Updates

Prohibited Transactions

Usually an IRA is invested in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and perhaps certificates of deposit. Sometimes a retiree may see this nest egg as a resource for a more unconventional investment.  In that case, one needs to beware of the rules against self-dealing.  Some transactions are prohibited under the tax code and may lead to […]

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Summer Markets

There will be a two-week break in the Weekly Update. We will resume on Tuesday, September 4th. After five straight weekly gains, the S&P 500 took a vacation and closed 0.25% lower last week. Treasury yields drifted lower during the week. The 2-year and 10-year Treasury notes finished the week yielding 2.60% and 2.86% respectively. […]

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Small Caps Making New Highs

Stocks were higher again last week, for the 5th straight week in a row. The S&P 500 finished the week just 0.87% under its all-time high while the NASDAQ set new highs. Positive earnings reports have supported the strength in the S&P 500 with 75% of reporting companies in the index beating analysts’ estimates. The […]

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Second Thoughts on Adult Adoptions

A parent, who is still living, created an irrevocable trust before 1985 for his lineal descendants. The trust creation date was before the effective date of the current generation-skipping transfer tax, and so the trust is protected from that tax by the “grandfather” rule for pre-existing trusts. The trust will divide into three portions upon […]

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Q2 Earnings

The S&P 500 index was up for the fourth week in a row, closing +0.61% for the week and +3.70% for the four weeks combined. The gains have been supported by good earnings and revenue growth even though these have been accompanied by cautious guidance due to the uncertainty over the near-term effects of trade […]

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Five Traps for Amateur Trustees to Avoid

An item in Barron’s a few years ago by Lauren Foster demonstrates that being a trustee may be harder than some people expect (“The Five Biggest Ways to Bungle a Trust,” May 21, 2011).  Foster’s observations are must reading for anyone who expects to be a trustee, or who has nominated a family member to […]

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Summer Doldrums

Earnings season is in full swing and reports to date confirm full year earnings for the S&P 500 will be nearly $160 which places the PE for the index at 17.5. This week will be the heaviest in the earnings reporting season. Traders will be looking at management guidance which has so far been reassuring. […]

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Required Minimum Distributions

The best way to prepare for retirement is to save, early and often.  Generally, one should set aside 10% to 15% of one’s income each year.  If the habit takes hold early in one’s career, a very meaningful nest egg should be the result. Saving is easier when there is a tax deduction for it, […]

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Market Signals

Short-term Treasury yields moved higher last week as the 2-year rose 4 basis points to 2.58%. The 10-year rose early but was off late in the week to finish flat 2.83%. Although the 2 year/10-year spread narrowed to 25 basis points, a level not seen since August 2007, renewed concerns about inversion, a signal of […]

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Planning for a Long Life

Not many years ago, the typical retirement age, 65, was viewed as the onset of old age. Today, gerontologists define matters differently: If you’re between the ages of 65 and 74, you are one of the “young-old.” To be considered “old”, you need to be in the 75-to-84 age bracket.  After that, you’re known, demographically, […]

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