Ted Barnhart

Ted Barnhart has written 146 posts for The Austrian School of Investment Thought

Understanding the Net Investment Income Tax

If your income hits a certain level, you may face an additional wrinkle in calculating your taxes: the net investment income tax (also referred to as the unearned income Medicare contribution tax). This 3.8% Medicare tax applies to some or all of your net investment income if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) exceeds certain … Continue reading

Zero Hedge: What if Rates Rise Above 3.5% ?

Late last month the notorious financial blog Zero Hedge published an analysis  regarding the economic after shocks that could occur if interest rates were to spike above 3.5%. Indeed eight years into “recovery” from the great recession of 2008, it is easy to forget just how extraordinary Federal Reserve policy remains.  Just because the can … Continue reading

401(k) Rollovers: What to Consider

If you’ve lost your job, or are changing jobs, you may be wondering what to do with your 401(k) plan account. It’s important to understand your options.   What will I be entitled to? If you leave your job (voluntarily or involuntarily), you’ll be entitled to a distribution of your vested balance. Your vested balance … Continue reading

February Sector ETF Performance

BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Month of February 2017 2017 YTD January February 2017 S&P500 SPY 1.79% 3.93% 5.79% Dow Jones DIA 0.53% 5.14% 5.69% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 5.14% 4.38% 9.74% S&P Midcap MDY 1.65% 2.60% 4.29% Russell 2000 IWM 0.28% 1.93% 2.22% Dow Transports IYT 1.57% 2.68% 4.30% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX … Continue reading

January Sector ETF Performance

BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Month of January 2017 2017 YTD January 2016 S&P500 SPY 1.79% 12.00% Dow Jones DIA 0.53% 16.37% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 5.14% 5.90% S&P Midcap MDY 1.65% 20.46% Russell 2000 IWM 0.28% 21.60% Dow Transports IYT 1.57% 22.17% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX 2.45% 2.60% 30yr Treasury Yield ^TYX 3.05% … Continue reading

Friday Humor: Super Bowl Tickets

A guy named Bob receives a free ticket to the Super Bowl from his company. Unfortunately, when Bob arrives at the stadium he realizes the seat is in the last row in the corner of the stadium – he’s closer to the Goodyear blimp than the field. About halfway through the first quarter, Bob notices … Continue reading

2017 Tax Rates and Information

2017 Tax Rates and Information including: Important Dates, Tax Brackets, Standard Deductions and Personal Exemptions, Alternative Minimum Tax Exemptions, Qualified Dividends and Long-Term Capital Gains, Net Investment Tax (ACA) Thresholds, Education Deductions and Credits, Estate Tax Rates and Exclusions, Retirement Plan Contribution Limits, Medicare Costs, Social Security Taxable Benefits. Request: Introductory Phone Call With Barnhart … Continue reading

What are Alternative Investments?

  These days the mention of alternative investments within the investment community is a bit like brining up the presidential election; an interesting topic for sure but you are likely to run into some pretty strong opinion or resistance, no matter where your personal opinions lie.   Before diving into the debate of who (if … Continue reading

Friday Humor: Can I Get a Day Off?

An employee goes to see his supervisor in the front office. “Boss,” he says, “we’re doing some heavy house-cleaning at home tomorrow, and my wife needs me to help with the attic and the garage, moving and hauling stuff.” “We’re short-handed,” the boss replies. “I can’t give you the day off.” “Thanks, boss,” says the … Continue reading

Top Ten Investment Books for Austrian School Economics

The following are books that have had the greatest impact on my investment philosophy. Though that philosophy is heavily influenced by a belief in Austrian School Economics only two of these books deal with Austrian Economics specifically. What they do provide however is education and wisdom on how real world markets work, which has allowed … Continue reading

Chinese Currency Manipulation and the New “Giant Sucking Sound”

As Barron’s Up and Down Wall Street columnist Randall Forsyth wrote this weekend “for the currency markets, seven Chinese Yuan to the U.S. Dollar has become a milestone that seems as inevitable as Dow 20,000.” For decades Chinese officials worked to keep the Yuan artificially cheap in an effort to boost an export driven economy. … Continue reading

December Sector ETF Performance

  BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Month of December 2016 Monthly YTD December 2016 S&P500 SPY 2.03% 12.00% Dow Jones DIA 3.42% 16.37% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 0.44% 5.90% S&P Midcap MDY 2.18% 20.46% Russell 2000 IWM 2.89% 21.60% Dow Transports IYT 0.80% 22.17% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX 2.44% 2.27% 30yr Treasury Yield ^TYX … Continue reading

James Bianco on Bloomberg

Jame Bianco is President of Chicago Based Bianco Research. While not strictly an “Austrian” economist/strategist, he has long been writing and commenting on topics concerning Austrians such as credit expansion, central banking policy, politics and economics. He is certainly in the category of under the radar gurus (as in legitimate guru, not the carnival barker … Continue reading

