Weekend Reading for Financial Planners (Sept 18-19)

Weekend Reading for Financial Planners (Sept 18-19)

Enjoy the current installment of “Weekend Reading For Financial Planners” – this week’s edition kicks off with an in-depth recap of this week’s proposed tax legislation, and how President Biden’s tax plan is changing as compromises are made to get it passed, including a reduction in the proposed top capital gains tax rate to ‘only’ 25% (and no longer 39.6%), and not eliminating step-up in basis at death… but with a number of new crackdowns, including the elimination of backdoor Roth IRAs in 2022, and what may only be a few weeks until the demise of popular Intentionally Defective Grantor Trust (IDGT) strategies and the ability to obtain valuation discounts on Family Limited Partnerships that hold “nonbusiness” assets.

Also in the industry news this week are a number of other interesting headlines around proposed tax legislation:

  • How the elimination of step-up in basis at death ended out on the cutting room floor of this week’s tax legislation
  • A separate tax proposal in Congress that would eliminate the tax-favored treatment for ETFs that adjust their underlying allocations through in-kind redemptions

From there, we have several investment management-related articles:

  • A look at the evolution of tools that advisors use to implement client portfolios, from mutual funds to ETFs, SMAs to UMAs, and the looming rise of direct indexing as the next tool for building client portfolios
  • How implementing better investment decisions and actually taking action is often about breaking down financial goals into much smaller bites
  • Recent research that shows how the biggest impact of investors who ‘freak out’ in market volatility is not actually that they sell at the wrong time, per se, but that they typically wait far too long to buy back in, instead

We’ve also included a number of articles on refining an advisory firm’s own value proposition, including:

  • Why advisory firms serving HNW clients should just accept the consequences of having “custody” of client assets in order to roll out more specialized services (e.g., client bill-pay)
  • How to weigh the balance between personalization (which sets value in how every client’s process is different) and standardization (where having a more standardized process that generates repeatable value for every client is the value)
  • Why advisors should embrace Client Segmentation as a way to scale their advice for all their clients (and not view it as just a way to do ‘less’ for smaller clients)

We wrap up with three final articles, all around the theme of the ongoing evolution of the work environment:

  • How businesses are struggling to fulfill the role of the “Office Mom” in a more virtual environment
  • The role of “proximity bias” in hybrid in-person-and-virtual work environments that risks causing virtual team members to fall behind in their career opportunities and growth
  • Why virtual can be better for “focus” work but in-office teams are better for “collaboration” work, which means not only can a hybrid approach be the best of both worlds, but also requires a fundamentally different approach to how office space is designed (when it’s ‘just’ about facilitating collaboration)!

Enjoy the ‘light’ reading!

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