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Tax Refund Status
IRS News on Identity Theft & Scams
Second Best Investment (August,
companies offer 401(k) or similar retirement plans
to their employees, and an employer match might
be available. If that's the case, you should contribute
to the plan at least enough to get the full match.
IRA Money to Buy a Business Can Be Dangerous
owners may need capital to support growth, and
the money in their IRA can be tempting: Nevertheless,
the pitfalls can be steep, as illustrated in a
recent Tax Court case.
True Cost of Higher Education
College Board reports that full-time students at
private institutions typically paid almost $44,000
for tuition, fees, room and board during the 2015-2016
academic year. That's the average, so costs at some
private colleges and universities were well over
$50,000 per year. Higher education at public schools
was much less expensive, but in-state students still
spent nearly $20,000 for tuition, fees, room and
board, on average.
Can Be Plain or Fancy (July,
virtually nowhere, exchange-traded products have
grown to over $3 trillion in assets. A small portion
of these products are exchange- traded notes (ETNs),
but most are exchange-traded funds (ETFs): typically,
pools of securities that trade like stocks.
the New Federal Fiduciary Rule Means to Investors
April, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) made
headlines with its final rule covering conflicts
of interest among investment advisers. Media coverage
focused on the difference between a ""fiduciary"
standard andi a "suitability standard. Financial
advisors and investment firms have been debating
this issue-often heatedly-for years, and the DOL
action probably will bring about changes within
Planning Versus Succession Planning
owners should have an exit strategy: a plan for
the time when they're either unwilling or unable
to keep running their company. Often, that planning
can include a current disaster plan for relatively
young business owners and a future long- term
succession plan for a smooth path to retirement.
The tax code includes Section 179,
which permits first-year deduction (expensing)
of amounts spent for business equipment. This
provision formerly allowed annual deductions up
to $25,000. After $200,000 of equipment outlays,
the allowance phased out, dollar-for-dollar.
for Today's Pensions
observers have commented that few private sector
workers can look forward to pensions after retirement.
The traditional pension, a lifelong stream of
income to a retiree and perhaps a surviving spouse,
is becoming a rarity for those who are not long-term
Insurance and Divorce
through a divorce can be a stressful experience,
and some items may be overlooked. Nevertheless,
if you are in this situation you should be sure
to pay some attention to future health insurance.
Medical bills and health insurance premiums can
be extremely expensive; any lapse in coverage
might lead to a financial crisis.
Corporation or LLC?
business owners structure their companies as S
corporations or limited liability companies (LLCs).
On the surface there are several similarities.
Both types of entities avoid corporate income
tax. Instead, business income is taxed only once,
on the tax return of the S corporation shareholder
or the LLC member.