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At Plancorp, we don’t wait for you to ask the right questions.
We take the initiative to offer insights and guidance — real enlightenment for real life.

New Year Planning Tips and Resources

As we begin the new year, this is the time to review your financial plan and work towards a successful financial plan for 2021. In this video Peter Lazaroff, Chief Investment Officer and Daniel Lee, Senior Wealth Manager give their top financial planning tips. You will find a list of their tips as Read more…

How to Pay Off Your Credit Card Debt

2020 – there’s not much more to say. This year has brought us financial pressure that some of us have never seen in our adult lives. And it wasn’t just a volatile stock market – it’s the day to day, very real pressure of paying bills and making it from month to month. Now that we’ve lived through Read more…

How to Hack Your Health Savings Account to Capitalize on its Tax Advantages

It’s easy to ignore what we don’t understand – including something like an Health Savings Account. But plenty of professionals leave money on the table by not making the most of these tax-advantaged accounts. Read more…

Daniel Lee Speaks to NerdWallet on Why Savings Rates Rates Are so Low?

Daniel Lee, Senior Wealth Manager out of our Silicon Valley office recently contributed to an article on NerdWallet on why savings rates are so low and what to do about it. A excerpt can be found below, click the link below to read the article in it's entirety. Read more…

Myopic Loss Aversion

How often do you look at the stock market or check your investment portfolio? The Digital Age has made access to stock market data and real-time portfolio values increasingly easy.  The problem with easier access to real-time market data is that investors can lose sight of the big picture as their Read more…

Compounded Annual Return vs. Average Annual Return | Plancrp

Compounded Annual Return Read more…

Timely Topic: What You Should Know About a Donor Advised Fund

As end-of-year tax planning draws to a close, there is still a small window of time to set up a Donor Advised Fund if you wish to make charitable donations in the next few years and take advantage of the tax benefit from charitable giving. Read more…

How to Pay for College without Breaking the Bank | Plancorp

Deciding how much to spend on your child’s college education? Given the sticker price, it’s one of the most significant financial decisions you’ll ever make. Parents who overspend on their kids’ higher education may end up having to work longer, live on less, sacrifice other important goals and Read more…

End-of-Year Tax Planning Tips

My first opportunity to vote in a presidential election was the year 2000. Bush v. Gore. Hanging chads. A month of legal battles until we had a President Elect. I always wondered whether another election would surpass that chaos. 20 years later I have my answer. Read more…

Stressed Out About Money? A Financial Therapist Might Help

If the financial crisis of 2008–2009 had a silver lining, it was the launch of an important new profession: the financial therapist. At the time, many families realized financial worth wasn’t their only concern. They also wanted to build healthier, happier relationships with their wealth. Read more…

Growing List of Industry Awards for Plancorp in 2020

Plancorp Continues to Earn Industry Awards The year 2020 will likely go down as one of the most challenging and unusual years in modern history. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted individuals, businesses and markets in one way or another — making the work we do for our clients more important than Read more…

3 Icebreakers For Difficult Conversations With Your Parents About Money

How do you approach difficult conversations about money with your parents? A survey from GoBankingRates found that 73 percent of adults have not had in-depth conversations about money with their parents, which comes as no surprise. Read more…

Peter Lazaroff Named to Investopedia Most Influential Advisors

The Investopedia 100 celebrates financial advisors who are making significant contributions to critical conversations about financial literacy, investing strategies, life-stage planning and wealth management. With more than 100,000 independent financial advisors in the U.S., the Investopedia 100 Read more…

Medicare Open Enrollment Has Now Started

For Medicare recipients, the period from October 15 through December 7 is a designated time to evaluate coverage and make certain changes if better options are available. Among the changes permitted during this time are: Read more…

2021 Retirement Plan Limits

The IRS announced the new limits for 2021 retirement savings and the amount that 401(k) participants, or participants in similar employer sponsored plans can save is staying the same. Read more…

Advice for Women from Seasoned Financial Professionals

Good advice. It’s not just a core service we offer our clients. Here at Plancorp, we mentor each other as well. By learning from one another’s interests, experiences, and perspectives, we strengthen our teamwide talents, for our clients and ourselves. Read more…

Will the U.S. Election Affect Stock Market Returns?

