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About the author  ⁄ Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Hey!

My friends and family all think I’m a workaholic, but I say I’m just a guy that loves to help people do better in life.

My mother is still the only one that calls me by my real name Theodore Michael, my wife calls me Teddy, but for the rest of you it is just plain old Ted.

Ever since I was a little kid, I always loved money and being an entrepreneur. In fact, I still have cassette tapes of me talking to my grandmother at the age of five and my mother tells me all the time how much I played with money as a kid...

Read More About Ted Here

Ted Jenkin is a frequent guest columnist for the Wall Street Journal and Headline News Weekend Express. He is the co-CEO of oXYGen Financial. You can follow him on LinkedIn @ www.linkedin.com/in/theceoadvisor or on Twitter @tedjenkin.

Securities offered through Kestra Investment Services, LLC (Kestra IS), member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through Kestra Advisory Services, LLC (Kestra AS), an affiliate of Kestra IS. oXYGen Financial is not affiliated with Kestra IS or Kestra AS. Kestra IS and Kestra AS do not provide tax or legal advice.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect those held by Kestra Investment Services, LLC or Kestra Advisory Services, LLC. This is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific investment advice or recommendations for any individual. It is suggested that you consult your financial professional, attorney, or tax advisor regarding your individual situation. 

Background and qualification information is available at FINRA's BrokerCheck website.

Should You Get Divorced Before The End Of 2018

Divorce is never an easy thing to go through no matter what time in life this may happen to you.  The trauma that it may create for you, your children, and other family members may make day to day financial decisions go to the bottom of the pile.   Many people wait to try to get their financial house in order after they complete the divorce proceedings.  With the new Trump Tax Rules here in 2018, divorce may become even more painful in the future. The new alimony rules, included in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, apply to divorce or separation agreements executed after December 31st, 2018.  These changes will only intensify the divorce process because at least one of the spouses in the divorce will likely be taking a huge financial hit.  Effectively, January 1st of 2019 alimony payers will no longer be able to deduct alimony payments from their tax returns on new divorces.  Old alimony deals will ...

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Do We Have Data Breach Fatigue?

After another monumental data breach this past week from Marriott/Starwood, we were once again exposed to the real threats and realities that exist with our information held within the systems of large corporations where we spend money.  Marriott has not finished identifying duplicate information in the database, but it believes it contains information on approximately 500 million guests.  They believe for approximately 327 million of these guests, the information hacked included name, mailing address, phone number, email address, passport number, Starwood Preferred Guest account information, date of birth, and other pertinent information.  There is still no definitive information on whether or not credit card information could be decrypted by the hackers.  Class action lawsuits are already flying off the shelf. It almost seems as if once per month we are barraged with some new data breach from large companies seeing what has happened with Equifax, Yahoo!, and now Marriott recently.  Many Americans may already believe hackers have their information from ...

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Five Last Minute Tax Tips

Tax season is upon us and you might be asking what can you still do that can potentially reduce your overall tax liability.  Here are 5 big deductions that people often don’t ask about or overlook come tax time. Charitable Mileage- Most taxpayers are very good at keeping receipts of their cash donations that they make to the organizations they donate to during the course of the year. One of the deductions few taxpayers pay attention to is the charitable mileage deduction.  For 2018, you can deduct .14 cents per mile driven for rendering gratuitous services for charitable organizations.  Don’t forget fees and tolls as well (irs.gov). Consider the amount of time that you give gratuitously during the course of the year for your religious organizations, charitable causes you support, or possibly coaching a one of your kid’s teams. Non-Cash Charitable Contributions Most taxpayers literally get a blank receipt from the Salvation Army, Goodwill, or some other charitable organization and ...

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4 Lessons About Making Money and Giving Back

This post was sponsored by Regions Bank, member FDIC. All opinions are my own. I recently attended a tremendous event called “Making Moves While Giving Back”, a Regions Next Step – Real Talk event series at the Gathering Spot in Atlanta.   It had some of the brightest and best young leaders in the city, such as Gwen Cole, Joey Womack, Briana Holmes, and Labriah Lee talking about how they have taken control of their lives professionally while also being able to give back philanthropically in the community.  For anyone wanting to lead a “boss” life personally, professionally and philanthropically, this event filled the bill because it really got to the root of how to be a good decision maker in your financial life including great advice on how to reach the goals that you want to achieve. Here are four financial lessons I took away that you’ll want to keep by your nightstand: Learn How To Say No Sounds like a ...

