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10 Biggest Estate Planning Mistakes

10 Biggest Estate Planning Mistakes

Here are some of the most common estate planning mistakes we see in the business. 

Estate planning may be a difficult topic to discuss, but it’s vital. How you will distribute assets after death or plan for incapacitation is an important component of every financial plan.

The Financial Planning Association recently published a helpful article on common estate planning mistakes by Caroline Demirs Calio, J.D.  Here are some of the most common estate planning mistakes we see in the business.

Mistake #1: Not developing an estate plan.

If you don’t direct how your assets will be distributed at your death, your state will decide. Formalizing your wishes may also save your family some heartache after you are gone and could help prevent inter-family arguments, which could cost more in legal fees.

Mistake #2: Failing to create a complete list of assets and keep good records.

A complete list of your assets and an approximation of their value will aid in crafting an appropriate estate plan that takes into account potential estate tax exposure and other issues that arise in estates of your size.

Mistake #3: Failing to update beneficiary designations.

Life insurance proceeds and retirement plans can comprise a large portion of a person’s wealth. Life insurance, IRAs, pensions, and other employee benefits do not pass under your will or trust but are governed by beneficiary designation. Update all your beneficiary designations to make sure they match your current wishes and are consistent with your other estate planning documents.

Mistake #4: Failing to name appropriate fiduciaries.

Acting as a fiduciary is oftentimes consuming and complex. As your life and circumstances change, your views of who would be best in each capacity may change. An essential aspect of creating and updating your estate plan is regularly reviewing the individuals and institutions you have appointed in fiduciary roles to take on these responsibilities after you are gone.

Mistake #5: Failing to correctly title assets.

Incorrect or haphazard titling of your assets can have unintentional consequences. For example, certain ownership arrangements (such as trusts) will avoid probate on your assets at your death.  In addition, as part of the estate planning process, your assets can be titled to take advantage of any state estate tax exemptions and federal estate tax exemptions that are available.

Mistake # 6: Failing to consider incapacity.

When most people consider estate planning, they automatically think of death. However, in addition to covering the distribution of your assets, your estate plan should set forth who will make decisions for you if you are incapable of making them yourself. Things to consider: durable power of attorney, medical power of attorney, and living will.

Mistake #7: Failing to structure gifts and inheritances appropriately.

Estate plans are not one-size-fits-all. Your estate plan should not be cookie-cutter, but rather designed for the state in which you live and to consider your beneficiaries’ needs and circumstances. For example, minor children’s assets may be managed in a trust or a special needs beneficiary may need special consideration. Make your estate planning fit your family structure.

Mistake #8: Failing to properly administer an irrevocable life insurance trust.

Life insurance proceeds will be includable in your estate if you own the policy at the time of your death. If the value of your estate (including the life insurance proceeds) exceeds the applicable estate tax exemption amounts, it may be prudent to create an irrevocable life insurance trust to hold the policy, thereby sheltering the proceeds from estate taxes at your death.

Mistake #9: Failing to consider gifting techniques during life.

It is not uncommon for an older person to ask for estate planning advice. Although some techniques can be employed at older ages, in most cases better results (for example, lower estate taxes) could have been achieved through an earlier gifting program. Properly implemented, this technique can save tens of thousands in taxes later.

Mistake #10: Failing to review and update your estate plan.

It is tempting to prepare an estate plan and put it on a shelf and forget about it. However, because of various changes, estate plans should be reviewed after significant changes in federal or state estate tax laws, when life events occur (marriage, divorce, birth of children and/or grandchildren).  And, in any event, every three to five years.

If you have any questions about the above or need specific advice regarding estate planning, we recommend speaking to a board certified estate planning attorney. If you need a referral to one, our team at Republic Wealth Advisors is happy to help you find someone who can meet your needs.

 


 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

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The IRS Dirty Dozen: 12 Top Scams in 2016 – Part 2

The IRS Dirty Dozen: 12 Top Scams in 2016 – Part 2

The 2nd half of the dirty dozen scams from 2016 according to the IRS. 

Tax season is now in full-swing. That’s why we’re reviewing some of the worst scams according to the IRS. Last week we explored the top six ways con artists and tax dodgers ply their trade. In case you missed last week’s blog, checkout the post here.  

This week we cover the bottom half of the ‘Dirty Dozen’ tax scams. The re-printed article is a slightly abridged version from Think Advisor. Think Advisor: IRS Top 12 Tax Scams for 2016

Fred

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7. Fake Charities

The IRS said charitably inclined Americans should be wary of nonprofits with names that are similar to familiar or nationally known, legitimate organizations. The agency’s Exempt Organizations Select Check allows donors to find legitimate, qualified charities to which contributions may be tax deductible.

Legitimate charities will provide their Employer Identification Numbers, if requested, which can be used to verify their legitimacy through EO Select Check. It is advisable to double check using a charity's EIN, the IRS said.

Donors should not give or send cash. For security and tax record purposes, they should contribute only by check or credit card or another way that provides documentation of the gift.

