HWZ Forums

Login Register FAQ Mark Forums Read

*Official* BBCWatcher club

Like Tree234Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 24-09-2020, 06:13 PM   #2821
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 612
TreasuryDirect signup or I Bond purchase?

To be clear, I’m referring to Series EE Savings Bonds here, not Series I. Series I are quite different and potentially appealing for other purposes. Series EE for a specific U.S. dollar spending objective 20+ years from now (e.g. university), to handle part of the expense anyway, seem fairly appealing especially for conservative savers/investors.
Treasury Direct signup... as you go through the steps there is one step where it says something to the effect of... by proceeding you agree that you are a US person, or words to the effect. That is why I didn’t sign up for my non-resident alien spouse, even though she has a SSN, US address and US bank account.
celtosaxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-09-2020, 09:11 AM   #2822
Arch-Supremacy Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,006
Roth 401(k) to Roth IRA Rollover?

Here’s an interesting little idea for those of you who have (or will have) a Roth 401(k), which is a U.S. tax advantaged, employer sponsored retirement savings account. You can end up with one of these accounts, or the very similar Roth 403(b), if you work in the U.S. for even a brief spell. And you can also get a Roth IRA, directly or via the “backdoor.” About 75% of employers that offer 401(k) plans now offer the Roth variant, meaning contributions are after tax and qualified withdrawals are U.S. tax free.

It turns out that when you leave the 401(k) plan’s employer, you have the option to roll a Roth 401(k) over to your Roth IRA. Which seems silly, right? What’s the point? It turns out there is a point. The 401(k) and 403(b) plans require that you start distributions at age 72 (recently raised from age 70). An IRA, on the other hand, has no Required Minimum Distributions (RMD) except years after the Roth IRA passes to an heir.

This little quirk could be interesting to some, even if you never use it. The only downside I can think of is that some U.S. states don’t shield IRAs from creditors and courts as well as the employer-sponsored plans are shielded. If that situation applies and concerns you then you can rollover as much or as little as you want. With any rollover please make sure you follow all the rules to make sure there’s no complication. In particular, you wouldn’t want to get hit with tax withholding or a tax bill.
BBCWatcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 27-09-2020, 11:08 AM   #2823
Arch-Supremacy Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,006
Overseas Work? Surprise, You Might Qualify for a National Pension!

Not too long ago I was chatting with an associate who happens to be a Singaporean citizen living in Singapore. He’s working now in Singapore and spent most of his career so far working in Singapore, but he did spend some time working overseas, including in the United States.

“You should see whether you qualify for U.S. Social Security retirement benefits. And whether your spouse qualifies for spousal benefits, too.”

Really? Yes, really! These details are worth checking, and you might be surprised. It turns out he does qualify, so he’ll have a future U.S. dollar retirement income stream from the U.S. Social Security Administration. It won’t be a huge one — on the order of a couple or few hundred U.S. dollars (in 2020 dollars), but of course that’s way better than the zero he assumed.

Many countries have social insurance systems and often require all workers, including visiting foreign workers, to pay into them. They also typically require a minimum number/size of contributions to qualify for benefits, such as retirement benefits. However, many also have social security treaties with other countries that provide for “totalization,” meaning that each system can count contributions to treaty systems in order to total up to the minimum contributions to qualify for benefits. There are other variations, including contribution refunds when foreign workers leave (careful, that might not be wise), spousal and even ex-spousal benefits, inflation adjustments in payouts, international transfer of pension payments to foreign banks, etc.

So let’s consider a hypothetical example: Jackie Tan (no relation to anybody with that name), a citizen of Singapore working and living in Singapore. She is currently 55 years old, and she is a senior risk officer at a bank in Singapore where she has worked for 30 years and counting, mostly in Singapore. However, her company sent her to work overseas on three occasions:

1. In the year 2000, she went to the bank’s New York office. She started working there in November, 2000, and planned to work there for 2 years (until November, 2002). However, the 9/11 terrorist attacks happened, and her bank ended up recalling her to Singapore. She left in February, 2002. She earned about US$80,000 per year annualized, and she was paid twice per month from November 1, 2001, through the end of February, 2002.

2. She ended up with another stint in the U.S., this time in Charlotte, North Carolina. She worked in Charlotte from October, 2010, through March, 2013 — about 2 1/2 years. She averaged US$150,000/year of income.

