exercise my stock options? These contingent questions are useless when no additional information...
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It’s a good thing we have mighty brains, because humans are pretty useless in the face of danger. Sometimes doing what you think is the right thing can lead so adverse consequences. For example, survivalist experts and African safari guides often advise travelers never to turn their back and never to run when confronted by...
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Just like it’s a good idea to have an annual check-up for your health, it’s smart to have a Medicare check-up to make sure the coverage will work when folks need it, and not break the bank. The best time of year for everyone in Medicare to have that check-up is in the fall during...
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Often, small legal firms opt for a SIMPLE IRA, only because there are no administrative costs associated with operating this plan. In some cases this can be a big mistake, especially if you have the ability to contribute significantly more to a 401(k) plan. While it is true that SIMPLE has no administrative cost, the...
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The 3 percent to 4 percent plunge in the major American indexes earlier this month is unsettling for investors who have grown accustomed to low U.S. market volatility in recent years. What’s more disturbing is that most of the traditional hedges against such a large equity sell-off, both within and across market segments, did not...
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Although there is no hard and fast rule on how often you should update your trust, conducting an annual review of the trust and asset schedule is recommended. Circumstances will inevitably change. There will always be changes in the law – especially the tax laws. There are also going to be changes in your family...
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