Barron’s: Tax Tips for the Trump Plan

This week’s Barron’s magazine published an interview with Robert Willlens titled Advice From Wall Street’s Go-To Tax Man. Writer Andrew Barry describes Mr. Willens as “one of Wall Street’s leading tax and, financial-accounting experts. When hedge funds and other investors want advice on whether companies such as Yahoo! and Liberty Media can use the complex … Continue reading

Weekly Review and Sector ETF Performance

Weekly Review   The highly anticipated if hardly dramatic FOMC meeting on Tuesday yielded the expected bump in the federal funds rate by twenty-five basis points.  An indication of the potential for three hikes on 2017 was somewhat noteworthy, but then one should remember last December’s rate hike came with the pronouncement of an expected … Continue reading

Weekly Sector ETF Performance

  BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Week Ended Dec 9, 2016 ytd Weekly 2016 9-Dec S&P500 SPY 12.83% 3.11% Dow Jones DIA 16.23% 3.10% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 7.71% 3.28% S&P Midcap MDY 22.65% 4.19% Russell 2000 IWM 24.20% 5.66% Dow Transports IYT 26.95% 4.04% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX 2.27% 2.46% 30yr Treasury Yield … Continue reading

Bonds: The Price and Yield See-Saw

While many investors could correctly answer a question about the direction of bond prices when interest rates rise, understanding such a relationship at an intuitive level in an ever changing market place can sometimes be elusive. One good way to better conceptualize and understand the relation ship between bond prices and interest rates is to … Continue reading

After a Tough November for Bonds What’s Next for Investors?

Bond investors are in for a rude awakening when it is time to look at November account statements. As the ten-year treasury yield jumped from  1.83%  to 2.37%, the Lehman Brothers Aggregate Total Return ETF (AGG) was down 2.68%.  The 7-10 year Treasury ETF (IEI) was down 4.23% for the month and the the Long … Continue reading

November Sector ETF Performance

BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Month of Novermber 2016 ytd Monthly 2016 November S&P500 SPY 9.77% 3.68% Dow Jones DIA 12.53% 5.94% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 5.90% 0.44% S&P Midcap MDY 17.89% 7.88% Russell 2000 IWM 18.18% 11.06% Dow Transports IYT 21.19% 11.77% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX 2.27% 2.37% 30yr Treasury Yield ^TYX 3.02% … Continue reading

Weekly Sector ETF Performance

BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Week Ended September 2, 2016 ytd weekly 2016 2-Sep S&P500 SPY 8.23% 0.50% Dow Jones DIA 8.06% 0.57% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 5.30% 0.29% S&P Midcap MDY 14.04% 1.34% Russell 2000 IWM 11.50% 1.18% Dow Transports IYT 6.76% 1.68% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX 2.27% (1/1) yield 1.6% 30yr Treasury … Continue reading

Weekly Sector ETF Performance

BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance Week Ended August19, 2016 ytd weekly 2016 19-Aug S&P500 SPY 8.31% 0.04% Dow Jones DIA 8.33% 0.04% Nasdaq 100 QQQ 5.42% 0.05% S&P Midcap MDY 12.71% 0.32% Russell 2000 IWM 10.09% 0.61% Dow Transports IYT 6.42% 1.57% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX -30.40% 3.95% 30yr Treasury Yield ^TYX -24.17% … Continue reading

Friday Humor: Dilbert Worthy Quotes

  A magazine recently ran a “Dilbert quotes” contest. They were looking for people to submit quotes from their real-life Dilbert-type managers. Here are the top ten finalists: 1. “As of tomorrow, employees will only be able to access the building using individual security cards. Pictures will be taken next Wednesday and employees will receive … Continue reading

Weekly Sector ETF Performance

BIA Tracked ETF and Fund Performance 27-May Week Ended May 27, 2016 ytd weekly 2016 27-May S&P500 SPY 3.66% 2.31% Dow Jones DIA 3.69% 2.14% Nasdaq 100 QQQ -1.26% 3.44% S&P Midcap MDY 7.40% 2.95% Russell 2000 IWM 2.07% 3.44% Dow Transports IYT 3.90% 1.34% 10 yr Treasury Yield ^TNX 2.27% 1.85% 30yr Treasury Yield … Continue reading

Friday Humor: The Creative Accountant

  There once was an entrepreneur who was interviewing people for a division manager position. He decided to select the candidate that could answer the question “how much is 2+2?” The engineer pulled out his slide rule and shuffled it back and forth, and finally announced, “It lies between 3.98 and 4.02”. The mathematician said, … Continue reading

Yield Shopping: The Most Expensive Shopping You’ll Ever Do

(this post originally publisehd on December 8, 2011) In an environment of what seems to be perpetually low interest rates, what is an investor looking for income to do? A recent cover story in Barron’s Magazine “How to Get Safe Annual Payouts of 7%”  illustrates some of  today’s challenges in the fixed income world. The … Continue reading

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