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Property Tax Changes Under Prop 19

California’s Prop 19, which narrowly passed last week, was promoted primarily as a way to help disaster victims avoid potentially steep property tax increases after being forced to move. However, it also includes a very complicated change to two current benefits, one involving the transfer of ownership from parents to children, and the other associated…
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Which Is Better: Medicare Advantage or Original Medicare Insurance?

It’s Medicare open enrollment time again so I thought I’d address a question that comes up a lot, especially for those reaching age 65: which is better, Medicare Advantage or original Medicare? First, a brief review of original Medicare: Part A, also known as hospital insurance, covers in-patient hospital stays, surgeries, and post-hospital skilled nursing…
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Beware of Political Math

Last week the U.S. Commerce Department reported that its estimate of the third quarter’s real gross domestic product (GDP) increase over Q2 was an annualized 33%. One immediate and unsurprising outcome was a slew of pre-election ads by Donald Trump touting his economic prowess. Putting aside the fact that it’s just an estimate that will…
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Is Trying To Time The Market Worth It?

Imagine you are the unluckiest investor on the planet. You tried to do all the right things. You used a highly-diversified stock market index fund for your investments rather than trying to pick individual stocks. You received a $10,000 bonus at work thirteen times over the last eighty years (you are a long-lived workaholic) and…
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Your Retirement Account May Not Be As Safe As You Think

Many people don’t even think about experiencing a lawsuit or a bankruptcy. That’s understandable since for most of us these are highly unlikely events. Unfortunately in the time of COVID the prospect of bankruptcy has become unexpectedly real for many small business owners. And the risk of being sued is no farther away than fumbling…
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How Much Impact Do Presidents Have On The Stock Market?

As part of his bid for a second presidential term, one of Donald Trump’s assertions is that he is responsible for the greatest stock market gain of any president. Putting aside his usual hyperbole, has the stock market in fact done better under him than under past presidents? And more interestingly, can we use historical…
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