The Biden Administration has proposed increasing the top rate on long-term capital gains from 23.8% to 43.4%. Here’s an interesting fact: the top capital gains tax rate in China is 20%. Chinese citizens are allowed, even encouraged, to buy and own stocks in Chinese companies. They can invest and become wealthy, as long as they don’t challenge the … Read more


We know that many clients and friends in our communities are charitably inclined. We have frequently written and spoken about the benefits of using a Donor Advised Fund or gifting a required annual IRA distribution and have assisted many of our clients with such gifts over the past several years. An additional strategy, one that applies primarily … Read more


Inflation has shot to the top of investors’ list of concerns after an April Consumer Price Index (CPI) report was much higher-than-expected. We aren’t particularly surprised. This has been an ongoing drumbeat dating back to the global financial crisis in 2008-09. Here are a few things to keep in mind. Base Effects – Any measure … Read more


While writing our quarterly review this time last year, the stock market was beginning a recovery following a ferocious decline from the month before.  Going back and reading our April 2020 letter, there are two things that particularly stand out.  Number 1 – The pandemic turned out to be much worse than expected with more … Read more


For many families, helping to fund college expenses is a major financial goal. According to reports from The College Board, tuition expense is continuing to rise but at a slower pace than in the past. This is good news for prospective college students and their parents. Over the last decade, in-state public 4-year tuition increased 16% (adjusted … Read more


In 2020 we saw a new resurgence in an old investment vehicle called a SPAC. SPAC stands for Special Purpose Acquisition Company which is essentially a “blank-check company” with no operating history. Its sole purpose is to raise funds through an Initial Public Offering (IPO) to finance an acquisition, merger, or facilitate the combination of private companies. While … Read more


Consumer spending is the life blood of the U.S. economy and policymakers devoted much of 2020 to bolstering future demand.  A lot of the money injected into the economy was spent, which saved jobs, but a lot was actually saved. The personal savings rate currently stands at a post-WWII high of 14%, more than double the 75-year … Read more


It seems not a day goes by without various news outlets talking about Bitcoin and digital currencies. It’s reminiscent of the strong run up and subsequent drawdown of the crypto currency in the winter of 2017. While volatility of Bitcoin is not a new development, the recent price surge masks far more interesting developments behind … Read more

4th Quarter 2020 Investment Commentary

In 1985 we were introduced to Doc Brown, Marty McFly and their retrofitted DeLorean time machine in the movie Back to the Future. Two sequels followed to complete the trilogy that has since become embedded in pop culture lore. In the second film, the Grey’s Sports Almanac with 50 years of professional sports results was … Read more

Emerging Markets Look Interesting

Image of stock market numbers

Not many people are talking about emerging markets (EM) lately but that may be about to change. For a long time, countries considered to be “emerging” were heavily tied to the commodity cycle and inflation. Examples included China and Brazil. This was the case in the mid 2000’s when emerging markets and commodities experienced explosive … Read more