Economy

A&A

Merchant cash advances are increasingly popular among business owners

As small business owners scramble to secure the working capital they need to maintain smooth business operations and banks continue to reject more lending applications than ever, business owners are choosing new alternative financing options. Among the most popular of these options are merchant cash advances, also known as MCAs. A simple concept, merchant cash advances are cash advances based on a percentage of future credit card receivables which provide immediate working cash for businesses. Upon approval, the merchant cash advance is electronically wired to the recipient's bank account.

Financial worries keep adults from making life decisions

Four in 10 American adults -- 41 percent -- are holding off on major life decisions either because they are financially strapped or worried about the U.S. economy, according to a poll conducted by Harris Interactive for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. The decisions include home ownership, higher education, marriage, children, medical procedures, and retirement.This represents an 11 percentage-point increase from a year ago, when 30 percent of U.S.
Tax

Tax Freedom Day arrives early in 2008

The annual announcement from the Tax Foundation tells us how many days we have to work each year in order to pay federal taxes. Tax Freedom Day 2008 will fall on April 23, three days earlier than 2007's Tax Freedom Day, which fell on April 26.Stimulus rebates and a projection of slow growth in 2008 are the principal reasons for the earlier celebration, according to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation.Tax Freedom Day is calculated by dividing the official government tally of all taxes collected in each year by the official government tally of all income earned in each year.

Confused about Bear Stearns? The SEC answers your questions

The staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission issued the following answers to frequently asked questions from investors regarding The Bear Stearns Companies, Inc. (Bear Stearns).* * *What protects customer funds and securities at broker-dealers?Bear Stearns' corporate structure includes several broker-dealers registered with the SEC.
Community News

Fed’s action in Bear Stearns's near collapse could signal new phase in credit crunch

The Federal Reserve agreeing to sell Bear Stearns Cos. to JPMorgan Chase & Co. for about $250 million and to fund $30 billion of Bear Stearns's assets that would be difficult to sell quickly, signals an unnerving new phase into the protracted credit crunch, according to a Los Angeles Times editorial.“No longer is the Fed simply pumping money into the economy to promote lending.

Private sector employment shows decline in February

According to the latest ADP National Employment Report SM, private sector employment declined by 23,000 in February. The ADP National Employment Report, created by ADP ® Employer Services, a division of Automatic Data Processing, Inc.

Many middle market companies have global expansion plans

Overseas markets are proving fruitful for middle market companies and, facing a declining U.S. economy, many are intending to expand globally, according to a survey by KPMG LLP, the U.S. audit, tax and advisory firm.
A&A

Bracing a business for recession

Economic indicators may point toward difficult times, but effective asset management can help strengthen a business quickly. By Marcus Scholes Economic forecasts are increasingly pointing toward recession, a prospect not missed by executive management teams and the boards of many private and public entities who are exploring ways to proactively strengthen their financial positions so that their businesses may ride out the economic downturn. As a part of a broader fiscal strategy, the move to more accurate and effective asset management can be invigorating to a bu

Economy looks bleak to CEOs of fasting growing companies

Optimism in the U.S. economy among CEOs of the nation's fastest-growing private companies has fallen nearly 59 percent in the last year to 29 percent, hitting its lowest point in the 16 years since PricewaterhouseCoopers launched its Trendsetter Barometer. Optimism in the global economy has also fallen but at a much slower pace, dropping to 55 percent in 4Q07 from 73 percent in 4Q06; while fully seven of ten surveyed CEOs responded they are uncertain or pessimistic about the prospects for the U.S. economy over the next 12 months.
Education & Careers

Financial security is most important issue to Gen Y

What career issues keep Generation Y professionals awake at night? When asked to name their chief career concern, one-third (33 percent) of Gen Y workers polled cited compensation and benefits issues. The second most common response was finding and keeping a job, provided by 26 percent of those surveyed; career satisfaction ranked third, named by 23 percent of respondents.The survey, commissioned by Robert Half International and Yahoo!

