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Are These Bonds to Invest In? Is 9.62% Really the Rate for I Bonds?

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What if you could profit from inflation rather than suffer from it?

Inflation would only be Temporary

While interest rates on most traditional bond investments remain near historical lows, there currently are bonds to invest in that are AAA rated and yielding 9.62% (as of 7.1.2022)! They are called I Bonds, and they have gained in popularity and garnered significant attention over just the past year or so, paralleling inflation’s rapid ascent.

Series 1 saving bonds issued

While on the surface the government guarantee and high interest rate may seem too good to be true, like most things in life (investing certainly included), there is more to I Bonds than initially meets the eye, and while they may be bonds to invest in for some people, there is lots to consider, and they do not come without risks.

Offered by the US Treasury and guaranteed by the full faith and credit of the United States government, Federal Series I Savings Bonds, commonly known as “I Bonds,” have become an increasingly popular investment. The way I Bonds accrue interest is somewhat unique: the actual rate of interest, or yield, for I bonds is determined with an equation using the ”Fixed Rate” + the “Inflation Rate.” This total “Composite Rate” is then re-established every six months.

With inflation soaring this year, the rate for I Bonds is now 9.62% (as of 7.1.2022).

This high (yet potentially temporary, depending on what inflation does throughout 2022 and into next year) interest rate for I Bonds, and the security of the full faith and credit of the United States government, are two reasons people are focusing more of their attention on this place to invest their money.

Two additional reasons why I Bonds may be good bonds to invest in include:

1. The interest that I Bonds pay is federally taxable (but deferrable!), but not taxable on a state level.

While federal taxes are owed on I Bond interest, you have the choice to defer reporting the interest until you cash the bond in (or the bond stops earning interest because it has reached final maturity). You also can report the interest every year on your tax return, but we typically would advise against that.

Additionally, because no state taxes are owed on I Bond interest, this makes the rate for I Bonds even more attractive for residents of high tax states like California, New York, and Oregon.

individual income tax rates in state

2. They provide inflation protection for your cash.

Want to create a small but direct inflation-adjusted rainy-day fund that is virtually risk free? Owning I Bonds and leveraging the current 9.62% interest rate (as of 7.1.2022) may be worth considering.

The security of the US government guarantee, coupled with the attractiveness of the current 9.62% rate for I bonds, give them great “curb appeal.” However, the drawbacks and downsides of I Bonds may mean they are not the best bonds to invest in.

  • For instance, I Bonds have a 30-year maturity, and are not redeemable for at least 12 months.
bonds to invest in Series 1

Put differently, you will have no access to your funds for one full year. For some, that is not a big deal, but for others, it could be an important consideration.

  • Also, investors will forfeit the last three months of interest if they redeem an I Bond between one year and five years after issue.
  • In addition, I Bonds are not marketable securities, and the maximum investment amount for an I Bond is “only” $10,000 annually.

You cannot buy and sell I Bonds at will like you can with regular stocks, bonds, and most mutual funds.

At Towerpoint Wealth we believe that for some investors, the $10K investment ceiling limits the I Bond “payoff” and may make it not worth the time and energy required to open and fund an account directly with TreasuryDirect. Additionally, many investors are looking to streamline their financial situations and not complicate them, and the additional hassle of having another account custodian and 1099 come tax time may not be worthwhile.

We believe the I Bond $10K annual investment limitation makes it difficult for some investors to accumulate enough to truly move the needle. However, for smaller accounts focused on wealth preservation, I Bonds may make a lot of sense.

  • All of this to say, I Bonds are less-than-easy to purchase through TreasuryDirect’s antiquated website, and cannot be purchased through an independent financial advisor or broker.

Quoting a CNBC article from Wednesday, “It’s like going to the DMV online.”

Add extra account numbers to your list, as well as extra passwords TreasuryDirect also may require additional identity verifications and account authorization forms, not to mention signature guarantee requirements and additional paperwork for simple bank account changes.

  • Finally, the rate for I Bonds is variable, changes every six months, and could easily adjust downwards depending on the rate of inflation.

While recency bias may lead us to believe that inflation will continue to surge, there are already signs that it may be moderating. The stock market strongly rebounded last week due in part to plunging commodity prices, a positive sign for potentially slowing inflation:

Spot Commodity Price Change Inflation

If, or more likely when inflation calms, the rate for I bonds are apt to decline.

Say What Inflation I bonds interest rate

Does the full faith and credit of the United States government, coupled with the 9.62% rate for I Bonds, make them attractive enough to explore further? After reading this newsletter, are you thinking about passing on them, or are you considering them as an investment? Click the thumbnail image below if you want to check out the official I Bond Treasury Direct website, and hopefully your experience won’t be as “DMV-ish” as mentioned above!

Series I Saving Bonds to invest in

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Sacramento wealth management firm

What’s Happening at TPW?

Two excellent and long-time TPW clients, Kristi and Dan Spector, connected with our President, Joseph Eschleman, CIMA®, for a comprehensive financial review meeting at our downtown headquarters this past Friday.

From the looks of their smiles, it appears that Dan and Kristi appreciate our commitment to the TPW mission statement:

Kristi Dan Spector TPW Clients

At Towerpoint Wealth, we do everything we can to defend our clients against fraud and cybersecurity threats, have implemented a strong cybersecurity plan which we regularly update, and consistently conduct employee education efforts aimed at identifying and stopping fraud attempts.

It can be difficult to protect our clients from scams they may encounter through channels such as email, social media, and even dating apps, all of which have been used by criminals to steal data and assets. So just last month, the TPW team participated in an interactive presentation from Charles Schwab where we learned about different types of scams that may target our clients. We also absorbed a few tips for helping clients identify and avoid them, as well as how to respond in the event that they fall victim to a scam.

Towerpoint Wealth Family Meeting in Sacramento California

What else is happening with the Towerpoint Wealth family?

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TPW Taxes – Section 1031 Exchanges

Do you own appreciated investment real estate? Torn between doing a 1031 and deferring all of the taxes, or selling and paying all of the taxes now?

A global pandemic and swiftly increasing interest rates have not (yet?) hampered the positive outlook of the residential and commercial real estate markets. In 2021, there was more than $100 billion in tax-free 1031 exchange volume, and transactions have been strong in 2022 as well. If you are considering the sale of investment property, rather than pay a tax liability of up to 40%, you may utilize a 1031 exchange to defer the following taxes:

1. Capital Gains Tax – Your rate will vary based on your taxable income. For 2022, your long-term Federal capital gains rate may be as high as 20% if your taxable income exceeds $459,750 (filing single) or $517,200 (married filing jointly).

2. Net Investment Income Tax (NIIT) – If you have income from investments, including capital gains, you may be subject to an additional 8% net investment income tax on your adjusted gross income in excess of $200,000 ($250,000 if married filing jointly) in 2022.

3. State tax –You will probably also be subject to state and/or local income taxes. State tax rates are quite variable, from 0% in some states to as high as 3% in California.

4. Tax on unrecaptured section 1250 gains – An IRS tax provision where previously recognized depreciation is recaptured into income when a gain is realized on the sale of depreciable real estate property.

Click Here Capital Gain Estimator
Exchange Agreement 1031 Investor
Steve Pitchford, CPA, CFP® Director of Tax and Financial Planning

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. Could This Be an Antebellum Age? – The Wall Street Journal – 6.23.2022

Could This Be an Antebellum Age

In John Milton’s “Paradise Lost,” Lucifer—who only yesterday had been God’s favorite—consoles himself with this thought: “The mind is its own place and in itself / Can make a Heav’n of Hell, a Hell of Heav’n.” The United States of America, another of God’s erstwhile favorites, now and then performs the same trick of the mind.

At the moment, the country seems committed to the second option, as if united in a natural preference for hell.

2. A Turning Point in Cancer – Eric Topol / Substack – 6.10.2022

A-Turning-Point-in-Cancer

Scientists have released an unprecedented series of breakthroughs related to cancer treatment, covering a wide range of therapies and types of cancer which could have huge impacts on overall mortality and quality of life.

3. The Vanishing Moderate Democrat – The NY Times – 6.29.2022

The Vanishing Moderate Democrat

Is there an existential crisis among moderate Democrats? While some of them remain reluctant to publicly concede the reality that the Democratic Party has indeed shifted left — either out of fear of angering their fellow Democrats or validating Republican attacks — they will readily acknowledge that voters perceive the party as having drifted out of the mainstream. And they are convinced that this is threatening their political survival.

TPW Chart of the Week

Shark attack!

The chart below from Charles Schwab shows what stock market *shark attacks* look like, using the relative performance of 1.) U.S. stocks vs. 2.) international stocks.

The two lines are just the ratio of one index divided by the other.

  • When the blue line is rising, international stocks are outperforming U.S. stocks.
  • When the orange line is rising, U.S. stocks are outperforming international stocks.

Do you think U.S. stocks appear to be overvalued vs. international stocks right now?

Shark Attack US vs International

What does this U.S. vs. international stock dichotomy mean? 

Should you should care?

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TPW Educational Video : Feeling Naive About Your Social Security Benefits?

Do you feel naïve about your Social Security benefits?

  • Are you confused about when to take Social Security?
  • Is it best to take your Social Security early or wait?
  • Are you concerned about the solvency of the Social Security system, and how that might affect your benefit?
  • Have you heard about Social Security spousal benefits but not sure you understand how they work?

Click the thumbnail image below to watch our President, Joseph Eschleman, answer each of these questions, and more! And if you enjoy the video, please subscribe to our YouTube channel, give us a thumbs up, and click on the bell if you want to be notified when we release our next one!