With election season heating up, debates on what a Trump or Biden victory could mean for the stock market are intensifying, too. Read more…

6 Smart Ways to Withdraw Retirement Funds and Lower Your Taxes

The global pandemic has had an enormous impact on all of our daily lives, but it presents a unique set of challenges to recent retirees. As the stock-market volatility continues, uncertainty over the future may leave you wondering the best way to draw down assets going forward.  Read more…

How To Break Up With Your Financial Advisor

Let’s face it, relationships can be hard. Whether it’s with your plumber, your significant other, or your financial advisor, there are many legitimate reasons you may want or need to leave them … and just as many reasons it’s tough to do. Read more…

Business Insider: Daniel Lee on what he tells high-income earners wanting to save for an early retirement

Daniel Lee, Senior Wealth Manager out of our Silicon Valley office is a financial advisor to high-income earners at Google, Salesforce, and Microsoft. Here's where he tells them to put their money to set themselves up for early retirement. Read more…

Financial Advisor: Plancorp Ranked in the Top 100 out of 715 firms in FA’s 2020 Annual RIA Ranking

Plancorp is pleased to announce it has been ranked #81 in FA’s 2020 Annual RIA Ranking. This year’s list ranked 715 firms across the country. Read more…

Tying the Knot? Ask Your Partner These 4 Money-Related Questions

About 37% of Millennials believe their financial health is poor, according to a report from Business Insider. Throw another person into the mix — as is the case with a wedding — and the situation only becomes more complicated. Read more…

Own a Business? 3 Reasons 2020 is a Great Year To Review Your 401(k)

2020 has been hard for small businesses; those who remain open have often had to make painful operating decisions for all concerned. Hopefully, your employees understand you’re not taking those decisions lightly. But they can still be frustrating. Read more…

Start Your Company’s 401(k) Plan for 50% Off

For many business owners, starting a 401(k) plan is both expensive and an administrative challenge. 401(k) plans can be a great benefit to your employees, but is it worth it for you and your business? Read more…

5 Key Questions About 529 College Savings Plans

If you’re a parent, odds are you’ve already been mulling over how you’ll help pay for your kids’ higher education when the time comes. Read more…

How to Secure Your Financial Future After a Divorce

There are few life transitions more emotionally draining than divorce. At the same time, the end of a marriage can also bring the promise of a new beginning. Once the final papers are signed, sealed and delivered, here are some practical steps you can take to best secure your financial future. Read more…

Saving Tips for Millennials: How to Create a Personal Financial Plan for the Future

For Millennials, financial obligations are more overwhelming than they were for both Generation X and Baby Boomers before them. This shouldn’t come as a surprise since this generation arguably has faced more economic uncertainty than any generation since those who lived during the Great Depression. Read more…

The Benefits of Being a Financial Advisor for Working Moms Craving a Rewarding Career

I always knew I wanted to help people in my career. That’s why I chose social work as my major in college. At first, the only reason I took a basic finance course on the side was for my own knowledge — I wanted to manage my money effectively after graduation. Read more…

3 Useful Company Employee Benefits Policies for High Earners

Employee benefits can have a significant impact on wealth accumulation, but the International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans reports that 80% of companies struggle to get employees to read benefits materials. If you don’t correctly understand your company’s employee benefits policy, you Read more…

RIA Channel: Plancorp Named in Top 100 Wealth Managers 2020

Plancorp is pleased to announce it has been named to the 2020 RIA Channel Top 100 Wealth Managers List. This year’s Top 100 ranking showcases wealth management firms based on size, growth and quality. Read more…

Financial Times: Plancorp Named Top Financial Advisers 2020

Plancorp is pleased to announce it has been named to the 2020 edition of the Financial Times 300 Top Registered Investment Advisers. The list recognizes top independent RIA firms from across the U.S.  Read more…

Should You Stop Renting and Buy A House?

