Posts tagged Essex Financial
Retirement plans are almost always considered a priority, and most people have some form of account in place. Once you decide to start saving, however, the real challenge is determining where and how. There are numerous options, and all have different advantages (and disadvantages).
Essex Financial VP and financial advisor James Sullivan explains that first, everyone needs to define a hierarchy for themselves. Once they do, the key is learning which savings platforms best meet their needs.
Getting your employer to match your 401(k) contributions is the best place to start. Once that’s done, consider your tax brackets but current and future. Pre-tax retirement accounts and IRAs are most suitable for those who predict lower tax brackets at the time of their retirement. Roth accounts, on the other hand, work well for those who anticipate higher tax brackets in the future.
“Frankly, we don’t know what the tax code will be next year,” let alone in a few decades, Sullivan cautions. He suggests considering your current age rather than tax bracket alone. He believes that 20 years is a good marker; if you have at least 20 years before retirement, a Roth account may be more advantageous. However, some employers will only match a regular 401(k), which you should choose over a Roth IRA. He explains that employer-sponsored plans are automated, which is a tremendous benefit. Small amounts are saved throughout the year, instead of a lump sum being contributed at the end of each year, when possible. Retirement plans that are sponsored by an employer are also protected from creditors, as opposed to IRAs which often are not.
Sullivan recommends switching from a 401(k) to an IRA later on in the process. “401(k)s are great for accumulation, but IRAs are much better for funding your retirement. Why have your former employer still involved with your finances when you don’t work there anymore?”
Over three years ago, in March 2014, Essex Financial Services chose Advent’s Black Diamond platform to meet its portfolio management, reporting and rebalancing needs. The firm’s focus is as a Registered Investment Advisor although it also offers brokerage services. Essex Financial offers comprehensive wealth management and financial planning to its clients, offering custom-developed strategies for individuals, businesses and corporate retirement plans.
The Black Diamond solution offers the firm scalable technology that allows Essex Financial to more efficiently manage its large and complex operations. For instance, before Black Diamond was incorporated into Essex Financial’s operations, the firm’s advisors needed to ask for client reports several days in advance of their need at client meetings. Black Diamond facilitated access to client information immediately, saving time and bother for the financial managers. Black Diamond has also enhanced the ability of advisors to see revenue flows before bills are distributed.
President and CEO of Essex Financial Services, Charles “Chuck” Cumello explained his satisfaction with Black Diamond: “We can handle a broad range of client situations, from the fairly routine retirement planning and college funding aspects, all the way up to the unique needs for intergenerational wealth transfer and legacy planning of high net worth clients,” Cumello said.
Essex Financial has its main office in Essex, Connecticut, where, over the past 30 years the firm has grown to manage or administer $3.3 billion in assets.