Social Security Benefits Explained

Have questions about how exactly to optimize your Social Security benefit?

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Quote of the Week

Consistent with Towerpoint Wealth’s theme of evaluating and managing risk, but not avoiding it altogether, is William Shedd’s quote below.

William Shedd Quote

Its meaning is clear, and its applicability to building and protecting wealth, and to investing in general, cannot be ignored: It’s better to get out, take intelligent risks, and act, than to sit and do nothing.

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140,info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

– Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, Michelle, and Luis

Towerpoint Wealth, Sacramento - Financial Planning Services

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

Follow us on any of these platforms, message us there and let us know your favorite charity.
We will happily donate $10 to it!

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What’s the Point? How is it SMART to Be Investing During Inflation? 6.17.2022

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Right now, there are many people saying to themselves “What’s the point?” when thinking about investing during inflation. Does the below photo conjure up familiar feelings right now when checking your accounts?

What’s the Point? How is it SMART to Be Investing During Inflation?

There is no question that today’s market, economic, and political environment is scary, volatile, disconcerting, and our favorite adjective to use, unsettling. Saving and investing during inflation seems to hold no basis in logic, and can feel like throwing good money after bad. And no matter how old you are, there are at least five things going on right now that are affecting how you are thinking about what to do (or not do) with your money, including:

stock market cartoon

Add to this consumer prices rising more than they have in the past 40 years, and these events start to sound like reasons to run. Investing during inflation is emotionally difficult, but extremely important! Don’t use these events as excuses or rationalizations to withdraw, unless you have a magic crystal ball that will accurately predict these two important things.

1. When, exactly, to get out of the stock market, before it assumedly drops more, and

2. When, exactly, to get back in to the stock market, when circumstances are even scarier and prices are lower than they are today

We’ve seen people get #1 right, or #2 right, but rarely does anyone consistently and accurately get both right.

What to do to ensure we are investing during inflation, and not turning our backs?

1. Recognize this is an emotional time, and give yourself space – it’s normal to feel worried, desperate, fearful, anxious, and even angry.

Emotions you cannot control your money Warren Buffet

We are human beings, and we are hard-wired to be emotional. However, at Towerpoint Wealth, we understand that allowing emotions to dictate financial decision-making is the most common and problematic mistake made by many investors. And we also understand that it is immensely detrimental to growing and protecting one’s net worth and assets.

As investors (and humans), we all harbor cognitive biases, and having the fortitude to recognize and not give into our biases is essential.

Wall Street Market Cycle Graph

2. Be humble about your ability to predict the future, and disciplined in systematically rebalancing your portfolio.

Trying to sell right at the top, and buy right at the bottom, is an exercise in futility, and is an expectation that no reasonable investor should harbor. We believe the sooner you recognize that accurately predicting the future is something human beings are not very good at, the better off you will be.

Instead of repeatedly flailing with attempts to time the market and accurately predict the future, have a plan to systematically rebalance your portfolio (we advise semi-annually). This forces you to sell high and buy low, add to areas that are undervalued, and reduce areas that are overvalued. The chart below provides empirical evidence of the benefits of rebalancing.

Benefits of Portfolio Rebalancing Chart

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about how we help our clients build and protect their net worth.

Wealth Management Philosophy

3. If you are working, be disciplined in dollar-cost averaging (DCAing) funds into your portfolio and nest egg while the markets are temporarily weak.

Investing during inflation does not have to be any more complicated or sophisticated than investing during more “normal” times, and this certainly includes being systematic in investing during inflation.

It is important to understand that the key to dollar-cost averaging is NOT timing the market, a concept that can be difficult to internalize! The emotional temptation to terminate a DCA program becomes greater when the value of your accounts are declining, as it feels like you are throwing good money after bad, as we mentioned previously. However, the opposite is actually true, as you are adding more capital to your portfolio when prices are low, therefore building a stronger overall base to your nest egg – it just doesn’t feel very good at the time!

Dollar Averaging

You can also consider value averaging if you and/or your advisor have the time and the expertise.

4. If you are retired, be mindful about where in your portfolio you are withdrawing funds from while the markets are temporarily weak.

Having a plan to derive sustainable retirement income, during both good economic environments and bad, is essential. Follow a systematic retirement income plan like this basic example:

  • Establish a cash and emergency fund (your “feeder” fund) that holds enough cash to cover approximately two years of general lifestyle expenses
  • Regularly backfill your feeder fund with investment income from your investment accounts, i.e. interest and dividends, as well as guaranteed pension and Social Security income
  • Backfill your feeder fund by selling investments that have appreciated when the financial markets are doing well; pause and avoid selling investments at a loss when the markets are temporarily weak and in decline
Cash Emergency Fund Investment Accounts Invest Money

Would you like to discuss specific ideas on where to invest your money during an inflationary environment?

Click here and message Towerpoint Wealth

What’s Happening at TPW?

Today we are excited to welcome Luis Barrera to the Towerpoint Wealth family as our new Marketing Specialist.

We look forward to having Luis apply his marketing skills and experience to help Towerpoint Wealth connect in new ways with new and existing clients.

Click the photo below to learn more about Luis and his background, and be sure to ask him about his two Australian Shepherds, Bella and Blue, in reaching out to him with a warm “welcome aboard!”

Luis apply his marketing skills and experience to help Towerpoint Wealth
Click here and message Luis Barrera Marketing Specialist

A big congratulations to our Director of Research and Analytics, Nathan Billigmeier, for earning his Certificate in Blockchain and Digital Assets from the Digital Assets Council of Financial Professionals just last week!

Certificate in Blockchain and Digital Assets from the Digital Assets Council of Financial Professionals

What else is happening with the Towerpoint Wealth family?

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TPW Taxes – 2022

While the IRS has historically provided significant tax breaks to real estate investors, the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Actcreated another avenue of advantage for these investors through the creation of the Opportunity Zone program. By investing in an Opportunity Zone (OZ) through an investment vehicle called a Qualified Opportunity Fund (QOF), investors are provided with a unique opportunity to potentially defer, reduce, and eliminate capital gains taxes!

Click the image below to open and review a well-assembled white paper we recently published on the specifics of Opportunity Zones and Qualified Opportunity Funds, the tax advantages of investing in Qualified Opportunity Funds, as well as other considerations for an investor contemplating a QOF.

Opportunity Zone (OZ) - Qualified Opportunity Fund (QOF)

Curious if you might benefit from an OZ or a QOF in 2022?

Click here and message Towerpoint Wealth Steve Pitchford

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. The Markets and Households Lose Faith that the Fed Can Handle Inflation – The Washington Post – 6.14.2022

Fed Can Handle Inflation

The Federal Reserve’s missteps in waiting too long to tackle the greatest run-up in prices in four decades has shaken trust across the markets and the American public that it is up to the task of curbing inflation.

2. For Families Deeply Divided, A Summer of Hot Buttons Begins – AP News – 6.16.2022

For families fractured along red house-blue house lines, summer’s slate of reunions, trips and weddings poses another exhausting round of tension at a time of heavy fatigue. Pandemic restrictions have melted away but gun control, the fight for reproductive rights, the Jan. 6 insurrection hearings, who’s to blame for soaring inflation and a range of other issues continue to simmer.

Keep Abortion Legal

For families fractured along red house-blue house lines, summer’s slate of reunions, trips and weddings poses another exhausting round of tension at a time of heavy fatigue. Pandemic restrictions have melted away but gun control, the fight for reproductive rights, the Jan. 6 insurrection hearings, who’s to blame for soaring inflation and a range of other issues continue to simmer.

3. From Great Resignation to Forced Resignation – Tech Companies Shift to Layoffs After a Huge Ramp Up in Hiring – Marketwatch – 6.15.2022

Tech Companies Shift to Layoffs

Thousands of layoffs in the tech sector, compounded by hiring freezes and a slowdown in hiring, highlight the abrupt shift in fortunes over the past several months as a result of rampant inflation, fear of stagflation and recession, supply-chain interruptions, the war in Ukraine, an ailing stock market and other red-alert economic factors.

Chart / Infographics of the Week

The Fed raised rates 75 basis points (3/4 of a point) on Wednesday. This is the biggest rate hike since 1994!

One of the main reasons for the Fed’s hike was the massive increase in consumer inflation projections in the next year.

Fed’s hike was the massive increase in consumer inflation projections
What might this big rate increase mean for you?
Why should you should care?
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TPW Educational Video : Are You Really a Long Term Investor?

An essential, yet frankly sometimes annoying, question to ask in today’s current difficult market environment:

✅ Are you *really* a long-term investor?

Click the thumbnail below to learn what you may be doing wrong

Are you *really* a long-term investor?

Quote of the Week

An excellent quote below from author, entrepreneur, and photographer James Clear. Famous for his #1 NY Times best seller Atomic Habits, Clear focuses on habits, decision-making, and continuous improvement in his work.

James Clear Quote

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140, info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

Download Newsletter Towerpoint Wealth

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

Follow us on any of these platforms, message us there and let us know your favorite charity.
We will happily donate $10 to it!

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A Must-Ask! Do I Have a Fiduciary Financial Advisor? 06.03.2022

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According to AdvisorSmith, only 50% (!) of businesses survive their first five years – WOW.

This statistic makes us particularly happy, honored, and proud to be celebrating our fifth anniversary as a boutique, fully-independent wealth management firm. After 18 years managing the constraints of being employees for a major Wall Street firm, we launched Towerpoint Wealth on May 26, 2017. Can you believe five years have passed?

