A&A news

A&A

Dos and Don'ts for Releasing Records of Deadbeat Clients

A slow economy means slow-paying clients and increased client turnover. This can add up to tough ethical questions for accountants who prepare tax returns. One especially tough dilemma arises when a former client, who hasn't paid his bill, demands that copies of all his records be provided to his new accountant. What would you do in that situation?Do adhere to AICPA Professional Standards, ET section 501.
A&A

Business-Owned Life Insurance is Topic of Latest GAO Report

A recent report out by the Government Accounting Office (GAO) titled BUSINESS-OWNED LIFE INSURANCE - More Data Could Be Useful in Making Tax Policy Decisions looks into the subject of Business Owned Life Insurance. Federal and state regulators, in pursuing their regulatory responsibilities, have collected limited data on the prevalence and use of business-owned life insurance. Federal bank regulators have collected more data than other regulators.
Tax

Stock Options Accounting Legislation Clears House Subcommittee

On Wednesday, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Capital Markets, Insurance, and Government Sponsored Enterprises, chaired by Rep. Richard H. Baker (LA), approved legislation that would preserve broad-based employee stock option plans and improve American competitiveness.H.R. 3574, the Stock Option Accounting Reform Act, introduced by Rep. Baker on Nov. 21, was agreed to by a voice vote with two amendments.
Community News

WorldCom Investors, Enron Employees Win Settlements

Two of the most stunning business collapses of the last few years produced hefty settlements for some of the victims this week.Citigroup, Inc. on Monday agreed to pay $2.65 billion to investors who claim the firm’s brokerage unit pumped up WorldCom despite their knowledge of massive losses at the company. The suit, which sought $54 billion, also alleged that Citigroup's brokerage arm, Salomon Smith Barney, offered big loans to WorldCom’s then-chief executive Bernard Ebbers in a swap for investment banking business.Citigroup, the world's largest bank, denies wrongdoing.
A&A

SEC Files Civil Fraud Charges Against PIMCO

The Securities and Exchange Commission today filed civil fraud charges in federal court against PIMCO Advisors Fund Management LLC (PAFM), PEA Capital LLC (PEA), PIMCO Advisors Distributors LLC (PAD), Stephen J. Treadway, the chief executive officer of PAFM and PAD as well as the chairman of the board of trustees for the PIMCO Funds: Multi-Manager Series, and Kenneth W. Corba, PEA's former CEO, for their defrauding of PIMCO mutual fund investors, in connection with an undisclosed market timing arrangement with Canary Capital Partners LLC.
A&A

Ten Employer-Employee Rules For Successfully Running a Small Business

You've just been in a serious car accident. You've got massive internal injuries and a broken jaw. You're going to be in the hospital at least a month. Your jaw is wired shut so you can't use the phone. Will your business run easily and well while you recover? Will your customers be served while you are gone? If you've just experienced heart failure over this prospect, the following list is for you. The information below, if put into practice, will reduce your stress, increase your business' productivity, and give you the vacation you so richly deserve.
A&A

Vanguard’s Founder Calls For Better Fund Governance, Highlights Nine Emerging Issues

In a speech before the Mutual Fund Regulation and Compliance Conference entitled, "Mutual Funds in the Coming Century ... While We're At It, Let's Build A Better World," John Bogle called on the mutual fund industry to heed the Investment Company Act of 1940, which requires that mutual funds be managed in the interest of the fund shareholders, and not in the interest of their managers. Mr.
A&A

BBB Ranks Top Business Inquiries and Complaints During 2003

The nation's Better Business Bureaus (BBBs) this week reported that services provided to consumers and businesses in 2003 surged to 52.9 million, up 27 percent from the 41.5 million instances of service provided in 2002. Pre-purchase Information: Pre-buying inquiries in the United States increased to 48.8 million in 2003, up nearly 28 percent from 38.2 million in 2002. These requests included 30.8 million BBB reliability reports on businesses located in the U.S.
A&A

FASB Considers Costs to Small Businesses in Stock Option Issue

When final rules are adopted requiring expensing of stock options, small businesses may get different treatment than big corporations, according to the chair of the Financial Accounting Standards Board.At a congressional hearing Tuesday, FASB Chairman Robert Herz defended the board's March recommendation for mandatory expensing, but noted that the board is concerned about a "cost-effective" approach to small businesses.
Tax

