A&A news February 2006 | AccountingWEB

A&A news February 2006


Study: Northeast Tax Codes Unfriendly to Businesses

A new study pinpoints the Northeastern states as having some of the worst business tax systems in the country.New York has earned the dubious distinction of having the most unfriendly business tax climate in the country.

NetSuite Named Top SMB Business Application Suite

NetSuite, Inc. leads the rankings of on-demand business management software for small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) according to a new study of SMB business suites from Yankee Group.

AICPA Issues New Risk Assessment Standards

Eight new statements, collectively referred to as the Risk Assessment Standards, have been approved by the Auditing Standards Board (ASB) of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). The new Statements on Auditing Standards (SAS), SAS No. 104 through SAS No.

Sole Proprietors Likely to Be Focus of IRS Audits

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released data last week based on random audits of 46,000 tax returns for 2001 that showed a tax gap of about $354 billion a year. IRS Commissioner Mark Everson said, according to Bloomberg.com, that most of the noncompliance occurs in businesses where there isn’t automatic reporting of information to the IRS, such as sole proprietors who report income and deductions on Schedule C.

Growth Predicted for Long-Term Care Market

The market for long-term care (LTC) is expected to grow at an annual rate of 10.5 percent through 2009, with revenues expected to reach $394 billion, according to a new study, The Long Term Care Market: Nursing Homes, Home Care, Hospice Care, and Assisted Living, from Kalorama Information, a division of MarketResearch.com.

Cruise Control vs. Auto Pilot: The Need for Third Party Review of Plan Fiduciary Functions

The recent news on qualified plan governance is replete with violations of ERISA and common law principles. By properly scrutinizing these cases, plan sponsors can learn a valuable lesson in behavior avoidance.A common pattern we often see is the self-perpetuating behavior of sponsors, fiduciaries, administrators and advisors where inertia takes over and decision-making ceases being the product of a prudent process. Everyone is in a comfort zone and, consciously or unconsciously, fiduciary concerns are slighted because we stick with what we know.

FASB Responds to SEC Study

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) last week responded to the Security and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) Off Balance Sheet Report by identifying forces causing complexity and impeding financial transparency, as well as providing an update on the FASB’s activities intended to address complex accounting standards.
Practice Management

Employee Retention Strategies for Busy Season

Professional staffing firms are predicting that 2006 will the best year since 2000 for job seekers, especially in high-paying fields like financial services, and many employers are looking for strategies to keep their best workers.

NSA Testifies Before IRS Oversight Board

Joseph L. Santoro, a member of the National Society of Accountants (NSA), testified before the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Oversight Board last week regarding the customer service needs of taxpayers.

Family Limited Partnerships Being Probed by the IRS

Family limited partnerships (FLPs) are the target of increased scrutiny by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These vehicles are apparently a popular technique for reducing estate and gift taxes. The IRS is increasing the number of audits it performs, focusing on those taxpayers with incomes of $100,000 or greater, according to the Wall Street Journal.The IRS is concerned FLPs are being set up for other than legitimate business purposes. Audit interviews are focusing on how these partnerships are set up and run, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Practice Management

Four Tips for Finding the Right Partner

Break-ups are big news. Less attention is paid to finding the right partner in the first place.

2005 Breaks Records for Private Buyouts

Bankers and economists say this year may be another global record-breaker for private equity deals.Private equity firms struck deals worth $396 billion in 2005, a third straight record year and a 51 percent increase over the year before, the Associated Press reported, citing Thomson Financial. Another record was reached in the amount of money raised by buyout houses in new investment–$261 billion, Private Equity Intelligence of London said.
Community News

Helping Clients Keep Their Financial Resolutions

It’s a new year and many clients start it off right by organizing financial files and “cleaning house.” The benefits of this are twofold: 1) They will gain a clearer idea of their current financial situation, and 2) They can form financial goals for their future.

FASB Issues Final FSP for Cash Settlements on Contingent Events

Last week the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued FASB Staff Position (FSP) No. FAS 123(R)-4:Classification of Options and Similar Instruments Issued as Employee Compensation That Allow for Cash Settlement upon the Occurrence of a Contingent Event. The guidance in this FSP amends paragraphs 32 and A229 of FASB Statement No.

Super Bowl Awash in Money

The game that is the Super Bowl has become a cash cow unrivaled in American sports.In fact, its ability to generate revenue, on several levels, is as sure as the hands of Shaun Alexander, the Seattle Seahawks’ MVP running back who only fumbled the ball five times in 370 chances this season.From the network airing the game, to the city hosting it, to the National Football League itself, the Super Bowl historically produces mind-boggling figures, and this year’s event is shaping up to be no exception.
Community News

Present, Future Looking Good for Accounting Grads & Professionals

Things are looking good for accounting professionals these days. Confidence among accounting and finance workers increased 8.7 points to 112.6 in January, according to the Hudson Employment Index. In addition, results from a survey of chief financial officers (CFOs), conducted by AccountTemps, reveal that today’s accounting graduates are equally or better prepared for their careers than they were ten years ago.
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