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AMT stock option relief rule falls flat

January 29, 2007

CHICAGO — While Congress considers a bill to repeal the alternative minimum tax, accountants still are trying to sort out the most recent change Congress made to the AMT provisions — in the Tax Relief and Health Care Act of 2006, passed in...

Phone customers receiving tax bonanza

January 29, 2007

WASHINGTON — Businesses and self-employed individuals faced with hefty telephone bills in recent years have reason to celebrate tax season this year. The U.S. government is refunding businesses and individuals the excise taxes these entities...

INVESTMENTS IN CANADA: Is it really curtains for income trusts in Canada?

January 22, 2007

OTTAWA — Last fall’s announcement that all income trusts face a 31.5% tax hit in four years and that new ones would be taxed this year sent investors into a panic. The unexpected announcement, made Oct. 31 by Finance Minister Jim Flaherty,...

AMT expected to snare many more in middle class

January 8, 2007

CHICAGO - As Congress considers a bill to repeal the alternative minimum tax, advisers are bracing themselves for the possibility that any changes to the bill that get passed will amount to little more than a Band-Aid. Last Thursday, a bipartisan...

Democrats could move on estate tax

November 27, 2006

CHICAGO - Most advisers say they wish Congress would do something about the estate tax law, because as it stands, it is set to expire in 2010 and then be reinstated in 2011. This makes planning nearly impossible, they say. The estate tax has...

Selling advisers on 529 plans isn't as easy as 1-2-3, it seems

November 13, 2006

VOORHEES, N.J. - By noon on a recent Wednesday, 30 financial planners and advisers had filled up the back room of Coconut Bay Asian Cuisine, a Chinese restaurant in a shopping mall in this Philadelphia suburb. Red lanterns cast a muted light...

Income tax status of municipals questioned

November 6, 2006

IRVINE, Calif. - Several class actions have highlighted the issue of whether municipal bonds all should be treated the same under state income tax schedules. Once the court cases are resolved, some states may decide to tax all bonds; others...

Mutual fund investors may pay $20 billion in taxes this year

October 30, 2006

BOSTON - U.S. mutual fund investors could pay about $20 billion in taxes for this year, in part because capital gains distributions by funds in 2006 are expected to be the third-largest on record, experts say. Unlike most corporations, a mutual...

Congress may look to reduce tax gap with cost basis reporting

October 30, 2006

WASHINGTON - Brokerage firms are worried that legislation that would require them to report securities transaction cost basis information will be difficult to implement, but advisers welcome the idea. It appears increasingly likely that Congress...

Democrats put together 'wish list'

October 16, 2006

WASHINGTON - Eliminating the alternative minimum tax is a top priority for Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., if the Democrats gain control of the House of Representatives next month, and he assumes the chairmanship of the House Ways and Means Committee....

Advisers aren't reaping the advantages of SMA tax efficiency

October 16, 2006

DETROIT - Despite more than a decade of steady growth, the $780 billion separately managed account industry remains saddled with the reality that tax efficiency, one of its strongest selling points, is grossly underutilized. Less than 15% of...

AEGON sued for marketing VAs in retirement plans

September 18, 2006

NEW YORK - Giving clients the ability to defer taxes on a retirement account once is financial planning, but doing it twice for the same account is financial fraud, according to a plaintiff's law firm. Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP...

H&R Block adviser unit landing big producers

September 18, 2006

SAN FRANCISCO - H&R Block Financial Advisors Inc. is beginning to recruit high-producing, experienced stockbrokers from wirehouses and other national companies. Two weeks ago, the Detroit-based subsidiary of Kansas City, Mo.-based tax return...

New federal law makes it easier to fund IRAs

September 11, 2006

CHICAGO - A new federal law opens the door for financial advisers to encourage clients to save more money for retirement. A little-known provision of the Pension Protection Act of 2006, which President Bush signed into law last month, allows...

IRS cutback may mean fewer estate tax audits

August 21, 2006

CHICAGO - Some financial planners and tax lawyers may change the advice they give on estate tax issues to high-net-worth clients now that the Internal Revenue Service is reducing the number of agents who enforce the taxes. The Bush administration...

Law targets misuse of donor-advised funds

August 21, 2006

BOSTON - Pension legislation signed by President Bush last week contains provisions aimed at stopping people who experts say cheat American taxpayers and misuse donor-advised funds to raise money for their favorite charity: themselves. The Pension...

No excuses for lack of cost basis information

August 7, 2006

WASHINGTON - Brokerage cost-basis-reporting services should make it feasible for brokerage firms to provide securities cost basis information to their clients and reduce capital gains tax errors, the national taxpayer advocate said. "Burden...

Report raises liability issues for advisers

August 7, 2006

BOSTON - A recent government report criticized financial industry professionals and lawyers for helping U.S. citizens use offshore tax havens to evade up to an estimated $70 billion a year in taxes illegally. According to the report, by the...

Buffet's 'well lawyered' estate plan saves billions

July 24, 2006

Warren E. Buffett's plan to give away $37 billion to charity not only made him one of the most generous philanthropists, it helped him avoid one of the biggest personal tax bills in U.S. history. Mr. Buffett's gift of 12.05 million Berkshire...

As tax parity gains, 529 split widens

July 24, 2006

NEW YORK - As more states approve income tax deductions for residents who enroll in out-of-state Section 529 college savings plans, tax parity has emerged as the most divisive issue facing the 529 industry. This month, Pennsylvania became the...

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