3. From March, 2015, through March, 2018, she worked in Paris. While there she met the love of her life, a Japanese lady. They married in Paris. Jackie and her Japanese wife moved back to Singapore, her wife on an Employment Pass.

In all these postings Jackie contributed to the social insurance systems in the U.S. and in France. Guess what? Jackie qualifies at least for U.S. Social Security retirement benefits and may also qualify for benefits from the French system. She has 7 years (in the way the U.S. counts) — 28 “credits” — of U.S. Social Security contributions. The U.S. has a social security totalization agreement with France, and so the U.S. Social Security Administration can get her up to the minimum 40 credits required to qualify for a U.S. national pension based on her French contributions.

Moreover, Jackie’s wife, who has never worked in the U.S., qualifies for a U.S. spousal benefit. This is typically 50% of Jackie’s monthly pension. If Jackie should predecease her wife, Jackie’s wife can then end her spousal benefit and switch to Jackie’s pension amount (100%). Spousal qualification rules are a bit more complicated since they can depend on residence and citizenship factors, but in this hypothetical example Jackie’s wife should qualify. She might even still qualify if they separate or divorce, and no, it doesn’t matter that Singapore doesn’t recognize the marriage. The U.S. (and France) do, and that works for these purposes.

These factors can and probably should influence your career decisions, especially if you’re close to qualifying for a benefit from some country or countries. Good luck!

Last edited by BBCWatcher; 27-09-2020 at 11:10 AM..
BBCWatcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 12:06 AM   #2824
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 612
I wouldn’t count on the U.S. recognizing that forever. It is quite certain now that judge Barrett will be confirmed.
celtosaxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 12:26 AM   #2825
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 1,276
I wouldn’t count on the U.S. recognizing that forever. It is quite certain now that judge Barrett will be confirmed.
They could have received US$1200 stimulus cheque signed by D Trump already.
Tiger9119 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 07:41 AM   #2826
Arch-Supremacy Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,006
I wouldn’t count on the U.S. recognizing that forever. It is quite certain now that judge Barrett will be confirmed.
Forever is a long time, and the next Tweet might change the world, but I doubt same sex marriage recognition will be reversed. And for U.S. Social Security it’d have to be a reversal all the way back to pre-United States v. Windsor. I don’t think there are even 5 votes in a Barrett-installed Supreme Court for reversal (cf. Marisa v. Pavan), never mind a President and Congress that would tolerate a reversal for long. It’s much more likely to be strengthened legally, and as soon as 2021, via the proposed Equality Act.
BBCWatcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 10:32 AM   #2827
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 612
Forever is a long time, and the next Tweet might change the world, but I doubt same sex marriage recognition will be reversed. And for U.S. Social Security it’d have to be a reversal all the way back to pre-United States v. Windsor. I don’t think there are even 5 votes in a Barrett-installed Supreme Court for reversal (cf. Marisa v. Pavan), never mind a President and Congress that would tolerate a reversal for long. It’s much more likely to be strengthened legally, and as soon as 2021, via the proposed Equality Act.
Can see you are betting big for a Biden win
celtosaxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 10:32 AM   #2828
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,666
Hi BBCW,

I believe you have mentioned before that IWDA and CSPX ETF are more tax friendly for non US investor as compared to those domiciled in US. Do you happen to know where can i get a list of such tax friendly ETFs for a Singaporean investor?

Currently, i am looking at S&P value etf but i can't find a tax friendly version listed in London exchange /domiciled in Ireland. thanks
arcaninx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 11:23 AM   #2829
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 49
Try this site https://www.justetf.com/uk/etf-lists.html

It has an extensive list of ETFs available and they will list whether it is Ireland domiciled (the one you want to look for, tax-wise).

Hi BBCW,

I believe you have mentioned before that IWDA and CSPX ETF are more tax friendly for non US investor as compared to those domiciled in US. Do you happen to know where can i get a list of such tax friendly ETFs for a Singaporean investor?

Currently, i am looking at S&P value etf but i can't find a tax friendly version listed in London exchange /domiciled in Ireland. thanks
Sent from Samsung SM-G975F using GAGT
arcaninx likes this.
yellownova is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-09-2020, 03:36 PM   #2830
Arch-Supremacy Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,006
Can see you are betting big for a Biden win
"Betting big"? No, I'm not making any bets at all on any election outcomes. However, you can(*) if that's your thing, for example via the Iowa Electronic Markets.

