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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 [...]

Highlights of House Tax Proposal

Yesterday members of the House of Representatives announced their version of income tax reform.  The Senate is expected to offer its own version as early as next week. Assuming each passes without changes (and that’s a big assumption) there will still likely be changes as the legislation moves through the reconciliation process before being presented [...]

IRS To Reject Returns That Do Not Address Health Insurance Coverage

The IRS has announced it will no longer accept electronically filed returns where the taxpayer does not address the reporting requirements of the Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”).  In addition returns filed on paper that don’t address the reporting requirements may be suspended pending receipt of additional information and any refunds may be delayed. This marks [...]

An Apolitical View of the Tax Reform Debate

Much is being made of the Administration’s tax reform proposals.  It’s the usual politicized rhetoric.  Democrats argue it’s a tax cut for the rich.  Republicans argue a small percentage of taxpayers pay a large percentage of taxes so, logically, the largest portion of a tax cut will benefit those paying the most taxes. Been there, [...]

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 [...]