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Mark Henricks

Mortgage, Retirement and Investing Expert

Mark Henricks has reported on personal finance, investing, retirement, entrepreneurship and other topics for more than 30 years. His freelance byline has appeared on CNBC.com and in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and other leading publications. Mark has written books including, “Not Just A Living: The Complete Guide to Creating a Business That Gives You A Life.” His favorite reporting is the kind that helps ordinary people increase their personal wealth and life satisfaction. A graduate of the University of Texas journalism program, he lives in Austin, Texas. In his spare time he enjoys reading, volunteering, performing in an acoustic music duo, whitewater kayaking, wilderness backpacking and competing in triathlons.

Posts by Mark Henricks:

by Mark Henricks Sep 20, 2021

Brokerage accounts can be either cash accounts or margin accounts. With cash accounts, investors have to pay the full cost of any securities, usually within three days. Margin accounts, on the other hand, let investors borrow part of the cost from the broker. By buying on margin, investors can acquire more securities and potentially increase returns. They can also lose more, up to and more than the initial investment. Cash accounts offer opportunities for more limited profits but are less risky. Read more

by Mark Henricks Sep 20, 2021

Corporations that pay dividends to stockholders usually make the payouts on a regular schedule, such as annually or quarterly. However, they sometimes opt for special dividends. These non-recurring cash dividends are usually much larger than the regular recurring dividends. Companies may use them to reward loyal shareholders when profits are unusually good, to distribute proceeds of sales of subsidiaries or other asset sales and, occasionally, to take advantage of changes in tax laws. The choices available to fixed-income investors are vast, so working with a financial advisor to get just the right mix for you can really pay. Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 25, 2021

A Section 121 Exclusion is an Internal Revenue Service rule that allows you to exclude from taxable income a gain of up to $250,000 from the sale of your principal residence. A couple filing a joint return gets to exclude up to $500,000. The exclusion gets its name from the part of the Internal Revenue Code allowing it. To get the exclusion a taxpayer must own and use the home as their main residence for a period adding up to two years out of the five years before it is sold. Consider working with a financial advisor to ensure you’re getting all the credits, exemptions and deductions you’re entitled to. Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 25, 2021

STRIPS, which stands for Separate Trading of Registered Interest and Principal of Securities, are securities that consists of a U.S. Treasury bond that has been stripped of its interest coupons.… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 24, 2022

A credit shelter trust is used to help married couples with significant assets pass their estates after their deaths to children or other beneficiaries without incurring estate taxes. Credit shelter… Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 16, 2021

The acronym “DINK” stands for “dual income, no kids.” It refers to couples where both members have paying jobs and don’t have any children living with them. The number of people living as DINKs has… Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 16, 2021

Thanks to a law that took effect in 2020, if you inherit a traditional individual retirement account (IRA) you may have to take all the account’s distributions within 10 years. The exception is if… Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 16, 2021

Venture philanthropy uses techniques from the world of venture capital financing to support charitable and humanitarian goals. It differs from impact investing in several ways, including being… Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 16, 2021

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) gives investors a measure of how much the stock market is expected to fluctuate over the next 30 days. VIX is often called the “fear index,” because it can indicate… Read more

by Mark Henricks Aug 26, 2021

Dividend growth modeling helps investors determine a fair price for a company’s shares, using the stock’s current dividend, the expected future growth rate of the dividend and the required rate of… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 28, 2021

Dividends are regular cash payments corporations make to shareholders as an incentive to get them to invest in the company. Dividend yield is a percentage figure calculated by dividing the total… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 28, 2021

Buying shares of real estate investment trusts (REITs) gives investors a convenient way to invest in land and buildings while receiving income and capital appreciation. REITs own and finance real… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 22, 2021

An option premium is the fee that the buyer of an option contract pays for the right to buy or sell stocks or other securities at a pre-set price when the contract’s time limit expires. From the… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 21, 2021

Tax efficient investing allows investors to reduce, delay and otherwise manage taxes generated by investment activities, potentially improving after-tax returns. Investors can use a variety of… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 21, 2021

Risk premium is the added return that investors expect to earn from an asset such as a share of stock that carries more risk than another asset such as a high-grade corporate bond. The risk premium… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 17, 2021

Snowflake is a cloud data platform company that lets business customers consolidate data from multiple clouds and other sources. After the company’s 2020 initial public offering the price of its… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 16, 2021

As marijuana laws have relaxed, the pot trade has become a legitimate industry and some cannabis-related companies, including Nevada pot superstore operator Planet 13, have gone public, allowing… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 16, 2021

Trusts and limited liability companies (LLCs) are both legal vehicles that can be used to protect assets. Both are also created at the state level but they have different features and different uses.… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 08, 2021

When the staff at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has made the decision to recommend taking an enforcement action against a person or firm, the commission will often issue a Wells Notice… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 08, 2021

U.S. monetary policymakers are often described as being either hawkish or dovish. The terms refer to different viewpoints on the way monetary policy should influence the economy. Hawks are primarily… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 03, 2021

When prices rise rapidly and persistently during an inflationary spiral, dollars lose purchasing power and investors can see the value of their portfolios decline. Inflation-hedging strategies try to… Read more

by Mark Henricks Jun 03, 2021

The producer price index (PPI) is a government economic report prepared by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) that measures the change in prices sellers receive for thousands of items and services.… Read more

by Mark Henricks May 21, 2021

The U.S. central bank, known as the Federal Reserve, has a dual mandate of managing inflation and promoting full employment. When Fed officials are said to be “dovish,” it means they are more… Read more

by Mark Henricks May 11, 2021

U.S. interest rates are controlled by the nation’s central bank, the Federal Reserve. The bank has Congressionally mandated tasks to pursue a monetary policy that encourages employment, keeps prices… Read more

by Mark Henricks May 20, 2021

Inflation occurs when prices for goods and services increase, while deflation happens when prices decrease. Sustained periods of sizable inflation or deflation can have significant effects on the… Read more