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Summary of Tax Changes

This chart does a nice job showing the prior laws, the competing Senate/House proposals for change and how things were resolved during the reconciliation process to create the new laws to go into effect beginning in 2018. Missing from the chart is discussion of the changes to §529s.  Previously distributions in order to qualify for [...]

Stock Market Records Mean Little to Most Americans

Takeaways from the above: more than half of American households own no stock roughly 1/3 maintain indirect ownership and with the rise in passive strategies (i.e. indexing) have endowed giants like Vanguard with enormous voting power over corporations Now consider the following:   60% of American families combined own less than 2% of stock wealth [...]

Denial Isn’t Just a River in Egypt

It’s a poor joke but it seems appropriate given data released yesterday by the Hartford Funds. A decade after the deep financial crisis the majority of survey respondents said there was no impact upon their lives.  Really?  Wow! And yet... 42% of respondents reported that they avoid investing in financial markets 46% have altered their [...]

Warren Buffett Reminds Us Smart People Can Do Stupid Things

In an interview with CNBC the Oracle of Omaha disclosed that his investment vehicle (Berkshire Hathaway) is delaying taking profits in anticipation of a tax cut. Right now we're sitting and watching because within three months, actually less than that, we'll know the answer on it . . . I would feel kind of silly [...]

Tell Them What They Want To Hear

Should a financial relationship be about doing what’s right or feeling good?  The former, right?  Not so fast. A survey by index zealots DFA found the #1 thing valued in receiving financial guidance is a “sense of security / peace of mind.”  Not that that’s a bad thing of course but at 35% of respondents [...]