And as we eclipse this milestone, we continue to be resolute in focusing on and advancing our mission:

Helping you remove the hassle of properly coordinating all your financial affairs, so you can live a happier life and enjoy retirement

5 year Anniversary Towerpoint Wealth

We are very humbled by this milestone, and offer a sincere thank you to our clients, partners, colleagues, family, and friends for your confidence, trust, and support. You represent our lifeblood, as we certainly would not be where we are today as a fully-independent firm, nor would we have grown, matured, and advanced as much as we have without all of you entrusting us to help you navigate the very unsettled world we live in. And while much work remains to be done (both for us as a fully independent firm and also for us, in our joint effort with you within each of our partnerships), we are eager and excited for what the next five years has in store!

The phrase “fully independent firm” is repeatedly used above intentionally. It holds as much significance for you as it does for us. What few people know about working with a fully independent wealth management firm is the much stronger professional and personal responsibility we have to you – specifically, a legal fiduciary obligation. As your fiduciary financial advisor, we are legally responsible to put your personal and financial interests before our own and always act in your best interests, 100% of the time. This is the definition of fiduciary. Are all financial advisors fiduciaries? Absolutely not. This is an extremely important distinction, was not an obligation we were bound to while we were employed by a major Wall Street firm, and is one that we were eager and have been happy to embrace, every day, for the past five years.

fiduciary financial advisor

This all begs a very important question: What does having a fiduciary financial advisor mean, and why should you care? Putting aside the very important fact that a fiduciary relationship is generally viewed as the highest standard of client care available under law, below are three of the most common considerations when deciding whether to partner with a fiduciary financial advisor:

1. The suitability standard (doing what is suitable for a client) is MUCH different than the fiduciary standard (doing what is in a client’s best interests always).

Investment brokers who work for broker-dealers (such as Merrill Lynch, UBS, Morgan Stanley, and Wells Fargo), and investment advisers who work for fully independent registered investment advisory (RIA) firms like Towerpoint Wealth, both offer financial and investment planning, counsel, and advice. However, they are not governed by the same standards

Investment advisers work directly for clients, and must place clients’ interests before their own, according to theInvestment Advisers Act of 1940 – this is known as the fiduciary standard.

Investment brokers work for, and serve, their broker-dealers, and must only ensure that their recommendations are suitable for their clients – this is known as the suitability standard.

It is accepted as fact that the fiduciary standard is better and more comprehensive than the suitability standard, that a financial advisor with a fiduciary responsibility is rising to a much higher level of duty and care, and deals with no competing interests, a higher quality of investments, full disclosure, fee transparency, and client-centered advice 100% of the time.

Peter Lazaroff from Forbes has excellently summarized this important differentiation in his April 6, 2016 article. We believe this meme does too.

fiduciary advisors suitability standard

2. If you do not have a fiduciary financial advisor, you have fewer legal options in the event you discover your interests haven’t been fully served.

A breach of fiduciary duty occurs when a financial advisor fails to act responsibly or in the complete best interests of a client. Usually, the actions are alleged to have benefitted the fiduciary’s interests or the interests of a third party instead of a client’s interests.

By law, a plaintiff must show that a fiduciary duty existed. If a breach of duty case proceeds to the courts, major consequences can result. A successful breach-of-fiduciary-duty lawsuit can result in monetary penalties for direct damages, indirect damages, and legal costs. A court ruling can also lead to discrediting, the loss of license, or removal from service.

You do not have this legal recourse if you are not working with a fiduciary financial advisor (see Point 3 below).

3. If you have a relationship / partnership with an advisor who works for a major Wall Street firm, you do not have a fiduciary financial advisor.

We should know – we worked for a major Wall Street firm for 18 years! Please do not misconstrue our comment, as we firmly believe that most advisors who work for one of the four largest “wirehouses” (Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch, UBS, and Wells Fargo) do good work. However, it is impossible to act in a client’s best interests 100% of the time when operating within the constraints of the employee-employer relationship. This advisor inherently has a primary obligation first to their employer.

Don’t believe us? Feel free to confirm for yourself: Ask your current wirehouse advisor if he/she would be willing to attest to and sign this simple Code of Ethics document stating that they are a legal fiduciary to you, and see what they have to say!

It is important to understand that the only requirement to be called a financial advisor is that you dispense financial advice. It is also important to understand that no rule, label, or regulation will completely stop those who have intent to disregard doing what is right (Bernie Madoff was technically a “fiduciary” for the last two years of his career).

Despite this sad fact, engaging a fiduciary financial advisor tilts the odds in your favor; you are much more likely to wind up with a professional who takes seriously their legal fiduciary obligation to you when they are fully independent.

For the past five years, we have embraced the role of fiduciary financial advisor in our clients’ lives. It’s been a responsibility we fully honor, take seriously, and recognize is a tremendous privilege.

Interested in learning more about how we help our clients build and protect their net worth?

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What is Happening at TPW?

The TPW family shared a fun day of teambuilding a few weeks ago, soaking in a sunny day of Sacramento River Catsbaseball at Sutter Health Park.

Hey Joe and Steve, slow down and calm down, those hot dogs aren’t going anywhere…!

Sacramento River Cats baseball game
TPW family Sacramento River Cats baseball

Did somebody say Italian??!!

Apparently fresh risotto makes for a happy Lori and a happy Michelle, as the ladies of Towerpoint Wealth enjoyed a bite to eat together last week at Il Fornaio on Capitol Mall!

Lori and Michelle Il Fornaio Capitol Mall

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TPW Taxes 2022

How do you find opportunity during a market pullback, and make lemons out of lemonade when account values are temporarily depressed?

As investors emerge from a tumultuous market over the first five months of 2022, the current volatility may pose an opportunity for IRA account holders. Considering a partial conversion to a tax-free Roth IRA may be advantageous right now.

conversion to a tax-free Roth IRA

This Kiplinger article outlines two reasons to consider a Roth conversion now, plus a few traps to avoid.

Curious if you might benefit from a partial Roth IRA conversion in 2022?

Director Tax Financial Planning

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. Top-Paid LA Lifeguards Earned Up to $510,000 in 2021 – OpenTheBooks Substack – 5.31.2022

Who knew that LA lifeguards – who work in the sun, ocean surf, and golden sands of California – could reap such unbelievable financial rewards? It’s time we put Baywatch on pay watch!

2. Why Most Americans Are Losing the Battle of Getting into Pre-COVID Shape – NY Post – 6.1.2022

Squeezing back into a pair of jeans bought before March 2020 is a challenge for lots of Americans — and a new study found that injury may be to blame. The study of 2,000 adults, by OnePoll in partnership with CURAD, found that seven out of 10 respondents said they stopped working out during the thick of the COVID-19 pandemic.

3. From Ukraine’s Front Lines, Bravery and Wreckage – New York Times – 6.1.2022

Amid the roar of artillery and bone-rattling explosions, New York Times photographers have borne graphic witness to the fight to survive.

These are their stories and images.

Chart / Infographic of the Week

As we have repeatedly stressed, dividends matter!

A compelling chart below, supporting the philosophy that owning and investing in dividend-paying equities (the purple line) is rarely a bad idea, especially during times of extreme market volatility like we have experienced in 2022…

dividend paying equities purple line

TPW Educational Video : The Importance of Estate Planning

Why is it ESSENTIAL to have an up-to-date estate plan?

Click the thumbnail below to watch an excellent video that focuses on the benefits of estate planning to avoid probate, and to ensure that your assets are distributed according to your wishes and in a timely fashion.

What do you want for your loved ones when you are gone? A protracted, expensive public legal process (known as probate), or a tax-efficient and streamlined disposition of the assets in your estate?

benefits of estate planning to avoid probate

Quote of the Week

Below is found one of our favorite quotes from investing legend Shelby Davis. His philosophy can be difficult to grasp when prices (and account values) are temporarily declining; however, we (and Shelby Davis) believe that you will make more money in a down market by being disciplined in doing two things:

1. Not giving into fear by selling low, and

2. Being courageous in buying and investing more when prices are low

These are simple but certainly not easy concepts to understand and practice, yet we are confident that doing so will pay the greatest ultimate rewards over time.

Shelby Davis Quote

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140, info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

Download Newsletter Towerpoint Wealth

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

Follow us on any of these platforms, message us there and let us know your favorite charity.
We will happily donate $10 to it!

Click HERE to follow TPW on LinkedIn
Click HERE to follow TPW on Facebook
Click HERE to follow TPW on Instagram
Click HERE to follow TPW on Twitter

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The Stock Market: A Safe Place to Invest Money?? 5.20.2022

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Right now, do you trust your investing instincts?

Or, as Jerry said to George in one of the highest rated episodes of the iconic Seinfeld series, “If every instinct you have is wrong, then the opposite would have to be right!”

Do you think the stock market is a safe place to invest money right now? Is now a good time to channel your inner George Costanza?

Yes, we are currently in an extremely unsettled and unpredictable investment climate, and yes, it stinks when economic and investment “visibility” is poor, account balances are declining, and the daily headlines are less than sanguine.

The Stock Market: A Safe Place to Invest Money??

On the flip side, the labor market is extremely tight – so described when there are more job openings and fewer unemployed people. Indeed, the unemployment rate is extremely low. Consumer activity continues to pick up on the back of the “global reopening,” and China has resumed both monetary and fiscal stimulus. And in a true contrarian sense, we believe the financial markets have fully “priced in” today’s extremely high oil and gas prices, and an ongoing war in Ukraine- if either shows signs of abating, it could be an unexpected source of positive stimulus.

