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NEWSLETTER: A Year of Growth, Gratitude, and Giving Thanks

Updated: Jan 9


WD WEALTH NEWSLETTER

December 20, 2023


Welcome back. With the holidays approaching and many businesses closed for the holidays, we’re wrapping up for 2023. We’ll pick back up and see you in the new year, but first, this week’s newsletter: A Year of Growth, Gratitude, and Giving Thanks. With a heart-felt thanks, we go over big changes for this year that you helped make happen.


TAX LAWS: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW

Regulation Best Interest was enforced on June 30th, 2020, through the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934. This was implemented to raise the standard of care for advisors acting through a broker-dealer. Under previous law and regulations, broker dealers were required to find an investment that is suitable for the investor. There were no strict fiduciary requirements like there are for investment advisors. Regulators felt that advisors on the broker dealer side sometimes would advise clients to invest in vehicles based on the commissions generated, rather than the client’s best interest. The SEC wanted to make both investment advisors and broker-dealers equally accountable to pursue the best interest of clients.


Why is this important?

  • Your Interest Comes First: Financial professionals are required to prioritize your interests above all else when making investment recommendations. This commitment sets a higher standard of care across the industry. 

  • Increased transparency: You deserve to know how your financial advisor operates. Reg BI mandates greater transparency, ensuring you receive clear information about services offered, potential conflicts of interest, and the nature of your advisor-client relationship. 

  • Confidence in Recommendations: Knowing that your advisor is bound by a best interest standard instills confidence in the recommendations provided. 

We at WD Wealth process our security investments through a broker-dealer. Many broker-dealers are paying closer attention to concentration limits for alternative investments, which is a win-win for everyone involved.

EMPLOYEE HOLIDAY BENEFITS 

 



Navigating the tax landscape during the holiday season requires careful consideration for both employers and employees. As companies prepare to express gratitude through holiday bonuses, gifts, and parties, it's crucial to address the associated tax implications. Here are some key considerations:


For Employers

  • Strategic Structuring: Consider how to structure benefits in a tax-efficient manner such as offering non-cash gifts, or organizing events within IRS-approved exclusion limits. For example, tickets to a single theater or sporting event are considered nontaxable (although season tickets would be taxable). Additionally, flowers, fruit, and books given "under special circumstances" may meet the criteria set by the IRS. Check with your CPA to help ensure your holiday appreciation doesn’t end up giving your workers the gift of a higher tax bill down the road as many gifts can be considered taxable income to employees.

  • Tax Deductibility: Be mindful of the tax deductibility of holiday expenses, such as employer-sponsored holiday events to maximize available business tax benefits.

  • Communication: Foster open communication with employees to ensure clarity on the taxable nature of certain benefits.

For Employees

  • Understanding Tax Implications: Bonuses are considered wages and are taxed the same way as other wages on individual tax returns. However, bonuses are considered supplemental wages for tax withholding rules, so it is critical to ensure enough tax is being withheld from your bonus. Recognizing the taxable nature of holiday bonuses and gifts will help you be financially prepared come tax season.

  • Professional Guidance: There are several ways the tax impact of a bonus could be minimized, such as contributing bonuses to a tax advantaged account, deferring bonuses to a lower income year, reviewing your W-4 to adjust your withholdings, or taking advantage of itemized deductions. Seek advice from a tax professional to make informed decisions about the acceptance or utilization of holiday perks.

  • Communication with Employers: Engage in dialogue with employers about the tax implications of benefits to enhance mutual understanding.

By implementing these thoughtful strategies, employers and employees can enjoy the festive season without unwelcome surprises when it comes to their year-end tax obligations.


DON’T FORGET HOW IMPORTANT YOU ARE TO US




Some of our WD Wealth Team this holiday season!


As we reflect on the past year, we are filled with gratitude for your trust and partnership. Your support has been instrumental to our success and we want to express our sincere appreciation for the pivotal role you've played in our growth.


You spoke and we listened: With your support, we successfully launched our new Property & Casualty division this year, brought back our alternative investments webinars, brought on eNotary services, and onboarded our new CPA to offer an even more holistic approach to our financial toolkit. Your enthusiasm for this expansion has been a driving force and we are excited about the opportunities it presents for us to better serve you.


As the holiday season unfolds, we extend warm wishes to you and your loved ones. May this festive time bring joy, reflection, and well-deserved moments of respite. We are excited about the opportunities the coming year holds and remain committed to providing you with the highest level of service.


Thank you for being an integral part of our journey. We’re looking forward to another year of mutual success!


ANNOUNCEMENTS


This is our last newsletter of 2023. We will see you in the new year!



IN THE SPOTLIGHT




This week’s Spotlight features insights about and from another member of our paraplanner staff at WD Wealth, Moog Kim, CFP®. Interestingly, Moog and Jason both came to our Colorado office from Ohio. And, both are graduates of the University of Cincinnati. As this year closes, we celebrate that Moog, not only completed, but conquered two arduous challenges. He completed his first marathon (at altitude, no less) and his certification as a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional. 


It goes without saying that our team benefits greatly because of Moog’s passion for delivering exceptional financial solutions. His commitment to teamwork, passion for learning, and his camaraderie all define how he navigates delivering exceptional customer service to internal and external clients.



WHAT HE’S WATCHING

“The one I want to recommend is less of a personal finance podcast and more of an entrepreneurial and sales podcast. I have been following The Game w/ Alex Hormozi. The host is an entrepreneur who has amassed over $100 million on businesses and is documenting his journey to becoming a billionaire. Along the way on this journey, he shares his most valuable lessons. Topics include how to increase sales, improve your outreach, how to retain customers. I like it that he elaborates on mistakes he has made and the aside discussions on many other topics.” 


WHAT HE’S READING 

“I recently read Relentless by Tim Grover. The author has decades of experience training the likes of Kobe Bryant, Dwayne Wade, and Michael Jordan. Grover teaches what a person must do to rise above and become unstoppable. He elaborates on the discipline of separating yourself from those who are great as a passage to being unstoppable. I read this book during a mental toughness challenge a few members of our team started. It really motivated me to have a mindset to not give into complacency. I realized that for me to be unstoppable requires replacing complacency with self-discipline and sacrifice.”



TAKE A BREAK




New Year's resolutions serve as a powerful tool for personal growth, motivation, and well-being, offering individuals the opportunity to reflect on their lives and actively pursue positive change. What is your New Year’s resolution this year? We’ll announce the best submission in our next newsletter.


Submit your answers to info@wdwealth.com


Last week’s TAKE A BREAK winner was this Christmas getup (very festive and thanks to everyone who participated!):




Let us know what your biggest goal is for 2024!


See you next time!


If you missed last week’s newsletter,  click here  to catch up.


This advertising is sponsored by Innovation Partners, LLC. The information provided to you does not constitute an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any financial instrument, or security. All materials provided to you are for informational purposes only and may not be construed as legal advice.


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