8. Falsely Padding Deductions on Returns

Each year, some taxpayers just can’t resist the temptation to fudge information on their tax returns by falsely inflating deductions or expenses to underpay what they owe and possibly receive larger refunds.

“Taxpayers should file accurate returns to receive the refunds they are entitled to receive and shouldn’t gamble with their taxes by padding their deductions,” John Koskinen, IRS Commissioner said.

The IRS said it normally is able to audit returns filed within the last three years, and additional years can be added if substantial errors are identified or fraud is suspected.

9. Excessive Claims for Business Credits

The fuel tax credit generally is not available to most taxpayers, yet the IRS said it routinely uncovered unscrupulous preparers who had enticed sizable groups of taxpayers to erroneously claim the credit to inflate their refunds.

Improper claims for the fuel tax credit generally come in two forms: an individual or business making an erroneous claim on an otherwise legitimate tax return, or an identity thief claiming the credit in a broader fraudulent scheme.

10. Falsifying Income to Claim Credits

Some people inflate or include income on a tax return they never earned, either as wages or as self-employment income, usually in order to maximize refundable credits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit.

“Misrepresenting facts is cheating and taxpayers are legally responsible for all the information reported on their tax returns,” Koskinen said.

Falsifying income could result in the taxpayer facing a big bill to repay the erroneous refunds, or in some cases, criminal prosecution.

11. Abusive Tax Shelters

According to the IRS, abusive tax schemes have evolved from structuring of improper domestic and foreign trust arrangements into sophisticated strategies that take advantage of certain foreign jurisdictions’ financial secrecy laws and the availability of credit/debit cards issued from offshore financial institutions.

“These schemes can end up costing taxpayers more in back taxes, penalties and interest than they saved in the first place,” Koskinen said.

The IRS said taxpayers should be aware that an arrangement is an abusive scheme if it uses unnecessary steps or a form that does not match its substance. Taxpayers should also remember that promoters of these schemes often use financial instruments improperly to facilitate tax evasion.

12. Frivolous Tax Arguments

Promoters of frivolous arguments encourage taxpayers to make unreasonable and outlandish claims to avoid paying the taxes they owe, such as contending that taxpayers can refuse to pay taxes on religious or moral grounds by invoking the First Amendment. They also include contentions that the only “employees” subject to federal income tax are employees of the federal government; and that only foreign-source income is taxable.

Taxpayers have the right to contest their tax liabilities in court, the IRS noted, but using frivolous arguments is wrong, and these have been thrown out of court.

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We hope the list of 12 tax scams reviewed over the last two weeks has been insightful and is a good reminder to always be careful.  

 


 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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The IRS Dirty Dozen: 12 Top Scams in 2016 – Part 1

The IRS Dirty Dozen: 12 Top Scams in 2016 – Part 1

The top 6 scams and tax evasion techniques tried last year according to the IRS.

Tax Season is upon us. Believe it or not, April 15th is only 6½ weeks away. And, this year, you get a few extra days with tax day in 2017 falling on Tuesday, April 18th because of the Easter holiday.  

Every year, individuals try to pull one over on Uncle Sam. And every year they get caught. It has become an annual tradition for the IRS to publish various ways con artists and tax dodgers attempt to fool the unsuspecting public and government. This week, we review an abridged version of an article covering half of those 12 ways. Look for part 2 next week.  

Fred

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Think Advisor: IRS Top 12 Tax Scams for 2016

Almost as certain as death and taxes is the perennial appearance during tax season of scammers and evaders.

Con artists steal personal information, gull the elderly and promote schemes to the unsophisticated to avoid taxes or increase refunds. Some venal taxpayers don’t need help, and instead finagle their returns to win undeserved benefits or lower liabilities.

Every year, the Internal Revenue Service issues a “dirty dozen” list of a variety of common scams that taxpayers may encounter anytime but especially during filing season as people prepare their returns or hire people to help with their taxes.

The agency notes that illegal scams can result in significant penalties and interest and possible criminal prosecution. IRS Criminal Investigation works closely with the Department of Justice to shut down scams and prosecute the criminals behind them.

The agency also offers a variety of ways to obtain tax information.

Following are this year’s “dirty dozen” as prepared by the IRS:

1. Identity Theft

Tax-related identity theft, in which someone uses a stolen Social Security number to file a tax return claiming a fraudulent refund, remains a chief concern for the IRS.

And with good reason. A recent study found that some two-thirds of taxpayers thought identity theft “could never happen to me,” often making them easy prey for scammers.

In fiscal 2015, the IRS initiated 776 identity-theft-related investigations, resulting in 774 sentencings through its enforcement efforts.

2. Phone Scams

Criminals impersonating IRS agents have deluged taxpayers across the nation with phone calls, threatening police arrest, deportation, license revocation and other things.

“There are many variations,” IRS commissioner John Koskinen said. “The caller may threaten you with arrest or court action to trick you into making a payment. Some schemes may say you’re entitled to a huge refund. These all add up to trouble.”

Following is what a taxpayer who gets a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS and asking for money should do.

If you don’t owe taxes, or have no reason to think that you do:

Do not give out any information. Hang up immediately.

