We must confine ourselves to the powers described in the Constitution, and the moment we pass it, we take an arbitrary stride towards a despotic Government. — James Jackson, First Congress, First Congress, 1st Annals of Congress, 489

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Tag archive: "investment"

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The Optimum Asset Allocation to Gold Is Always Zero

David John Marotta

Gold ownership has grown in popularity over the past five years. Fearful of monetary or societal failure, many hope that owning gold will bring them peace of mind. Advocates also suggest that some amount of gold is part of a balanced diversified portfolio. Arguments can be made for gold, but its investment properties are not among them. The optimum asset allocation to gold in an investment portfolio is zero.

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How Much Should I Have Saved Toward Retirement?

David John Marotta

You can use the analogy of the pioneers on the Oregon Trail as a way to think about your retirement planning. These stalwart individuals mapped which landmarks would show they were making progress and what they needed to do to reach each of them. They set out in late April or early May from Independence, Missouri, with the daunting goal of crossing the mountains and reaching their new home before the first snows closed the pass.

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How Much Should I Save Toward Retirement If I’m Starting Late?

David John Marotta

Knowing how much you should save for retirement is critical. But what if you are late getting started? The longer you delay, the shorter the time that compound interest can do its magic on your savings. Retirement planning is like the pioneers who set forth on the Oregon Trail. The hardy souls who began their journey in early spring had to average 15 miles a day to reach their goal. But those who delayed until summer needed to maintain a faster pace. The same is true of saving for retirement.

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How Much Should I Save for Retirement?

David John Marotta

I'm often asked, "How much should I save for retirement?" My standard answer, based on certain assumptions, is that you should save 15% of your take-home pay for retirement over your working career. As your situation varies, you must adjust your safe savings rate.<./p>

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The False Promises of Annuities and Annuity Calculators

David John Marotta

An annuity is a financial product sold as a way to collect and grow funds and then later receive those funds as a steady cash flow during retirement. Annuities have many flavors and features that vary this basic principle, but the basic terms you will hear are "deferred or immediate" and "fixed or variable." Ever-popular annuities sometimes sound too good to be true, which in itself is probably a good reason to avoid them.

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Smart Tax Planning for the Gap Years

David John Marotta

Many families seek financial planning advice specifically for retirement. But if they wait too long, they miss an important tax-planning opportunity. A great strategy is to take advantage of the time between retirement and Social Security at age 70, the so-called gap years. With some planning for this gap, you can move income into the lower tax brackets.

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Fund a Teenager’s Million-Dollar Retirement

David John Marotta

We teach teenagers a lot more about sexuality than we do about money. This can confuse them about what they should be learning. Give this article to a teenager and encourage him or her to start a Roth IRA. For a $4,300 gift spread out over the next seven years plus a little work on the teenager's part, you can fund a teenage child or grandchild's million-dollar retirement. Here's how it's done.

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What Is Comprehensive Wealth Management?

David John Marotta

The world of financial services is built mostly around products and services. So it is often difficult for families to understand the concept of comprehensive wealth management. Advisors who offer comprehensive wealth management are like financial concierges. Their only goal is to meet your needs. If you ask for fresh strawberries, they try to find them for you. And then they ask if you would like dipping chocolate or fresh cream to go with them.

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Are Investment Management Fees Tax Deductible?

David John Marotta

I often get asked, "Are investment management fees tax deductible?" The answer is not a simple "yes" or "no." Like many tax questions, the answer is "It depends." You only receive a tax deduction for the amount that exceeds 2% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) from line 38 of your Form 1040. If your cumulative expenses are under 2% of AGI, you will not get a deduction. For most of our working clients, their miscellaneous deductions fall far short of the 2% AGI threshold. But when clients retire, they are much more likely to qualify.

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How Do Financial Advisors Earn Their Fee?

David John Marotta

Most of our clients are frugal supersavers. Often they have accumulated their wealth not by earning more but by simply spending less. They are the millionaires next door living well below their means, which is why they have means. Few investors even ask how commission-based annuity salespeople earn their fee, but with fee-only advisors the question often arises. Investment fees are generally about 1% of assets under management and drop as assets rise above $1 million. The critical question to ask is "Where do financial advisors add value that might exceed the 1% fee they charge?"

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Featured Articles

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Limbaugh’s ‘Jesus on Trial:’ The Verdict is in

J. Matt Barber

With his latest book, “Jesus on Trial: A Lawyer Affirms the Truth of the Gospel,” David Limbaugh remains true to form. In fact, having read nearly every manuscript he’s penned, I believe this to be, hands down, David’s best and most important work to date. While managing to make each sentence of each chapter in this page-turner fascinating, Limbaugh also provides proof beyond any reasonable doubt that Jesus Christ, in both His historical and spiritual respects, was, and is, exactly who He said He is: God incarnate, the living, physically resurrected Savior of the world and the only, yes, that means the exclusive, path to God the Father.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

Republicans shouldn’t pander to Hispanic voters

Star Parker

The immigration issue is now a political football because of the political baggage it carries. Both parties want the votes of the Hispanic population, the most rapidly growing demographic in the country. And this is the same population most sensitive to the immigration issue because most of the illegals within our borders are from Latin American countries.

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SOS: Speaking of Seniors – Government and Turtles

Woodrow Wilcox

What do the federal government and turtles have in common? Speed! One of our senior citizen clients got married in October 2013. After her honeymoon, she did the responsible thing and asked the Social Security Administration to change the name on her social security card to her new, married name. A few weeks later, she got a new card with her married name. But, Medicare never sent her a new Medicare ID card with her new last name.

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The Perfect Plan

A.J. Castellitto

159 House Republicans (including my district rep) and 33 Senate Republicans voted for arming Syrian rebels against the will of their constituents. In the meantime, our borders are a mess and our own government has been enabling (or simply ignoring) a multitude of illegal entries via land and air. Not only are we arming those who hate us (and will eventually come for us) but we are ignoring (and/or supporting) those who are planning and plotting something against us on our own soil.

Barack Obama and Ted Kennedy (Photo credit: Sage Ross)

EB-5 Program a Ted Kennedy Brainchild

Bob Ellis

The EB-5 "cash-for-visas" program has generated a lot of controversy and discussion in South Dakota over the past couple of years. Did you know the EB-5 program that some "Republicans" have embraced was created by a Democrat Ted Kennedy bill?

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"We don't intend to turn the Republican Party over to the traitors in the battle just ended. We will have no more of those candidates who are pledged to the same goals as our opposition and who seek our support. Turning the party over to the so-called moderates wouldn't make any sense at all." - Ronald Reagan, Nov. 10, 1964