Putting aside the negatives and positives of the current investment and economic climate, we will go out on a very small limb and make the assumption that many of you have some level of internal temptation right now to “stop the bleeding” or “take a breather” from what seems like anything but a safe place to invest money right now: today’s stock market.

It is not only understandable, it is natural to feel this way. It’s human nature to fix an injury, to stanch bleeding, and lately, most investors are feeling punctured. In this environment, the temptation to sell when prices are low can manifest quickly, begging the question – do you have the intestinal fortitude to:

1. Not give in to the compulsion to sell (read: capitulate)

Point of maximum financial risk.

2. Go against the herd, making yourself feel even more uncomfortable, and a la George Costanza, do the opposite of what feels right (read: buy when prices are low)

To be clear, everyone has a unique set of personal and financial circumstances, and everyone has different sensitivities to market gyrations and investment risk. This message to “do the opposite” is not intended to be prescriptive. We are not making blanket recommendations to thousands of different people, nor are we specifically directing anyone to head out for a pre-weekend stock market shopping spree. We are simply attempting to convey the importance of the idea of contrarianism, and how going against the herd, while quite difficult, can pay large dividends over time.

While buying low is simple, it certainly is not easy. It definitely falls into the easier said than done category. Yet doing so has proven to pay the largest dividends over time, supporting two timeless quotes from two extremely successful investors:

Warren Buffet Simply Attempt Fearful

Is the stock market a safe place to invest money? While safe is a binary word, and while there is no exact, correct binary answer to that question, we strongly encourage you to remind yourself that the stock market is always a safer place to invest when prices are lower.

Baron Rothschild Quote

What’s Happening at TPW?

Our President, Joseph F. Eschleman, CIMA® , spent an intensive three days last week at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), learning (and practicing) how to be a better leader and CEO as an invitee and participant in Dynasty Financial Partners’ Advisor-to-CEO program.

Advisor to CEO program MIT
  • Click the link and scroll to see the full MIT Advisor-to-CEO event agenda.
  • Visit the Towerpoint Wealth YouTube page (don’t forget to click the SUBSCRIBE button!) to see a video “short” containing a full panoramic recap of another incredible visual white board from the course curriculum, similar to the one seen below!
Advisor-to-CEO program | MIT Sloan School of Management

Administered through the MIT Sloan School of Management, the Advisor-to-CEO program contained a spectacular curriculum of experiential executive coursework on a variety of topics, including diversity & inclusivity (D&I), leadership, entrepreneurship, and strategic design thinking, as well as:

✅ Collective ambition
✅ Leadership and culture
✅ The longevity economy
✅ Adaptability quotient (AQ)
✅ Client experience and innovation

Our firm, and ultimately and most importantly, our TPW clients, will undoubtedly benefit from Joe’s continued growth as the President of Towerpoint Wealth, as we are already beginning to integrate a number of ideas that Joe brought back with him from Boston!

Click the image below to watch a short YouTube video and learn about the visual work management and visual project design (a.k.a. Post-It Note project planning!) that Towerpoint Wealth is implementing.

visual work management project design

What else is happening with the Towerpoint Wealth family?

Follow Towerpoint Wealth Instagram

TPW Taxes – 2022

The word audit can strike immediate fear into a person, even if they are on the “up-and-up” and haven’t fudged their income taxes. And although the chances of being audited are rare (the IRS audit rate has dropped from 0.93% in 2010 to 0.39% in 2019, to a low of 0.20% in 2020 due to a number of COVID-19 concerns), and half of all audits happen to those people making over $1,000,000, it is certainly still useful to know what triggers the IRS.

Click the image below to read an excellent article from Bloomberg Tax that itemizes some of the more common characteristics of a return that may make it more likely to be selected for audit, including some features highlighted in the IRS’s 2022 Annual Audit Plan.

IRS’s 2022 Annual Audit Plan

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. The Crazy Housing Market Is Finally Slowing Down – Axios – 5.16.2022

The red-hot housing market is starting to cool this spring, after nearly two years of soaring prices and shrinking inventories. Homebuyers and renters should begin to have more choices and fewer bidding wars, if only just a little.

2. Twisted Diary of Alleged Buffalo Shooter Reveals His Online Radicalization – NY Post – 5.17.2022

The avowed white supremacist who killed 10 people at a Buffalo supermarket first became radicalized during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic by scouring extremist internet messaging boards, according to his twisted online diary.

The 18-year-old spent months reflecting on his plans to conduct a mass shooting in the digital journal and said his exposure to 4Chan, an online message board known as a hotbed for extremism, kept him motivated to stick to his plans.

3. How a Trash-Talking Crypto Bro Caused a $40 Billion Crash – NY Times – 5.18.2022

Do Kwon, a South Korean entrepreneur, hyped the Luna and TerraUSD cryptocurrencies. Their failures have devastated some traders, though not the investment firms that cashed out early.

TPW Chart of the Week

Year-to-date returns on US bonds (as measured by the Bloomberg US Agg) through May 6 have been worse than any calendar year on record since 1976.

U.S. Bond Market Endures Challenging 2022

Over time, inflation hurts purchasing power – A LOT.

U.S Dollar inflation

An excellent graph below from our friends at Bespoke Investment Group, reflecting the forward one-year price return of the S&P 500, subsequent to a five-month decline of greater than 15% (i.e. what has happened so far in 2022):

Stock Market a Safe Place to Invest Money

Quote of the Week

No caption needed…

Bob Marley Positively | The Greatness of a Man

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140, info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

Download Newsletter Towerpoint Wealth

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

Follow us on any of these platforms, message us there and let us know your favorite charity.
We will happily donate $10 to it!

Click HERE to follow TPW on LinkedIn
Click HERE to follow TPW on Facebook
Click HERE to follow TPW on Instagram
Click HERE to follow TPW on Twitter

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Investment Advice from Warren Buffett – Never Bet Against America! 05.05.2022

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It is this investment advice from Warren Buffett that has been ubiquitous throughout his storied career:

1. Accurately predicting the stock market is a fool’s game, and
2. Never bet against America!

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is TT_5.06_WarrenBuffett_500px-Trending-Today.gif

After two remote pandemic years, an estimated 25,000 Berkshire Hathaway shareholders flocked to Omaha, Nebraska last weekend for the in-person return of the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder’s meeting, featuring the omnipresent, dynamic, and larger-than-life 91-year-old Warren Buffett.

Along with his 98-year-old right hand man and long-time sidekick Charlie Munger, the “Oracle of Omaha” presided over a spirited, intellectual, and oftentimes jovial congregation of investors from around the globe. Live-streamed by CNBC, the event had a festival feel to it, and was described as an “opportunity to learn from the masters.” Whitney Tilson, the CEO of Empire Financial Research who has been going to Berkshire’s shareholder meeting for the past 25 years, said that the event is always “intellectually, physically, and emotionally fulfilling.”

Where Warren Buffett invests

Want some investment advice from Warren Buffett? Here are four excellent takeaways from the Berkshire shareholders meeting:

Investment Advice from Warren Buffett

1. Both Buffett and Munger see market volatility and speculative behavior as an opportunity.

Buffett lambasted Wall Street for encouraging speculative behavior in the stock market and effectively turning it into a gambling parlor.

“Wall Street makes money, one way or another, catching the crumbs that fall off of the table of capitalism… They make a lot more money when people are gambling than when they are investing” Buffett said.

However, he then went on to say that the situation can create market dislocations that give Berkshire Hathaway an opportunity. “That’s why markets do crazy things, and occasionally Berkshire gets a chance to do something.”

Warren Buffett said

2.  Buffett’s trick for getting his money’s worth out of the stock market? Not obsessing about finding a perfect time to invest in a stock.

Go ahead and invest, and then observe the market over time to see if you should buy more of that company’s stock. Buffett says that this strategy has a higher chance of return, and it alleviates some of the pressure of predicting the stock market.

If the value of the stock dips after you buy it, and you still believe in the company, he suggests that the shares have become less expensive, so buy more. This is where Warren Buffett invests.

Another billionaire appears to feel the same way:

Elon Musk

3. Buffett prefers “assets with value” over bitcoin.

While bitcoin has steadily been gaining acceptance from the traditional finance and investment world, Buffett is sticking to his skeptical stance on the cryptocurrency.

When asked about bitcoin, Warren Buffett said it is not a productive asset and doesn’t produce anything tangible. He then elaborated and gave a hypothetical answer:

hypothetical answer

In short, bitcoin will not be where Warren Buffett invests.

4. Inflation swindles almost everybody.

From stock and bond investors, to people who stash cash under their couch, inflation hurts many different kinds of investors.

“You print loads of money, and money is going to be worth less,” Warren Buffett said.

Additionally, while he said that he couldn’t, and wouldn’t, predict the trajectory of inflation over the coming months or years (just like he avoids predicting the stock market), he did say that the best protection against inflation is your own personal “earning bar,” as a person’s skills, unlike currency, won’t be taken away and are inflation-proof.

Buffett then summarized: “The best investment by far is anything that develops yourself – and it’s not taxed at all.”

Buffett, Munger, and Berkshire appear to be doing something right, as the S&P 500 has dropped more than almost 14% this year so far, while Berkshire’s stock is up almost 6% year-to-date! We do believe that investment advice from Warren Buffett is worthy of our attention.

Click the image below to watch any part (or all!) of the BRK annual shareholder’s meeting.

Berkshire Hathaway Warren Buffett said

What’s Happening at TPW

It’s a family affair at Towerpoint Wealth!

It felt a little like a Billigmeier family reunion earlier this week, as Marc and Glenda, two good Towerpoint Wealth clients, flanked their son and our Director of Research and Analytics, Nathan Billigmeier, prior to their comprehensive financial, investment, and retirement review meeting.

