1. Expect the unexpected
Prepare for the unexpected. Many people lost their main source of income during the COVID-19 pandemic and didn't have enough savings to cover their cost of living. Plan for it now. It could be surgery, time in between jobs, or a major house renovation that you didn't foresee. Create an emergency savings now.
2. Prioritize your spending
After being cooped up in quarantine for over a year, it is easy to blow your budget with travel plans and dinners at restaurants. Instead, find balance and prioritize some entertainment but stick to your savings and retirement plans.
3. Evaluate and diversify your portfolio
Things are constantly changing whether we are in a pandemic or not. Invest in the long game. Quick returns do not usually pan out over time.
4. Watch how you spend your money
The pandemic showed us true colors of many businesses. It also showed us how communities could rally behind small businesses during tough times. Major events like the COVID-19 pandemic force us to evaluate our lives and how we are using our finances.
Source: Brewer, Katie. 12 July 2021. Your Richest Life. https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/review?uri=urn%3Aaaid%3Ascds%3AUS%3Ace5ab8ed-cf31-4a36-a3ef-78796da3ad9e#pageNum=1
As a Financial Analyst Intern, Noah engages in investment research and portfolio modeling to aid and support portfolio management decisions made by Brien and Sarah for the TWA clients. His primary scope of analysis is ensuring that investments our clients hold are optimal given their risk level through diligent quantitative and qualitative research and assigning them buy, sell, and hold ratings.
Noah was born and raised in Austin, Texas. He is beginning his first year of graduate school at Texas A&M University. He is pursuing a Master of Science in economics and a minor in business. Upon graduation, Noah plans to work in the finance and investment world.
In his free time, Noah loves to play a game of basketball or a round of golf with his friends. During the fall, he makes sure he is at every home football game cheering on the Aggies.
Cade Rosser '22
Financial Analyst Intern
As a Financial Analyst Intern, Cade engages in investment research and portfolio modeling to aide and support portfolio management decisions made by Brien and Sarah for the TWA clients. His primary scope of analysis is ensuring that investments our clients hold are optimal given their risk level through diligent quantitative and qualitative research and assigning them buy, sell, and hold ratings. Cade is especially interested in observing and evaluating macro-economic factors and projecting performance in the long-term through valuation research and technical analysis.
Cade grew up in Atlanta, Texas (a small town in Northeast Texas). He is entering his junior year at Texas A&M University in the Business Honors and Aggies on Wall Street Program and will receive his Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance. Upon graduation, Cade aspires to become an investment banking analyst at Wood Rock & Co.
Outside of his studies and work at TWA, Cade is an active member of Youth Impact of Grace Bible Church. He enjoys spending his time hunting, fishing, wakeboarding, and attending Texas A&M athletic events.
Michael Fong-Kutchins '22
Financial Analyst Intern
As a Financial Analyst Intern, Michael engages in investment research and portfolio modeling to aid and support portfolio management decisions made by Brien and Sarah for the TWA clients. His primary scope of analysis is ensuring that investments our clients hold are optimal given their risk level through diligent quantitative and qualitative research and assigning them buy, sell, and hold ratings.
Michael is entering his senior year at Texas A&M University. He is a Double Major in Business Honors and Finance and is pursuing a minor in Philosophy as well as a Philosophy of Pre-Law Certificate. Upon graduation, Michael hopes to attend law school and pursue a career in transactional law.
Outside of his studies and work at TWA, Michael runs his own photography business, is a member of Beta Upsilon Chi fraternity, on leadership for Impact Retreat, and is actively involved at Declaration Church. He enjoys spending his time playing the guitar, running, playing basketball and traveling.
Citius - Altius - Fortius. Faster - Higher - Stronger is the Olympic Motto. Here are some fun facts about the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics:
*Postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic to July 2021
*2nd time for Tokyo to host the Olympics (other time was 1964)
*206 countries competing
*11,091 athletes will compete in 41 different sports and 339 events
*New sports: skateboarding, karate, surfing, sports climbing, 3X3 basketball, baseball/softball (returning from 2008)
*The 68,000-seat stadium, designed by architect Kengo Kuma, cost $1.4 billion.
*Olympic Medals Will Contain Parts Of Old Electronics: Japanese citizens have the chance to make unique contributions to the Games by recycling their old electronic devices, which will be used in the production of the 5,000 Olympic medals to be awarded in Tokyo. The donation of old cell phones and the like not only demonstrates sustainability — it allows the entire nation to offer something tangible to making the Games happen.
