Standing in the middle of the road is very dangerous; you get knocked down by the traffic from both sides. — Margaret Thatcher

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.

retirement

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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The Boy Scouts of America present a gift to Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates after presenting a copy of their "Report to the Nation" at the Pentagon, Feb. 26, 2007. Defense Dept. photo by Cherie A. Thurlby

Liberals in California Target Judges with Boy Scout Ties

Gina Miller

Give them an inch, and they’ll demand a mile. We warned you that the terrible decision by the Boy Scouts of America to allow openly homosexual boys into membership would only lead to further attacks against the organization by the militant homosexual Left. We were right, and the target is now judges who have ties to the Scouts.

A female model demonstrating use of an electronic cigarette. (Photo credit: Michael Dorausch)

E-Cigarette Ban: Ideology Over Common Sense

Rick Manning

Ignorance amongst some politicians continues to rein as those who attack e-cigarettes in their war on tobacco are limiting the use of devices that help many smokers lessen or eliminate their tobacco dependency.

Pulling Down the Statue of King George III, N.Y.C. A romanticized depiction of the Sons of Liberty destroying the statue after the Declaration was read by George Washington to citizens and his troops in New York City on July 9, 1776.

The Rightful Remedy

Guest Author

Two hundred thirty years after the Founders won American independence from a tyrannical monarch, the inheritors of their estate are facing a hard reality: liberty is jealously defended or it is lost. As all three branches of the federal government exercise powers beyond those granted, our God-given rights are under sustained assault. The question is: what is the remedy?

Japanese Coast Guard Cutters stand watch over the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands. While disputed by China, Japan currently controls the island chain and has fiercely chased vessels from China and Taiwan that have entered the waters without permission. (Photo credit: Al Jazeera)

Rumors of War

Victor Sharpe

Despite the swirling tensions in the ever perilous Middle East and the current hostilities between Russia and the Ukraine, the real powder keg that could ignite a potential World War Three lies in the Far East as Japan and China fight over ownership of five uninhabited islands and three barren rocks.

environmentalism

Earth Day — High Holy Day of Paganism

JD Longstreet

I find it more than a little interesting that within 48 hours we are celebrating the high holy days of two of the world's largest and oldest religions: Christianity and (the oldest) Paganism.

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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