FBI: Why Do You Rob Banks?

A: Because That Is Where the Money Is.

The above exchange is attributed to Willie Sutton a nationally (in)famous serial bank robber during the 1930s.

The same applies to income tax.  The 2020 political cycle (aka “silly season”) started earlier than usual. On que, all sorts of calumny are attributed to the IRS.  In response, it may be of some inconvenient interest to look at the facts.

The IRS recently released its summary of the 2016 individual (Form 1040) tax year returns. The following table summarizes the key data points:

Row A shows the number of cumulative tax returns filed by each group of individuals.  There...

What does it mean to be a patriot? Is it what the media and celebrities tell us, or is it something more meaningful?

The current uncertainties contributing to the market's ups and downs have probably been there in one form or another as people have been living in groups.  As many people have long noted, social media and the Internet brings us everything, and social media and the Internet brings everything with an unprecedented immediacy.  This contributes to the general feeling that the world is falling apart.

The world has been falling apart for many millennia. All the world’s religions seek to bring order and reason to a chaotic world.  And all the world’s religions date back millennia.

Several years ago, a financial planning speaker brought this hom...

The December 2017 tax cut law was the longtime work of former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and his pursuit of supply side economics - making the tax code simpler as well as lowering rates. As with most supply side economics in a world awash with Keynesian economic theory, the changes are not always obvious or immediately visible.

Pay attention to collecting your tax docs in a timely way to start your tax return in late February so you have time to react before April 15, 2019, if the final tax return is not going in the direction you want.

Dividends and equities matter in the portfolio. Dividends allow the purchase of additional equities or fixed income securities to maintain the equity/fixed income balance. It is how future inflation is hedged.

Buried in the news at the end of August was an executive order by President Trump to the US Treasury and US Labor Departments to restudy Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) from retirement accounts. These distributions now start at age 70 from IRAs, 401ks, and tax-sheltered savings plans (with certain limited exceptions).

See what’s going on with the world, the market, the 10 Year Treasury, tariffs, and my dog Riley during this slow time before the storm of cooler fall weather, school starting, business picking up, and Congress coming back into session.

The elections coming in November are important for two reasons. The first reason is that voters can have their say in the where they want the country to go and how they want the county to be run. The second reason is stock market performance.

February 1, 2018

The market is on a tear and suddenly everyone is an expert on the economy. The reality is that the stock market will not continue to go up forever – trees don’t grow to the sky. At some point, the market will pull back.

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