What We Are Reading Today - March 30th

Benjamin Haas |

Instead of all the market commentary, which is valuable too, can we please start talking about the serious financial planning opportunities a bear market and the CARES Act present? There’s so much to talk about starting with focusing on the things our clients CAN control and that directly impact the path they are taking in pursuit of their financial goals. Here's what's on our minds:

  • Roth conversions - why not consider converting assets at lower values? If RMDs are suspended, that could be an opportunity for retirees too, right? Why not consider offsetting the taxes by pairing with charitable gifts (see below)?
  • Everyone now can deduct $300 for charitable gifts in 2020 whether you itemize or not. I'm not going to dismiss this line item in the CARES Act because it seems like a small amount. I think we should be encouraging every client/person who is able to give something to someone to do so. We all need to feel good about giving during these difficult times
  • The stimulus that’s coming - it’s so needed for many families. If you/your client qualifies and doesn’t need it, talk about where to save/ how to save/how to gift? Forward fund IRA/HSA in anticipation for the market to be higher a year from now come 2020 tax time?
  • The 50% AGI charitable deduction limit was removed. This could be a once in lifetime opportunity to fund a donor advised fund/charitable trust in a big way, or "pay it forward" to help a charity or the church, etc. Or, if 2020 was the year where someone needed to offset certain taxes on the sale of property or business or some other windfall, shouldn't this be discussed?
  • To the business owners - there are loan provisions and payroll tax flexibility, employee retention incentives, etc. We need to start talking about this stuff this week!
  • Check to maybe refinance mortgages with these rates so low? Or fill the oil tank with prices still well below where they were before winter?