Friday, January 26, 2018

Best January tax-saving move

Best last minute January tax saving move
Tax filing begins next week—Jan 29—even though all the forms are late in arriving. If you find you owe tax instead of hitting the refund button this year, you may still be able to claim your refund. You can reduce your income up to April 17 and receive a tax credit. Credits reduce your taxes dollar for dollar. In effect, Uncle Sam can help you reduce taxes AND save for retirement at the same time. On line 32, Form 1040 or line 17, Form 1040a, you can enter up to $5,500 ($6,500 over age 50) per person IRA contribution to reduce your income. If you meet the qualification, a credit will show up on Line 51, Form 1040 or Line 34, 1040a. You subtract this credit from your tax. EG: Income $66,000: tax refund is $3,335, without IRA contribution. With the contribution, the refund is $4,392 or $5,553 if you both make the contribution. Credit against tax is $400.

How did your advisor/broker do last year?
There were some lucky advisors/brokers out there last year. I settled for 21.1% total return but some clients got 62.8% return on their picks. Did your advisor/broker pick United Rentals, Avery, Marriott, Cadence Design, or Estee Lauder? These had 60% plus gains. Of course, for some of those returns, you had to NOT sell the year before when the stock cratered 60%. Trouble is only one or two people actually bet the ranch on one of these high flyers and got rich and they were ‘insiders.’ And what do you do for next year? Unless you have insider information, your advisor/broker is unlikely to pick the new winners for 2018. You have a 1 in 7,000 chance. In fact, studies show the annual winning managers are almost always next year’s losers. Again, if you were lucky you had these 4 top pickers: Steven Wymer, Larry Puglia, Paul Viera, or Henry Ellenbogen. This is why legendary manager, Charles Ellis calls stock picking the Loser’s Game and Warren Buffett recommends his SIMPLE strategy to NOT pick stocks.

IRS free tax filing sites to avoid $300+ cost of filing
Commercial tax prep sites offer expensive loans as advances on your refund but you can keep your whole refund using the IRS free filing partners. Refunds can be in your account within 2-3 weeks. The average refund is over $3,000. You can create a tax-free retirement fund of $500,000 with that amount each year. If you need free tax preparer service, use AARP Tax Aides near you.

Buffett's SIMPLE Strategy Beats Wall Street—22% in 2017; 11.11% since 1976.
The Master of investing, Warren Buffett, proved it, again. You do NOT need Wall Street 'professionals' to reach your financial goals. In fact, if you use them, you may give up 63% of your potential accumulations because of trading, charges, commissions and fees. Buffett’s SIMPLE strategy earns over 11% per yearDALBAR keeps track of returns and found that the average managed-account equity investor earned just 3.79% a year over 30 years. The benchmark returned 11.06%. You and I can start beating Wall Street with one phone call. Earnings are tax-FREE after age 59 ½ in special account too.
Earn 11% a year with Buffett’s SIMPLE strategy:

Trump uses religion to maintain control over constituents
Where did Trump offer his anniversary inaugural speech? Not in the Congress where our Reps need to hear again why we are the United ‘states. No, he made it to the small sect of GOP regionists who follow only one god—anti-abortion and religious Intolerance. While claiming to fight for religious freedom, they mean ‘freedom’ to legally force all Americans to follow their creed—NO reproductive choice—sex for procreation only. Trump, as the poster boy for the ‘women as sex objects’ ideology, creates religious propaganda to unite his followers. This is the same Trump who proclaimed his lack of respect for women: he gropes them, claiming they let him grab by the pu**y because of fame. This is the same Trump who pays prostitutes for sex and for silence in front of his wife and daughters and sons. There is no celebration of life by this immoral devil. Can you imagine how they feel after being insulted and then hear his “pro-life” speech?
Surely, this person has separated himself from the God of love in order to have power.
What happened to the America that was founded on the freedom of EVERY citizen to be free to follow his own conscience and his own religion. That was a guarantee that we adult citizens don’t have to be bound by any religion/belief—we can be agnostics. Americans believe in taking responsibility for themselves, NOT in have GOP religionists decide what we do with ourselves.
We don’t need a self-righteous bully, a devilish man-child telling us what to do.
St. Augustine (354-430AD): Love God and do what you want.

