Updates

IRS Forgives Rollover Mistake

A man’s family noticed that he was mentally declining in 2016. It may have been the onset of dementia.  In 2017, this man withdrew funds from his IRA, apparently intending to roll the money into a new IRA.  However, due to his medical condition, the man never completed the rollover. This man’s grandson son was […]

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Wealth Preservation and Wealth Creation

Volatility is the price investors pay for long-term wealth creation. Markets fluctuate, sometimes wildly, and this is the reason a person should never invest funds which will be needed in the immediate future in investments which trade in volatile public markets. The definition of immediate future is a personal one, which is why it is […]

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Positive Start to the New Year

Last week, Fed Chairman Powell confirmed the Fed’s future interest rate and balance sheet reduction decisions are not predetermined. Previous Fed boards and chairs have a spotty history of setting Fed policy, so some concern is understandable but current criticism seems excessive. We believe current FOMC members are at least as smart as the majority […]

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Ask a Trust Officer: Mutual Fund Distributions

Dear Trust Officer: I bought shares in a mutual fund last summer and now I’m getting a distribution of capital gains from the fund.  Why?  I don’t want that.  Do I have to pay taxes on it? — Buyer and Holder DEAR BUYER AND HOLDER: Federal law requires mutual funds to distribute nearly all of […]

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Perils of the Amateur Trustee

Glenn Forgey created a revocable living trust to manage his assets, naming his oldest child, Lyle, as trustee.  The trust owned bank stock and agricultural property.  At Glenn’s death in 1993, the trust was to be divided into equal shares, one for Lyle, one for his brother Wayne, and one for his sister Bessie.  The […]

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Year-End Planning

This year’s stock market correction and increased volatility has monopolized the headlines and commentary leaving other important issues unaddressed. One of those topics is tax planning. The new standard deduction which is part of the 2018 tax law will increase the number of individuals and couples who will use the standard deduction. This change, by […]

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Multi-year Tax Planning

According to estimates, there will be 29 million more taxpayers using the standard deduction for the 2018 tax year than did in 2017. Usually, one who is relying on the standard deduction, can get away with fairly minimal tax planning—maximize contributions to qualified retirement plans, offset capital gains with capital losses, and so on. However, […]

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Sideways, Lower and Higher

Why do we constantly hear about investment time-horizons? Because, as the old saying goes, time in the market is a consistently effective approach to investing while timing the market is not a dependable strategy. It is impossible to know what the market is going to do. We can’t even agree on what the market has […]

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No “Clawbacks”

Next year the amount exempt from the federal estate and gift tax will be $11.4 million per taxpayer.  For a married couple, assuming that they both die next year, the exemption is doubled, to $22.8 million.  This exemption is scheduled to fall roughly in half in 2026, unless Congress acts before then to make it […]

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Headwinds Down to a Breeze

The stock market correction stalled last week. One of two headwinds was eliminated when Fed Chairman, Jerome Powell, confirmed the members of the Federal Open Market Committee are not the ill-informed, mindless and stubborn group many self-serving market participants and commentators had declared them to be in recent weeks. The market gained 4.85%, as measured […]

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