Investment Tools and Tips

Today TaxMama wants to speak to you about how to gain a better understanding of your investments, and money – and perhaps their relationship to your taxes.  

Dear Family,

My first tip is for the sophisticated investors among us. Never leave short sale open at the end of the year. It makes for tax reporting headaches, since you’ve sold a stock, but haven’t bought it yet.

The top resource for investors looking for reliable mutual fund information is Value Line. They have one of the largest independent research staffs of investment analysts and statisticians in the world. Value Line provides investment data and analysis for individual and professional investors. When my husband started researching investment strategy, he did his homework. Value Line was the only resource he felt was worth paying for.  Rather than spending the small fortune Rick did at the time, consider looking at a subscription to  the Value Line Investment Survey. . A 13-week Trial comes with an impressive array of research tools and resources for as little as $75.

For people just starting to learn about investments, there is a terrific resource you’ve probably never heard of – the MoneyPaper. It’s a fun, easy to understand publication that enables you to buy as little as one share of stock directly from many major corporations that have dividend reinvestment plans (DRIPs). It’s a popular tool families use to get their children started learning about stocks. I have seen fun articles, like stocks that provide other benefits in addition to the dividends – like gifts and corporate discounts, free VIP access to their facilities. When we got engaged, my friend Rita gave Rick and me one share each of stock to the Santa Anita Racetrack that included free access to their private club and restaurant. Those shares have since split off into Quality Inns, La Quinta and other companies.  You can try it out for as little as $35 for 4 months.

BottomLine Personal is one of my favorite reads. Nice format, terrific articles about a variety of money-savings tips, aside from investments. The current issue contains one of the best articles I  have seen about inheritance issues related to IRAs, by Ed Slott. $39 gets you an 18 month subscription, a few useful reports, about health and money – and the Bottom Line Guide to Practically Everything. (I love the title!).

And remember, you can find answers to all kinds of questions about money, and other tax issues, free. Where? Where else? At www.TaxMama.com.

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