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The newsletter articles on this page provide valuable information on timely and interesting financial issues across a variety of subject areas, including retirement, investments, personal finance, annuities, insurance, taxes, college, and government benefits.


Key Numbers for 2015
10 Financial Terms Everyone Should Know
Should Life Insurance Be Part of Your Retirement Plan?
Should I be worried about a Federal Reserve interest rate hike?
How can I try to manage the impact of an interest rate hike?


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Key Numbers for 2015

Every year, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announces cost-of-living adjustments that affect contribution limits for retirement plans, thresholds for deductions and credits, and standard deduction and personal exemption amounts. Here are a few of the key adjustments for 2015.

Retirement plans

  • Employees who participate in 401(k), 403(b), and most 457 plans can defer up to $18,000 in compensation in 2015 (up from $17,500 in 2014); employees age 50 and older can defer up to an additional $6,000 in 2015 (up from $5,500 in 2014)
  • Employees participating in a SIMPLE retirement plan can defer up to $12,500 in 2015 (up from $12,000 in 2014), and employees age 50 and older will be able to defer up to an additional $3,000 in 2015 (up from $2,500 in 2014)

IRAs

The limit on annual contributions to an IRA remains unchanged at $5,500 in 2015, with individuals age 50 and older able to contribute an additional $1,000. For individuals who are covered by a workplace retirement plan, the deduction for contributions to a traditional IRA is phased out for the following modified adjusted gross income (AGI) ranges:

2014 2015
Single / head of household (HOH) $60,000 - $70,000 $61,000 - $71,000
Married filing jointly (MFJ) $96,000 - $116,000 $98,000 - $118,000
Married filing separately (MFS) $0 - $10,000 $0 - $10,000

Note:  The 2015 phaseout range is $183,000 - $193,000 when the individual making the IRA contribution is not covered by a workplace retirement plan, but is filing jointly with a spouse who is covered.

The modified AGI phaseout ranges for individuals making contributions to a Roth IRA are:

2014 2015
Single / HOH $114,000 - $129,000 $116,000 - $131,000
MFJ $181,000 - $191,000 $183,000 - $193,000
MFS $0 - $10,000 $0 - $10,000

Estate and gift tax

  • The annual gift tax exclusion remains $14,000
  • The gift and estate tax basic exclusion amount for 2015 is $5,430,000, up from $5,340,000 in 2014

Personal exemption

The personal exemption amount has increased to $4,000 (up from $3,950 in 2014). For 2015, personal exemptions begin to phase out once AGI exceeds $258,250 (Single), $309,900 (MFJ), $284,050 (HOH), or $154,950 (MFS).

Note:  These same AGI thresholds apply in determining if itemized deductions may be limited. The corresponding 2014 threshold amounts were $254,200 (single), $305,050 (MFJ), $279,650 (HOH), and $152,525 (MFS).

Standard deduction

The standard deduction amounts have been adjusted as follows:

2014 2015
Single $6,200 $6,300
HOH $9,100 $9,250
MFJ $12,400 $12,600
MFS $6,200 $6,300

Note:  The 2015 additional standard deduction amount (age 65 or older, or blind) is $1,550 if filing as single or HOH (unchanged from 2014) or $1,250 (up from $1,200 in 2014) for all other filing statuses. Special rules apply if you can be claimed as a dependent by another taxpayer.

 
©2015 Broadridge Investor Communication Solutions, Inc. All rights reserved.
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