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Vest Strengthens Financial Services Offerings

This week, Dallas-based financial services giant H.D. Vest announced a new alliance with in an effort to continue building its portfolio of offerings to clients and customers.Customers can log on to the mortgage site through the regular Vest Web site.

Powerful PowerPoint Presentations Made Easy

Run, don’t walk to your computer to blast your boring PowerPoint presentations out of the way. If you are bored by the same old designs, imagine how your audience feels. Today’s professionals see lots of presentations and it’s not hard to spot a Microsoft template, if you know what I mean.Animate it. Bring your charts to life by animating them. To animate an existing chart, select it and choose Slide Show, then Custom Animation.
Community News

Y2K Impact Big, Reports KPMG

Now that the hubbub about the Y2K bug is behind us, firms are analyzing the impact the millinneum bug had on companies, Web sites and the world.KPMG recently issued their own report regarding how extensive the Y2K was, and reports that it did cause havoc on many areas, including nuclear plants, millitary satellites, some hospital equipment and even traffic lights.What's the meaning of this for the future (forget the past!): on one hand, experts say that most of us should have paid more attention to life-threatening mishaps, like nuclear power plants.

ABA Debates Lawyer/CPA Alliances

The American Bar Association, during their annual meeting in Dallas, a href="">debated the pros and cons of allowing lawyers to merge with accountants and other business professionals.During the six-day meeting, much of the agenda was taken up with this topic, which has been in the news over the past year with the ventures of several Big 5 accounting firms to offer legal services.However, a resolution was not reached, and the ABA expects no resolution before August, at the earliest.

Our 10,000th Subscriber!

Just seven months into the expansion of AccountingWEB, and we've just reached our 10,000th subscriber! Thanks everyone. On to 20,000 . . .

Writing Winning Proposals - With Bob Kantin

Bob KantinSalesProposals.comMichael Platt: Welcome everyone to today's workshop. The session will be interactive, in that you can offer your questions at any time.We are pleased to have with us today Bob Kantin, President of SalesProposals.comBob Kantin is founder and president of, a firm devoted to making a significant impact on the sales of its clients by improving the sales proposal process.

New In Financial Planning: CCH Solutions for Financial Planning Provides Expert Insight, Practice Tools on the Internet

New In Financial PlanningCCH SOLUTIONS FOR FINANCIAL PLANNING PROVIDES EXPERT INSIGHT, PRACTICE TOOLS ON THE INTERNETExpert Guidance for New, Experienced Professional Planners(RIVERWOODS, ILL., February 9, 2000) Financial planners, accountants, attorneys and other professionals who wish to expand into or bring greater depth to their financial planning practices now have an authoritative Internet resource for a theoretical grounding in the field, as well as real-world insights and practice tools.

Bob Kantin

Bob Kantin is founder and president of, a firm devoted to making a significant impact on the sales of its clients by improving the sales proposal process. Bob has extensive experience and consults in the areas of proposal design and sales process integration, marketing, and new product development. In 1991, he co-authored Quality Selling through Quality Proposals (11,000+ copies sold). Bob’s second book, Strategic Proposals, Closing the Big Deal, recently hit the shelves.

Company Chief Resigns Due to Audit Findings

The head and two other executives with JDN Realty in Atlanta resigned their positions on Monday as a result of the findings of the Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) and almost five years' of accounting faults.The REIT discovered that certain transactions were not properly recorded from 1994 to 1998. As a result of the resignations of J. Donald Nichols (CEO), Jeb Hughes and C.

Block Combines Real Estate Companies

H&R Block has taken the retail operations of the two real estate companies it owns and given them a new name, H&R Block Mortgage Corporation. The two companies were Option One Mortgage Corporation and Assurance Mortgage Corporation.The new company, based in Burlington, MA, marks another move by the tax preparing giant to capture more of the financial services marketplace. Recently, Block opened its newest venture, a complete financial services center, in major cities.H&R Block Mortgage is licensed to operated in 48 states.