Contact the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration to report the call. Use their “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” web page. You can also call 800-366-4484.

Report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on FTC.gov. Please add "IRS Telephone Scam" in the notes.

3. Phishing

“Criminals are constantly looking for new ways to trick you out of your personal financial information, so be extremely cautious about opening strange emails,” Koskinen said.

Some scammers pose as a person or organization the victim trusts or recognizes. Others hack an email account, and send mass emails under another person’s name.  Still others pose as a bank, credit card company, tax software provider or government agency.

 “The IRS won't send you an email about a tax bill or refund out of the blue,” Koskinen said. “We urge taxpayers not to click on any unexpected emails claiming to be from the IRS.”

Doing so can expose the target’s computer to malware, enabling the criminal to access sensitive files or track keyboard strokes, exposing login information.

4. Return Preparer Fraud

Although most tax professionals provide honest, high-quality service, some dishonest preparers set up shop each filing season to perpetrate refund fraud, identity theft and other scams that hurt taxpayers.

“Choose your tax return preparer carefully because you entrust them with your private financial information that needs to be protected,” Koskinen said. 

The IRS offers these tips for choosing a tax preparer:

  • Ask whether the preparer has an IRS Preparer Tax Identification Number, which is required to register with the IRS and must be included on the filed tax return.
  • Does the tax return preparer have a professional credential, belong to a professional organization or attend continuing education classes?
  • Check the preparer’s qualifications on the IRS Directory of Federal Tax Return Preparers with Credentials and Select Qualifications
  • Never sign a blank return
  • Review the return before signing
  • Report tax preparer misconduct to the IRS

5. Offshore Tax Avoidance

The IRS said that despite several years of budget reductions, it has continued to pursue cases of offshore tax evasion in all parts of the world, regardless of whether the person hiding money overseas chooses a bank with no offices on U.S. soil. It said taxpayers were best served by coming in voluntarily and taking care of their tax-filing responsibilities.

The IRS offers the Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program to enable people catch up on their filing and tax obligations. Since the first OVDP opened in 2009, there have been more than 54,000 disclosures, and the agency has collected more than $8 billion from this initiative alone. The agency has conducted thousands of offshore-related civil audits that have produced tens of millions of dollars, and has also pursued criminal charges leading to billions of dollars in criminal fines and restitutions.

6. Inflated Refund Claims

“Be wary of tax preparers that tout outlandish refunds based on federal benefits or tax credits you've never heard of or weren't eligible to claim in the past,” Koskinen said. “Taxpayers should choose preparers who file accurate returns.”

Scam artists use flyers, advertisements, phony store fronts and word of mouth to throw out a wide net for victims. They frequently prey on people who do not have a filing requirement, such as low-income individuals or the elderly, as well as on non-English speakers, who may or may not have a filing requirement.

 


 

The above list serves as a reminder, as always, that you should be ever vigilant.  We will share with you another 6 scams to be on the lookout for next week.  

 


 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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Trump Delays the DOL Fiduciary Rule & Why It Doesn’t Matter to Our Clients

Trump Delays the DOL Fiduciary Rule & Why It Doesn’t Matter to Our Clients

How President Trump delayed the Department of Labor's Fiduciary Rule, what the Fiduciary Rule is, and why it doesn't matter to Republic clients.

In his first 100 days in office, President Trump has attempted to accomplish quite a bit.  One such item is a memo he issued on February 3rd ordering the Department of Labor to review new rules regulating financial professionals handling of clients funds known as the ‘Fiduciary Rule’.  This will likely delay the implementation of the ruling which was previously set for April 10, 2017.

What is a Fiduciary?

The Department of Labor’s definition of a fiduciary demands that advisors act in the best interests of their clients, and to put their clients' interests above their own. Advisors are required to disclose any potential conflict of interest.  In addition, all fees and commissions must be clearly disclosed to clients.

According to a 2015 report from the White House Council of Economic Advisors, conflicts of interest by brokers reduce annual returns on retirement savings by one percent, on average.  This is estimated at up to $17 billion per year.

While there are other nuances and the rule is in fact complex, simply put, the Fiduciary Rule seeks to apply this fiduciary standard to individual retirement accounts as well as rollovers from 401k’s.  

With baby boomers entering retirement, the issue of considering the best option for the assets with their employer’s 401k plan is ever important.  

What is Republic Wealth Advisors’ Duty?

At Republic, a Registered Investment Advisory firm, we are upheld to a fiduciary standard on all client assets, regardless of whether the type of asset is impacted by the Fiduciary Rule.  In other words, regardless of whether the Fiduciary Rule is delayed, we still maintain this standard.  We are a fee-only firm, meaning we do not charge a commission on any investments our clients choose to invest in.  We have a duty to put our clients first and always make decisions that are in their best interest.

Many individuals may not know the difference between a broker and an investment advisor representative.  After all, we both are able to invest our client’s funds in similar fashion.  One difference is that brokers can charge a commission regarding the sale of an investment or product while an investment advisor representative cannot.  