Both Marc and Glenda are well-versed in Warren Buffett’s philosophies, and know that accurately predicting the stock market is next to impossible. A key factor in their longer-term success is most certainly their humility and their discipline, which are also two foundational TPW wealth-building and wealth-protection ideals.

Warren Buffett philosophies Towerpoint Wealth Client

Our President, Joseph F. Eschleman, CIMA®, and friend of Towerpoint Wealth, John Palombi, put some work in last weekend at the Fair Oaks Sun Run, clocking a quick five miles. Nice work, gentlemen!

John Palombi Joseph Eschleman Fair Oaks Sun Run

TPW Taxes – 2022

Is it full steam ahead for Secure 2.0?

After passing the House in late March by a 414-5 vote, the bipartisan Securing a Strong Retirement Act of 2021 is now awaiting approval by the Senate, with Congress expected to vote on a final measure before the end of 2022.

Providing even more and arguably better opportunities to save for retirement, the passage of Secure 2.0 appears to be more of a ‘when’ than an ‘if’, and as we wait for this legislation to hopefully become law, click the image below to read an excellent overview from Wealth Management.com that discusses five key provisions of the bill:

The Secure Act2.0

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. What Was the Strategy Behind the Supreme Court Leak?NY Times – 5.4.2022 The leak of a draft Supreme Court decision that would overturn Roe v. Wade is not a surprise, but it is something of a mystery. The mystery: The logic of and strategy behind the leak.

2. The Bottom Line in Ohio? Trump WinsWashington Post – 5.4.2022

Most one-term presidents recede from the political scene, with their party’s voters happy to see them go. But Donald Trump continues to dominate the Republican Party a year and a half after he lost re-election. Tuesday’s Republican Senate primary in Ohio confirmed Trump’s influence, as a Trump-endorsed J.D. Vance won the nomination, with 32 percent of the vote, in a primary that included four other major candidates.

3. A ‘Haven for Criminals’NY Post – 5.4.2022 A NYC subway conductor outraged about attacks on transit riders and his fellow transit workers confronted MTA CEO Janno Lieber during a live radio interview on Wednesday.

TPW Chart of the Week

Rising interest rates are bad for the stock market, right? Not so fast…

While it may have felt that way in April, the illustration below from Nuveen indicates the opposite is actually true!

Note the Average column on the far right: equities have historically performed well through tightening cycles, albeit not without volatility.

Equities Policy Tightens

Do you enjoy predicting the stock market? Do you believe rising interest rates will cause the market to go up, or go down?

Send us a quick message and let us know what you think!

Quote of the Week

“During this time of reopening, we are likely to see some upward pressure on prices… But those pressures are *likely to be temporary* as they are associated with the reopening process.”

Jerome Powell, Chairman of the Federal Reserve April, 2021

Powell Says Factors Driving Inflation

The sardonic truth? Almost a year later, the consumer price index (CPI) is +8.5%, and accelerating.

Here’s the point: predicting the stock market, or inflation, or any future economic occurrence, is next to impossible to consistently (and accurately) do. Be aware but wary of the accuracy of expert predictions, understanding that today’s forgone conclusions are often hindsight’s most embarrassing moments. Those who can mix knowledge with humility are often at a longer-term competitive advantage.

Want further testimony? From August of last year: Why Fed’s Powell Still Thinks High Inflation is ‘Temporary’

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140, info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

Download Newsletter Towerpoint Wealth

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

Follow us on any of these platforms, message us there and let us know your favorite charity. We will happily donate $10 to it!

Click HERE to follow TPW on LinkedIn
Click HERE to follow TPW on Facebook
Click HERE to follow TPW on Instagram
Click HERE to follow TPW on Twitter

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Will Homeowners Frown with Housing Prices Going Down? 4.22.2022

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Today’s housing market – it feels to us like we are at a true inflection point right now, and perhaps not a good one.

Clients and colleagues are frequently asking: “Is the housing market in a bubble?” And they are hearing conflicting words from economists:

“Housing starts have historically been unresponsive to changes in mortgage rates in a supply-constrained environment, likely because homebuilders are able to continue building with little fear that homes will sit vacant after completion.” – Ronnie Walker, Goldman Sachs economist
vs.

“We expect the combination of surging mortgage rates and record-high home prices to cause more homebuyers to drop out of the market.” – Daryl Fairweather, Redfin chief economist

Can we expect to see housing prices go down with overall economic growth remaining strong? The housing market does seem to be struggling a bit under the weight of higher interest rates, consistent with Fairweather’s statement above. Don’t let anyone tell you that interest rates don’t matter – they do! The cost of money (read: the interest rate you are charged to borrow) is extremely important, and directly correlated to the overall long-term growth of the housing market!

housing market hold my beer

While still hot, the housing sector seems to be just a touch cooler today when compared to the 2021 market, when over 70% of home listings saw a bidding war!

Existing Housing Sales

We argue how can it not be, understanding US home prices soared by a seemingly unsustainable 18.8% (!) last year.

US Home Price Growth

But housing prices going down? Current “expert” opinion on what happens next is quite varied, and while we are admitted skeptics of expert predictions due to their consistently poor overall track record, the current dichotomy is extreme. 

On one hand, housing “bulls” say:

  • Demand remains strong, with many properties still consistently selling for above asking price.

According to a new report from Redfinsome 5,897 homes nationwide sold for at least $100,000 over (!) asking price at the beginning of 2022, up from 2,241 compared to the same period in 2021.

Housing Prices Going Down
  • There’s no inventory!

Among the 327 housing markets tracked by Zillow, 254 have inventory levels that are down by more than 30%between December 2019 and December 2021. In another 54 housing markets (Miami and Ft. Collins, CO being two), housing inventory is down by over 50% from pre-pandemic levels!

Will Homeowners Frown with Housing Prices Going Down?” - Trending Today - 4.22.2022
  • Buyer urgency has increased.

As interest rates rise, people may push to buy sooner rather than later, anticipating and getting ahead of further rate increases. This could be creating additional temporary demand.

On the other hand, housing “bears” say:

  • We have a “hawkish” Fed. The housing sector is vulnerable to the risk of the Fed orchestrating a “hard landing” with its interest rate hikes, possibly leading to a recession.
Bloomberg Interest Rates
  • Yields/interest rates on 30-year mortgages are surging.

Just last month, the average 30-year mortgage rate was 4.2%. NOW, it is north of 5.3%, the highest it has been since 2009!

Mortgage Rates Daily Index
30 year Fixed Rate Prices
  • Affordability is horrible.

The combination of surging mortgage rates and rapidly increasing home prices translates into even more difficulty for aspiring homebuyers, and many Americans are being priced out of safe and affordable housing.

Housing Affordable Index Housing Market
  • The SPDR® S&P® Homebuilders exchange traded fund (XHB) is out of favor, down nearly 25% year-to-date

XHB seeks to provide exposure to the homebuilders segment of the S&P Total Market Index, which comprises the following sub-industries: Home Building, Building Products, Home Furnishings, Home Improvement Retail, Home Furnishing Retail, and Household Appliances.

Interest-rate sensitive areas of the economy and stock market, like XHB, are portending pain, and less-than-attractive profits, in the housing market.

Homebuilders Index

At Towerpoint Wealth, we do believe we are at an inflection point right now, and that home appreciation may soon begin to slow. However, appreciation that is slowing is still appreciation, and is clearly much better than no growth or, even worse, negative growth.

Put differently, we fully agree with Citi analyst Steve Zaccone’s take:

California housing prices

TPW in the Media

Described as “a human wellbeing and flourishing podcast,” LifeBlood is released daily and features a myriad of different professionals and subject matter experts. Produced and hosted from Scottsdale, AZ by George GrombacherLifeblood featured our President, Joseph Eschleman, earlier this week.

Click the thumbnail below hear what Joe had to say about leading by example, focusing on process and on things you can control, and about his membership, along with Tim Cook, Oprah, and Michelle Obama, in the 4AM club!

Lead By Example LifeBlood Podcast

What is happening at TPW?

Flanked by two beautiful young ladies and outstanding Christian Brothers’ freshmen, our President, Joe Eschleman, was not interviewing for upcoming summer internship positions, but instead chauffeuring his daughter Josephine, and her good friend Bailey, to and from the Crocker Art Museum last week, with a TPW pit-stop mixed in!

Joseph Eschleman & JoJo Eschleman Towerpoint-Wealth

Arches National Park, the world’s largest concentration of natural sandstone arches, is the latest vacation destination for our adversome Director of Tax and Financial Planning, Steve Pitchford!

Nice work, Steve – your affinity for Mother Nature and goal to see all 63 amazing US national parks is ambitious and wonderful, and we are all jealous of your getaway and amazing photos!

Steve Pitchford CPA CFP Financial Planning

What else is happening with the Towerpoint Wealth family? Follow us on Instagram to find out!

Follow Towerpoint Wealth Instagram

TPW Taxes 2022

With the passing of the 2021 income tax filing deadline on Monday (hooray!), myths abound about ways to get information about tax refunds and how to speed one up.

As of the week ending April 1, the IRS said it has sent out more than 63 million refunds worth over $204 billion! The average refund is $3,226.

Click the image below to read an excellent article from ThinkAdvisor that discusses seven common myths about income tax refunds.

1040 Refund Coming

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. We’re Trader Joe’s Workers, and There are Some Items You Should Never Buy – NY Post – 4.19.2022

Four unnamed workers revealed a list of products that shoppers shouldn’t buy, as well as seasonal items shoppers shouldn’t miss out on, when visiting their local Trader Joe’s store this spring.

