Tax Rates & Retirement Contribution Limits for Individuals & Married Filers in 2019

As we begin gathering up tax documents in anticipation of filing 2018 tax returns, it is also a good time to look ahead to our expected tax liability for 2019. Now is the perfect time to make any adjustments to withholding rates or retirement contributions for this year.

Each year, the IRS adjusts tax brackets to account for inflation. The following brackets took effect on January 1, 2019.

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New U.S. Tax Law – New Tax Rates for Businesses in 2018

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) passed in December 2017 created sweeping new tax law changes. This article is about businesses and entities. For more information about changes to individual and family income taxation in 2018, see this article.

The following rates took effect January 1, 2018. Read the rest of this entry »

Callahan Financial Planning Adopts CFA Institute Asset Manager Code of Professional Conduct

CFA Institute Asset Manager Code

Callahan Financial Planning Company is proud to announce that the company has adopted the CFA Institute’s Asset Manager Code of Professional Conduct.

Callahan Financial Planning joins approximately 1,400 firms worldwide that have adopted this professional conduct code.

The Asset Manager Code of Professional Conduct outlines the ethical and professional responsibilities of companies that manage assets for clients. This code serves as a point of reference for investors, establishing clear policies on what investors can expect by working with a firm that has claimed compliance with the code. Read the rest of this entry »

New U.S. Tax Law – Options to Consider in the Final Days of 2017

A sweeping new tax law has just passed in the final days of 2017. Given the swift passage of this legislation so close to year-end, taxpayers have been left with limited time to respond proactively. Nonetheless, below are some last-minute options you may have for reducing your taxes due for 2017 (for tax returns prepared in 2018 for tax year 2017). Learn more about this new, December 2017 U.S. tax law that takes effect January 1, 2018 here.

Taking action in this final week of December, 2017 may be helpful for three reasons: 1) itemized deductions will be limited beginning in 2018, 2) tax rates are generally higher in 2017, rendering deductions more valuable in tax year 2017, and 3) ‘lumping’ itemized deductions, such as charitable contributions, together every few years may become more common under the new tax rules given the higher standard deduction and limitations to itemized deductions. Read the rest of this entry »

Equifax Data Breach – What Do I Need to Do?

Equifax, one of the three largest U.S. consumer credit agencies, announced this month that a large data breach occurred estimated to affect 143 million Americans, or more than 57% of American adults.

This breach is believed to have included the theft of highly sensitive personal information, including Social Security numbers, names, birth dates, and addresses. 

For this reason, we have outlined some immediate and long-term actions you can take to begin protecting yourself right away.

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Beginning Retirement During Declining Markets

Retirement portfolios are generally intended to have withdrawals made regularly. These withdrawals provide the regular income necessary for a retiree’s living (and other) needs. However, when a multi-year downturn in the markets is combined with regular withdrawals, a retirement portfolio can deplete at a rapid pace.

The S&P 500 (a broad measure of large American business stocks) averaged a compound annual return over the last century of more than 9% (made up of the change in stock prices plus dividends). This long-term average has been remarkably consistent over long periods of time, but it is a poor predictor of returns over shorter periods of time. Let’s look at some examples to see why. Read the rest of this entry »