Of course, not all brokers ignore a fiduciary obligation.  One notable exception are CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals who are also held to a fiduciary standard of care, even if they are a broker.

The media coverage regarding the Fiduciary Rule should bring to light that not all financial advisors are created equal.  To protect yourself, if you can’t answer the question “How is my advisor compensated?”, I’d recommend you ask.  

Coverage over the Fiduciary Rule will continue and we will see its eventual outcome.  If you’re looking for a fee-only fiduciary advisor, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Republic Wealth Advisors.

 


 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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Financial Fitness 2017: What Shape Are You In?

Financial Fitness 2017: What Shape Are You In?

Last month we focused on financial goal-setting in 2017. But financial stability doesn’t end with goal setting. Now comes the hard part: achieving your established goals.

A great first step in working to achieve your goals in 2017 is to assess your current financial situation. Time.com posted a series on financial fitness which provides some guidance in determining the shape of your finances. The following is a reprint of part 1 of their series: 10 Days to Total Financial Fitness

David

 


 

When you think about what kind of shape your finances are in nowadays, you may be feeling downright buff. Retirement plan balances are at record highs, home prices are back to pre-recession levels in most parts of the U.S., and the job market is the strongest it's been since 2006.

No wonder Americans are more optimistic about their finances.

Given that, it's understandable that some bad habits may be creeping back into your routine. Americans, overall, are slipping into a couple problems:

  • Household debt is at a record high, fueled by an uptick in borrowing for cars and college and more credit card spending. Vanguard reports that investors are taking risks last seen in the pre-crash years of 1999 and 2007.
     
  • What's more, the financial regimen that's been working well for you of late may not cut it anymore. In this slow-growth, low-interest-rate environment, both stock and bond returns are expected to be below average for several years to come.

To pump up your finances in 2017, you need to shake up your routine. The plan that follows can help you do just that.

See What Shape You're In

Even if you're a dedicated exerciser, you could be ignoring whole muscle groups, leaving yourself susceptible to injury. For example, 39% of people earning more than $75,000 a year wouldn't be able to cover a $1,000 unexpected expense from savings, according to a 2014 Bankrate survey. So the first step is to establish your baseline by asking yourself these questions.

1. How are my vital signs?

Tick off the basics: Check your credit, tally up your emergency fund (aim for six months of living expenses), look at how much you are contributing to your retirement plans, and get a handle on how you're splitting up your savings between stocks and bonds.

Less than half of workers have tried to calculate how much money they'll need for retirement, EBRI's 2014 Retirement Confidence Survey found. Take five minutes to use an online tool that will show you if you're on track, such as the T. Rowe Price Retirement Income Calculator.

2. What's my day-to-day routine?

The very first thing Rochester, N.Y., CPA David Young does with his clients is go over their spending. Budgeting apps like Mint.com and Personal Capital, he notes, "make the invisible credit card charges visible." As important as the "how much" is the "on what," says Fred Taylor, president of Northstar Investment Advisors in Denver. Divide your expenses into the essential costs of living, investments in your future (savings, education, a home), and the discretionary spending you have the flexibility to cut.

3. Am I juicing my finances too much?

In other words, how toxic is your borrowing? Your total debt matters. But the kinds of debts you have and the implications for your future are crucial too, says Charles Farrell, author of Your Money Ratios and CEO of Northstar.

4. What's my biggest weak spot?

You need to guard against familiar risks, like insufficient insurance. But David Blanchett, head of retirement research for Morning-star, says you should also think about less obvious threats. Will new technology put your livelihood at risk? Are you counting on a pension from a financially shaky firm? Do you live in an area, such as Northern California, where home values hinge on the success of one industry?

Once you know how much progress you've made so far and what areas need the most work, you're ready to get going on your financial fitness plan.

 


 

If you have any more questions about your financial situation, we would love to help. Contact Republic Wealth Advisors to schedule a meeting today.

 


 

 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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The Stock Market & The New President

The Stock Market & The New President

Market behavior under new presidents, post-election year performance by party, and the post-election years.

The Stock Trader’s Almanac is a great market research tool. Since 1967, the Almanac has provided backwards looking research on how markets have performed under various conditions. History may never repeat itself, but it often rhymes. With that in mind, here’s a possible preview of coming attractions for the stock market and the new Trump Administration. 

(Hint: The stock market tends to do worse with Republicans in office.) 

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Article Reprinted from The Stock Trader’s Almanac:

Market Behavior Under New Presidents

For 50 annual editions of this Almanac, we have had to look ahead 6 to 18 months and try to anticipate what the stock market will do in the year to come. Predictable effects on the economy and stock market from quadrennial presidential and biennial congressional elections have steered us well over the years. Also, bear markets lasting about a year on average tended to consume the first year of Republican and second of Democratic terms. 

Prognosticating was tougher in the 1990s during the greatest bull cycle in history. Being bullish and staying bullish was the best course. Bear markets were few and far between and, when they did come, were swift and over in a few months. Market timers and fundamentalists, as a result, did not keep pace with momentum players. The market has come back to earth and many of these patterns have re-emerged.