There are plenty of pros and cons of buying versus renting a home. For Millennials who dream of putting down roots in a place of their own, it’s crucial to weigh several factors. “Should I buy a home or keep renting?” Read more…

What Are Restricted Stock Units (RSUs) and How Do They Work

Just as a single piece in a puzzle can be difficult to decipher all by itself, a Restricted Stock Unit (RSU) can be a bit of a head-scratcher as a stand-alone asset. Read more…

Your Employer Offers You Non-Qualified Deferred Compensation (NQDC): Now What?

It’s always nice to be recognized for a job well done. Being invited to participate in your employer’s non-qualified deferred compensation (NQDC) plan, is one such vote of confidence; it’s typically offered exclusively to select executives or similar high-performing employees. Read more…

Unpacking the Mega Backdoor Roth IRA

Admittedly, the “mega backdoor Roth IRA” is a mouthful of a term. I wonder who came up with it? It’s as if they took their cue from Barnum & Bailey’s Greatest Show on Earth. Read more…

8 Financial Planning Benefits for Same-Sex Couples: The Story of Jane and Josephine

In 2015, Jane and Josephine had been together as a couple for ten years and, the U.S. Supreme Court just declared that same-sex couples have the fundamental right to marry. Like every couple, Jane and Josephine had a lot to consider before deciding to get married or not. The first thing that they Read more…

The Untold Advantages of Your Employee Stock Purchase Plan (ESPP)

Congratulations, your employer has an Employee Stock Purchase Plan (ESPP)! What’s that you say? You’re not sure congratulations are in order? That’s understandable. It’s easy to know what to make of excellent healthcare or an annual bonus. It’s harder to wrap your head around how to participate in Read more…

Cash Balance Plan Benefits —and Their Trade-offs

As a retirement plan advisor, I help business owners come up with the right mix of benefits to build a secure retirement for themselves and their employees. Yet there are so many options beyond the familiar 401(k) plan that busy owners can struggle to keep all the details straight. One option that Read more…

Pay Off Student Loans or Invest? Here’s How to Decide

These days, holding a college diploma is table stakes to qualify for a decent job. Because more people than ever attend a four-year college and that degree is the minimum qualification for many positions, we’ve also seen a spike in students who continue their education to pursue a graduate degree. Read more…

10 Things To Do Now If You’re A Decade Away From Retirement

For most of your life, preparing for retirement probably wasn’t a high priority. But as the years count down on your career, nerves set in and rhetorical questions start flooding your head: Have I saved enough? Did I invest too aggressively? Do I have the right kind of insurance? Read more…

What to Do If You Were Getting Ready to Retire Before the Pandemic Hit

The current impact that the global coronavirus pandemic has had on our daily lives is obvious. This event has touched every one of us in various ways, but you may feel particularly affected if you were thinking about retiring in the near future. You may wonder how the fallout and long-term Read more…

6 Methods to Consider When Choosing an ESG Investing Strategy

A growing number of investors are interested in Environmental, Social and Governance investing, known as ESG. That term is becoming more common, but ESG still means different things to different people. Read more…

IRS Provides Additional Relief for 2020 Required Minimum Distributions

Earlier this year Congress passed the CARES Act as part of the legislative response to COVID-19. The bill includes a waiver of required minimum distributions (RMDs) for the 2020 tax year for IRAs (including inherited IRAs and Roth IRAs) and defined contribution plans. Read more…

How Tax Projections Help You Make Better Financial Decisions

There is a phrase we say a lot here at Plancorp: “We should run a tax projection.” You might hear it when you ask if it makes sense to boost your charitable contributions this year, or when you call us with the good news that you’re getting a big bump in non-salary compensation. We also might reach Read more…

How to Use Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts (GRATs) to Transfer Wealth to Beneficiaries Tax-Free

One of our most important responsibilities is helping clients achieve financial independence. We love when we can tell them they have enough money to do whatever they want for the rest of their lives. But that milestone is hardly the end of the wealth management process. The next question we like Read more…