Free Daily Computer Software Tips

When it comes to getting tips that you can really use, look no further. ZD Journals has a tip page just for you! Simply, click on this article’s link and daily tips will fill your e-mail in box within 24 hours. All you have to do is complete a quick online registration and it’s free. It just doesn’t get any simpler!Word processing packages supported by this freebie include: Corel WordPerfect and Microsoft Word.

Death Benefits Excluded

Death benefits, accidental death benefits, burial benefits, and death benefits payable from an employee welfare benefit plan to a retiree on a spouse's death constitute excludable insurance contract benefits according to the IRS’ PLR 200002030. This determination was made when an issue involving an employee who received benefits under a collective bargaining agreement from an employer-established welfare benefit plan arose.

EY Reports Status of Online Valentine Purchases

Flowers, fragrances, jewelry and electronic well-wishes are among the gifts that will be bought on Valentines Day, according to a new survey by Ernst & Young.The Big 5 firm found that about 1/3 of online shoppers will shop the Internet for their purchases this year, and that 38 percent had bought flowers and cosmetics for other occasions on online, while 29 percent had previously purchased flowers.The survey also found that of online shoppers, the majority of buyers will be married men.

Auto Write-Offs: Bigger is Better

Tax season is the time of year when clients invariably try to take as many deductions as possible--within the extent of the law. One area commonly overlooked, especially for self-employed individuals, is the allowable deductions for a car.Brushing up on the rules will benefit your client (and perhaps you, too!).Naturally, if a car is used primarily for business, the IRS allows taxpayers to deduct a maximum $3,060 each year. But now that cars cost more, and more of us yearn for a luxury car--even a gigantic SUV--how does the car depreciate over time?Slowly, for sure.

ADP Sweetens Accountants Deal?

ADP has unveiled its new Accountant Advantage program as a way to market its services to CPAs and accounting professionals whose small business clients could benefits from ADP services.ADP services are not new to the marketplace, so what's in it for the CPA?If a client works with ADP and the referral can be traced back to the professional, then the CPA earns "rewards" toward online continuing education credits, as well as access to what ADP calls "other educational and business growth opportunities."ADP is keeping the rest of the rewards vague, but does indicate that it will provide i

Pooling Issue Heats Up

Pooling is supposed to be a thing of the past next year, but accounting professionals from various industries are gathering around the issue. Professionals from companies such as PricewaterhouseCoopers and General Electric talked to the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) last Thursday to make a plea for pooling-of-interests accounting.Although FASB is willing to listen to corporations, the organization remains unimpressed with current suggestions.

Self-employed health insurance deduction on the rise

How much of my health insurance premium can I deduct and how does the deduction work? I am self-employed and I understand only some of the premium can be deducted as a business expense. Does the rest count as an itemized deduction? L.G., Muncie Congress has been fooling with the deduction for health insurance premiums for the self-employed for a long time. Last year's sweeping changes to the tax laws affected the rules in this area once again.

After 3 years, go ahead and clean out those files

I've been trying to find some extra space in my house lately, so this seems like a good time to think about which tax records I can safely dispose of and which ones I ought to keep around in case the IRS wants to ask me some questions about my tax returns. At a minimum, I've always been told to save everything for three years. That statement sounds innocuous enough, but what constitutes "everything" and when do I start counting to determine "three years?"

Hobby costs are miscellaneous expenses on 1040

I design and create porcelain dolls. I make the dolls from scratch, pouring the porcelain into molds I have made, I sew their clothes and make their shoes from little pieces of leather. Everything is first quality. My dolls have won awards, and I have displayed them at shows across the country. Because I'm actively engaged in the business of making dolls and am established, I assume my costs are tax-deductible. Does the information about my doll business go on a Schedule C or is it considered miscellaneous itemized deductions?

Several options available when selling shares

When selling shares from a mutual fund, how do I know which shares have been sold, and how do I determine the cost of the shares in order to compute my tax on the sale? G.J., Indianapolis It's up to you, which shares you sell from a fund, and you have control over the costing method as well.


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