Updates

Sizing Up the Corporate Tax Cuts

Stock indexes continued to hold above the recent correction’s lows last week as the first quarter earnings reports began to trickle in. The season will shift into higher gear this week as companies like Netflix, Bank of America, Bristol-Meyers Squib, Merck, Honeywell and Schlumberger report, not only their revenue and earnings for the quarter just […]

Read More

Market Volatility Makes a Comeback

For investors, 2017 was an unusually calm year. The S&P 500 stock index never changed by 2% in a single day, either up or down. There were only eight 1% days all year. 2018 is shaping up to be a very different story. CNNMoneyInvest reports that, in the first quarter, we’ve already had six 2% […]

Read More

2018 First Quarter Earnings Season Begins

Market prices constantly adjust to new information. Later this week we will begin receiving new, meaningful information as first quarter corporate earnings begin to trickle in. Reporting will be in full swing next week and continue through the month. We will soon be able to update the “E” in P/E multiples. Expectations are for S&P […]

Read More

Many Hats in Trust Administration

Historically, the traditional trust had a trustee and beneficiaries. The modern trust may have a four, five, or more fiduciary and non-fiduciary positions that might include: administrative trustee, distributions trustee, trust protector, investment advisor, loan director, charitable designator, person holding a power to add beneficiaries, persons holding powers of appointment, person holding the power to […]

Read More

First Quarter Summary

The S&P 500 began the year at 2,673.61 and from there continued its two-year rally to January 26th posting an all-time high close of 2,872.87. At that point, the index was up 57.07%, excluding dividends, from its February 11, 2016, close of 1,829.08. From the new high, stock prices became volatile as the index corrected […]

Read More

Perils of Deferring Estate Taxes

When a decedent’s estate includes interests in a closely held business, and it is large enough to incur federal estate taxes, the executor has the option of deferring the tax and paying it off in installments.  In theory, this avoids having to sell the business to pay the tax. Selling a closely held business for […]

Read More

Potential Breakout

Last week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average failed to hold at its February 8, low close of 23,860.46, finishing the week at 23,533.20, down 11.6% from its high close of 26,616.71 on January 26. The broader S&P 500 fared slightly better finishing the week at 2,588.26, slightly above its early February low of 2,581.00 and […]

Read More

Good News on Dividends

There has been quite a bit of publicity about companies sharing with workers the benefits of the corporate tax cut enacted last December, in the form of bonuses and additional retirement plan contributions.  As it turns out, many are sharing the newfound wealth with shareholders also.  More than a fifth of the companies in the […]

Read More

Expectations (continued)

Last week, we wrote about analysts’ expectations for the economy for the next twelve to eighteen months. Inflation is expected to hold at 2.0% to 2.5% for the full year. The Federal Reserve’s well-advertised plan for short-term interest rates is to raise the Fed Fund rate (the rate at which financial institutions lend to one […]

Read More

Paycheck Checkup

In January the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released new withholding tables, based upon the changes for 2018 from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA).  On February 28th the IRS released an online tool for calculating proper withholding after TCJA.  The tool may be found at https://www.irs.gov/individuals/irs-withholding-calculator.  The IRS called using this tool a “paycheck […]

Read More