3 Ways to Strive for Financial Freedom—Even During a Pandemic | Plancorp

We live in uncertain times. The deluge of depressing news only reminds us of the many things that are out of our control. Read more…

7 Tax Reduction Strategies to Help Your Portfolio During a Crisis

When events such as COVID-19 occur, investors often feel at the mercy of wildly fluctuating portfolios. Investing in the market involves risk — your portfolio will go down. And according to the math of percentages, the more significant your losses, the more returns you’ll need to break even. Read more…

Managing Your Equity-Based Compensation With Restricted Stock Units (RSUs)

With stock markets fluctuating wildly, it’s especially important to understand the financial and tax implications of any company stocks your employer might offer. Restricted stock units, or RSUs, have become particularly popular in recent years. A 2017 survey by Ayco’s Compensation and Benefits Read more…

What Does it Mean to Be an ESG Investor?

In late 2017, I was tasked with building Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) portfolios for Plancorp. To be honest, I was initially less than thrilled; my past experiences with these types of portfolios were not necessarily positive. Read more…

What Business Owners Should Look for in a 401(k) Advisor

We know business owners don’t start their business to oversee healthcare plans or manage a 401(k) plan. However, benefit plans are necessary to recruit and keep employees, so it’s important to find someone you can trust will help your plan, your employees, and your business. Read more…

Why financial planning is essential if you want to help your friends and family get by during COVID-19

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to send shockwaves through the economy, millions of people are facing financial distress. Some are turning to family members for financial help, and some are seeking government assistance. To help struggling Americans, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Read more…

GoBankingRates: Daniel Lee on How To Financially Prepare For Potentially Losing Your Job

Daniel Lee, Senior Wealth Manager out of our Silicon Valley office recently contributed to an article on being better prepared for job loss. A excerpt can be found below, click the link below to read the article in it's entirety. Read more…

5 Ways Our Firm is Adapting So We Can Still Offer Internships

This piece is not taking aim at anyone. I understand that because of the coronavirus and the related economic upheaval, some businesses are being forced to cut staff or even close their doors. I know how gut-wrenching that is. However, I’m hearing from some students that the internships they Read more…

Is Now the Time to Buy Individual Stocks?

As people across the globe are being told to stay put in their homes, it’s not surprising to see some companies suffering more than others. Our normal routines are turned upside down, and so are our normal consumer spending habits. Read more…

What Women Need to Know About the SECURE Act

At this point in your life, you probably worry more about paying back student loans than you do saving for retirement. However, the days of retiring to a Florida beach — or wherever floats your boat — aren’t as far off as they seem. Read more…

Three Ways to Make the Most of Your Recovery Rebate

The American Enterprise Institute estimates 91% of American families will receive a check from the US government as part of the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. They also expect the average Recovery Rebate check to be $1,729, with some Americans receiving them Read more…

5 Financial Questions to Help Physicians Prepare for a Market Downturn

The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting virtually everyone in our society, and our hearts go out to all who have suffered first-hand or through friends and family. As a former practicing physician, I cannot help focusing on the plight of our healthcare workers – including nurses, aides, support staff, Read more…

I Just Need a Minute: What It’s Like to Be a Working Mom During a Pandemic

Staying calm in a crisis is something I have often needed to practice in my career in human resources. The particular crisis has varied. It has been, at times, an employee who was a danger to themselves or others. It’s also been the loss of a corporate client that necessitated layoffs. There have Read more…

Choose to Be an Optimist

We are facing risks unlike any we’ve dealt with in our lifetimes. Being told you’re in danger triggers all your evolutionary defense mechanisms intended to keep you safe. Unfortunately, none of these instinctive reactions are useful in the arena of long-term investing. Read more…

COVID-19 Summarizing Recent Legislation and Tax Relief

As we all learn to live with the impact the coronavirus is having on our daily lives, recent legislation and relief from the federal government seeks to alleviate the financial impact of COVID-19. The most significant piece of legislation is the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act. Read more…