CPAs pessimistic about economic outlook

Expectations for the U.S. economy turned sharply negative among senior-level executive CPAs as the outlook for finance, real estate, and retail trade declined in the first quarter, according to the latest Business and Industry Economic Outlook Survey of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the University of North Carolina's Kenan-Flagler Business School.For the first time since the AICPA survey began in December 2005, pessimists outnumbered optimists and did so by nearly a five-to-one margin. The economy emerged as the top issue facing lawmakers and U.S.

NYC CPA firm offers 10 "Smart moves" for a tightening economy

As the economy tightens, making smart money moves and avoiding tax and other financial pitfalls become more important.
Tax

Congress passes stimulus bill, including tax rebate

On Thursday, the House of Representatives passed an economic stimulus bill designed to stave off a recession. The bill passed 380-34, complementing the Senate vote of 81-16 earlier in the day. President Bush has indicated he expects to sign the bill into law next week.For the general public, the highlight of the bill is a tax rebate program that will provide individual taxpayers with a $600 rebate and joint filers with a $1,200 rebate this May. Additional rebates will be issued in the amount of $300 per child.
Tax

Survey results: Americans unsure how they will spend rebate checks

American consumers may not be as all-consuming as politicians are hoping for when it comes to jump-starting the economy through a broad-based tax rebate, according to findings from a nationwide CCH CompleteTax survey. "While it may be in the overall economy's best interest for individuals to go out and buy more, when you ask the average person what they would do, they're more focused on their financial well-being than on the health of the economy," said David Bergstein, CPA, a tax analyst for CCH CompleteTax. The survey of 2,020 U.S.
Tax

Tax relief aimed at easing sub-prime mortgage mess

Amid daily headlines of a worsening housing crisis, debt-burdened homeowners are looking to two pieces of congressional action that could ease the pain.Monday's headlines stated that new home sales fell by 26 percent last year, which is the biggest drop since 1963, the U.S. Department of Commerce says. And last week's headlines said sales of previously owned single-family homes took a dive - the biggest annual drop in 25 years.

A holiday gift idea from Virginia CPAs: Money-minded toys

The Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA) recently donated 100 piggy banks to Toys for Tots, teaching children to use money, make change, and accrue savings this holiday season. If you'd like the lessons your children's toys teach to last longer than the batteries, Virginia CPAs recommend giving gifts that teach financial concepts.In addition to the piggy banks donation, VSCPA chapters statewide participated in a toy drive to collect money-minded toys.

Millions of new jobs will be created in green economy

A new United Nations Environment Programme report indicates that a job boom resulting from the transition to a global low-carbon economy is already underway, and millions of new jobs will be created as the world goes green.The UNEP is the voice for environment in the United Nations.

Debt management a factor among consumers this holiday season

This year Americans are strategic about planning their holiday spending and taking real steps to prevent long-term debt. Surprisingly, more than half of consumers are using cash, and/or debit cards for this seasons' shopping and an overwhelming 78 percent are prepared to pay off their holiday debt within three months, according to a survey commissioned by The Financial Services Roundtable.Consumers are also taking personal responsibility for their finances.
Community News

Friday news briefs...

Herewith, a summary of some of the interesting news items that came across the desk at AccountingWEB this week...43 percent of CFOs do not want to be promoted to CEO In a national survey of chief financial officers and senior comptrollers conducted by Grant Thornton LLP, 43 percent of CFOs do not want to be chief executive officer of a company one day.

Correction expected in real estate market

More than 600 of the nation's leading real estate experts expect the sizzling commercial real estate market in the U.S. to slow in 2008, with a healthy correction that will likely bypass long-term investors but penalize late-to-the-game speculators and overleveraged buyers, according to the annual Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2008 report, released by the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP.According to the report, real estate investors and developers believe uncertainty will characterize 2008.

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