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Good news and bad news about America’s retirement accounts

A survey by the Survey of Consumer Finances has found that the average IRA and 401(k) balances of American working households rose to $135,000 last year from $111,000 in 2013, according to this article in MarketWatch. While the averages increased markedly, however, the amounts varied significantly by income levels, write Alicia H. Munnell, director of Boston College's Center for Retirement Research. Balances for the highest quintile were $780,000 in 2016, a dramatic increase from $452,000 in 2013. In contrast, for the lowest quintile, balances amounted to only $26,700. Moreover, a significant percentage of households have no 401(k) balances at all. Please click here to continue reading: http

6 Things a Trust Can Do That You May Not Realize

To many people, a Trust seems like a basic (albeit highly effective) estate planning tool. The maker of the trust transfers ownership of certain assets to the trust, and a trustee manages those assets for the beneficiary or that trust. But your trust can do a lot more than that. A Trust can protect your beneficiaries. A trust can provide beneficiaries protection from lawsuits, creditors, or divorce. Establishing an irrevocable trust means a future creditor or claimant cannot satisfy a judgment against the assets held in that trust. A trust can also protect the interests of a minor child by setting guidelines for when distributions are made. A Trust can provide for children with special needs

2018 Estate And Gift Tax Limits: $11.2 Million Per Couple

It’s official. For 2018, the estate and gift tax exemption is $5.6 million per individual, up from $5.49 million in 2017. That means an individual can leave $5.6 million to heirs and pay no federal estate or gift tax. A married couple will be able to shield north of $11 million ($11.2 million) from federal estate and gift taxes. And the annual gift exclusion amount is $15,000 for 2018—up from $14,000 where it’s been stuck since 2013. Please click here to read full article: http://bit.ly/2yCJOhy

What Kinds of Financial Assets Do People Hold and How?

While the cost of getting involved in various financial markets has dropped over the years and access has increased, overall use of various instruments remains quite low. I came across an interesting blog by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis—one of my favorite Federal Reserve Banks to boot— on “What Types of Financial Assets Do People Hold?” The upshot was that, as you would expect, simple transaction accounts is by far the highest category for participation at 98 percent. Far down the list are retirement accounts, owned by some 52.1 percent of U.S. households. Things fall rather dramatically from there. Only 10 percent of households own assets indirectly via pooled investments—mutual fu

Hugh Hefner, Role Model? ... He Was When It Came To Estate Planning

When most people think of Hugh Hefner, they picture the famous Playboy bunny logo, young and buxom blonde women by his side, and his ever-present robe and captain's hat. But people should also think of his smart business and planning sense. After all, Hefner started a unique business with $8,000 in 1953 and grew it into a massive global enterprise. How Hefner used the resulting wealth to plan for his golden years and beyond was as unique and innovative as the way he lived his life. It certainly isn't a road-map for everyone, but it worked out well for him. Please click here to continue reading: http://bit.ly/2fWdf3n

 

Julian Schubach is an Investment Advisor Representative of Nosuris, Inc., a New York State Registered Investment Advisory. Investment Advisory Services are offered through Nosuris, Inc., a NYS Registered Investment Advisory. Please visit www.Nosuris.com for additional disclosures. Check the background of this firm on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.

©2016 by Julian Schubach