For Our Clients

Educational Resources

Tax Tip Tuesdays: What Are You Doing with Your Tax Refund? Jump Start Your Retirement Savings!

Mar 17, 2020

By Theresa Fry, Senior Vice President and Manager, IRA’s and Retirement Planning

If you have filed your tax return and are anxiously awaiting your income tax refund, have you decided what you will do with it?  Last year the average federal income tax refund was $2,869[1].  The majority of IRS refunds are processed within three weeks, so you have a little time to decide if you will save it or spend it. 

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Great Balls of Fire

Mar 16, 2020

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

Goodness gracious! Again last week, the market shook our nerves and it rattled our brains.  That market action can drive a man insane. Last week was the first since late-1929 in which all five trading sessions had a gain or loss of more than 4%. Three of those days included trading halts early in the session. Don’t let it break your will. 

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The SECURE Act is Designed to Expand & Preserve Savings. Here’s What You Should Know.

Mar 11, 2020

By Theresa Fry, Senior Vice President and Manager, IRAs, Retirement and Education Planning

 

 

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Tax Tip Tuesdays: SEP IRAs and Other Retirement Plan Reminders

Mar 10, 2020

By Edward “Ed” V. O’Neal, Vice President and Manager, Retirement Plans

Tax season is a time when business owners often are juggling multiple priorities, seeking approaches for potentially reducing tax liability, while also looking for opportunities to increase retirement savings. For business owners looking for 2019 tax deductions, along with a way to jump start retirement savings, the SEP IRA is the only employer-sponsored retirement plan that can be both established and funded after the 2019 calendar year.

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Submarine Baseball

Mar 9, 2020

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

Now that our clocks have been sprung ahead, our hearts and minds can turn to baseball. With Spring Training about half completed, and, oh yeah, with markets in turmoil, a baseball analogy might be a good way to explain the market’s recent extreme back-and-forth volatility.

Imagine throwing a baseball while underwater. It probably wouldn’t go very far. If two people were playing a game of catch underwater,

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Tax Tip Tuesdays: Deadline for 2019 RMDs is April 1st, not April 15th

Mar 3, 2020

By Theresa Fry, Senior Vice President and Manager, IRA’s and Retirement Planning

Did you turn age 70 ½ last year?  Did you take your first required minimum distribution (RMD) in 2019?  If not, the deadline is fast approaching.  It is April 1st, not the April 15th tax filing deadline.  Why do those few days matter?  The IRS could impose a 50% penalty on any RMD amount you fail to take on time.

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Technical Foul

Mar 2, 2020

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

Last week, the market changed.  The corona virus news introduced a whole new level of uncertainty.  In such a circumstance, fundamentals go out the window and technical considerations drive market activity.  A market that had been awash in liquidity and focused on stocks with rapid revenue growth and expanding earnings multiples suddenly morphed into a market fixated on technical factors.  This same transformation occurred two years ago and again in late-2018. 

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Caution: Panic Can Be Infectious

Feb 28, 2020

By Pete Biebel, Senior Vice President

Don’t let this week’s market headlines strike panic.  If you consider percentages vs. points, the SARS virus and 9/11 triggered 12-13% corrections in the market and that is roughly the percentage pullback we’ve had to date.  We urge you to resist the urge to sell now.  We don’t know if the next news on the coronavirus will be positive i.e. things are getting under control or negative,

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Lifetime “Stretch” IRA Dies; Life Insurance Lives

Feb 27, 2020

By Dan Schulte, Vice President and Manager, Annuities and Insurance

The recently passed Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act, changes the post-death distribution rules for retirement account owners by requiring most beneficiaries to receive funds from their inherited account within 10 years after the original owner’s death.   This change mandates much faster distributions than what was previously allowed under the ‘stretch’ provision, which lets beneficiaries spread distributions over their own life expectancies. 

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Tax Tip Tuesdays: Beware of the Dirty Dozen of Tax Scams

Feb 25, 2020

By Jeffrey R. Wolfe, Senior Vice President, Manager of Wealth Planning Strategies

The IRS continues to monitor their “Dirty Dozen” of tax scams.  These are the most common and most dangerous scams that affect taxpayers.  The top three, for the third year in a row, are:

  • Phishing: Phishing is when scammers send fake emails or website links to try and trick a taxpayer into sharing private information. 

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