Current legislation allows for individuals to gift up to $5.12 million in 2012 without paying any additional gift or estate taxes. However, in 2013 that maximum is scheduled to drop to $1 million.
The end never came. As I write today, the S&P 500 last closed above 1,428, over six times higher in price from that dreadful market bottom 25 years ago. And this is despite the fact that the last quarter of a century included, as you might vividly remember, the two worst market crashes our country has endured since the Great Depression: the dot.com crash of 2000 and the financial recession of 2008.
From my experience, with myself and with clients, is that for most purchases (a coat, a lipstick, a pair of skis, a television) our greatest point of satisfaction occurs just BEFORE we pay the money or hand over the credit card.
We've been trying to offer our clients electronic quarterly reports for over ﬁve years. We've tried countless systems and found them all wanting. However, we've ﬁnally found one that meets our standards and are proud to roll it out to…
At a recent lecture I gave in my Science and Art of Investing course at UCLA, my students came up with three significant financial calamities that they feared could derail the world's investment markets. These included the prospect of US debt burdens rising to unrecoverable levels and European economies and the euro falling apart. This quarter's CIO message offers compelling counter-arguments to each of these prognoses.
With interest rates so low, the Abacus Investment Committee has been devoting a lot of thought to how we can increase the current yield on our portfolios. Unfortunately, each move we can make to increase yields would also increase one or more risks. Here’s some detail on bonds, and alternatives we’re considering.
My mom tells me that we had the “birds and bees” talk following an after-school TV special. I must have blocked it out. While I don’t recall any discussions about how my life began, that won’t stop me from having “the talk” about the ﬁnal years of her life.
In November 2011 our Investment Committee gathered for a two-day off-site retreat, specifically for "big-picture" discussion, and to review the specific investment vehicles we use in every asset class we recommend to clients. We also considered whether to include new asset classes. We surveyed a vast amount of academic literature in advance, and invited four guest speakers on specific topics. The 29 pages of written minutes generated many actions we're taking now, actions we may pursue as we investigate the practicalities, and several other areas for further investigation. We devoted considerable attention to coming up with long term expectations for future investment rates of return.
At a silent auction to raise money for one of my favorite charities, I ﬁxated on a piece of art. I loved it. At last, I would have some great art for the blank space in my new living room.
The film Moneyball is about baseball. But it’s equally about the investment strategy that has made the clients at Abacus successful. Billy Beane, the Oakland A’s manager, selected the best players based not on their appeal, but strictly on the numbers.