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A&A

AICPA National Conference on Current SEC & PCAOB Developments

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is holding its 33rd annual National Conference on Current Securities and Exchange (SEC) and Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) Developments this week. The conference is being held at the Marriott Wardman Park located at 2660 Woodley Road, NW, Washington, DC. The conference will conclude Wednesday, December 7, 2005. The AICPA’s new Chair, Leslie Murphy, opened the conference. Murphy said, “Reliable and transparent financial reporting is fundamental to the well-being of our capital markets.
A&A

Microsoft Yields: Will Adopt Open Document Formats

In an apparent effort to respond to Massachusetts’ Governor Mitt Romney’s plan to adopt a so-called OpenDocument format for storing state documents by 2007, a move that could eventually cause the state to remove Microsoft’s Office software from its computers, Microsoft announced in November that it would submit its Office Open XML (XML) to the standards body Ecma International, at their December meeting, the Associated Press (AP) reports.
A&A

Diverse December Celebrations

The holiday season often sparks employee creativity, especially when it comes to decorating their space, and community space, with the signs of the season.
Practice Management

Why Every Business Needs a Cafeteria…Plan, That Is

They’ve been called one of the most under-used employee benefits for small businesses. Not only do they allow employees to set aside a portion of their pre-tax salary for qualifying insurance premiums, medical expenses and even child-care expenses, they also reduce employer payroll tax liability by eliminating matching FICA taxes of 7.65 percent and, depending on the state the business is operating in, possibly also workers compensation. What are they?
A&A

High Deductible Health Care Plans Off to Slow Start with Small Businesses

Health care plans with high deductibles that can offer Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) grew only 2 percent among small businesses this year, according to a survey by Mercer Health and Benefits consultants reported on by USA Today. The high deductible plans are more popular among employers of more than 20,000, 22 percent of whom will offer some form of the plan this year.
Practice Management

QuickBooks: New Solutions for Small & Mid-Market Firms

QuickBooks 2006, which hit the shelves last week, is being called the most significant update to the nation’s leading small business management software so far. Along with a new, easier to use interface, a redesigned QuickBooks Solutions Marketplace and other features, QuickBooks 2006 users will find the support experience to be easier and more efficient.
A&A

FASB to Review Proposed Fair Value Reporting of GICs

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) will meet Tuesday to consider the proposed FASB Staff Position (FSP) Reporting of Fully Benefit-Responsive Investment contracts Held by Certain Investment Companies Subject to the AICPA Investment Guide, issued on August 15th.
Community News

Job Losses in Cities Mounting But Accounting Firms Prosper

Federal programs sponsored by both the Clinton and Bush administrations over a period of years have failed to stop the loss of jobs in the nation’s cities, according to a Harvard University study reported by the Associated Press. Nearly half of the country’s 82 largest municipalities lost jobs from 1995 to 2003 in comparison with surrounding metropolitan areas, only one of which lost jobs.Michael Porter, the Harvard business professor who conducted the study said “It’s sobering. . . .
A&A

Marketworks Helps Prevent Overselling

One of the most frustrating holiday experiences is finding the perfect gift for someone only to be told it can’t be delivered until after Christmas. It can be particularly annoying when shopping online, where customers may find themselves going through the entire sales process only to discover their purchase is out of stock. Marketworks is a software solution that not only helps online retailers prevent overselling, but also assists with many back-office functions and marketing activities.Marketworks prevents overselling by tracking inventory.
A&A

Stock Option Expensing Coming in 2006

American companies with fiscal years ending December 31, 2005 will start expensing their stock options in 2006. This newly required reporting is expected to drop company net income figures noticeably. The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has been working to require American public companies to account for the impact of stock options in their financial statements since 1993, according to Business Journalism.
A&A

Tip Time: Giving to Those Who Do For Us

Cash is the best way to say “Happy Holidays” to those whose job it is to make others lives easier, experts and recipients told CNN.“You tip the people who perform services for you year-round, who are there for you when you need them and whom you have a valuable relationship with,” Peter Post, director of the Emily Post Institute and author of Essential Manners for Couples told CNN.In addition to the cash, Hilka Klinckerg, founder of Etiquette International, suggests including a short note of thanks and giving the tip in person whenever possible, CNN reports.
A&A

Remembering the Customer During the Holidays

In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it can be easy to lose sight of what matters the most in business: the Customer. Without customers, or clients, or patients, or subscribers or whatever label you want to give the people who purchase your services or products, you wouldn’t have a business.
A&A

So-So-So: Flat Start to Holiday Shopping Season

The holiday shopping season officially began at midnight Friday morning. Early signs were encouraging as crowds gathered to take advantage of huge sales and deeply discounted prices designed to lure in shoppers. The plan may have not have worked as intended, however. Shoppers came, but spending on Friday was virtually unchanged from the previous year, according to ShopperTrack RCT Corp. which tracks total sales at more than 45,000 retail outlets.The ShopperTrack data indicates total sales dropped 0.9 percent to $8 billion from a year ago.
A&A

Florida CPAs Working with FEMA

"It’s human instinct. We see people in need, especially those affected by natural disaster, and we want to help,” says Tom Limroth, partner, Donovan and Limroth CPAs, PA in Seminole, Florida and a Florida Institutes of Certified Public Accountants (FICPA) disaster recovery volunteer. “There are times when you want to do more than write a check.
Community News

Talking Turkey About Employer Gifts

For many businesses, holiday gifts are a tradition. As with most gifts, some prefer tangible items, like turkeys or hams, other prefer things that can be used in the office, such as mouse pads, books or pens, while still others prefer cash because it is more versatile.
Technology

Simplify Tax Payments with Treasury’s EFTPS

Do your clients make tax payments? If so, the U.S. Department of the Treasury wants to talk to you about the benefits of paying taxes electronically.Simplify is a national campaign launched to communicate to tax professionals and small businesses the benefits of paying taxes electronically using the Electronic Federal Tax Payment (EFTPS).
A&A

The Transformation of Microphilanthropy and Microfinancing

Microphilathropy and microfinancing are ideas with similar social missions: allowing people to uplift themselves. The Dalai Lama has said that wealth should be viewed as an ability to give. More directed social and personal impacts are the goal. Both initiatives will require the development of more efficient ways of distribution and communication to reach more people. Microfinancing involves making business loans to people that are too poor to qualify for normal-sized loans. Traditional banks have ignored microfinancing loan amounts of $500 or less.
Technology

A Big Day for Small Businesses Thanks to NetSuite

NetSuite Inc., a leader in e-commerce solutions for small and mid-sized businesses, made three announcements on Thursday that will help online retailers make the most of the upcoming holiday season. The announcements included integrating PayPal, adding new UPS shipping capabilities and solving e-commerce mysteries for small and mid-sized businesses.PayPal Integration The NetSuite Paypal integration provides seamless end-to-end online transactions with real-time visibility and no monthly fees.
A&A

Consumers Demanding Convenience of Online Bill Payments

The main criteria for choosing a bank used to be its proximity to home. Now customers are looking carefully at the quality of a bank's online bill-paying service before they choose.“Paying bills online is in the mainstream, and for the first time online banking and bill pay has moved into the top three factors considered by consumers when choosing a bank," said Matt Lewis, executive vice president and general manager of CheckFree's Electronic Commerce Division.
Practice Management

InSite Business Intelligence Software Now Enhances Visibility

PerformanceRetail introduced the latest version of InSite Retail Intelligence Suite at the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) Show in Las Vegas this week.

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