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Wealth Advisor, Madeline Valente CFP® is quoted in this US News and World Report Article about the psychology of financial planning.
A financial planner, René Bruer likes to joke that instead of earning his MBA in finance, he should have studied psychology.
A certified financial planner based in Tallahassee, Florida, Bruer estimates only 20 percent of his time with clients is spent talking about actual finances. The other 80 percent of the time, he's playing the role of therapist. That's because investors can often be tempted to make rash decisions as they react to economic or political news, or personal events. It is Bruer's job to help clients understand how money gets entangled with their fears and emotions, all while reminding them to stick to their long-term investment strategy.
BlueSky Wealth Advisor Stephen Fletcher, CFP® shares helpful advice to help you know if it is time to update your estate plan.
Too often, estate planning is put off because the discussion is too morbid. No one likes to think about their death, understandably. But if estate planning isn’t done right, and updated after certain life events, you can end up leaving a real mess to your heirs. Wishes and circumstances can change, sometimes dramatically. Estate planning isn’t something that should just be done once and then forgotten about. In fact, here at BlueSky, we look through our clients’ estate planning documents every few years, confirming everything is still correct, and the wishes are still current. This review can save the surviving spouse and children significant stress and confusion. Some of the major pieces of information we look for are these:
Senior Wealth Advisor Bronwyn Shone, CFP® shares the many advantages to a Health Savings Account (HSA).
In a recent blog, “Contain Yourself! The tax treatment of different account types and why account structure matters,” we discussed account types according to their tax characteristics: taxable, tax- deferred, or tax-free. Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) combine characteristics of both tax-deferred and tax-free accounts: funds going into an HSA are tax deductible, they grow tax-free and withdrawals are tax-free if the funds are used for qualifying medical expenses. If used properly, these accounts are triple tax exempt, making them rare and valuable.
Senior Wealth Advisor John Gjertsen, CFA, CFP®, EA explains that marginal tax brackets aren't always what they seem:
Since 2013, federal marginal income tax rates have been calculated along a progressive scale, starting at 10%, then climbing to 15%, 25%, 28%, 33%, 35%, and finally 39.6%. However, the committees of brilliant (sarcasm) legislators who crafted the US Tax Code have hidden some rather onerous marginal rates lurking in rather pedestrian places like the 15% bracket.
Senior Wealth Advisor John Gjertsen, CFA, CFP®, EA shows how we see the idea of diversification frequently misapplied.
Senior Wealth Advisor, Aaron Szager, CFP®, explains important considerations in managing a concentrated stock position.
There is an undeniable creation of new wealth in the Silicon Valley area. Much of this wealth stems from employees and founders in the high-tech industry receiving company stock as a component of overall compensation. In the case of start-up companies, the stock component may be up to 100% of compensation. With the stock market on a steady rise since the recession of 2008-2009, employees given grants of Restricted Stock Units (“RSU’s”), Stock Options, or enrollment in Employee Stock Purchase Plans (“ESPP”) in years past may have their company stock making up a significant portion of overall net worth. Concentrated stock positions are the norm in this area and pose both a substantial risk and opportunity; factors which are quite fitting for Silicon Valley. Also, with a younger working demographic, many tech employees do not remember the “good ‘ol days” of the 90’s, and the subsequent collapse of the tech industry in the early 2000’s. In fact, 3 of Fortune Magazine’s top 10 most admired companies of 2000 (Lucent, Cisco, and Intel) lost 98%, 86%, and 79% respectively of their stock value in the following 2 years (source: Fortune Magazine). So, with the enviable situation of having too much of a good stock, the question is what to do: sell, hold, or hedge?
David Blain, CFA has over 20 years experience advising small business owners with how to remain successful for generations.
No one likes to think about aging-related issues such as retirement, debilitating illness or death. But, almost everyone agrees on the importance of planning for such eventualities. And, never is such planning more important than when you are the steward of a family-owned business. Developing and implementing a business succession plan is essential to seamlessly passing down the company to future generations. It’s not difficult, but it does require careful thought and a business-like approach.
Madeline Valente, CFP® explores some of the many factors that go into cross-border planning:
As a country, we are increasingly becoming a more global, mobile workforce and population in general. Many retirees are now envisioning spending their leisure years in a foreign country or countries. Employees commonly receive opportunities and assignments to work in a country that is not their country of citizenship. Amidst the excitement and the flurry of packing, traveling, and settling in, many people do not think to ask one of the most important questions relating to the adventure: What happens to your money and financial life when you venture beyond your borders?