2. All Hope Isn’t Lost for Democrats in November – The Hill – 4.5.2022

“We got a story to tell; just got to tell it,” former President Obama replied to a question about Democrats’ chances in the 2022 midterms as he left a news conference with President Biden. I watched the moment on live TV and immediately thought, “Easy for you to say.”

3. A LePen Upset Would Be as Big a Shock to Markets as Brexit – Yahoo! Finance – 4.20.2022

All the polls show French President Emmanuel Macron is likely to win a second term Sunday. But from Citigroup Inc. to asset manager Amundi SA, the warnings are piling up that markets are underestimating the risk of a surprise.

Chart/Infographic of the Week

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Housing Market Index (HMI) in the US fell in April for a *fourth* consecutive month, to reach its lowest point since September of last year. See our commentary above for some of the possible reasons why, as well as NAHB’s Chief Economist Robert Dietz’s quote below:

The housing market faces an inflection point as an unexpectedly quick rise in interest rates, rising home prices, and escalating material costs have significantly decreased housing affordability conditions, particularly in the crucial entry-level market.

housing prices going down housing market

Quote of the Week

Saving money and investing money are two completely different philosophies, and require two completely different mindsets, as the excellent wealth-building and wealth-protection illustration below demonstrates!

invest pessimist optimist

Responsible Investing

Happy Earth Day 2022! Did you know you can align your portfolio with your *personal values*? Yes, you can!

Click the thumbnail below, or visit our responsible investing page to learn more. Please feel free to click HERE and reach out to us with questions.

Does your portfolio reflect your values?

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it. 

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor
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Feeling Depression About a Possible Recession? 04.08.2022

Top 5 Ways to Recession-Proof Your Portfolio!

Download Newsletter Towerpoint Wealth

Is the United States economy on the verge of slipping into a recession?

Or is the exact opposite happening – is the economy continuing to recover, more robust than it is getting credit for?

Recession Proof | Economy in Recession

A broad measure of the “stock market,” the S&P 500 ended 2021 at 4,766.18. It then proceeded to “correct” down to 4,173.11 on March 14 (click HERE to read our 2.1.2022 commentary about this, Market Correction Is Coming – What, Me Worry?). However, since 3/14, the market has notched an impressive rally, sailing back out of correction territory in less than a month.

So what gives? Are we looking towards an economy in recession, or are we more recession proof than many economists believe?

It should come as no surprise to our clients and to TPW friends and colleagues that we take this volatility with a grain of salt. We pay attention, but rarely react, to these short-term movements. Daily, weekly, and monthly market movements are much more important to, and are scrutinized more closely by, traders and speculators, as opposed to investors interested in taking a disciplined approach to building and protecting wealth. As Warren Buffett said:

Warren Buffet

However, we do seem to be at an odd inflection point in our economy, and unsurprisingly, there is anything but consensus on what happens next.

While the Towerpoint Wealth Investment Committee remains cautiously optimistic and sanguine (a favorite adjective used often in the investment community by analysts and talking heads who want to sound extra intelligent) about the future of the US economy and financial markets, not everyone agrees with us.

BOA and MS Info

While it currently seems fashionable to portray a bearish / negative outlook for the US economy and financial markets, we believe that record corporate profitsplentiful jobssignificant declines in coronavirus caseswage increases, and excess consumer savings will outweigh the economic risks of inflationinterest rate increasesUkraine-Russia geo-political and supply-chain concerns, and potentially higher US federal income taxes.

Oil Housing Covid Graphic

At Towerpoint Wealth, we firmly believe that a possible slowdown does not have to mean recession, and we also firmly believe that when you have an economy in recession, truly, almost by definition, it involves job losses and high unemployment. In today’s environment, it is not hard to see that the absolute opposite is currently true.

Click the thumbnail below to read an excellent report from T. Rowe Price discussing why recession in the US appears unlikely amid our reopening economy.

Market Parallels 1973- Recession Proof

We also believe that Putnam’s graph below, illustrating economic expansions and recessions, and concurrently, bull (rising) and bear (declining) markets, does an excellent job of helping our clients to understand:

  1. Economic expansions (above the line, in green) are much more robust than recessions (below the line, in red)
  2. Over the past 73 years, bull markets have lasted longer (50 months, on average) than bear markets (13 months, on average), and have more than made up for periodic market declines
Putnam Investments - A world of investing

However, at Towerpoint Wealth, we don’t want to say that we have a recession-proof economy – we fully recognize that the risk of a recession is not zero, and that it is important to be mindful of and have a plan to protect against the possibility that the Fed “slams on the brakes” by aggressively increasing interest rates (and concurrently the cost, or “price,” of borrowing money), which would result in a rapid slow-down of our economy.

Market Pricing Total Fed Funds Increase 2022

What to do to recession-proof your portfolio? Read on!

1. Own and have exposure to blue-chip equities (stocks)

Investors almost always find blue chip stocks attractive, but especially during a recession. They typically pay attractive dividends, which provides a tangible return in the form of consistent income. Blue chip stocks also tend to be larger companies with more stable and predictable streams of revenue and profits, which can lessen the impact on the price of a stock during a market pullback or recession.

2. Harness the power of low-correlation investments and alternative diversifiers


Owning or adding to your portfolio investments whose price and value tend to “zig” when more traditional stocks and bonds “zag” can help lower your risk, especially during a recessionary period. Commodities, precious metals, timber, commercial real estate, cryptocurrency and digital assets, hedge funds, private equity and debt, timber, and art are just a few examples of low-correlation investments.

The three D2 of alternative diversifiers

3. Increase your exposure to non-US equities

Owning international stocks is another way to recession-proof your portfolio. While the economies, and stock markets, of the major developed countries and economies around the globe seem to be more correlated than ever before, the discounted valuations, and currencies, that oftentimes can be found within international stock markets can be an excellent hedge against a possible US recession. Additionally, international markets oftentimes offer more exposure to structural growth opportunities than the US market, and can be an excellent hedge against rising inflation here in the US.

4. Cash is (or can be) king!

Cash adds “bubble wrap” to your portfolio, especially during a recession. Having cash allows an investor to further recession proof their portfolio by cushioning against volatility and market declines. Smart investors also can utilize this “dry powder” to take advantage of attractive investment opportunities as they arise during a market pullback or correction, especially if they believe a recession is coming.

Warren Buffet Quote Cash

Cash is considered “oxygen” for a portfolio, as it becomes more and more important to have as temporary market declines occur during a recession. Lastly, while checking, savings, and money market accounts have paid little if any interest over the past few years, things are quickly changing, and as interest rates rise throughout 2022, you should earn higher rates on your cash and money market deposits.

5. Be properly diversified

Through maintaining a portfolio allocation across a diversified group of asset classes, investors can position themselves, and their portfolios, to better weather market and economic volatility. Additionally, being properly diversified allows for the benefits of disciplined portfolio rebalancing, helping an investor to recession proof their portfolio by buying low and selling high when transitioning their portfolio back to its original strategic targets. Plus, who wants all of their eggs in just one or two baskets when a recession is coming? Not us…

What’s Happening at TPW

A BIG congratulations to our Partner, Wealth Advisor, Jonathan LaTurner, and his new bride, Katie McDonald, who tied the knot last week in Tulum, Mexico! We couldn’t be happier for both of them!

And of course our President, Joseph Eschleman, was in attendance to help the happy couple celebrate!

Jonathan W. LaTurner Wedding in Mexico
Jonathan W. LaTurner Wedding in Mexico
Jonathan W. LaTurner & President Joseph Eschleman, CIMA® Wedding in Mexico

It’s not a Happy Friday without a McDonald’s McNuggets Happy Meal!

Ethan, the son of our Director of Research and Analytics, Nathan Billigmeier, keeps getting more and more adorable as the months pass! #heartbreaker

Nathan and Ethan McDonalds

 What else is happening with the Towerpoint Wealth family? Follow us on Facebook to find out!

TPW Taxes – 2022

While here in California, state income tax rates continue to climb, this is not the norm and not the case throughout many parts of the US. A dozen states introduced measures to REDUCE corporate or personal income tax rates last year. Click the two images below to read examples from states that are doing the opposite of what California is doing – cutting the state taxes their residents have to pay.

TPW GA Taxpayers
Georgia lawmakers create flat income tax, cutting taxes by $1 billion
TPW Mississippi House Tax Bill
Mississippi enacts its largest-ever tax cut

We are officially in the Tax Day 2022 “home stretch,” as the filing deadline to submit 2021 tax returns, or an extension to file and pay tax owed, is Monday, April 18. As we have mentioned previously, we welcome and look forward to directly interfacing and collaborating with you, and/or your tax advisor. 

Towerpoint Wealth’s Director of Tax and Financial Planning, Steve Pitchford, CPA, CFP® is our resident tax expert, and we invite you to simply click his image below to reach out to him about any specific income tax-related need, issue, service or document request, or question.

TPW News You Can Use

1. A New COVID Mystery – Why Haven’t Cases Started Rising Again in the US? – NY Times – 4.6.2022

To many people’s surprise, new COVID-19 cases in the US have not begun to rise. Over the past two weeks, they have held roughly steady, falling about 1%, even as the highly contagious BA.2 subvariant of Omicron has become the dominant form of COVID in the US.

2. Making it Rain – Yankees, Mets Both Have the Obscene Payrolls NY Teams Need – NY Post – 4.5.2022

The Mets and the Yankees will combine to spend $532 million on baseball players this year, and if that seems outrageous… well, sure, it probably is.

