Published: Tue, 19 Jan 2021 17:10:21 +0000
Economic Blog 1/19/2021 Investment-grade credit spreads, the extra yield you get from investment-grade corporate bonds compared to similarly dated US Treasuries, have already tightened to a level you usually only see during the middle of the economic cycle—and that can … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 19 Jan 2021 16:00:42 +0000
Tuesday, January 19, 2021 Top Story Market Signals Covers It All This week’s Market Signals podcast covers all the latest events impacting markets and the economy: Q4 earnings, a new stimulus proposal, the Democratic blue wave, and President-elect Joe Biden’s … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 15 Jan 2021 21:12:53 +0000
Market Blog January 15, 2021 Index Performance US and International Equities The major market indexes finished the week lower. In addition, many international markets followed in lockstep with their US counterparts. Emerging markets (MSCI EM Index) outperformed developed international markets … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 15 Jan 2021 17:00:19 +0000
Economic Blog January 15, 2021 One of the top questions we’ve received recently has been what a blue wave may mean for investments. After the Democrats won the two Senate runoff elections in Georgia, they will now control the White … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 15 Jan 2021 16:00:02 +0000
Friday, January 15, 2021 Top Story Retail Sales Worse Than Expected Retail sales in the United States declined 0.7% month over month in December, below all but two of the 70 forecasts in Bloomberg’s consensus survey (US Census Bureau). The … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 14 Jan 2021 17:25:56 +0000
Market Blog January 14, 2021 Heading into 2020, we maintained our preference for growth stocks as we believed that earnings growth would become harder to come by as the economic cycle aged, and their robust earnings growth was greatly appealing. … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 14 Jan 2021 16:00:27 +0000
Thursday, January 14, 2021 Top Story New Street View Video Sets Positive Tone The stock market has started off 2021 surprisingly well, and LPL Research Chief Market Strategist Ryan Detrick says this bull market is alive and well. “Surprises to … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 13 Jan 2021 17:00:38 +0000
Economic Blog 1/13/21 Rising COVID-19 cases and concern about the policy environment put a dent in small business optimism in the month of December, the index’s second straight monthly decline. As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, the … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 13 Jan 2021 16:00:57 +0000
Wednesday, January 13, 2021 Top Story Consumer prices in line with forecasts Consumer inflation for December, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI), grew 0.4% month over month, buoyed by higher gasoline prices. Core inflation, excluding food and energy prices, … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 12 Jan 2021 17:00:41 +0000
Economic Blog 1/12/2021 Treasury yields hit two key levels the first week of 2021. As shown in the LPL Chart of the Day, the 10-year Treasury yield moved above 1% for the first time since March 2020, and the 10-year … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 12 Jan 2021 16:00:55 +0000
Tuesday, January 12, 2021 Top Story 2021 Policies Update and the Markets In this week’s Market Signals podcast and video, LPL Research talks about 2021 policy updates and the possibilities of higher taxes and more regulation, more stimulus, higher Treasury … Continue reading →
Published: Mon, 11 Jan 2021 16:00:53 +0000
Monday, January 11, 2021 Top Story Stocks open modestly lower as investors reassess risk sentiment. The US dollar traded higher with demand supported by higher Treasury European stocks pulled back from a 10-month high in midday trading as Germany underperforms. … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 08 Jan 2021 21:00:11 +0000
Market Blog January 8, 2021 Index Performance View enlarged chart. US and International Equities This week, we gained clarity on the makeup of Congress with the Georgia US Senate runoff. Democrats will now have control of both chambers of Congress, … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 08 Jan 2021 17:00:59 +0000
Economic Blog 1/8/2021 The differences in strength between the stock market and real economy were laid bare this week as the stock market surged to new highs while the jobs market continued to deteriorate and remains well short of its … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 08 Jan 2021 16:00:05 +0000
