Using AssetBook for Tax Planning

As we approach the end of the year, many advisors are taking the time to analyze their client’s accounts, searching for opportunities to save them money on this year’s income taxes.  Since each client’s taxable situation is unique, it is important to understand how cost basis is handled in AssetBook and what useful tools are available to help you with this effort.

We also thought it would be useful to explain in detail the tax lot information being imported into AssetBook from your custodian that could be extremely useful when considering tax harvesting opportunities.tax

Tracking Cost Basis in AssetBook

There are two ways in which we track cost basis in both AssetBook systems:

  1. Internal cost accounting system
  2. Importing tax lots from the big 4 custodians

Using AssetBook internal cost accounting feature

Our internal cost accounting system can track cost basis using the following standard methods:

  • Average
  • FIFO
  • LIFO
  • High Cost
  • Low Cost

Using the imported custodian tax lots feature

This is the preferred method, since by using your custodian’s tax lots mitigates the chance for discrepancies between your custodian’s tax reporting and your own tax reporting.  To use your custodian’s tax lots, notify your custodians that you wish to receive the files.  In AssetBook, enable custodian tax lots by clicking the “Use Custodian Cost” box on each account record.

Tools to identify tax saving opportunities

We thought it would be useful to explain in a couple of tools available that could be extremely useful when considering tax harvesting opportunities.

Tax Considerations tile in the Household Dashboard

The Tax Considerations tile is a very good way to see your client’s tax picture at a glance.  The tile shows you all taxable income, short and long term realized gain/loss.  It also displays the client’s top 3 unrealized losses for positions in taxable accounts.

Account Unrealized Gains/losses Report

Once to get a look at your client’s tax picture, run the unrealized gain report.  This report can be run at either the Household or Accounts levels.

Other useful reports

  • Household Rebalancing by Class with Last Buy Date (rebalancing report that shows cost basis and gain/loss for each position).
  • Advisor Positions Unrealized Gain/Loss (Global report across clients)
  • Advisor Positions Unrealized Gain/Loss Sums (Global report across clients)

For more detail on using AssetBook for tax management and planning, click here do download the complete white paper.

 

Quarterly Webinar – Dec 14, 2016 at 4PM EST

Webinar Details

AssetBook will be conducting a quarterly webinar where Rob Major, CEO will discuss recent development, company updates and give you some tips on best practices for the upcoming quarter end. We hope to see you there!

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.
If you have any problems registering, please contact Sarah Flanagan at

Holiday Hours

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at AssetBook!

Our office will be closed on Thursday, November 24th and Friday, November 25th in observance of the Thanksgiving Holiday.

We will resume normal business hours on Monday, November 28th.

Upcoming InvestorView Webinars in November

Our client portal partners, ModestSpark, will be holding several webinars this month. These webinars focus on key features, best practices, and deep-dives on specific topics.

Here’s what is coming in November:

2-Factor Authentication (2FA) – Sneak Peek

Audience: Administrators and Advisors
Description: 2-factor auth is coming to Modestspark! With security for you and clients always a top priority, 2FA is a great feature you should know about. Learn more about the upcoming release containing 2FA and how to use these new capabilities.

Wednesday, November 30 @ 10:00am PST


Document Center – Deep Dive & Best Practices

Audience: Administrators and Advisors
Description: The Document Center is a key feature within Modestpark. With unlimited storage and easy access for you and clients, the Document Center is a vital place to securely store quarterly reports, invoices, and other important documents. Learn more about the use of Document Center, tips/tricks to increase adoption and migration of documents into Document Center.

Tuesday, November 22 @ 8:00am PST


On-boarding QuickStart

Audience: New Customers (Administrators)
Description: This session walks new customers through the onboarding process. From data imports to configuration and rollout activities, we’ll cover the basics to get you started!

Tuesday, November 29 @ 10:00am PST


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How to assign multiple households to one InvestorView user name

It’s easy to assign multiple households to a single InvestorView username.  There are a number of reasons that advisors may want to do this.  For example, if an advisor is managing multiple households for a family and each of those households needs to be accessed by the primary trustee.

In order to accomplish this, simply choose each of the ClientID’s (your AssetBook household name), when registering a user.

From the main client list in the Administrator portal, click the Register button. Fill in the email (this is the username) and Display Name (which is how your client will view their own name in the portal).

Next, pick each ClientID to be attached to the username by picking each client from the drop-down list.

reg

The result will be that when the user log’s into the portal, there will be links to each household that is linked to the user.

You can also add a household(s) to a username that has already been registered. From the Administrator portal, click Clients, Registered Users and then the Clients tab.

Next, click the small arrow just to the left of your registered user, and then Update.

reg2

Finally, just add the households that you wish to assign to this username.

reg3

Save and you are all done.

Watch this blog for a follow up post on how you can also add multiple usernames (or emails) to a single household.

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How to use the Global Activity tab to ensure all of your fees are debited

The Global Activity tab is a great way to be sure that all of the fees that you submit for debiting get processed.  Cash shortages and changing account permissions can sometimes interfere with you collecting your all of your fees.

An easy check is to open the Global Activity tab, put in the date or date range that fees were debited, and sum the column at the bottom.

global-tab

You can either use the filter at the top to specify fees, or filter the grid column using the column filter.   To sum the Dollars column, just right-click the space just below the column, and click “Sum”.

Now just compare the summed value to the amount of the total in your management fees review sheet (debited fees only).  The totals should match!

The Global Activity tab is also a great way for you to check trades, deposits and withdrawals on a global scale.

Thanks to Bob Veres and Jean Sinclair for an excellent conference

Bob Veres’ Insider’s Forum conference just keeps getting better year after year. We really enjoyed visiting with our clients and catching up with many old friends last week.   The venue, which was the historic Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego, was amazing.

There was a large emphasis on robo-advisors and how they are beginning to play a complementary role in professional financial advisory firms.

There was also much discussion about how the new Dept. of Labor fiduciary rule is impacting advisors and how the robos can participate in digital management IRA accounts that now must be managed.

Congratulations to Skip Schweiss, Managing Director of Retirement Plan Services at TD Ameritrade, for winning this year’s Insiders Forum leadership award.  According to Bob Veres, Skip played a major role in Washington lobbying for the new DOL ruling.  Rob Major and Skip go back 17 years and all of us here at AssetBook want to congratulate him for his valiant efforts.

skip Skip Schweiss

We got word that next year’s Insiders Forum will be held in Nashville, TN.  We will definitely be there and hope to see you there too!

How to switch out an Investment in an Investment Model

Last week one our clients was trying to change one of the investments in an investment-based model, and unintentionally changed the symbol in an investment.  This caused havoc in their database because the symbol is the key linkage for investment records and the custodial data feed.

This action resulted in a full database backup restore from the date that the symbol was changed.  Thankfully, not much work was lost.  As a reminder, the key fields that serve a “linkages” to our custodial data feeds are the symbol and the cusip for investments and account numbers for accounts.

We thought it would be a good idea to show users how to switch out an investment in an investment model.

When you want to change an investment in an investment model, you need to first delete the investment that needs to be removed.  To do this, just click the trash can beside the investment that needs to be removed.

capture1

For example, say you want to replace Fidelity Mid Cap Stock with Franklin Small-Mid Cap Growth:

capture2

Once FMCSX has been removed, add Franklin Mid Cap Growth (FRGSX) by choosing it from the investment drop-down list.

capture3Now add in your Target and Tolerance percentages, then click Add:

temp
Finally, just make sure that your total percentage for the Model is 100%.