 

Data from The Stock Trader’s Almanac

Looking at the past, you can see that new and succeeding Democrats fared better in post-election years than Republicans. Democrats have tended to come to power following economic and market woes. Republicans often reclaimed the White House after Democratic-initiated foreign entanglements. Both have fallen to scandal and party division.

Wilson won after the Republican Party split in two, Carter after the Watergate scandal and G.W. Bush after the Lewinsky affair. Roosevelt, Kennedy, Clinton and Obama won elections during bad economies. Republicans took over after major wars were begun under Democrats, benefiting Harding, Eisenhower, and Nixon. Reagan ousted Carter following the late 1970s stagflation and the Iran hostage crisis.

Truman held the White House after 16 years of effective Democratic rule. Hoover and G.H.W. Bush were passed the torch after eight years of Republican-led peace and prosperity.

A struggling economy, ongoing foreign military operations and a divided Republican make handicapping this November’s winner elusive at press time. Prospects for 2017 improve should the market decline further in 2016.

Post-Election Year Performance by Party

It is clear that during the first two years of a president’s term, market performance lags well behind the latter two. After a president wins the election, the first two years are spent pushing through as much policy as possible. Frequently, the market, economy, and country experience bear markets, recessions and war. Conversely, as presidents and their parties get anxious about holding on to power, they begin to prime the pump in the third year, fostering bull markets, prosperity and peace.

There is a dramatic difference in market performance under the two parties in post-election and midterm years over the last 16 administrations. Since 1953, there have been 19 confirmed bull and 20 bear markets. Only 6 bear markets have bottomed in the pre-election or election year and 10 tops have occurred in these years, as the bulk of the declines were relegated to the post-election and midterm years. However, more bear markets and negative market action have plagued Republican administrations in the post-election year, whereas the midterm year has been worse under Democrats.

Republicans have mostly taken over after foreign entanglements and personal transgressions during boom times and administered tough action right away, knocking the market down: 1953 (Korea), 1969 (Vietnam), 1981 (Iran hostage crisis), and 2001 (Lewinsky affair). Democrats have usually reclaimed power after economic duress or political scandal during leaner times and addressed more favorable policy moves the first year, buoying the market: 1961 (recession), 1977 (Watergate), 1993 (recession, and 2009 (financial crisis). 

 

Data from The Stock Trader’s Almanac

Post-Election Years: Paying The Piper

Politics being what it is, incumbent administrations during election years try to make the economy look good to impress the electorate and tend to put off unpopular decisions until the votes are counted. This produces an American phenomenon: the Post-Election Year Syndrome. The year begins with an Inaugural Ball, after which the piper must be paid, and we American have often paid dearly in the past 103 years.

Victorious candidates rarely succeed in fulfilling campaign promises of “peace and prosperity.” In the past 26 post-election ears, three major wars began: World War I (1917), World War II (1941), and Vietnam (1965); four drastic bear markets started, in 1929, 1937, 1969, and 1973; 9/11, recession and continuing bear markets in 2001 and 2009; less sever bear markets occurred or were in progress in 1913, 1917, 1921, 1941, 1949, 1953, 1957, 1977, and 1981. Only in 1925, 1985, 1989, 1997, and 2013 were Americans blessed with peace and prosperity.

 

Data from The Stock Trader’s Almanac

Republicans took back the White House following foreign involvement under Democrats in 1921 (WWI),  1943 (Korea), 1969 (Vietnam), and 1981 (Iran); and scandal in 2001. Bear markets occurred in these post-election years. Democrats recaptured power after domestic problems under  Republicans in 1913 (GOB split), 1933 (Crash and Depression), 1961 (recession), 1977 (Watergate), 1993 (sluggish economy), and 2009 (financial crisis). Post-election years have been better under Democrats.

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Please remember we can’t predict future market fluctuations. Reviewing historical price movements based on crop seasonality, full moons, or presidential elections is a complicated enterprise fraught with complexities. But it can serve as a thought-provoking exercise. Hence the reason for republishing The Stock Trader’s Almanac’s insightful research. 

If you have any questions related to your personal situation and how it may be affected in the first year of the Trump Presidency, don’t hesitate to reach out.  

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IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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5-Step Goal Setting Guide for 2017 -- and Life

5-Step Goal Setting Guide for 2017 -- and Life

Goal setting can be a simple, dynamic process to provide clarity on all your actions for this year and beyond.

Whether you’re ultra-wealthy or like most of us, you can benefit from a solid list of goals. And January is a great time to set your goals for the year.

The following excerpt is an edited version of a financial goal-setting worksheet prepared by Kingdom Advisors. If you’ve never set financial goals, this simple, 5-step process can help you take action for goal-setting this year and beyond. Enjoy.

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Writing down your goals can be a mental roadblock to many people. But don’t be afraid to take this step! Without written goals, you will never know when you have reached your finish line. Attaining a goal brings a great feeling of success.

As you set your goals, remember the process is dynamic. Write your goals in sand, not in concrete. Know that even if you have set a faith goal – things can change. Goal setting and keeping is a process. What you aim for may not be where you ultimately end up. 