(*) Or cannot. Please refer to Singapore's Remote Gambling Act.
BBCWatcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-09-2020, 07:27 PM   #2831
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 612
"Betting big"? No, I'm not making any bets at all on any election outcomes. However, you can(*) if that's your thing, for example via the Iowa Electronic Markets.

(*) Or cannot. Please refer to Singapore's Remote Gambling Act.
The debate was hard to watch

Makes me shudder to think about it.
newjersey likes this.
celtosaxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2020, 09:46 AM   #2832
Arch-Supremacy Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 13,006
Goldman Sachs agrees with Moody’s: a Democratic sweep would boost the profits of U.S. S&P 500 companies. Some other factors — availability, effectiveness, distribution, and uptake of a COVID-19 vaccine, for example — are more consequential in terms of corporate profits. But Democratic control of the executive and legislative branches would be helpful, they say.

Relatedly, Goldman Sachs forecasts a slightly weaker U.S. dollar if there were a Democratic sweep. A weaker U.S. dollar tends to boost U.S. exports, in particular. From the perspective here a weaker U.S. dollar would be nice in terms of your online shopping from the U.S. (and your post-COVID-19 travel to the U.S. and other U.S. dollarized countries), and it might cause a little upward pressure on interest rates, eventually. Higher interest rates are good if you have fixed deposits and the like, not great if you’re a borrower.

Goldman Sachs forecasters think we might see a short-lived dip in U.S. stock markets if there’s a Democratic sweep. Their interpretation is that that would be a buying opportunity for market timers.

We should know about 6 weeks from now what the basic results are if not the details. (Congressional composition details might take a little longer.) Election Day itself is November 3 (U.S. timezones, all the way out to Hawaii and Alaska — Alaska is fairly competitive this year), but that’s only the last day of voting. Voting has already started, and postal mail ballots in many places can arrive several days after that date and be counted as long as they were sent on or before November 3.

If you happen to be a U.S. citizen who is or will be at least 18 years old on November 3, 2020, then there’s time to vote in the U.S. election (at least for federal offices) if you act now. To vote from overseas fill out an emergency ballot (called a “FWAB”) — follow the instructions — and send it into the election office serving your most recent place of U.S. residence (or, if you never lived in the U.S., based on your citizen-parent’s most recent U.S. residence; most states allow that). If you haven’t registered to vote in that jurisdiction in 2020 then you’ll also need to fill in a “FPCA” and send that in, too. You can visit Votefromabroad.org for solid help. Do it right now; don’t wait. Singpost airmail costs a mere S$1.40 for a stamp (which you can get from any post office or SAM kiosk), or maybe a bit more depending on what you need to mail — if it’s a piece of mail >20g or oversized.
BBCWatcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2020, 12:00 PM   #2833
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Posts: 612
Note in the article where is says - “its predictions were in stark contrast to what’s expected by most market participants”

Goldman has a poor record forecasting things... just back in March, they said the bottom would not be reached until July.

One thing we can be sure of is that raising corporate tax rates from 21% to 28% will negatively impact corporate earnings, which is the fundamental thing driving stock prices.

Nevertheless, whoever ends up as president, I don’t see it being that consequential. Often the best situation is when opposite parties control the executive & legislative branches, so neither side can push their agenda through. After all, we have the best government that money can buy.
celtosaxon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2020, 05:05 PM   #2834
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 182
Hi BBCWatcher,

I am enrolled in the CareShield Life w.e.f 1 Oct 2020. Saw that NTUC launched their Care Secure rider to supplement the Care Shield life coverage.

What are your thoughts on it?Thank you.
ChinoGirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-10-2020, 06:15 PM   #2835
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 182
I’m also on GE PayAssure, with a 180 day waiting period. Premium is $107/month with a monthly benefit of $3600 plus. I took it up last Dec.

Just wondering if there would be overlaps in coverage?
ChinoGirl is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply
Important Forum Advisory Note
This forum is moderated by volunteer moderators who will react only to members' feedback on posts. Moderators are not employees or representatives of HWZ. Forum members and moderators are responsible for their own posts.

Please refer to our Terms of Service for more information.


Thread Tools

Posting Rules

Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On