Capital Insights

To buy or not to buy: Is that the question?

We’re all quite familiar with the idea of the American Dream at this point. The house, the white picket fence, a dog on the porch, and 2.5 kids playing in the yard. While this may sound archaic to some, it’s still a deeply held wish for others. So, how does one go about answering the central housing question: should I rent or buy? The answer (as with many big questions) is, it depends.

Are You Better Off with a Roth?

While you might already be invested in an employer-sponsored plan like a 401(k), an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) allows you to save for your retirement on the side, and potentially save on taxes. However, there are two different types of IRAs: traditional and Roth that each have different rules and benefits.

ESG and SRI Investing: 2020’s Silver Lining?

As the dust settles on a year that was like no other, we can now look back at 2020 and see where we stand today. Although the pandemic highlighted a rather terrible year overall, it wasn’t bad for investing and, relatively speaking, it was another good year for socially responsible investments (SRI). Looking at equity investments specifically, three out of four sustainable equity funds beat their Morningstar Category average in 2020, and far more sustainable funds finished the year with performance that ranked in the top quartile (42%) than in the bottom quartile (6%).

Is a donor-advised fund (DAF) right for you?

A donor-advised fund (DAF) is like a charitable investment account with the sole purpose of supporting organizations you care about. When you contribute cash, securities, or other assets to a DAF, you are generally eligible to take an immediate tax deduction. Those funds can then be invested for tax-free growth and you can recommend grants to virtually any IRS-qualified public charity.

2021 Post Election Outlook: Cautious Optimism

With the uncertainty of an election year nearly behind us, and COVID-19 vaccines heading for production, the stock market has notched new record highs that may signal an economic recovery on the way. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed above 30,000 points for the first time at the end of November – an encouraging sign of investor confidence for the future. Even more remarkable is the growth in the DJIA since its low of just under 18,600 during the worst of the early pandemic decline.

Do You Really Need an Estate Plan?

As financial planners, one of the most difficult tasks we have is persuading people to do estate planning.  Many assume it is only for the elderly, but the advent of COVID-19, which has no regard for age and can cause sudden death, has certainly brought it to the forefront for many.  

Year End Tax Planning: A few reminders

As we approach the end of 2020, it’s a good time to take a look at your personal finances. There are some standard strategies that can be used to reduce your tax exposure and help organize savings, gifting, and charitable donations.

Charitable Giving: 4 Things to Know as 2020 Comes to a Close

This year has been challenging for people, no matter their means or situation. As we approach the holiday season (and the end of the tax year), many of you may be considering increased charitable giving to organizations you support, or you may be concerned about maintaining the level of giving you have targeted in past years. In both cases, reviewing your options thoughtfully can reveal opportunities to make your giving more impactful to recipients while also lightening your tax burden.

With Election Season Heating Up, How Much Volatility Should We Prepare For?

As we head into October, with a contentious election less than five weeks away, it’s easy to see why investors are worried about what might be next. Expectations of volatility, as measured in the options markets, have spiked for November but questions remain. How big a drop might we see in financial markets? Will it be like 2000? Could it be worse?

D.C. is a financial standout. Are you making the most of your career?

The politics of our hometown might get more headlines, but the economics of D.C. tell a story that’s just as complex and compelling. We’re fortunate to be in one of the country’s most active financial hubs.