House Passes Temporary Alternative Minimum Tax Relief

On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed to extend the Middle-Class Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act through 2005 by a bipartisan vote of 333-89. The Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) is supposed to target the most prosperous of Americans to ensure they pay taxes. Instead, the AMT too often hits middle-income American families because tax rates have not been adjusted for inflation since 1993. This bill expands the standard deductions for the AMT to $40,250 for individuals and $58,000 for married couples.
A&A

Most Americans Don't Have the Right Plan for a Financially Secure Retirement

A Retirement Income Flexibility study commissioned by Golden Retirement Resources, Inc., creator of RetireMentor®, an integrated retirement income planning and management system, found that 64 percent of Americans are trapped by retirement plans that don't allow them to make adequate adjustments to their investments in response to market pressures or life changes.
A&A

Australia, Canada, UK and US Agree to Establish Joint Task Force

Tax Commissioners of Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States have now established a joint task force to increase collaboration and coordinate information about abusive tax transactions by signing a Memorandum of Understanding (inserted below) in Williamsburg, Virginia on April 23, 2004.An initial focus of the work will include the ways in which financial products are used in abusive tax transactions by corporations and individuals to reduce their tax liabilities, and the identification of promoters developing and marketing those products and arrangements.The joint tas
Tax

Some Small Businesses Suffer, Others Profit from Outsourcing

As outsourcing accelerates, it can be the best of times or the worst of times for U.S. small businesses.Take for example Craig Schroer, president of Unitech, a tool and die manufacturer in Lee's Summit, Mo. His company’s revenues were slashed in half almost overnight when his biggest customer, a U.S. truckmaker, decided to purchase cheaper parts from a Chinese manufacturer. "One month they were talking to us about doubling their orders," said Schroer, who until recently employed 16 workers and enjoyed annual sales of $2 million.
Community News

The Value of Trust, A Client's Perspective

By, Joe Heller, The Strategy SamuraiOne of the most challenging, if not the most difficult piece of the business development puzzle in a sale is - Trust. Trust today is truly the pivotal point of building a successful business relationship. Trust is rarely tied to a product or service but it is facilitated by the person interacting with the customer. Why is this important? Because everything depends on trust and in this day and age, trust is difficult to come by.
A&A

Women-Owned Businesses Growing Twice National Average

Nearly half of all privately held firms in the U.S. -- 10.6 million -- are owned 50 percent or more by women, says a new Center for Women's Business Research study sponsored by Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC). According to the study, "Women-Owned Businesses in 2004," between 1997 and 2004 the number of women-owned firms with employees were estimated to grow over 28 percent, nearly three times the rate of all privately held firms, and twice the national rate of all firms.
A&A

CCH Employment Law Briefing Analyzes Overtime Rules

The Department of Labor has issued a far-reaching revision of the basic rules on who does and who doesn’t qualify for overtime pay under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), the federal wage-hour law, but has stepped back from an earlier, more fundamental reworking of the law, according to CCH INCORPORATED, a leading provider of human resources and employment law information. The proposed changes are expected to cost employers approximately $700 million to implement, but then produce savings of more than $1 billion annually.
Community News

Pension Crisis Prompting Changes to Company Retirement Plans

More than half (52 percent) of 125 companies polled are considering changes or already have made changes to their pension plans in the past year, according to a survey by Deloitte Consulting LLP.Buffeted by increased costs due to falling interest rates and investment returns and by continued pressure from financial analysts to limit future risk, more companies are opting to move away from defined benefit plans. Among those respondents that have changed their plans, the single most common shift (among 38 percent) was freezing their pension plan and moving to a defined contribution plan.
A&A

IRS Continues Launch of Online Business Tools

With record numbers of Americans e-filing their tax returns and recently announced e-filing options for corporations and tax exempt organizations, the Internal Revenue Service has launched a new online form that gives tax professionals a faster, easier method of applying to become an authorized e-filer.As more and more taxpayers ask for e-file, tax professionals now have an online application form that cuts processing time and reduces errors associated with using the paper Form 8633, Application to Participate in IRS e-file.
A&A

Google IPO Sparks Excitement among Investors, Wall Streeters

First Google became a verb: Have you goggled today?
A&A

Federal Government Unveils New $50 Bill

Ulysses S. Grant is getting a face-lift. Grant, who has adorned the $50 bill since 1913, will debut with his new look this week in the latest of the bill redesigns done to ward off counterfeiters.Production of the new $50s will begin this summer at the printing plant in Ft. Worth, TX, where the new look was unveiled this week.

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