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How To Avoid A Charity Donation Scam During The Holidays

After a New Jersey couple recently launched a fundraiser for a homeless man last year, donations poured in as hearts were ripped out about this tear jerking story. We see charitable causes all the time that pull the purse strings of our wallet, especially during the holidays. The story of the homeless man and the $400,000 GoFundMe money unraveled in the past few weeks and we learned about the money that completely disappeared. Everyone behind the GoFundMe campaign were playing America, but inevitably they were outed. As we approach the season to be jolly, here are some tips on how not to get scammed when giving to charity. 1) Start With The IRS- Yes, the IRS. The IRS website has a Tax Exempt Organization Search you can use to see if the charity is in fact a legitimate organization. Remember, you want to be asking two very important questions. One, is the organization you are giving to a tax-exempt organization ...

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The Greatest Tax Strategy You Never Heard Of Before

It’s been a good decade for people.  Stocks have gone up.  Real estate has gone up.  You might have even benefited from a liquidity event where you owned stock in a private company that has now gone public.  What’s interesting is that most people left to their own device make a big mistake of letting the tax tail wag the dog.  If you have an appreciated piece of real estate or stock, you’ll be inclined not to sell it because you are worried about paying a massive capital gain tax.  What if I was to tell you that there is a way to really apply the age-old adage that it is more blessed to give than to receive. Enter the greatest tax strategy you never heard of before….The NIMCRUT. What does NIMCRUT actually stand for…. NI = Net Income:Only trust income is paid by the unitrust.* You control the level of income distributed. M = Makeup provision: Amounts not paid ...

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Should You Discuss Salaries With Your Co-Workers?

As technology is sweeping the way we live our lives, millennials are also potentially creating a new trend… openly discussing salaries in the workplace.  Once considered a taboo subject, millennials don’t turn a cheek to sharing how much money they make, yet they are incredibly shy about talking about sex in general. In a recent study done by www.bankrate.com, Americans between the ages of 18 to 37 are more likely than gen x’ers and baby boomers to share their salary information with others, especially co-workers, according to the study.  The study showed that 33% of all millennials share their salary information with others at the workplace, which is twice what baby boomers are willing to do with their salary information. In Pamplona, they have the running of the bulls.  In Helsinki, they observe something called “National Jealousy Day” where every single Finnish citizen’s taxable income is made public at 8 a.m. for all to view in plain sight.  A few ...

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Five Ways To Raise A Financially Successful Child

With student debt soaring past 1.5 trillion dollars, it isn’t getting any easier for Generation Y and Generation Z to get up and going financially in this world.  Unemployment is now sitting under four percent and wage growth is barely rising at the pace of overall inflation. This means that as parents, we need to do everything we can early on in our children’s lives or even as they get close to graduating college to set them up for long term financial success.  It is important we teach them the concepts and practices that can help them become more financially self-sufficient down the road.  Here are five ways you can help raise a financially successful child. 1. Start Saving for College Tax-Free The average student will amass more than $30,000 of student debt in college, so doing everything we can to help them avoid having that debt is important.  Remember, do not sacrifice your retirement for your children’s college education ...

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What To Do With Your 401(k) As The Market Gyrates

The markets are poised to cap off a rocky week on Wall Street with, yes, more volatility. So, should you turn everything in your 401(k) retirement plan into cash ? Financial advisors have one message for you: Don’t panic. That holds true even as the Dow Jones Industrial Average has had three-digit swings throughout the week. The stock market index plummeted more than 500 points at one point on Friday. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 index dropped as much as 2.2 percent and flirted with correction territory. show chaptersAIG Retirement CEO on how market turmoil can affect your retirement    5 Hours Ago | 04:02 Despite the scary headlines, these are signs of a healthy market, said certified financial planner Scott Hanson, founder and senior partner at Hanson McClain Advisors. “The market has to go through this sort of thing,” Hanson said. “The longer we go without volatility, the more nervous I become. I almost welcome a bit of this shaking out.” ...

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How you can tell if you have a good 401k plan

Does Your Company Have A Good 401(k)? A recent study done by The Pew Charitable Trust found that 35 percent of private sector workers over the age of 22 don’t work for a company that offers a 401(k) plan.  What’s scary is that the 65% that do have a retirement plan offered through the workplace today, still don’t even understand how the plans work and how to maximize the plan for their personal benefit.  Terms including matching, profit sharing, vesting, Roth 401(k), target funds, and many more can be overwhelming.   In a recent sample I did with my own clients, 10 out of 10 people did not know what a summary plan description was or where to find it on their company intranet. Having a 401(k) at work is going to be an important savings element for your financial future.  Far too often, employees don’t realize they can go to their owner, CEO, Benefits or HR department, and tell them ...

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