Write down what you think you should do, make it measurable, and take action. Setting goals should be a process that takes action towards that direction.

Step 1: Make a List of Goals

Take the first step of recording your goals and dreams by making a list. 

Record your financial goals. Some examples of financial goals are to: cut spending, eliminate debt, start a business, retire, put children through college, give to charity, or provide extracurricular activities for your children.

Step 2: Consolidate & Refine Your Goals

The second step is to consolidate and refine your financial goals and dreams.

Look at your list and check it. Do you have any goals that can be combined? For example, did you list pay off credit cards and reduce debt? Those two could be one goal. The purpose of this step is to refine your list so that your goals are clearly stated and distinct.

Step 3: Prioritize Your Goals

The third step is to prioritize your goals.

Put them in order of importance. If you have a lot of goals, choose the top five in order of priority.

Step 4: Quantify Your Top 5 Goals

The forth step is to quantify your top five goals.

Put the goals in numeric terms – how much money and/or time will be required to reach your objective? Without quantifying a goal, it is hard to be effective in pursuing that goal. Your most important goals should be measurable.

Step 5: Keep Your Goals Visible

The fifth and final step is to keep your goals visible.

Write them down, and put them in a place where you will see them regularly. Some ideas for this are to keep them in a notebook you use for your daily prep time, or to post them on your dashboard, on your bathroom mirror, or inside your checkbook cover. Periodically review your goals, and revise or eliminate as your circumstances change or you accomplish your goals! 

Financial Goal Setting for 2017

How are you doing on your financial goal setting this year?

If you need help setting financial goals for your family, it may be helpful to chat with one of our advisors as your situation is likely unique. Don’t hesitate to reach out if we can be of assistance. 

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IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

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Ultra-Wealthy Financial Goals & How It Helps Your Goal-Setting

Ultra-Wealthy Financial Goals & How It Helps Your Goal-Setting

People with $30+ million in investible assets rated the importance of financial goals for themselves and their families – and how that can guide your 2017 goals.

Goal setting is usually a hot topic in January. The turn of the calendar typically means a new reset point in life and it’s why we explored goal setting for a 30-year retirement a couple weeks back.  

The ultra-wealthy are no different. 

They set goals and execute them year-in and year-out. Seeing how the ultra-wealthy track their goals can be an enlightening exercise. It can even help you plan your goals for 2017 and beyond.  

Most Important Goal: Wealth Preservation

Those heading ultra-high-net-worth households – $30 million or more in investable assets – may take certain financial goals rather more seriously than others. According to a 2016 Family Decision-Making Survey by Morgan Stanley and Campden Wealth Management, wealth preservation is the most important goal for both the participant and their family members. 

But that’s not the only financial goal important to the ultra-wealthy and their family members. Other items like stewardship and family education, growing family wealth, legacy and continuity, and managing taxes also rank very highly. 

Here’s a breakdown comparing participants’ goals and their family members’ goals:  

Source: Morgan Stanley & Campden Wealth Management

How the Ultra-Wealthy Goals Helps Your Goal Setting

Perhaps you can borrow a page from the ultra-wealthy playbook. Here are some survey findings that can help your goal setting starting now…

1. Spend less than you earn.

61% of survey participants thought wealth preservation was extremely important – it was the #1 goal. The ultra-wealthy do not want to spend down their principle, but preserve what they made. You can have the same mindset. As you earn, spend less than you earn. Moreover, find ways to not dip into your savings so you can preserve your wealth. That will help preserve and grow your wealth.

2. Implement a long-term savings plan.

Those with $30 million in investible assets don’t simply live for today. They’re considering their financial situation in the distant future. You can also take a long-term view of your finances. Are you saving enough to enjoy your golden years? If you’re not there yet, it’s probably not too late to start. Create a long-term savings plan that will work for your situation.

3. Create an investing plan to match your risk tolerance and time horizon.

The ultra-wealthy think about multiple generations. Their investment decisions reflect that longer-term outlook. In fact, some investments may not play out for many years. You can do the same thing. Make sure you pick investments that match your risk appetite and time horizon. The longer-term your horizon the more assets you can save and grow.  

4. Get educated about financial planning as it relates to your situation.

Education is the 2nd most important goal for the ultra-wealthy. That includes financial education. In a sea of ever-increasing options, they want to know the best fish to catch – and that happens through education. Much of that education is available to you as well. Whether it’s through seminars, YouTube, podcasts, blogs, or good old-fashioned books, you can learn many of the same lessons the ultra-wealthy do about finances.   

Financial Goal Setting for 2017

How are you doing on your financial goal setting this year?

If you need help setting financial goals for your family, it may be helpful to chat with one of our advisors as your situation is likely unique. Call us at Republic Wealth Advisors or another trusted financial professional. 

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IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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Birthday Milestones & Why Half-Birthdays Really Matter

Birthday Milestones & Why Half-Birthdays Really Matter

Birthdays can be great fun for kids. Whether it’s a bouncy castle party, a special visit to Chuck E Cheese, or just a simple cake-and-presents party with friends from school, most kids love birthdays. 