Friday, January 8, 2021 Top Story Jobs Growth Turns Negative The US economy lost 140,000 jobs in December, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, missing Bloomberg survey estimates of a 50,000 gain. This represents the first monthly loss … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 07 Jan 2021 18:19:52 +0000
Markets Blog 1/07/21 2020 was a good year for stock investors despite unprecedented challenges. After being down more than 30% at the March 2020 lows, the S&P 500 Index ended the year with a solid 18.4% total return. Last year … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 07 Jan 2021 16:23:11 +0000
Thursday, January 7, 2021 Top Story LPL Research Condemns Violence in Washington, DC LPL Research condemns the violent actions at the US Capitol Building on Wednesday and hopes for healing in our nation’s political and societal divides. We fully support … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 06 Jan 2021 17:00:50 +0000
Market Blog January 6, 2021 Well, we can officially say goodbye to 2020. Although there still will be many challenges in 2021, we do see much better times ahead. Just how amazing was it? “2020 will go down in history … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 06 Jan 2021 16:00:44 +0000
Wednesday, January 6, 2021 Top Story 2020 in 20 Charts 2020 was a historic year in many ways, which made it hard to highlight just a few charts. So in honor of 2020, we picked 20 charts that show how … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 18:18:28 +0000
Economic Blog 1/5/2021 US investment-grade bonds had a solid 2020 despite a tumultuous year overall. The broad Bloomberg Barclays US Aggregate Bond Index had a total return of 7.5%—not as strong as 2019’s 8.7% but its fifth-best year in the … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 05 Jan 2021 15:57:24 +0000
Tuesday, January 5, 2021 Top Story 10 Lessons LPL Research Learned in 2020 LPL Research reviews its top 10 takeaways from 2020, the year-end Santa Claus Rally, and what the markets are saying about the Georgia runoffs in this week’s … Continue reading →
Published: Mon, 04 Jan 2021 17:46:29 +0000
Market Blog View enlarged table. US and International Equities The S&P 500 Index, Dow Jones Industrial, and Nasdaq Composite indexes, continued their November run in December. As noted last month, November was a record-breaking month for equities, thanks to … Continue reading →
Published: Mon, 04 Jan 2021 16:42:25 +0000
Monday, January 4, 2021 Daily Insights Markets start the New Year higher. US markets continue their trek higher following last year’s nine-month rally. Market participants appear optimistic for a better 2021 in the wake of COVID-19 vaccine progress and December’s … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 31 Dec 2020 21:02:00 +0000
Market Blog 12/31/2020 US and International Equities As we finish out a challenging year this week, Congress passed COVID-19 relief, providing increased unemployment benefits, small business assistance, along with an additional $600 stimulus payment. In addition, Congress is presently in … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 31 Dec 2020 16:00:51 +0000
Thursday, December 31, 2020 Happy New Year to all from LPL Research! We made it through a very challenging 2020. Have a happy, healthy, and safe 2021. Top Story What a big end of year rally means. The S&P 500 … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 31 Dec 2020 13:00:51 +0000
Market Blog 12/31/2020 Welcome to the last day of 2020! It has been a devastating year in so many ways, yet for investors it has been quite rewarding. Much of the gains in 2020 have taken place the final two … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 30 Dec 2020 17:00:47 +0000
Economic Blog 12/30/20 For many economic data series, 2020 has been a roller coaster. Not for housing, however. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing measures jump-started the “nesting” behavioral shift away from urban apartments and into single-family … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 30 Dec 2020 16:00:31 +0000
Wednesday, December 30, 2020 Top Story Home prices continue to climb. While some industries continue to struggle during the pandemic, housing data in the United States (US) remains a strong point of the US economy. Standard & Poor’s 20-city composite … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 29 Dec 2020 17:54:05 +0000
Economic Blog 12/29/2020 2020 was an extraordinary year for the Federal Reserve (Fed). The Fed responded swiftly and decisively to the rapidly accelerating financial and economic uncertainty brought on by efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. The current Fed was … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 29 Dec 2020 16:00:03 +0000
