Category: Tax Issues

Yes, State Taxes Matter

A recent study by the Mercatus Center at George Mason University found that, unsurprisingly, states with higher taxes have lower economic growth, even when controlling for a variety of factors including a state’s population growth, educational attainment, and value of natural resources.  One of the study’s findings?  A one-percent increase in the average tax rate […]

The Camp Tax Reform Plan Is a Good Start With a Few Caveats

Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) unveiled a plan today (executive summary here) to simplify the tax code and reduce income tax rates, from the current seven rates to just two rates:  10 percent and 25 percent.   It also groups personal family exemptions into three categories instead of the usual six:  a larger standard deduction, a larger […]

Retiring Soon? Pay off the House First

In 2011, the first of some 78 million baby boomers began retirement.  By the year 2031, the last year of the boomer generation will reach their full retirement age (67).  Many will consider moving to a less costly, low-tax state in an effort to reduce their living expenses.  However, more than half of those on […]

Major Tax Savings That May Not Be Around Next Year

There are several tax cuts that are set to expire at the end of the year.  While it is not yet known whether they will be extended into tax year 2014 (and it may be months before we know for sure), now is the time to assume their demise and take advantage of them this year.  […]

Tax Recreational Marijuana?

Yes — that is what Colorado is planning to do now after legalizing recreational marijuana last year. Voters approved a proposition to tax marijuana by a wide margin, 64 to 34 percent. The state of Washington also legalized recreational marijuana as well as the cities of Ferndale, Jackson and Lansing in Michigan and Portland in […]

Good News and Bad News on the Home Front

After the housing crisis, are consumers reevaluating the mortgage path?  Report:  Half of All Homes Are Being Purchased With Cash (WSJ) can i get my ex back Or are mortgages simply becoming harder to obtain?  Fannie Could Curb Low-Down-Payment Loan Purchases (WSJ) Meanwhile, the Netherlands is facing its own housing crisis:  The New Dutch Disease: Mortgage Debt (WSJ) zp8497586rq

Ruling on DOMA Highlights the Need for Tax Reform

Today’s Supreme Court ruling on the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) goes beyond traditional arguments on whether or not the federal government should recognize same-sex marriage.  While there are strong and differing opinions on whether the Supreme Court’s decision was the right one, it has shed light on a topic that all can agree […]

Shock from Senators as Large Firm Attempts to Maximize Profits!

“US Senators Accuse Apple of Avoiding Billions in Taxes,” reads the front page headline from the May 21 print edition of the Financial Times (link to online article here).  Before I started reading, I thought perhaps this beloved provider of all that is I-phone was guilty of a Leona Helmsley or Walter Anderson-style case of […]

An Uphill Playing Field for Online Retailers

Just when I thought we could get a break from bad news this week, the Internet sales tax collection bill  reared its ugly head.  It has a way to go before becoming law, but according to the New York Times, a majority in the Senate has voted to take it up for debate and amendment. While […]

How Do We Really Feel About Taxing the Rich?

Last month the National Bureau of Economic Research released a working paper that explored some of the more puzzling disconnects between the harsh realities of U.S. tax progressivity and how the public views fair taxation. Matthew Weinzierl of the Harvard Business School argues that modern tax research is the result of utilitarian assumptions.  This means […]