Tax Planning at the Mid-Stage of Your Career

Financial planning that focuses on your goals and helps you achieve flexibility in your journey is critical at the mid-point of your career. It’s how you build a plan to help you realize the lifestyle you want now while keeping longer-term achievements on track. Staying on top of your career earnings by regularly benchmarking your salary to the market and effectively managing equity compensation are two areas where you can keep the income element growing and your wealth building. But an overlooked area is how much of your income you get to keep.

As income increases, it becomes even more essential to ensure that you are optimizing your tax planning. And a good tax plan doesn’t just happen in April every year. Proactive planning during the year, and a strategic plan that takes a multi-year view, can make a big difference in keeping your lifetime taxes as low as possible.

Moves you make now can also set you up for more income potential and greater tax efficiency in retirement. If an early retirement, work-optional, or one spouse temporarily or permanently leaving the workforce is a goal, focusing on effective tax planning can get you there sooner. When you put all the plan elements in play, you can create a lot of optionalities.

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Inflation, the Fed, and Recession. It’s Not Linear.

The June CPI number came in at 9.1%. This is not only the second consecutive month that we’ve seen an increase – it was a whopper. Consensus expectations were for an 8.8% annualized increase in inflation. This huge spike came after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by a surprise 75 basis points after the June meeting and communicated that more – and higher – rate increases are in store.

As measured by the futures markets, the immediate response was to assume that the high inflation number would increase the likelihood of the Fed enacting at least a 75-basis point rate increase and potentially a 100-basis point increase at the FOMC meeting at the end of July.

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Retiring in a Volatile Market: Control What You Can

Retirement during a volatile market is unsettling. Whether you are on the cusp or have already made the leap, a market downturn’s impact on your savings will be felt now and potentially for years to come. How do you keep your plan on track and your desired lifestyle in place?

If you can’t control income, you’ll need to control expenses. And that means budgeting and taxes. You can deploy tactics and strategies to optimize these factors no matter what stage you are in on your retirement journey.

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GMB Ep #138: How to Use Options as Portfolio Insurance

As we approach an era of economic uncertainty, many investors are becoming concerned about the value of their investments falling. This is where, if used carefully, options contracts can give investors the ability to safeguard their investment portfolios. In this week’s episode, Grant explains the pros and cons using options as portfolio insurance, as well as some major risks investors could face when using this investment strategy. 

 

 

Show Notes

[02:19] Introduction –  Grant discusses how investing in options can be used to reduce portfolio risk for some investors.

[06:57] Put Option – Grant gives a comprehensive overview of put options and the benefits and risks of investing in them.

[17:10] ETF – Grant explains how having option contracts on ETFs can be advantageous.

[20:25] SPY – Grant describes SPY ETFs and provides a hypothetical scenario on utilizing option contracts.

[24:30] Call Option – Grant shares the pros and cons of call options.

[31:20] Combining Strategies – Grant describes an investment option in which you can create revenue by selling call options against positions that you already hold in your portfolio.

[34:22] Be Mindful – Grant stresses the importance of limiting risk, and why you should proceed with caution if you’re considering this investment strategy.

 

Resources

GMB #137: All About I-Bonds, TIPS, and Bond Investing in Inflationary Times

As inflation continues to rise, many questions have come up regarding best practices for safeguarding investments. This week on Grow Money Business, Grant takes a deep dive into bond investing in an inflationary market, and answers some important questions about Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS) and I-bonds. Throughout the episode, Grant shares his thoughts on when they may be a good fit for your portfolio, as well as some important considerations and strategic approaches to bond investing.

 

 

Show Notes

[04:07] Bond Investing – Grant explains the process of bond investing and the importance of allocating a portion of your portfolio to US government securities.

[08:44] Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities – Grant discusses the similarities and distinctions between ordinary US government securities and treasury inflation-protected securities.

[13:41] Interest Rate Risk – Grant explains why the value of TIPS are decreasing even though they are intended to protect investors against inflation.

[21:26] I Bonds – Grant describes the structure of I-Bonds, and shares his thoughts on who is best suited to invest in them.

[25:48] $10,000 Limitation – Grant shares a strategic approach on how to circumvent the $10,000 per year per person investment limit that the Treasury Direct website imposes.

[29:00] Emergency Fund Cash – Grant explains why he does not recommend investing emergency fund cash in I-bonds.

[32:50] Borrowings – Grant describes how rising inflation affects borrowing and how to benefit from borrowing in inflationary times.

 

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Mistakes are Expensive: A New Generation Embraces Financial Planning at the Mid-Stage

Financial planning has evolved beyond investing assets. The old model limited comprehensive planning to a wealthy few with high levels of manageable assets. For many people, their first engagement with a financial advisor was when they needed to create a retirement income plan.

The new fee-only model allows financial advisors with experience and knowledge to assist across the landscape of financial life. And a new generation with very different goals is taking advantage of all the elements to create plans that work for them.