Tuesday, December 29, 2020 Top Story Lessons learned from the Fed in 2020. The Federal Reserve (Fed) will remain in focus for markets in 2021. “Don’t fight the Fed” seems like obvious investor guidance in hindsight, but it didn’t in … Continue reading →
Published: Mon, 28 Dec 2020 16:00:31 +0000
Monday, December 28, 2020 Top Story Solid holiday shopping season. Holiday sales grew 3%, beating forecasts for a 2.4% increase according to MasterCard’s SpendingPulse. Online sales rose 49% year over year. These results were impressive for a recessionary period—the comparable … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 24 Dec 2020 17:28:26 +0000
Market Blog 12/24/2020 Data is as of 11:15 AM ET View enlarged chart. US and International Equities This week, concerns about a new COVID-19 strain in the United Kingdom along with new lockdown restrictions have weighed on the markets even … Continue reading →
Published: Thu, 24 Dec 2020 16:00:25 +0000
Thursday, December 24, 2020 Top Story Markets Close Early Today The NYSE and NASDAQ will close at 1 p.m. ET today. The bond markets will close at 2 p.m. ET. All markets will be closed Friday, December 25, and will … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 23 Dec 2020 16:16:32 +0000
Wednesday, December 23, 2020 Top Story Jobless Claims Beat Weekly jobless claims halted their recent skid as 803,000 Americans filed for unemployment insurance according to the US Department of Labor, ahead of Bloomberg consensus estimates of 880,000. Continuing claims also … Continue reading →
Published: Wed, 23 Dec 2020 15:17:21 +0000
Market Blog 12/23/20 “If Santa should fail to call, bears may come to Broad and Wall.” —Yale Hirsh December is widely known as one of the best months of the year for stocks, but most don’t realize that the majority … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 22 Dec 2020 19:54:06 +0000
Economic Blog 12/22/2020 With concern about inflation rising for some investors, we’ve started to receive questions about Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities, or TIPS. With TIPS, the principal of the bond, the part that’s paid back when the bond matures, is adjusted … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 22 Dec 2020 19:43:39 +0000
Economic Blog 12/22/2020 Brexit, the United Kingdom’s (UK) withdrawal from the European Union (EU), is making news again as it stumbles toward its apparent conclusion on December 31, 2020. The major sticking point now: fish. The UK officially left the … Continue reading →
Published: Tue, 22 Dec 2020 16:00:35 +0000
Tuesday, December 22, 2020 Top Story Stimulus Bridges to Recovery Recent economic data shows evidence of slowing momentum in the US economy, but the new stimulus package could keep the recovery moving forward. This week’s Market Signals podcast reviews the … Continue reading →
Published: Mon, 21 Dec 2020 16:00:36 +0000
Monday, December 21, 2020 Top Story Stocks Open Lower The S&P 500 Index opened roughly 1.5% lower, while the tech-focused NASDAQ fared better. Stocks are responding to more curbs to contain the spread of COVID-19 and bucking a tailwind created … Continue reading →
Published: Fri, 18 Dec 2020 21:00:40 +0000
Market Blog 12/18/20 View enlarged chart. US and International Equities The major market indexes reversed course from last week to finish this week higher. The tech-laded Nasdaq composite was the bright spot, returning 3% this week. So far, the Nasdaq … Continue reading →
It is the process of developing and implementing a master plan that facilitates the distribution of your property after your death and according to your goals and objectives.
At your death, you leave behind the people that you love and all your worldly goods. Without advance planning, you have no say about who gets what, and more of your property may go to others, like the federal government, instead of your loved ones. If you care about (1) how and to whom your property is distributed, and (2) ensuring that your property is preserved for your loved ones, you need to know more about estate planning.
As a process, estate planning requires a little effort on your part. First, you'll want to come to terms with dying, at least to a degree that you can deal with the necessary planning. Understandably, your death can be a very uncomfortable subject, but the discussions in this area are full of references to your death, so it really can't be avoided. Some statements may seem too businesslike and unfeeling, but tiptoeing around the subject of dying will only make the planning process more difficult.
