Author - Tom Orecchio, CFA, CFP®

1
After The Superstorm – Insights From Sandy
2
The Possible Implications Of The Fiscal Cliff
3
Now’s The Time To Refinance
4
What Is Fair In A Divorce?
5
Important To Stay In The Game

After The Superstorm – Insights From Sandy

As you well know, in October the entire Eastern Seaboard was drastically impacted by Superstorm Sandy. Sandy’s landfall was severe and damage was widespread.

As difficult as it may be, there are some crucial next steps that need to be taken as soon as possible in order to begin to recover after the storm, especially if you have property damage. Generally speaking, to be a deductible casualty loss, property must be damaged or destroyed as a result of a sudden, unexpected or unusual event.  You would have to prove that a casualty loss occurred.

  • With a well-known natural disaster like
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The Possible Implications Of The Fiscal Cliff

The term fiscal cliff is said to have been coined by Ben Bernanke during hearings of the House Financial Services Committee in February 2012. On January 1, 2013 several major budget items are scheduled to expire. Among them are many tax incentives that have benefitted tax payers such as the earned income credit, child credits, and some subsidies for businesses, health care and education.

The end of 2012 will bring about the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, which are cuts that lowered income and investment tax rates that have been in effect since 2001. Also, as the year draws …

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Now’s The Time To Refinance

If you are a home-owner, now may be an opportune time to refinance.  Over the last month, interest rates have continued to drop and remain at historic lows. Banks are also offering some extremely favorable loan terms, including credits that can be used toward your escrow and adjustable loans with favorable caps that lower the risk should rates rise sharply over the next few years. 

To give you an idea, below are some examples of rates and terms that we have seen in the past month:

  • A 30-year fixed mortgage:  3.250% – 3.5%
  • A 15-year fixed mortgage: 2.75% with zero
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What Is Fair In A Divorce?

All is fair in love and war… but not in divorce.  If this is the direction your marriage is heading, you need to know what the rules are.

When a couple decides to dissolve their marriage, most states require an “equitable” or “fair” division of marital property. But what constitutes equitable or fair?

With divorce, equitable or fair does not necessarily mean equal. A 50-50 split is generally the starting point in the discussion, but rarely do the two parties end up with an exact amount. In fact, one party may end up with a far greater share of the …

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Important To Stay In The Game

Prior to the economic downturn of 2008, clients were eager to take investment risks.  They wanted double-digit returns and appeared relatively unfazed by short-term fluctuations in their portfolio.  When explaining the impact of volatility and portfolio risk, I often had to tell them that that it’s better to aim for singles and doubles rather than swing for home runs. 

When I was illustrating a sample portfolio with 5, 6, or 7 percent net return, one particular client wondered if he should take on additional risk to generate a higher return, even when his financial plan suggested that a lower return …

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