As we get older, we may not mark our birthdays with as much fanfare as kids. But there are some birthdays that matter in your finances – even a couple of half-birthdays. We compiled a list of birthday milestones that should be kept in mind in your planning…

Age 18: Privacy, Contracts, & Voting

When you turn 18, you can now enter into contracts, make your own personal health care decisions and are granted new privacies.  If your child just turned 18, you will need a HIPAA release form to deal with your now-adult child’s medical records. Other things change too due to this major milestone, including a new right to vote. Congratulations, you’re now an adult!

Age 21: Credit Cards

When you turn 21, you can now signup for a credit card. The Credit Card Act of 2009 prohibits credit card companies from issuing cards to anyone under the age of 21 unless they have a co-signer over age 21. As an alternative, you can prove you’re capable of repaying the debt to get a credit card before 21. For everyone else, age 21 is another financial milestone. However, this milestone can include financial landmines. If your child is turning 21, talk with them about the responsible use of credit cards. 

Age 25: Car Insurance Premiums Often Drop

Insurance actuaries think age 25 is important. If you’re turning 25, your car insurance premiums tend to decrease because those under that age have higher accident rates. Of course, insurance premiums are based on a many factors including claims, type of vehicle and more. Still, 25 year old drivers often see benefits based on their age and a clean driving record.

Age 26: Dependent Health Insurance Coverage Ends

Unless something changes with the new administration, the Affordable Care Act allows a person to keep his or her status as a dependent and stay on the parent’s health insurance plan until the age of 26. If your health plan is through an employer, check carefully to find out the exact date a child's benefits will terminate. It may be the birthday month or another time, so check before the child is dropped. If you’re the 26 year old, make sure to verify yourself.  

Age 50: IRA Catch-Up Contributions & AARP Discounts

When you turn 50, you can put an extra $1,000 a year into an IRA or Roth IRA or $6,500 total. You can also contribute an additional $5,500 into a 401(k) plan or $23,000 total. Also, watch your mail: AARP mailings and discounts usually start at age 50. 

Age 55: Penalty-Free 401(k) Withdrawals Start

The 10% early withdrawal penalty is lifted on the 401(k) withdrawal at 55 if you leave a job after 55 and the 401(k) was from your most recent employer. This may or may not be in your best interest. Check with your financial advisor or CPA about the best time to begin taking withdrawals.

Age 59 ½: Early Withdrawals Penalties Removed

Age 59 ½ is the first half-birthday financial milestone. When you cross that line, the 10% early withdrawal penalty for IRAs and 401(k)s goes away. Withdrawals are still taxable. If your Roth IRA is open for 5 years, Roth IRA contributions withdrawals of contributions are tax-free. But be careful. A separate “5-year rule” applies to each Roth IRA conversion.

Age 60: “Senior” Discounts 

Take advantage of “senior” pricing at shops, restaurants, and entertainment. You earned it.

Age 62: Eligible for Social Security

When you turn 62, you are now eligible for Social Security. This is an early date and will mean you’ll receive reduced benefits. If you continue to work, benefits can be withheld due to a wage limit. This goes away at full retirement age (see Age 66-67 below).

Age 65: Medicare Enrollment

At 65, you can now enroll in Medicare. At this age, Medicare becomes the primary medical insurance for many people and usually the most affordable option. Make sure you enroll during open enrollment when you turn 65 or 6 months before.  

Age 66-67: Full Retirement Age for Social Security

When you turn 66 and 67, you have reached Social Security’s “full retirement age.” The previous caps on what you can earn from a job are removed and you can begin drawing the maximum amount for your situation.  

Age 70 ½: Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) in Effect

Age 70 ½ is the next significant half-birthday. At this age, you’re subject to the Required Minimum Distribution (RMD) rules governing IRA and employer retirement plans.  You can take your first required distribution until April 1 of the next year, however you will effectively “double up” your distributions for that year, which may not be tax advantageous – check with your CPA to make sure. 

If you don’t take the RMD each year, there’s a 50% IRS penalty assessed on that amount you should have withdrawn. Withdrawals are considered taxable income except for any previously taxed portion, i.e. your basis.

There are two exceptions to the RMD Rule: One, Roth IRAs are not subject to the same RMD rules.  Two, if you continue working you can delay distributions from your current employer-provided plan until April 1 of the year after you retire.

Next Steps for Your Next Birthday Milestone 

If you’re reaching any of these significant birthday milestones in 2017, take appropriate action. If you have any questions about these milestones, check with our advisors at Republic Wealth Advisors or another one of your trusted professionals. 

 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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Financial Goal Setting 201: Planning a 30-Year Retirement

Financial Goal Setting 201: Planning a 30-Year Retirement

Every year, the New Year presents us with a new opportunity. 

In early January, we often review our lives as and decide if we’re heading in a good direction. If not, we make adjustments and change goals. This happens with our personal fitness, family direction, personal finances and other areas. It’s easier to do this in the New Year because many others are doing the same thing. 

In other words, it’s a good time to review your financial goals.  

A critical question for financial goal setting is deciding where you want to go. Retirement is usually the destination. The question is, how long will your retirement last? 