Estate planning may be important to individuals with a wide range of financial situations. In fact, it may be more important if you have a smaller estate because the final expenses will have a much greater impact on your estate. Wasting even a single asset may cause your loved ones to suffer from a lack of financial resources.
Your master plan can consist of strategies that are simple and inexpensive to implement (e.g., a will or life insurance). If your estate is larger, the estate planning process can be more complex and expensive.
Implementing most strategies will probably require you to hire professional help of some kind, an attorney, an accountant, a trust officer, or an insurance agent, for example. If your estate is large or complex, you should consult with an estate planning expert such as a tax attorney or financial planner for advice before the implementation stage.
In deciding on your course of action, you should always consider whether the benefit of the strategy outweighs the cost of its implementation.
You may need to plan your estate especially if:
Designing a plan is a process that is unique to each estate owner. Don't be intimidated or overwhelmed at the prospect. Even the most complex plan can be achieved if you proceed step by step. Remember, the peace of mind that comes with developing a successful estate plan is worth the time, trouble, and expense.
There are many estate planning strategies, including some that are implemented inter vivos (during life), such as making gifts, and others post-mortem (after death), such as disclaimers. Before you choose which strategies are right for you, you need to understand your particular circumstances.
Gather and analyze the facts
Understanding your particular circumstances results from gathering and analyzing the facts. The following questions may help you to accomplish this. If they are not easy to answer, you may have to make some estimates based on reasonable assumptions and expectations.
Information regarding your financial condition
• What is your current income?
• What is your income likely to be in the future?
• How much do you spend each year?
• What are your expenses likely to be in the future?
• What are your current assets and debts?
• Are your assets currently owned solely or jointly?
• What estate planning strategies have you already implemented?
• Who are the family members you intend to benefit?
• What are the needs of each family member?
Decide what your goals and objectives are in light of your particular circumstances and in light of the factors that may affect your estate. The primary factors that may affect your estate are your beneficiaries, taxes, probate, liquidity, and incapacity.
One of the largest potential expenses your estate may have to pay is taxes, which may include federal transfer taxes, state death taxes, and federal income taxes.
Federal transfer taxes--The federal transfer taxes include (1) the federal gift tax and estate tax and (2) the federal generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax.
State death taxes--States also impose their own death taxes. You should be aware of what the death tax laws are in your state and how they may affect your estate. There are three types of state death taxes: (1) estate tax, (2) inheritance tax, and (3) credit estate tax (also called a sponge tax or pickup tax). Some states also impose their own gift tax and/or generation skipping transfer tax.
Tip: Most states that imposed a credit estate tax have "decoupled" from the federal system (i.e., they're imposing some form of stand-alone estate tax.)
Tip: The federal system allows a deduction for state death taxes for the estates of persons dying in 2005 and later. Prior to 2005, a credit was available.
Federal income taxes--In the estate planning context, you should be aware of three federal income tax considerations:
Probate is the court-supervised process of proving, allowing, and administering your will. The probate process can be time-consuming, expensive, and open to public scrutiny. Avoiding probate may be one of your most important goals. To develop a successful avoidance strategy, you'll need to understand how the probate process works, how to estimate probate costs, and what is subject to probate.
Estate liquidity refers to the ability of your estate to pay taxes and other costs that arise after your death from cash and cash alternatives. If your property is mostly nonliquid (e.g., real estate, business interests), your estate may be forced to sell assets to meet its obligations as they become due. This could result in an economic loss, or your family selling assets that you intended for them to keep. Therefore, planning for estate liquidity should be one of your most important estate planning objectives.
Planning for incapacity is a vital yet often overlooked aspect of estate planning. Who will manage your property for you when you can no longer handle these responsibilities? You need to ask and answer this question because the consequences of being unprepared may have a devastating effect on your estate and loved ones. You should include plans for incapacity as a part of your overall estate plan.
Your goals and objectives are personal, but you can't formulate a successful plan without a clear and precise understanding of what they are. They can be based on your particular circumstances and the factors that may affect your estate, as discussed earlier, but your feelings and desires are just as important. The following are some goals and objectives you might consider:
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