When you have a sizable portfolio, you don’t want to lose it to a downturn, especially if you are living on the principal for income. If you are 10 years or more from living on a fixed income, you can stay invested the whole time and not suffer great loss. Actually, by staying in the market you are going to benefit when the rebound comes. No one has yet figured out how to time the market to get back in for the highest gain. However if you don’t have the 10 years for recovery, you must be prepared. The market fell in ’08 big time—37%. It then gained 27% and 14% and eventually you got back what you lost if you stayed around. Now we have had a 22% gain after 12%. Since no one (even the geniuses) knows what is going to happen, consider how you can be ready. Some of us anticipate the fall and our lack of time to make it up. So some have gone to a low-cost balanced fund for the bulk of our lifelong nest egg. Vanguard presents a viable strategy in its Wellesley Income Fund. It has returned 9.85% since 1970 with 60% bonds. Even though past is not the future, what about its record for market corrections? In ’08 this fund lost 10%. Some of us can live with that 10% correction since the fund has done well overall. And if we are using the tax-FREE trust account, we don’t have to pay tax on a bad year’s gains. I am ready for a correction, are you?

Our client’s Top Ten funds
extended their 11.7% annual returns for another year. For the last 20 years, clients who picked these low-cost funds did very well. Over time earning over 11% has created $ million accounts for their retirements. Investing can be easy. They bought these funds during their working lives and have maintained their annual average of over 11%. Solid returns and they avoided all the brokerage fees too with The Vanguard Top Ten.

2017 Total Return Fund        Long-term Return Longevity

            21.7% 500 Index                     11.1%* since 1976
            3.2% Energy                            10.7% since 1984
            17.9% Extended Market          10.9% since 1987
            19.6% Health                           16.5% since 1984
            42.9% International Growth      10.8% since 1981
            29.5% PRIMECAP                 13.9% since 1984
            16.1% Small Cap Index            10.7% since 1960
            10.2% Wellesley Income            9.9% since 1970
            19.1% Windsor                        11.5% since 1958
            16.8% Windsor II                    10.8% since 1985
            19.7% Average                        11.7%
*Average Annual Returns as of 12/31/17.
You enjoy high returns with less volitility too:

How the GOP will take away the Medicare benefits we paid for
What can Trump say NOW?: here is what Trump said back in 2013 on the topic of cuts: “It’s not unreasonable for people who paid into a system for decades to expect to get their money’s worth – that’s not an ‘entitlement,’ that’s honoring a deal.” But now Ryan and the GOP millionaires, flush with their $1 Trillion extra income, are claiming they must stop paying our Medicare bills. The GOP’s 2018 budget resolution calls for $500 billion in Medicare cuts, largely by adopting Speaker Ryan’s privatization scheme: we will be given vouchers that do not pay full premiums for traditional Medicare or private health insurance. Since the GOP will control the voucher amounts, we will be forced to use our SS benefits which will also be cut starting in 2034. Rising health care costs will leave us without coverage in some situations. Ryan also wants to hike the Medicare eligibility age from 65 to 67. Congressional millionaires just assume that the promises America made to its citizens can be broken rather than make cuts to a bloated defense industry and industry subsidies. Congress relies on these donor groups for their election money so the only place left to cut is US citizens. We are not represented in this process. We lose.

Where do you keep your money when you need it in a year?
Short-term savings vehicles are easy to find. Lots of CDs provide guaranteed return of about 2%. However, what if you want more? Taking a calculated risk with a diversified bond fund may be your best bet. A low-cost government and corporate bond fund that offers 3-4% is a solid foundation. You can access your money quickly and you are not paying a redemption/penalty charge. You pay 0.05% a year not the average bond fund cost of 0.75%. You are paying for fund maintenance not for ‘star’ fund managers. Or, depending on the amount, you can hedge with a set or ladder of longer-term CDs which provide money using climbing interest rates. If you are in retirement, low-cost annuities can be laddered so that you stay ahead of inflation in future years.

Make “The Don” Great Again

“I have absolute right to do what I want to do with the Justice Department,”

Art of the Deal does NOT work in government: too many power players

Trump can’t be a racist: he had a TV show”
“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?

‘I’m the only one that matters’ Mob Boss, Nov 3, 2017
The Don’s enforcers lie re: contacts to Putin and list longer: Why all the lies if innocent?
GOP suppresses vote: can voters make America normal again?

‘I was elected President.’
Bannon and I wish to “destroy the state”–our government: “I don’t care.”
GOP to destroy FBI investigators and rule of law to save their mob boss
Dictator’s great weapon is fear: Dems are evil TV ad

How Govt wastes our money:
Party politics brings end to American democracy and Reps get paid to do it. $6.5 biln/wk
We pay and train Afghan units implicated in “gross human rights violations

Kushner, in hock up to his ears to China investors, is meeting in secret with the Chinese. 
Chase gives raise to 9% of employees; Disney gives 1 time bonus to some. Propaganda!

Trump’s Labor proposal: employers to pocket their workers’ tips if pay minimum wage.
Trump’s new solar tax eliminates 23,000 jobs

Who owns your account now?
PA considers ending property tax: fund schools via sales and income tax.


“Fake news is a sign of intolerant and hypersensitive attitudes, and leads only to the spread of arrogance and hatred. That is the end result of untruth.” Pope Francis

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