News & Insights

Seascape Capital Annual Client Event

by Laurie Barrett on Nov 9, 2022

November 2022-- Clients and friends of Seascape Capital enjoyed an evening with Mariana Budjeryn at the One Hundred Club for Seascape's annual client event. Mariana is a regular contributor to CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera, France 24, The Guardian, and other media that seek out her analysis on the war in Ukraine. Please read on to learn more..

Donor-Advised Fund

by Laurie Barrett on Nov 1, 2022

November 2022- A donor-advised fund offers an easy way for a donor to make significant charitable gifts over a long period of time. A donor-advised fund is similar to a private foundation but requires less money, time, legal assistance, and administration to establish and maintain. A donor-advised fund also enjoys greater tax advantages than a private foundation. Determining your charitable deduction can involve many factors. We will review your tax returns, your philanthropic goals, and coordinate with your CPA to determine the most appropriate plan for your personal tax situation.  Please give us a call soon if you would like to consider this charitable giving strategy. Please read on to learn more.

Market Recap -- Q3 2022

by Laurie Barrett on Oct 20, 2022

October 2022- After a summer bear market rally, asset markets resumed their decline through the end of the third quarter. Stocks have fallen 25% and the average bond 15%. This decline marks one of the worst first three quarters of the year for a diversified portfolio of stocks and bonds ever. All asset classes have felt the pain. From "risky" high-growth technology stocks to "safe" Treasury bonds, nothing save energy assets and US dollars avoided this selloff. As has been the case this entire year, inflation and central bank tightening routed asset prices. Inflation remains high and sticky. Monetary policy has begun battering areas of the economy. Even the housing market shows signs of succumbing. A recession is likely coming soon, though importantly, not a 2008 type meltdown. Generally, a recession sees a 30% drop in equity prices. We are not too far from this level, though there is likely a little more downside to come. Unfortunately, volatility is not going anywhere for the foreseeable future.

Medicare Open Enrollment Is Here: How Are Costs Changing for 2023?

by Laurie Barrett on Oct 17, 2022

October 2022- Medicare's Open Enrollment Period — which runs from October 15 through December 7 — is your annual opportunity to switch your current Medicare health and prescription drug plans to ones that better suit your needs. Just in time for Open Enrollment, 2023 Medicare premiums, deductibles, and other costs have been announced, and surprisingly, some of these costs are lower than they were last year. Read on to learn more.

New Cancellation for Federal Student Loans: Think you may not be eligible? Scenarios to consider--

by Laurie Barrett on Sep 8, 2022

September 2022- Do you have a Federal Student Loan or family members with student loans? The new Student Debt Relief Plan announced late last month will cancel $10,000 in federal student loan debt for individual borrowers whose income was below $125,000 ($250,000 for married couples) in 2020 or 2021, plus another $10,000 for Pell Grant recipients. Think you may NOT be eligible? Here are some considerations: --> First, to the extent an individual is a business owner and still has the ability to make deductible contributions to a retirement plan for 2021 (e.g., a self-employed person contributing to their own SEP IRA), if those contributions, and the corresponding deductions, reduce AGI enough to get under the applicable threshold, such contributions should be carefully considered. --> In addition, if the thresholds for single filers are also applied to married individuals who file separate returns, married couples with student debt should evaluate whether filing separate returns for 2021 makes sense, even if they normally file joint returns. If the debt forgiveness available to one spouse exceeds the additional tax burden (plus any other applicable costs, such as tax prep fees) created by filing separately, it could be a net win. Please read on to learn more and call us so we can help!

Mid-Quarter Market Update

by Laurie Barrett on Sep 2, 2022

September 2022- Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s tough talk about bringing inflation down threw cold water on the markets this week, effectively ending the relief rally that started at the end of June. Powell strongly emphasized the central bank’s focus on inflation reduction, even at the cost of economic growth and unemployment, with this telling comment, “While higher interest rates, slower growth, and softer labor market conditions will bring down inflation, they will also bring some pain to households and businesses.  These are the unfortunate costs of reducing inflation. But a failure to restore price stability would mean far greater pain.”  These comments fueled fears that the Fed’s policies would lead to even weaker economic growth, rising unemployment, and lower corporate profits. Some of the recovery in equity prices since June was born of the belief that the Fed would begin lowering interest rates once the economy weakened.   Powell’s crystal clear declaration disabused investors of this Goldilocks scenario.

Seascape Capital Supports the Cross Roads House

by Laurie Barrett on Aug 22, 2022

August 2022- The Seascape Capital Team spent a beautiful Volunteer Day at the Cross Roads House.  We support their mission to meet the immediate needs of homeless families and individuals, and to provide them with the tools and guidance they need to successfully return to permanent housing.  This transitional shelter has helped homeless families and individuals get back on their feet for forty years.  It has been our pleasure to support this great organization for most of the nearly twenty years we've been in business.

Inflation Reduction Act: What You Should Know

by Laurie Barrett on Aug 22, 2022

August 2022- The Inflation Reduction Act, signed into law on August 16, 2022, includes health-care and energy-related provisions, a new corporate alternative minimum tax, and an excise tax on certain corporate stock buybacks. Additional funding is also provided to the IRS. Please read on to learn about some significant provisions in the Act that you should know.

Market Recap -- Q2 2022

by Laurie Barrett on Jul 27, 2022

July 2022- Rising inflation, increasing fears of a recession, the ongoing war on Ukraine, and the Federal Reserve’s aggressive tightening have continued to shock markets. Developed market equities fell over 20% turning in their worst first six months in over 50 years. To make matters worse, asset class diversification didn’t work this quarter. Equites and bonds rarely fall in tandem since bonds are the safe harbor investors seek in a storm. However, rapid interest rate increases hit government and investment grade bonds nearly as hard as equities. Fixed income securities fell 10%-20% depending on the maturity. Though generally in line with benchmarks over the quarter, portfolios experienced this pain as well.