News

Tax Update

Evergreen Q1 2020, News

Tax Cuts and Growth 

Although the day that all a taxpayer’s owed taxes have to be paid in is still April 15th every year, the “tax season” doesn’t end until the extension deadline around October 15th.  The calendar year end brings the start of a new tax season although actually filing returns won’t start until February 1st.  What state is the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in? 

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Focus on Long-Term Market Health

News

We are all concerned about how the Covid-19 coronavirus will impact us. In addition to the costs of human life and suffering, it is having an economic impact. As one would expect, the stock market reflects this – the S&P 500 is down about 12% from its all-time highs reached just nine days ago on February 19th. The index has still returned about 9% over the past twelve months. The virus is most scary now because it continues to spread geographically, and no one knows how it will play out.

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It’s Complicated…

Evergreen Q4 2019, News

While airplanes themselves and the flight systems that the airlines use to ferry us around the country and around the world are some of the most complicated systems humans have devised, perhaps there are lessons we can learn in dealing with other less complicated systems from their travails.  One commentator on Boeing’s maneuvering control system failure simply states that manufacturers and regulators need to recognize that “many current pilots are simply not up to the standard necessary to operate current systems”.[1] 

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Noise Cancelling “Fed-phones”? Isolating the Signal from the Noise

Evergreen Q4 2019, News

Investors like data and particularly the predictability of data. In fundamental investment analysis, company and economic data are the signal that is useful for modeling future expected economic growth rates, revenue, earnings, cash flows, etc. We use these to determine future values that can be discounted back to a fair value today. This helps us decide if something is currently cheap or expensive relative to future expectations, and importantly, what are we buying, holding or selling for our clients’ portfolios. Unplanned economic and political events can affect our economic decision making but they are mostly noise around a signal.

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Tax Update

Evergreen Q4 2019, News

Wealth Taxes Are in the News

How does someone get a feel for our tax system?  In business, running your own, smaller business is probably good preparation for running a larger one.  A senior executive of a large firm who was pushed out to make way for another manager, started and ran his own firm before being hired back to run the larger firm.

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On Building A New Portfolio From Cash

Evergreen Q4 2019, News

Woodstock Quarterly Newsletter / Winter 2019

When constructing a new portfolio from cash our philosophy is to move expeditiously but use common sense.  Initially, fully knowing that we cannot predict the market, the impetus is to invest a major portion of the funds in a diversified portfolio of stocks that both line up with the client’s circumstances and desires and meet Woodstock financial and quality criteria.  Subsequently, depending upon market conditions, our strategy is to put the remaining resources to work over a period of several months.

Peter Hartzel, Senior Vice President and Portfolio Manager

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90th Anniversary

Evergreen Q4 2019, News

Woodstock Quarterly Newsletter / Winter 2019

According to Company lore, Woodstock Corporation and its predecessor organizations were founded in October 1929. After the passing of the founder of Paine Webber, (the Boston based broker dealer and investment bank), William A. Paine, his estate and financial affairs were handled by an office called Paine Estates.  Within a few years Paine Estates was incorporated as Woodstock Corporation, mostly handling tax and custody issues.  In the late 1960s, Woodstock Corporation registered as an investment adviser, as we are today. William A. Paine died a few weeks before the Wall Street Crash of 1929. As with other estates, the valuation before the crash was much higher than the valuation post-crash. Company lore credits William A. Paine’s estate with helping to establish the alternate valuation date now available to all US taxable estates.

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Keep Calm and Carry On in U.S. Public Equity Markets

Evergreen Q3 2019, News

There is current interest in the effect of the new tax law changes on investment fees. Before discussing deductibility, investment fees have always had to be justified. For assets managed at a firm like Woodstock, the ownership of individual equities, not in a pooled investment structure, allows the investment manager to use asset allocation, tax considerations and turnover, in other words use the levers available, to effectively save as much as the management fee might be.

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Unchartered Territory, But With Déjà Vu

Evergreen Q3 2019, News

The S&P 500 Index returned +18.5% through the first six months of this year, following a -13.5% fourth quarter of 2018. On a year-over-year basis, the market has returned a still strong, but more modest +10.4%. The market hit a rough patch in May, down 6.4%, when trade negotiations between the US and China stalled. Also in May, the Trump Administration imposed more aggressive sanctions on China’s leading telecom equipment manufacturer, Huawei, and threatened to impose tariffs on Mexico.

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Tax Update

Evergreen Q3 2019, News

Multi-Generational Tax Planning

How hard is it to do multi-generational tax planning with the 2020 national election run-up showing such diverse views of potential tax policy? We try to keep two rules of thumb in mind when planning. Don’t be “too smart by half” which we believe means don’t make what can be simple too complicated and, the best tax advice ever given, “don’t be greedy”.

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