  • Retire early, create “work optional,” or work part-time
  • Save for kids’ college
  • Enjoy life now – and save for the future
  • Invest in a second home or rental property

This generation has created high income and realizes they do not have to wait another 20 or 30 years to have the lifestyle they truly want. They understand that financial planning is all about tools, tactics, and strategies that can be deployed in tandem to help them keep more of what they make and actively grow their wealth.

It’s about understanding the options, making the right choices for a highly individual path forward, and solving problems.

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Staying Safe Around Bears

The S&P 500 recently breached bear territory, which is largely agreed to be a market that has dropped 20% from a recent peak. It’s common to see some retracing. The “bear-market bounce” is real.

However, even if the market recovers a bit, it will take some time, good sentiment, and real economic progress for performance to climb from bear to correction to neutral to positive.

In the meantime, outside of a short, sharp drop in 2020, we haven’t seen this volatile market since, you guessed it, 2008.

Driven by inflation, global uncertainty, supply chain issues, and rising rates – economists are predicting a recession in the months and years ahead. Some are even saying we’re in a recession now.

With a bear market, and 20%+ drops in the market, comes a wave of emotions: Stress, sadness, and anxiety. The list can go on and on.

The National Park Service has a lot of advice for safeguarding yourself when you encounter not-Smokey out in the wild. And much of it is based on psychology and managing your own fear, so that you stay in control of yourself and the situation.

We’ve borrowed from that playbook to give you tactical pointers in navigating bear markets, volatility, and turbulence.
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July Market Commentary: Will the Fed’s Rate Resolve Lead to Recession?

June Recap and July Outlook

After a barely positive May, June saw the bear market return across indices. We ended up with the worst first half performance since 1970. A mid-month surprise 75 basis point rate hike at the June FOMC meeting, followed by Fed Chairman Powell’s testimony to Congress in which he indicated aggressive rate increases at the July and September meetings, convinced markets that inflation is the priority for the Fed.

Chairman Powell indicated that the current level of inflation – a historic 8.6% – will require a short-term rate of at least 3% to get to a neutral level. With the Fed funds rate currently at 1.50%-1.75%, that means several more rate increases this year.

Are we headed for a recession? Are we already there? Or is the Fed’s plan to slow the economy and bring the labor markets into balance beginning to work?

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GMB #136: Taming the Cost of College With Brad Baldridge

Properly planning for a college education has become one of the crucial decisions that could define the future of a young adult. This week on Grow Money Business, we’re joined by Brad Baldridge, a licensed financial planner, consultant for college funding, and main podcaster for the “Taming the High Cost of Education.” Brad assists families in preparing and saving for college by offering individualized planning services and insights on the most recent tax, cash flow, and academic strategies. Throughout the episode we discuss many important strategies for reducing the cost of college expenses.

 

 

Show Notes

[01:54] Background – Brad describes how he became interested in college planning and shares some thoughts on why it is so expensive.

[05:23] Sticker Price – Brad explains the evolution of sticker pricing and how it impacts college planning.

[21:24] Process –  Brad walks us through his advising process on how he helps individuals apply, enroll, and select the best school for them.

[27:16] Strategies for Business Owners –  Brad explains what company owners should know about planning and paying for their children’s college education.

[45:36] Common Mistakes – Brad outlines several common mistakes people make when planning for a future college education.

[50:22] Best Choice – Brad explains how to differentiate between applying to a college with a reputable financial aid office versus one that may not be as transparent.

[59:42] Taming the High Cost of College – Brad describes how his college funding company serves its clients.

 

Resources

GMB #135: A Longer Look at Inflation & Monetary Policy With Kirk Chisholm

In recent months we’ve seen the highest inflation rates in the United States since the 1980s. As a result, many people seem to be concerned about the ripple effects of inflation and what the Federal Reserve is doing to handle it. This week on Grow Money Business, we’re joined by Kirk Chisholm, an expert in inflation, monetary policy, self-directed IRAs, and 401K. Kirk is also the wealth manager & principal of Innovative Advisory Group, which reshapes the wealth management industry via innovation. In this episode, Grant and Kirk dive deep into inflation and the current state of the markets.

 

 

Show Notes

[02:27] Background – Kirk describes his background and his journey thus far.

[05:54] Risk Management – Kirk provides a thorough overview of risk management from a portfolio perspective and how he applies it in his firm.

[15:59] Inflation – Kirk offers comprehensive perspectives on the current state of the markets.

[24:31] Deep-dive Into Inflation – Kirk and Grant dive deep into how rising interest rates will impact the United States economy

[48:22] Banking Systems – Kirk discusses the impact inflation has on banking systems, as well as his unique approach to investing money.

[01:00:40] Federal Reserve – Kirk shares his opinions on the Federal Reserve.

 

Resources