March 2020
Flavor of Money

When talented musicians join forces, they epitomize Aristotle's maxim: "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts." Collaboration is the essence of music, and even the most technically proficient soloists benefit from an ensemble framing and highlighting their skills. You can't whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it.

It's always sad when your favorite band breaks up or loses a key player, especially for non-artistic reasons. The Beatles broke up, in part, because John insisted on dragging Yoko everywhere he went. The Grateful Dead fired keyboardist Keith Godchaux because he did too many drugs. (Really.) And last week, rappers Public Enemy fired their flamboyant clock-wearing co-founder and hype man Flavor Flav.

The move leaves Flav at a crossroads. He and bandmate Chuck D have worked together since 1985 — an eternity for artists. He's starred in VH1's  Flavor of Love , put out solo albums, and licensed his name to a couple of ill-fated chicken restaurants. It's hard to picture him settling into one of those Florida "55+" communities, buying a golf cart, and binge-watching cable news until the doctor calls with a bad biopsy. Yet he faces the same financial challenges as any other corporate castoff looking down the barrel of an unexpected early retirement...


I N C ASE Y OU M ISSED I T
In these unprecedented times with the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) upon us, we understand you may be wondering how this is affecting you and your portfolio. We're here to assure you that our number one goal is to do the right thing for each of you and your individual situations. 

Please watch the video below as I talk about the Coronavirus, its impact on the financial market, our advisory process, and the changes we've made. 

Coronavirus and the State of the Markets
If You Don't Want 100 Percent Depreciation, Elect Out or Else
 
As you likely know, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act increased bonus depreciation to 100 percent.
Unlike most tax provisions that involve a tax election, this one requires you to elect out if you don’t want it.

For example, you (or your corporation) buy two $50,000 trucks, each with a gross vehicle weight rating of 6,500 pounds and a bed length of 6.5 feet. You use the trucks 100 percent for business. Because of the weight and bed size, the trucks are exempt from the luxury passenger vehicle depreciation limits.

You have five choices on how to deduct:
  1. Do nothing. This forces you to use bonus depreciation and deduct the entire $100,000 cost in year one. In addition, you deduct your operating expenses such as gas, oil, insurance, etc.
  2. Elect out, choose Section 179 expensing of any amount of your $100,000 cost of the trucks, and depreciate the balance. For example, you could elect to deduct $30,000 of Section 179 expensing on each truck and then depreciate the remainder using MACRS. In addition, you deduct your operating expenses such as gas, oil, insurance, etc. (Note. The trucks are not subject to the $25,000 SUV ceiling because of their weight and bed length.)
  3. Elect out, don’t use Section 179, and depreciate the trucks using the five-year MACRS depreciation schedule (which takes six years).
  4. Elect out, don’t use Section 179, and depreciate the trucks using the five-year straight-line depreciation schedule (which also takes six years).
  5. Use the 57.5 cent IRS standard mileage rate for each business mile driven. The 57.5 per mile rate includes operating expenses and 27 cents a mile for depreciation. 

Okay, you get the big picture. Two trucks, each with a cost of $50,000 and both exempt from the luxury vehicle limits. Five choices as to the deduction. And one easy way to make a major mistake.

Read full article here.
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Fed cutting interest rates by a quarter point -- what does that mean for the average American?
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Happy Retirement, Carla Strawn!

We'd like to congratulate Carla Strawn on her retirement from PNC Bank! In retirement, she plans on volunteering with church activities, training for outdoor sporting events, and spending time with her husband of 40 years, Dave, exploring new adventures.

Happy Anniversary, Dave and Carla!
We'd also like to wish Dave and Carla a Happy 40th Wedding Anniversary! If you see them out, extend a congrats!
Happy Anniversary, Mark and Crystal Goodwin!

Join us in wishing the happily married couple on their 45th Wedding Anniversary!
Happy Anniversary, Dave and Lynn Fox!

Join us in wishing the happily married couple on their 40th Wedding Anniversary!
Happy Birthday, Carloe Dobrick!

Join us in wishing Carole a very happy 85th birthday!
Eating To Your Heart's Content

Deciding to change your diet can feel daunting. It can be difficult to figure out which one is "best" for you. Many fad diets come and go, but there are a few that have stuck around, the most popular being the Mediterranean diet.
 
The Mediterranean diet is less of a traditional diet and more of a lifestyle shift toward healthier eating patterns. It's modeled after principles of Italian and Greek cuisine, which have remained relatively unchanged since the 1960s. Consuming this diet has been correlated with lower rates of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and other chronic illnesses. The diet emphasizes eating more fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, fatty fish, whole grains, and olive oil and fewer meats and dairy products. The diet is flexible. Elimination isn't the intention, rather balance more toward nutrient-rich foods versus energy-dense ones.
 
Food is life, and making healthy choices can help support a healthier life. While the Mediterranean diet could be a good option for someone, no single diet will fit everyone's lifestyle, preferences, and health needs perfectly. So, be sure to discuss any dietary choices you make with your physician or registered dietitian first.

Tip adapted from Healthline.com
Curry in a Hurry

These super simple cookies date back to WWII and are just as delicious today.

Makes 24 cookies

Ingredients: 

  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
  • 2 large diced onions
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1 can coconut milk, unsweetened
  • 1½ pounds of your preferred meat (peeled shrimp or diced boneless chicken)
  • 1 cup diced tomato, no peel or seeds

Directions: 

  1. Peel and dice onions.
  2. Oil skillet and place over medium-high heat.
  3. Add onions with a bit of salt and pepper. Stir until very soft, 15 minutes or more.
  4. Mix in curry powder, stir for one minute.
  5. Pour in coconut milk and cook for two minutes, stirring lightly.
  6. Add meat of choice and cook for another 3 to 6 minutes.
  7. Stir in tomato and cook for another minute.
  8. Serve over rice.

Recipe adapted from cooking.ny.times
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Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a broker-dealer, member  FINRA / SIPC . Advisory services offered through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc. a Registered Investment Adviser. Beacon Wealth operates independently of Cambridge.