3. The Remarkable Brain of a Carpet Cleaner Who Speaks 24 Languages – SF Gate – 4.5.2022

Vaughn Smith, a real, live hyperpolyglot (a person who can speak several languages), is fluent in eight languages and conversational in another 25!

Chart / Infographic of the Week

Incremental change – small micro-actions, when done repeatedly, over a long period of time, can cause massive improvements. Also known as baby steps!

Line Chart Improvement

Also, if you haven’t heard, rampant inflation is one of the central reasons that interest rates continue their upwards march, as borrowing for a mortgage has quickly become much more expensive

Mortgage Graph 30 Year Fixed

Quote of the Week

Very consistent with the theme of the Chart/Infographic of the Week found above, we love NBA legend and Hall of Famer Jerry West’s quote and outlook on life found below.

Jerry West Quote

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

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Don’t Hide from the Ides (of March)! 3.18.2022

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The stock market has been a friend to investors in recent years, just as Brutus was a friend (for a time) to Caesar. However, most of us know the end of that ancient tale: Caesar ignored the soothsayer’s dark and gloomy warning, “beware the ides of March,” ultimately to his peril, as Brutus stabbed him in the back.

Seeing that we are only three days removed from 2022’s Ides of March, should today’s investors be concerned that their portfolio this year may suffer a similar outcome as Caesar, especially understanding the recent spate of “doom and gloom” economic, geo-political, and market forecasts?

Caesar Comic

Through the Ides of March (March 15), the S&P 500 was down more than 11% year-to-date, marking the fifth worststart to the year ever.

TPW Percent Chart

However, then came Tuesday’s, Wednesday’s, and yesterday’s swift and major rebound.

Historically, and as evidenced by the “10 Worst Starts for the S&P 500*” chart found above, comparably

1) The remainder of March
2) The remainder of the first half of the year
3) The remainder of the entire year

How closely are you regularly following financial news stories? Do you feel that 2022 will, or will not, follow this bounceback trend? Click HERE to message us and let us know your thoughts.

Towerpoint Wealth’s wealth-building and wealth-protection philosophy leads us to rarely be led by feelings, get worried or excited by daily market movements (please see the below Chart/Infographic of the Week). And despite historical trends, we have no soothsayer. However, considering the deluge of troubling and worrisome news we have been overburdened with recently, it is important not to get overwhelmed, but instead to be aware and not lose perspective. While history rarely repeats itself exactly, it is certainly rhyming so far this March.

Of course, we would be remiss if we did not also briefly touch upon the price of oil, and concurrently, the price at the pump of a gallon of gasoline. While it is evident that supply disruptions will continue to persist, we feel there is a high probability of a “settling out” of oil and gasoline prices. In fact, it’s already underway.

US oil production is increasing again

Towerpoint Wealth Crude Oil Chart

The price of oil is down ~ 25% from its recent early March highs

TPW ICE Brent

The U.S. imports WAY more oil from Canada than from any other country

TPW Top 5 Countries

What is happening at TPW?

Cheers and a BIG thank you to two excellent Towerpoint Wealth clients, Steve and Toni Shaffer!

Steve and Toni gave a very apropos t-shirt to our craft beer-loving President, Joseph F. Eschleman, CIMA®, after their financial and wealth planning meeting last week with Joseph and our Director of Research and Analytics, Steve Pitchford.

Towerpoint Wealth Beer Giving Back

Helping out and giving back to our local community has always been a central core value here at TPW.

We were humbled and privileged to assemble, and then distribute, 100+ bagged lunches, hot coffee, and hand warmers to Sacramento’s homeless community late last month at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament here in downtown Sacramento.

A big thank you to Marilynn Fairgood (again!), and the Brown Bag Lunch program she is in charge of, for helping us coordinate our volunteering efforts.

Towerpoint Wealth Beer Giving Back

TPW in the Media

Speaking of financial news stories, our President was recently featured in the February 25 edition of Financial Advisor IQ, a highly regarded wealth management industry publication, discussing what clients need to know about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the impact these developments may have on investments, and how clients can and potentially should respond.

Click the thumbnail image below to read Joseph’s insightful comments and perspective in greater detail.

Financial Advisor IQ TPW Feature LinkedIn

TPW Taxes – 2022 – Financial News Stories

As the April 18, 2022 “Tax Day” personal filing deadline draws closer, we have seen an unsurprising uptick in tax-related questions, CPA inquiries, and service-related needs. And in the interests of making your life a little easier as you gather your information and prepare to file, we continue to stand ready to help you (and your CPA)!

Please click HERE if you have a specific tax-related question, issue, or need.

Additionally, click on any of the six thumbnail images below for resources, tax tips, commonly asked tax-related questions, and other information. Enjoy!

Towerpoint Wealth Time Saving Hacks Filing Your Taxes

3 Time-Saving Hacks That Can Make Filing Your 2022 Taxes a Little Easier

Towerpoint Wealth Tax Refund

Tax Refund Delays: 5 Things That Could Slow Down Your Money

Towerpoint Wealth Free Options Filing Taxes

Free Options for Filing Your Taxes

Yes I am CPA No Taxes

5 Situations Where It’s Not Worth It To Hire a CPA

Married Filling Separately

Here’s When Married Filing Separately Makes Sense

Working From-Anywhere Tips Avoid Tax Nightmares

Working from Anywhere? These Tips Will Help You Avoid Tax Nightmares

TPW News You Can Use

Ueful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. The Fed Needs to Get a Lot Tougher to Stop Soaring Inflation – NY Post – 3.16.2022

Wall Street loved the Federal Reserve’s quarter-point interest rate hike on Wednesday, with the Dow soaring 500 points. That’s a clear signal that Fed chief Jerome Powell is not doing enough to fight inflation Read Article

2. Chris Cuomo Hits Back at CNN “Smear Campaign” with $125MM Arbitration Demand – Deadline.com – 3.16.2022

After months of anticipation following his December, 2021 firing by Jeff Zucker, Chris Cuomo has just launched the official opening salvo in what looks to be a protracted legal battle with CNN over not only $125 million, but his character and family drama as well. Read Article

3. Imagining Peace in Ukraine – NY Times – 3.16.2022

Vladimir Putin’s history makes it hard to imagine a peace agreement in which an independent Ukraine continues to exist. The success of the US, EU, and Britain’s imposition of sanctions in order to force Putin to accept some version of defeat hangs on the four main points outlined in this article. Read Article

Chart/Infographic of the Week

Understanding we can all be influenced by today’s in-your-face, 24/7 news cycle, we believe it is extremely important to put some SPACE between these events, and any response that they may (or perhaps more likely, may *not*) merit.

Towerpoint Wealth Stimulus Space Response

Quote of the Week

Once again, Warren Buffett nails it. While nobody is perfectly comfortable with volatility and temporary market and portfolio declines, we believe it is important to both expect and embrace volatility throughout your career as an investor.

Towerpoint Wealth Warren Buffet Quote

Trending Today

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor
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The Russia/Ukraine Crisis – An Important Message 03.04.2022

Just over two months ago, markets were at a record high, as healthy data on the US economy signaled continued economic growth on the horizon.

Then, as Vladimir Putin and his Russian military first threatened, and then began, an outright invasion of Ukraine on February 24, world financial markets began a correction and decline. The events of the past week and a half have again reminded us – we live in extremely unsettled and uncertain times.

Click the image below to watch a well-articulated and important message from our President, Joseph Eschleman, as he addresses not only the major implications of the Russia/Ukraine crisis for the financial markets and our economy, but perhaps most importantly, for your portfolio.

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Crypto: Why It’s Here to Stay and Not Going Away! 02.18.2022

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Bitcoin launched back in 2009. Thirteen years have since gone by, there now exist more than 10,000 new cryptocurrencies, and the global crypto market capitalization tops $2 trillion!

However, as modeled by Larry David’s character in FTX’s hilarious Super Bowl commercial last weekend (look for a link to it later in this newsletter!), there are still plenty of no-coiners who continue to ask “Will crypto crash again?”

Even with the explosive growth referenced above, a healthy amount of skepticism and a fair amount of ignorance about digital assets and cryptocurrencies remain, informally correlated to one’s age and level of interest in technology. What’s keeping people from “buying in” to cryptocurrencies?

  • “Blockchain technology seems to be a solution looking for a problem.”
  • “Crypto is too complicated for me.”
  • “The adoption of crypto has been insufficient.”
  • “Using crypto will increase my transaction costs.”

Some people even believe crypto is a trojan horse, sent by radical libertarians to undermine the global financial system! While that last reason may be a bit alarmist, there continue to be those who argue blockchain and crypto may be too disruptive for their own good.

We disagree, and believe that while the journey to mass acceptance may continue to be wild and schizophrenic, that distrust of blockchain technology will ultimately prove to be unwarranted. We believe that the adoption of cryptocurrency will be much like the adoption of any other technology: The rate at which adoption occurs grows gradually, then generally explodes upwards.

Consider the internet thirty years ago. In 1990, only a handful of governments, universities, businesses, and individuals were using the internet. But by the year 2000, everyone had a website. In 2021, consumers spent more than $871 billion online, a 44% increase from 2019, and almost triple the 15.1% increase the previous year.

Remember when the iPhone was invented back in 2007? Smart phones were scarce then. Only a few short years later, and just about everyone had the internet available to them in their pockets and at their fingertips.

