Trends

Managing Company Stock in a 401(k); IRA Rollover vs. Taxable Account

Employees who are approaching retirement or taking advantage of a buyout and who hold company stock in a 401(k) should consider potential tax savings from taking a lump-sum distribution of the stock into a taxable brokerage account rather than rolling it into an IRA, USAToday says. The employee pays tax at the time of the distribution, based on his or her normal tax rate (25 percent or more) on the cost basis in the stock, not on its fair market value.
Community News

Online License Renewal Becoming Available in More States

Alabama, South Carolina and New Mexico have joined the list of states offering accountants the option of renewing their CPA licenses online. New Mexico provided CPAs with registration codes in their license renewal letters that they will need to access the state’s database.

Government in Canada Wants Better Access for Internationally Trained Accountants

Legislation that that will standardize and ensure fairness for the licensing process in Ontario for internationally trained professionals, including accountants, was introduced on June 8 by Mike Colle, the Province’s Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, the Toronto Sun reports.

CFOs Expect More Hiring During Third Quarter

Chief financial officers (CFOs) anticipate increased hiring activity in accounting and finance in the third quarter, according to the most recent Robert Half International Hiring Index.
Education & Careers

Tight Job Market Can Mean Increased Workloads for Accountants

Demand for accountants continues to exceed supply in 2006, and while employers are offering higher salaries and more benefits in an effort to keep their employees, low staffing levels are creating high pressure and resulting in even longer hours for many accountants, Times Argus reports. Finance professionals who feel overworked rose from 42 percent in 2004, to 53 percent this year, according to a survey from CareerBuilder.
Tax

Compromise Unlikely on Estate Tax Repeal

Small business owners, leading supporters of the drive to repeal the federal estate tax, are debating the next step for the proposal since the defeat of the repeal measure in the Senate last Thursday, by a vote of 57 to 41. Ending debate on outright repeal requires 60 votes and compromise measures face opposition from both Democrats and Republicans. Four Democrats joined the Republicans to open debate on repealing the tax. Some small business owners suggest keeping the tax but raising the exempt amounts, USAToday reports.
Community News

Ongoing M&A Market Boom to Spur Due Diligence, Tax Consulting Services

An ongoing strong market for corporate mergers and acquisitions (M&As) should mean continued steady business for CPA firms providing due diligence and related M&A and tax consulting services, according to a report from KPMG.Advertisement
A&A

Succession Plans for Family Owned Businesses

Successful transitions from the first to the second or third generations in family-owned businesses come from identifying the family member who is capable of running the business and then structuring the transition as a business transaction, says Christopher Hirschfeld, Vice President and Managing Director, Goelzer Investment Banking, according to insideindianbusiness.com.The business owner may assume that a child wants to run the business and is capable, but “this assumption needs to be validated well before the owner steps aside,” Hirschfeld says.
A&A

FASB Launches Review of Accounting for Leases

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has begun reviewing its guidance on one of the most complex areas of off-balance sheet reporting, accounting for leases, Chairman Robert Herz told Forbes. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had requested that FASB review off-balance sheet arrangements, special purpose entities and related issues in a staff report issued in June 2005.
Tax

White Collar Crime Prosecutions Down; ID Theft Crimes Up

A case-by-case analysis released by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), a nonpartisan research organization, shows that prosecution of white collar crime cases by the Department of Justice (DOJ) in U.S. District Courts has declined by 31.3 percent from levels reported in 2001.

Celebrating World Ocean Day by Looking at Ocean Economics

“[W]e don’t have enough information about the oceans’ impact on our economy,” William M. Daley, Secretary of Commerce said back in 1998. “A complete and accurate assessment of the ocean bounty has never been done, and I think this has been a serious handicap in our decision making over the past number of years. We need such information to make decisions on how to responsibly use our ocean resources. And we need it to protect the marine environment.

Investigation Spreads to Spring-Loading Executive Stock Option Grants

Individuals familiar with the rapidly expanding investigation into executive stock options grants have told Reuters that the practice of spring-loading, or setting a grant date and exercise price to occur shortly before the release of positive corporate news, is being scrutinized along with the practice of backdating.Advertisement
Tax

Has Enron Made Companies More Ethical?

There has been a dramatic five-year increase in how employees perceive their company’s ethics, according to a new national business ethics survey from global employee research and consulting firm ISR.Advertisement

Financial Reporting; Cost Burdens Expected to Grow with New Accounting & Tax Rules

Public and private companies of all sizes expect to face a heavier burden in reporting their tax liabilities, both to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and to their shareholders, according to a Grant Thornton LLP survey of senior financial executives.
Education & Careers

Schools Expand Accounting Programs; Add New Courses

Job prospects remain bright for accounting graduates and the number of students enrolled in accounting programs continues to grow in some areas of the country.

SEC Calls for Greater Disclosure of Executive Pay, Probes Options Dating

With companies now required under FAS 123 to disclose the value of stock option grants on their income statements for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2005, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and members of Congress are pressing for more detailed disclosure of total executive compensation.
Education & Careers

Fewer Plans to Hire Leaves Accounting Professionals Feeling Less Confident

The Hudson Employment Index™ for Accounting and Finance workers declined 3.6 points, to 107.2 in May.
A&A

Quality of Life Tips Relocation Scales

Successfully recruiting top executives from another city or region of the country requires more than just a great job offer. According to a recent survey by Robert Half, 31 percent of chief financial officers say that the quality of life in a new city would influence their decision to relocate for a job opportunity.
Education & Careers

Majority of employers report offering full-time positions to interns

In an online poll of interns, CareerExposure.com found that 94 percent of employers offered full-time positions within the organization to interns upon completion of their internship."Internships are the ideal interview tool," JillXan Donnelly, president of CareerExposure.com, said in a prepared statement announcing the poll results. "Employers have the opportunity to evaluate potential new hires and determine if the candidate is a good fit for the organization.
Tax

Survey Shows Fear of SOX Keeps Accounting Functions in U.S.

Companies are looking first to automation before moving their finance functions offshore, even as manufacturing and customer-service jobs are sent overseas.Advertisement

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