How You Can Benefit from a Down Market Using an Employer Stock Purchase Plan

An ESPP (short for Employer Stock Purchase Plan) is a super valuable benefit offered by your company that allow you to purchase your company stock at a discount. With the recent drop in the US stock market however, you might find that the price of your company shares is now below even the Read more…

The Ultimate Checklist to Improving Your Finances — and Your Mental Well-Being

Financial health is so intimately connected to mental well-being. This checklist can show you how to get a hold of your finances and, in turn, lessen your stress. Read more…

How FinTech is Shaping the Future of Wealth Management

The wealth management industry can no longer ignore the rise of fintech. Investors have pumped more than $100 billion into the fintech market since 2010—including $6 billion in the first quarter of 2019. Those investments are going toward things like robo-advisors and investment apps that help Read more…

7 Ways You Can Take Advantage of the Down Market

Volatility and risk are part of the stock market experience – it’s why stocks produce higher returns than less-risky assets over long periods of time. We say this often, it’s easy to forget when the market declines. Read more…

U.S. Treasury Extends Tax Filing Deadline, Some States Follow Suit

The Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service recently announced that the federal income tax filing due date had been automatically extended from April 15, 2020 to July 15, 2020.  Saturday’s release updated the notice issued on March 18th that payments could be deferred but not filing.  Read more…

Plancorp’s Response to COVID-19 Challenges

Friends of Plancorp: Thank you for your support over the last two months. We miss seeing you in person, but we are grateful to be able to continue working with you remotely. Your flexibility and understanding have helped us maintain our high standards of service and security. Read more…

Will the Coronavirus Impact Your Portfolio?

Global stock markets have fallen significantly  in response to the spread of the coronavirus. While market losses of this magnitude are not uncommon, the speed at which the losses have occurred are a bit more unusual. Read more…

How the SECURE Act Impacts Your Financial and Estate Planning

After a bumpy road for the new retirement bill in Congress, the SECURE Act came into effect on Jan. 1. Also known as the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act, the law is one of the most comprehensive pieces of legislation to reform retirement savings. Read more…

Business Insider: Questions to Find Out if Your Advisor Has Your Best Interest at Heart

Sara Gelsheimer, Senior Wealth Manager out of our St. Louis office had the opportunity speak to Eric Roberge of Business Insider. Sara shared her insights on the conflict that exists for a client when their advisor is getting paid a commission. An excerpt can be found below, click the link below to Read more…

Creative Ways to Give Money to Kids: Investment Gifts

Pop Quiz: You have 10 seconds to name what your parents gave you for Christmas when you were 15. Go! It’s almost impossible to think of even one thing, right? Most gifts—even the big ones—fade from our memories within months. But some gifts will continue to give years after recipients have torn off Read more…

Considerations When Planning for Retirement: Unexpected Healthcare Expenses

I often tell people that I lived a Norman Rockwell childhood. My parents provided a home full of love and encouragement. Our grandparents lived nearby and most of our extended family lived within a 30-minute drive. We celebrated holidays, birthdays, and often gathered for no reason at all. As a Read more…

Forbes Names Chris Kerckhoff One of '2020 Best-in-State Wealth Advisor'

Congratulations to Chris Kerckhoff on being named one of the 2020 Forbes Best-In-State Advisors. An excerpt from the Missouri list is below. You can view the list in its entirety here. Read more…

5 Costly Roth Conversion Mistakes to Avoid

A partial Roth conversion is one of my favorite tools to help clients manage their retirement income taxes, so I get frustrated when I see that tool used in the wrong way.  Read more…

A Common Mistake Many Investors Make: Mental Rigidity

New ideas are always difficult to accept at first. This is never more true than when those new concepts conflict with our existing beliefs. Read more…

Financial Advisor: Sara Gelsheimer on Helping Clients Reduce Taxes And Fears

Sara Gelsheimer, Senior Wealth Manager out of our St. Louis office had the opportunity to sit down with Jerilyn Klein Bier, of Financial Advisor. Sara shared her experience helping a client organize their financial life, save money on taxes, and have meaningful conversations about passing on wealth Read more…

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