*The Number Of Robots Will Be On The Rise: Futuristic AI helper robots have already been deployed at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport. These sleek, friendly machines are capable of giving directions, assisting with luggage and simultaneous interpretation in four different languages, according to The Japan Times. The goal is to make it normal to see humans interacting with robots throughout the airport.
Are you worried about how the coronavirus pandemic impacted your financial future? It is time to REVIEW, REVISE, and REFOCUS to gain a sense of clarity and control over your financial life.
Source: Rosener, Jason. 16 June 2020. Goldman Sachs. https://www.goldmanpfm.com/investment-blog/worried-about-your-financial-plan-3-ways-to-help-maintain-perspective
1. Track your missing payments.
Are you waiting on a refund? Reimbursement on overpaid taxes from unemployment income? Outstanding money from past stimulus checks? You can check the status of a return on the IRS website: https://www.irs.gov/refunds
2. Prepare for the child tax credit.
The 2021 Child Tax Credit will begin sending out payments in July. For qualifying families, each child under 6 years old will receive a total of $3600 and ages 4-17 will receive $3000. For more information or to change your status from advanced monthly payments to one lump sum in 2022, visit https://www.whitehouse.gov/child-tax-credit/
3. Check your estimated taxes.
The economic situation is still variable as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Plan ahead for income fluctuations in 2021.Don’t forget that unemployment benefits are taxable income.
4. Plan for future tax changes.
Time for a mid-year financial check up! Wow 2021 if flying by so it is a good time to check your tax bracket, investment income, the right amount of taxes taken out of your monthly paycheck, etc. For more tips, visit https://www.fidelity.com/viewpoints/personal-finance/midyear-checkup
5. Reset your RMD.
Required minimum distributions (RMDs) were suspended in 2020 for people over the age of 72 but are back in 2021. Double check your RMD situation but most likely if you don’t take your distribution by the end of the year there will be penalties. If you don’t need the money right now, plan ahead to reinvest it in a taxable account instead.
6. Look for tax savings.
One way to achieve tax savings in 2021 is to increase your 401(k) contributions. Also, self-employed professionals who work from home need to keep track of at-home office expenses for tax deductions. It is important to get a handle on any gains now and not wait until December 31st.
7. Stash your savings.
Be tax smart with where you stash your savings. A Roth IRA or Section 529 College Savings are options that accrue growth are tax-free. Increasing your emergency saving fund, giving to charity, or investing to meet your long term goals are also options for extra money.
Seize the chance to reduce taxes before the end of the year but always check with your tax professional or contact Traditions Wealth Advisors at Brien@traditionswealthadvisors.com or 979-694-9100.
Source: 22 June 2021, Fidelity Viewpoints. https://www.fidelity.com/learning-center/personal-finance/tax-moves?ccsource=email_weekly-06-24-S01
Cassidy Kusenberger '22
Financial Planning Intern
I was born and raised in Del Rio, Texas. I am a senior Economics major with a minor in Financial Planning. In my free time, I love getting to ride my horses and compete in rodeos, specifically barrel racing and pole bending. I also am very active at St. Mary’s Catholic Center, where I am currently serving as director for St. Mary’s Youth Retreat Team, where I lead other college students as we prepare retreats for middle/high schoolers. I am also a member of the Financial Planning Students Association, and I am a Financial Planning Ambassador.
At TWA, I serve as the Financial Planning Intern. I work closely with Sarah and Brien to conduct research, analysis, and review of client’s financial plans in order to assist them in achieving their life goals and dreams. I support the development of key systems and processes that TWA uses to operate efficiently and provide the optimal client experience. I have already learned so much through collaboration with TWA’s CFPs and look forward to learning even more about the ins and outs of financial planning throughout the rest of my time here. I will be graduating in May of 2022. Afterwards, I plan on studying in preparation to take the CFP exam and finding a reputable employer to launch my career with.
Adam Cuba '22
As the Accounting Intern, Adam serves as Traditions Wealth Advisors’ Chief Financial Officer (CFO). He assists Brien Smith (CEO) in managing the book keeping, cash flow, and tax related facets of the Traditions Wealth Advisors business.
Adam is dependable, organized, and hardworking at all that he does. He is a senior business honors and accounting major at Texas A&M University. Adam was recently accepted into Group 30 of the Professional Program in Accounting (PPA) at Mays Business School with a track in financial management. He is passionate about serving others and is eager to receive his CPA and work at a Big 4 Accounting Firm in the future.
Outside of work and his studies, Adam enjoys being in the great outdoors with family and friends. On the weekends his hobbies include playing disc golf or trying out a new recipe on his Traeger grill. In addition, Adam loves going to Aggie sporting events and can’t wait to get back to Kyle Field this fall!