This week, we explore a very likely scenario for many baby boomers: a 30-rear retirement. Here are some thoughts that may help prepare you for your retirement – and it may be a longer retirement than you’re planning for right now.

Fred

 


 

Funding a 30-year retirement will take financial planning prowess as you juggle the effects of inflation, distributions, taxes, asset allocation, and expenditures. Are you up to the task?

George Forman, the boxer-turned-spokesman for portable grills, may have best summed up the retirement conundrum facing baby boomers: “The question isn’t at what age I want to retire; it’s at what income.” The amount you’ll need each year to maintain your desired standard of living is the most critical variable to identify in the retirement planning process. 

How long will you need it?

Longevity is perhaps the greatest challenge for boomer retirement planning. 

Most boomers seriously underestimate their life expectancy. Perhaps this is due to a misunderstanding of what mortality age really means. In fact, half the population will outlive their life expectancy. 

When the mortality table tells us that a 65-yearold man has a mortality age of 84, it means that half of all men who are 65 today will die before age 84, and the other half will still be alive. The mortality tables also include the entire population, not just those who receive the level of nutrition and health care that you probably enjoy. 

The double bite of inflation

The increased longevity that boomers can expect contributes to the serious risk of inflation, which is the long-term tendency for money to lose purchasing power. 

This has two negative effects on retirement income planning. It increases the future costs of goods and services that retirees must buy, and it potentially erodes the value of their savings and investments set aside to meet those expenses. Even at a modest inflation assumption of 3% annually, the effects of inflation over a half century of retirement could be devastating.

The planning process

Explore all sources of guaranteed income available when retirement begins. 

Social Security, pensions, and any other income sources must be quantified as to how much, from what source, and for how long. Pay careful attention to whether benefits index with inflation or continue to a surviving spouse, since survivor planning is an important part of retirement income planning.

Develop three cash-flow models — both spouses living, husband dies, wife dies — to identify any gaps in cash flow that need to be addressed by additional savings or insurance. Next, inventory all assets that will be used to generate retirement income. This is where the traditional financial planning tools are needed to project future values and income streams from various types of assets. Be alert to the differences in taxation during distribution among various types of assets. Retirement accounts will generate less spendable income than investment accounts, because of the taxes due on distributions from retirement plans.

Asset allocation: Between a rock and a hard place

The double whammy of longevity and inflation creates an asset allocation dilemma for boomers. 

The old adage of subtracting a person’s age from 100 to obtain the optimal percentage of equities just doesn’t hold for a multi-decade retirement portfolio. Invest too conservatively, and your money may not grow enough to last your lifetime considering the erosion of long-term inflation. Invest too aggressively, and you run the increasing risk of outright capital loss without adding significant years to your plan under average market conditions.

Working with your advisor, determine an appropriate exposure to equities, then design an allocation within those equities to ensure meaningful diversification among asset classes and investment styles. Cash and fixed income will play a larger role in retirement portfolios, since provisions must be made for the orderly withdrawal of assets.

Setting a realistic withdrawal rate

Most of the evidence seems to point to 4% as being about right for a sustainable withdrawal rate for decades of retirement. The withdrawal rate is the one variable over which you have the most control — not your mortality, not your health, not your investment returns, not inflation — just your withdrawal rate. You must understand that this is the lever you will need to pull when things don’t go as planned. Being realistic about what you can spend and keeping a sufficient contingency reserve fund will ease the pressure that withdrawals put on retirement portfolios.

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Helen Modly, CFP, ChFC, has more than 25 years of experience providing wealth management services. She is a member of NAPFA and FPA. Sandra Atkins has been a business owner for more than 30 years. She is a member of the AICPA and NAPFA.

 

IMPORTANT DISCLOSURE INFORMATION: Please remember that past performance may not be indicative of future results.  Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk, and there can be no assurance that the future performance of any specific investment, investment strategy, or product (including the investments and/or investment strategies recommended or undertaken by Republic Wealth Advisors), or any non-investment related content, made reference to directly or indirectly in this blog will be profitable, equal any corresponding indicated historical performance level(s), be suitable for your portfolio or individual situation, or prove successful.  Due to various factors, including changing market conditions and/or applicable laws, the content may no longer be reflective of current opinions or positions.  Moreover, you should not assume that any discussion or information contained in this blog serves as the receipt of, or as a substitute for, personalized investment advice from Republic Wealth Advisors.  To the extent that a reader has any questions regarding the applicability of any specific issue discussed above to his/her individual situation, he/she is encouraged to consult with the professional advisor of his/her choosing.  Republic Wealth Advisors is neither a law firm nor a certified public accounting firm and no portion of this blog content should be construed as legal or accounting advice.  If you are a Republic Wealth Advisors client, please remember to contact Republic Wealth Advisors, in writing, if there are any changes in your personal/financial situation or investment objectives for the purpose of reviewing/evaluating/revising our previous recommendations and/or services. A copy of the Republic Wealth Advisors’ current written disclosure statement discussing our advisory services and fees is available upon request.

 

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