We are not doubting that the feel of a crisp $100 bill in your hand is unduplicable, and there will always be demand for fiat currency as long as there are governments. However, we firmly believe that the movement towards a global financial system that removes the control that banks have on money is inevitable. While this evolution will almost assuredly be met with many impediments, obstacles, and outright deterrents (such as the most recent cryptocurrency pullback, that began in early November and ended in late January, causing folks to ask “will crypto crash again?”), global finance is moving away from being centralized (money being held by banks, which have the goal of earning profits) to being decentralized, where blockchain technology eliminates the need to use profit-seeking intermediaries and third-parties to lend, spend, trade, and borrow.

DeFi, as decentralized finance is commonly known, is disruptive. And when something is disruptive, it is confusing, and causes disorder.

Please do not mistake our belief and confidence in the future of crypto, blockchain, and DeFi as being willfully ignorant, as we fully recognize the risks, uncertainties, and pitfalls that exist and will persist for some time. After all, is there anyone who does not believe that centralized financial institutions will fight tooth and nail to protect their primary means of earning profits? There seems to never be a dull moment with crypto!

However, understanding the advancements that need to be made, and the myriad of questions that still need to be answered before crypto is commonly accepted and DeFi trends towards becoming the norm, we believe it is not an if, but a when, finance becomes decentralized.

Will crypto and blockchain adoption perfectly mirror the two aforementioned examples? Probably not, but the similarities are noteworthy and should not be discounted. Will crypto crash again? It’s certainly possible, arguably even probable. But for those who understand, embrace, and adopt cryptocurrency and blockchain as an innovative new financial technology, we believe there are rewards to be had. Will the ride continue to be wild? Absolutely, but we believe it will become less and less wild as adoption increases, skepticism wanes, and use cases increase.

Below are five reasons why we believe crypto is here to stay and not going away!

1. Mainstream awareness: It wasn’t the Super Bowl, it was the Crypto Bowl!

A few short years ago, a number of media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, and Google banned advertisements that had anything to do with digital assets.

Last Sunday, an estimated 112 million viewers tuned in to watch the Rams defeat the Bengals in Super Bowl LVI. And a healthy number of them tuned in more for the halftime show and the commercials than for the game itself. And leading the advertising pack were Binance, FTX, Coinbase, Crypto.com, eToro, and Bitbuy – all cryptocurrency exchanges. And one of the best and funniest commercials of the entire Super Bowl featured the curmudgeonly Larry David, and his dismissal of history’s greatest inventions, including crypto. Click below to watch it!

The overlying point of these advertisers? Play into FOMO (fear of missing out), and don’t listen to Larry! The messaging continues to be clear – we are real companies, real advertisers, we’re here to stay, and we’re mainstream.

2. Rapid growth in mainstream adoption

More than 220 million people now own digital assets, as of June of last year. By some measures, this growth is rising faster than the internet did in its early stages. Trends firmly point to more users, longer holding periods, and growing institutional investment.

Bitcoin is also disrupting traditional payment processes, and is now one of the largest settlement networks in the world. By the end of 2021, the Bitcoin network settled over $13.1 trillion in transactions, up 470% from 2020, representing over half of the US’s GDP for the year, and MORE than what Visa, one of the largest payment processors in the world, settled last year!

3. Demographics – The Great Wealth Transfer

Over $68 trillion (yes, you read that right, trillion) is set to be transferred from the Baby Boomers to Millennials and Gen Xers over the next 25 years. Both Millennials and Gen Xers have a higher level of interest in innovation (read: decentralized finance) and a lower level of trust in traditional institutions (read: centralized finance). Supporting this perspective, 83% of millennial millionaires already own digital assets, a trend we believe is likely to continue as this demographic reaches peak earning and spending years.

Click the video below to learn more:

4. “We’ll just print more (money)”

Governments and central banks around the globe have clearly demonstrated a willingness to provide economic stimulus in the form of bailouts, social spending, and quantitative easing. In the past two years alone, 29% of the current US money supply was created.

The unsurprising result? Monetary, price, and asset INFLATION.

Conversely, bitcoin has programmed scarcity – its supply cannot be manipulated or devalued by fiscal or monetary policy, and provides direct protection from global fiat currency debasement.

5. Bitcoin is sound money

What qualities and characteristics about traditional money and fiat currency are important to us as users? The same ones that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies exhibit: Portability, security, storability, durability, acceptability, scarcity, divisibility, and fungibility.

All of these qualities allow bitcoin to be used as both a medium of exchange and a store of value.

Throughout history civilizations have used many different mediums of money, including cattle, leather, rocks, squirrels, jewels, wine, and seashells. And before sovereign currencies took hold, gold was the medium of trade for many nations (and to this day still is a very good store of value). As with any new currency, it will take time for cryptocurrency adoption to grow.

Bitcoin is only 12 years old, and many other cryptocurrencies are still in their infancy. However, each day crypto remains accepted, active, secure, and continues to grow in popularity and usage, it will become more and more mainstream. To be clear, bank notes and credit cards were not made for the internet and the digital age we are clearly in – crypto was!

Interested in learning more? Click the image below to read a well-assembled report from Eaglebrook Advisors about the bitcoin market cycle.

And while we don’t expect for you know, understand, and adopt all 10,000 cryptocurrencies, we couldn’t resist sharing the below “primer” with you.

Have you thought but are unsure about integrating crypto into your longer-term investment portfolio? Click HERE to message us, as we welcome opening an objective dialogue with you about the many advantages, disadvantages, risks, and considerations involved.

What is Happening at TPW

Kings win!

Our President, Joseph Eschleman, spent an enjoyable, action-packed, and productive evening last Wednesday at the Golden1 Center, soaking in an upset Kings victory over the Brooklyn Nets, 112-101.

As usual, Joseph mixed some business with pleasure during the game – flanking him in the photo is District 7 Sacramento Councilmember and Super Bowl XIchampion, Rick Jennings II, and one of the top estate planning attorneys in Northern California, Mark Drobny, CEO of Drobny Law Offices.

The entire TPW family was rocking their new company-branded winter vests yesterday at the office.

Everyone is excited at how warm and chic their new Towerpoint Wealth gear is, and a big thanks to FnD Embroidery for helping with the customization and finishing touches!

TPW Taxes – 2022

January 24 marked the official beginning of the 2022 tax season, when the IRS will begin accepting and processing 2021 tax returns. Taxpayers and tax advisors are beginning to clamor for tax information, with the April 18 tax filing deadline only two short months away.

If you are a Towerpoint Wealth client, please expect your Form 1099 Composite any day now, as Charles Schwab has indicated that by mid-February you should have these important tax forms.

TPW News You Can Use

Useful and interesting content we read the past two weeks:

1. Looking for Evidence? Trust Us, Biden Administration Says – Associated Press – 2.5.2022

When President Biden’s administration was asked for evidence to back up dramatic claims about national security developments last week, it demurred with a simple rejoinder: You’ll have to trust us on that.

No, they would not reveal what led them to say they knew that Russia was plotting a false flag operation as a pretext to invade Ukraine. No, they would not explain their confidence that civilian casualties were caused by a suicide bombing rather than U.S. special forces during a raid in Syria.

The lack of transparency strained already depleted reserves of credibility in Washington, a critical resource diminished over the decades by instances of lies, falsehoods, and mistakes on everything from extramarital affairs to the lack of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.Read Article

2. The Craziest Ways Wall Street is Spending This Year’s Record-Setting Bonuses – NY Post – 2.8.2022

Flush Wall Street hotshots blow their record-setting bonuses on cars and caviar.Read Article

3. How a Secret Assault Allegation Against an Anchor Upended CNN and Jeff Zucker – NY Times – 2.16.2022

The network’s top-rated host and its president were forced out following ethical lapses, an office romance, and a letter from a lawyer for “Jane Doe.”Read Article

Chart / Infographic of the Week

The below illustration from First Trust is an “oldie but goodie.”

While we generally believe that the stock market is very efficient, we also believe that the markets can be quite irrational in certain situations. Of course there are booms and busts.

Accurately predicting the exact days to “go all in” or “go all out” is next to impossible, and if you MISS the best days because you are out, you will pay a steep price! As evidenced by the chart below, we strongly encourage you to be humble when considering the binary decision of “going all in” or “getting completely out,” as the consequences can be devastating if you are wrong!

Quote of Week

If (when?) anyone tries to push or drag you down, just think about this quote from Denzel Washington!

TPW Washington Watch

Congress returned to Washington in 2022 facing a difficult legislative environment. The narrow margins in both chambers were already a huge impediment to passing legislation, but the fact that 2022 is a midterm election year only exacerbates the political tensions.

As a result, 2022 is expected to be relatively light on big legislative initiatives—though the atmosphere could be right for a dormant retirement savings bill to be rekindled. It is also expected to be a big year for regulations, as the administration seeks to use the regulatory process to accomplish some of its priorities away from the gridlock on Capitol Hill.

Click below for an excellent commentary from Charles Schwab that summarizes many of the key issues in Washington that could impact you in the year ahead.

As the 24/7 news cycle churns, twists, and turns, a number of trending and notable events have occurred over the past few weeks:

As always, we sincerely value our relationships and partnerships with each of you, as well as your trust and confidence in us here at Towerpoint Wealth. We encourage you to reach out to us at any time (916-405-9140info@towerpointwealth.com) with any questions, concerns, or needs you may have. The world continues to be an extremely unsettled and complicated place, and we are here to help you properly plan for and make sense of it.

 Joseph, Jonathan, Steve, Lori, Nathan, and Michelle

Towerpoint Wealth Sacramento Independent Financial Advisor

We enjoy social media, and are actively growing our online community!

Follow us on any of these platforms, message us there and let us know your favorite charity. We will happily donate $10 to it!

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