Daily Money Tip: Rite of spring: Waiting for a K-1

Posted: April 03, 2014

Master limited partnerships are increasingly profitable and popular investments - particularly if you're playing the energy boom in Pennsylvania's backyards. But come tax time, these MLPs can also delay the filing of your returns.

MLPs invest in oil and gas exploration and production, shale drilling, pipelines, and energy transport. Each year, these partnerships issue for investors income statements for tax purposes known as K-1s. But often the statements don't arrive until late March or early April, local financial planners say.

John Nealon, Wilkes-Barre-based northern Pennsylvania regional managing partner at the accounting firm ParenteBeard, says there is widespread confusion among investor clients about who is responsible for finding the K-1s. Nealon often ends up phoning his clients or their brokers repeatedly to find out who has their hands on a K-1 statement.

"Sometimes, my clients will have traded in and out of MLPs over the past year and forgot they even made the trade," he says.

He suggests trying to gather the information from your brokerage statements ahead of time, so you or your accountant can estimate what kind of capital-gains taxes you might have to pay. At times, K-1s arrive in the mail as late as April 14 - the day before the filing deadline - and still the taxpayer has to account for that income and is responsible for including it.

Don't panic if you don't have the K-1s you need - call your broker.

Women and investing

More female baby boomers are entering retirement, and it's important for women to educate themselves on finances, investments, and planning for a post-employment future.

There are plenty of resources to draw upon, including investing clubs such as BetterInvesting.org, networking outfits such as 85 Broads, education groups such as 100 Women in Hedge Funds, and local brokerages, such as Edward Jones in Princeton and AllianceBernstein in Philadelphia, that set up workshops to educate women, in particular.

AllianceBernstein has an event set for April 17 at its offices at 1735 Market St. featuring staffers Maureen Austin, who specializes in educating female investors as part of her advisory practice, and Anne Bucciarelli, a specialist in wealth-management research. They will discuss the psychology of investing and the traps and trends women face in today's challenging markets. For more information, call the firm at 215-430-5657.



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