Tag: Rick Brooks

Getting Ready for Medicare

| August 6, 2018 | 0 Comments

Medicare is the primary health insurance for U.S. citizens over 65. Unless you (or your spouse) are still working and covered by an employer-sponsored group health plan, all persons age 65 and older must sign up for Medicare to obtain health insurance. The Medicare rules are complex and can be confusing. It is important to […]

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Social Security and Longevity

| July 2, 2018 | 0 Comments

Every year, the Trustees for Social Security release a report which discusses the funding of the Social Security program. While it’s possible that Congress may enact changes to the Social Security program at some point in the future, we can’t predict how (or even if) that might take shape. With the caveat that there is […]

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Roth Conversions: More Important Than Ever Before

| June 4, 2018 | 0 Comments

A Roth Conversion is when you distribute money out of a regular IRA and “convert” it into a Roth IRA. Because you are taking a distribution from your IRA, this creates taxable income. If the funds are then left in the Roth IRA for five years or more (and you are over 59½), earnings in […]

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The Two Best Tools for Understanding Your Finances

| May 11, 2018 | 0 Comments

Have you ever looked at an empty toolbox and wondered what should be in there? What are the fundamental tools that a craftsman absolutely must have? For financial planners, two of the most important tools are a person’s balance sheet and cash flow statement. A quick review of these two documents can tell a lot […]

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The Problem With Protectionism

| April 2, 2018 | 0 Comments

On balance, global trade makes everyone better off. Trade lowers prices for domestic consumers and increases the choice and variety of goods available. Sixty-inch flat screen TVs would not be selling for $600 today without the increased availability and lower costs of global trade. So how do tariffs affect trade, and why is the stock […]

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Two Ways To Keep Your Charitable Deductions in 2018

| February 3, 2018 | 0 Comments

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 changed a lot about living in California. While the Standard Deduction doubled, personal exemptions were eliminated and several prominent deductions were capped or eliminated, including: • Deductions for state and local taxes (income, property, sales and other) are capped at $10,000. • The cap on new mortgage […]

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Are We Worrying About The Right Things?

| January 2, 2018 | 0 Comments

As we close out 2017 and start looking into the new year, several themes have been pervasive in our public discourse. As an investor, it’s important to look not just at the market results (which have been spectacular), but also the challenges facing us in the years to come. One thing that has struck me […]

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Skilled Care Guidance

| December 3, 2017 | 0 Comments

Have you ever had a loved one in a skilled nursing rehabilitation facility? This often follows a significant stay in the hospital and allows a patient to heal and strengthen under skilled care before coming home. Medicare will pay for the first 100 days (or so) of care in such a facility, but after that […]

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The Care and Feeding of Your Estate Plan

| November 3, 2017 | 0 Comments

Most affluent Californians have some form of estate plan. While a will is a basic necessity, many people have invested in a comprehensive package including a will, trust, powers of attorney and advanced health care directive. As I’ve written before, your estate plan determines what happens to your assets once you’ve passed away or when […]

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From Academic to Retirement – A Case Study

| October 2, 2017 | 0 Comments

It’s been said that roughly 10,000 baby boomers retire every day. Even though so many people are doing it, there’s still a considerable amount of stress as you transition from working into retirement. The big financial transition is from drawing a paycheck to drawing down savings, but the emotional changes of purpose and identity can […]

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