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So far Perspective Financial Services has created 142 blog entries.

New Tax Law Tempers Marriage Penalties

New tax law tempers marriage penalties.One unintended feature of U.S. income tax law is that the combined tax liability of a married couple may be higher than their combined tax burden if they had remained single. This is often referred to as the marriage penalty within the law. Congress’ new tax law tempers marriage penalties a bit.

“Marriage penalties and bonuses have a significant impact on the combined tax burden of couples,” wrote Amir El-Sibaie, an analyst with the Center for Federal Tax Policy at Tax Foundation. “Penalties affect couples at very high and very low incomes, and bonuses affect many middle-income couples with disparate incomes.”

Changes that would eliminate marriage penalties and bonuses would drastically impact the current distribution of taxes paid. This is politically difficult to accomplish. As a compromise, in the recently-passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Congress opted to incrementally reduce the effects.

While our nation’s tax laws remain extremely complicated, a few simple changes should bring some relief to married couples and families in 2018.

As an example, most federal income tax brackets for joint filers will now be double those for singles, thereby eliminating or reducing the marriage penalty for many people. (Married couples in certain high-income brackets will continue to experience higher rates than singles in the same brackets, however.) The new law also doubled the child tax credit to $2,000, and all dependents ineligible for the child tax credit are eligible for a new $500 per-person family tax credit (source: The Wall Street Journal).

By |March 26th, 2018|Taxes|

AdvisoryHQ Named Perspective Financial Services a Top Advisor

AdvisoryHQ Named Perspective Financial Services a Top AdvisorWe’re pleased to announce that AdvisoryHQ named Perspective Financial Services a top advisor for a third year. Our firm was once again identified as one of the top advisors and financial planners in Phoenix and Scottsdale. The organization also rated us among the best in 2016 and 2017.

AdvisoryHQ uses a multi-step selection methodology for identifying, researching and generating its list of top ranked firms. Its review and ranking articles are always 100 percent independently researched and objectively written. Firms do not pay for their ranking, and most firms do not even realize they’re being reviewed and ranked by AdvisoryHQ until after their reviews have been published. (A detailed overview of AdvisoryHQ’s methodology process is below.)

The reviewers highlighted our online tools and comprehensive, well-defined approach to financial planning as some of the key benefits of our firm. They also emphasized our personal touch.

“The firm’s focus on collaboration and individualized attention can provide clients with significant planning advantages, making Perspective Financial Services one of the best financial advisors in Phoenix to consider partnering with this year,” the AdvisoyHQ reviewers wrote.

Perspective Financial Services a Top Advisor: Click here to read the full article and review at the AdvisoryHQ website.

 

A step-by-step overview of AdvisoryHQ’s methodology process.

  1. Using publicly available sources, AdvisoryHQ identifies a wide range of firms that are providing services in a designated area (city, state, or local geographic location).
  2. AdvisoryHQ’s review team then applies initial methodology filters to narrow down the list of identified firms/products. These filters include company strengths, trustworthiness, transparency, professional reputation, managed asset, ROI/ROA effectiveness, fees structure, what customers/clients are saying about the organization, and many more.
  3. After trimming down the initial list, AdvisoryHQ then conducts a deep-dive assessment of the remaining firms. The award criteria takes into account a range of factors, including experience level, level of customization, site quality, resources, features, range of provided services, innovation, value-added, and many more factors, to build up a broad picture of what each firm or product has to offer, before the final selection process occurs.
  4. Based on the results of performed assessment, AdvisoryHQ’s research and selection team then finalizes the list of entities that make it into its top rated publications, which are then published to the general public.
By |March 12th, 2018|Company News|

Keep Your Investment Portfolio on Track

In this brief video, Certified Financial Planner practitioner Mike Larriva explains how investment risk and return run parallel to one another, just like railroad tracks. To keep your investment portfolio on track, you need to keep risk and reward in balance.

To help keep your investment portfolio on track – even during erratic market fluctuations – our firm applies time-tested asset allocation and diversification principles to balance portfolio risk and return. Click here to learn more about our investment philosophy and strategy.

By |February 14th, 2018|Advisors, Investing, Video Blog|

18 Cyber Security Tips for 2018

cyber security

18 Cyber Security Tips for 2018

Here are 18 helpful cyber security tips for 2018 to keep your electronic data and devices safe.

  1. You are an attractive target to hackers. Don’t think, “It won’t happen to me.”
  2. Lock your computer when you are away from it. Even a few minutes is enough time for someone else to destroy or corrupt your information.
  3. Avoid unintentionally installing spyware on your electronic devices; never click on links within pop-up windows.
  4. Be wary of free downloadable software; you may be exposing your computer to spyware programs by downloading programs from questionable websites.
  5. Install both anti-virus and anti-spyware software on your computer, and make sure they are compatible.
  6. Take a little time to review, understand and use the privacy settings on social networking sites.
  7. Turn off the option to automatically download attachments in emails.
  8. Be wary of unsolicited attachments in email, even from people you know.  Many viruses can “spoof” the return address, making it look like the message came from someone else.
  9. Use different passwords on different systems and accounts.
  10. Don’t use passwords with personal information that can be accessed or guessed; use capital and lowercase letters, numbers and characters.
  11. Report spam email messages.
  12. Never click on a link in an email from someone you do not know.
  13. Stay safe when shopping online. Only do business with reputable vendors. Some cyber attackers create malicious websites that appear to be legitimate; always verify the site before supplying any personal or financial information.
  14. Never plug an unknown USB drive into your computer to try to identify or locate the owner.
  15. Monitor your accounts (email, social media, banking, etc.) for any suspicious activity. If you see something unfamiliar, it could be a sign that you’ve been compromised.
  16. Disable Bluetooth when you’re not using it, to help prevent hacking.
  17. Hackers have strategies for attacking devices through public Wi-Fi. Keep firewalls enabled at all times; turn off file sharing when using  public Wi-Fi.
  18. Remember you can be a victim of cyber crime offline, too.  If someone calls asking for sensitive information, say no. Call the company directly to verify before giving out information.

Sources: Department of Homeland Security; Heimdal Security; Cisco

By |January 3rd, 2018|Current Affairs|