Weekly Digest – February 10, 2023
- I am excited to be writing and posting this week from my AirBnB in Brickell Florida, with a beautiful view of the bridge to Key Biscane; I am here for a special family friend’s wedding…
My daughter Emily is in the weeding party, she and my son-in law Jeff extened their trip and have been down on the West coast for a few days, thank you Jeff for this beautiful sunrset on the beach …
It’s been another busy but fun week, starting with a celebrabtion of Chinese New Year 2023 with a lovey banquet with friends from the Chinese American Society of Certified Public Accountants, needless to say the company was great and the food was amazing…
As I prepared for my pod cast interview with Marielle Segarra host of NPR’s Life Kit which will air later this month (stay tuned for the link and air date) I realized I could repurpose some of our discussion points for the TAX ISSUES/TAX PLANNING section of this and future posts. It was so much fund chatting with Marielle and her producers as we worked on turning a pretty complex topic into high level useful information (no photo yet).
We moved our office huddle to Wednesday morning so I could participate on a pannel presentation for the Suffolk County Women’s Business Enterprise Coalition (SWBEC); “Best Practices for a Successful Business” Thursday morning before flying down to Miami….
It was fun to share horror stories and solutions with Karen Tenenbaum and Moshe Zupnick. The energy and engagement with over 50 amazing business owners was well worth the trip to Suffolk County, hopefully I will be able to connect with them in the future.
I am hoping eveyone has a great weekend planned as well.
WEEKLY TAKE AWAY
If you are asked to present on a panel with a very broad title, look up the organization and the event on line to make sure you meet expectations, then run with it to make sure everyone gets value. My panel partners and I took the opportunity to prepare a poll of the audience, a list of general bullet points and a case study then created a valuable and engaging presentation by weaving best practices and real horror stories with solutions. We were even able to suggest follow-up’s to some attendee issues by reccomending other professionals with specific expertise on the subject. I had a great time, meet wonderful business owners and we now have a presentation we can offer another small business groups.
TAX ISSUES/TAX PLANNING
Time to Start Working With a Tax Professional and How to Vet Yours
Tax time; as we start receiving annual tax documents the focus turns to hopes for meaningful write-off’s and tax credits. Just this week as I was interviewed by Marielle Segarra of NPR for a pod cast (stay tuned and I will share the link once it goes live) we focused on why someone would be best served by working with a tax professional and how to find the right professional for you and your situation.
I feel that once a person starts working they should at least have a consultation with a tax professional, this could lead to immediate tax saving incentives offered by their employer.
In general I reccomend that you seek out a professional tax consultant when you experience or anticipate a major life change:
- new job
- moving to another location (especially a new state)
- make a career change
- get married, divorced or starting a family
- start a business or “side” business
- look to borrow money or take funds from a retirement account
- you were the victim of a casualty (Hurricane Sandy)
- you won money via gambling or the lottery
- you were granted relief from bankruptcy or credit card debt
- you are looking for assistance living within your income and paying off debt
- receive an inheritance (in that case the attorney may be a great referral source)
- purchasing (selling):
- a home or new home
- trading in digital assets
- have foreign investments
- have publically traded investments in pass through entities
You can generalize these suggestions when looking for a professional to work with; for a CPA or licesenced tax professional I recommend that you:
- If you are working with a financial advisor I would ask them for a referral. If you are not working with another professional you can ask your parents, friends or work colleagues for a referral. Ask them what they like and dislike about that professional.
- Look at their website, see what they specialize in, read some blog posts and testimonials
- Call their office and ask for an appointment to find out about their process (we call this a discovery meeting and ask for prior year’s tax return copies first before we book that appointment).
- Ask important questions:
- will they give you tax advice or just assist you with the filing requirements
- will they have an appointment with you to discuss your tax return (will the appointment be via video chat, in person or by telephone or not at all).
- how will you exchange documents- secure portal, mail, email, hand deliver
- confirm that they will represent/support your return if your tax return is pulled for audit
Now, time to start or continue gathering and organizing your tax documents and make that appointment!
Is the U.S. Economy Really Heading for a Recession? Here’s What the Economists Think
While many economists believe the U.S. is headed for a recession, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the unemployment rate remains at 3.5%, the lowest in around 50 years. Economists say the country could be headed to a different type of recession than has been seen in the past.
PayPal is the Latest Tech Company to Announce Mass Layoffs
PayPal announced it will layoff around 2,000 workers, approximately 7% of the company’s workforce, over the next few weeks. The company follows Alphabet, IBM, Microsoft, Spotify, Stripe, and Amazon in announcing major layoffs.
McDonald’s Doubles Down on Restaurant Development
McDonald’s announced plans to open approximately 1,900 restaurants around the world, including more than 400 in the US. This would mark the first time the fast-food giant plans to open new restaurants in the U.S. in more than 8 years, a period in which the company focused on remodeling its restaurants. Other regions that will see new restaurants include Australia, Canada, and Germany.
U.S. Launches Second USMCA Dispute Panel in Dairy Battle with Canada
The United States has launched a dispute panel regarding Canada’s dairy industry, alleging Canada is violating its trade agreement in how it distributes its allotment of dairy tariff rate quotas. The US alleges Canada failed to properly respond to the findings of the first dispute panel, which agreed with the US that Canada allocated too much of its quota allotment to processors instead of producers.
How is the US Economy Doing After COVID-19?
Reports indicate nonfarm employment returned to pre-pandemic levels in August 2022, making the labor market incredibly strong, while the GDP grew 2.1 percent in 2022. Although COVID-19 did affect economic growth, the country has made a swift recovery. The recovery, however, could result in an economic slowdown or recession in 2023.
Global Economic Outlook Slightly ‘Less Gloomy,’ Europe Ekes Out Growth
Rising interest rates and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine are affecting the global economy, which is expected to continue weakening. Economists, however, believe the overall slowdown in growth won’t be as bad as predicted. In October, economists predicted growth of 2.7%, while in January, that figure was revised to 3.3%.
- IRS resources for stimulus payments:
- IRS information about the Advance Child Tax Credit Payments
- The best source for up-to-date and accurate health information is the Center for Disease Control (CDC)
- Our Covid-19 Resource Center with relevant blog posts, videos and prior weekly newsletters
- Payroll, HR and benefits company Gusto has put together An Employer’s Guide to Navigating the Coronavirus
- Accounting Today has a special page for articles on COVID-19
- Intuit QuickBooks has a dedicated page to help small businesses
- Entrepreneur put together a listing of free tech resources for remote work
- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has warnings about COVID-related scams
- Fast Company has a listing of the best productivity apps for 2020
- The New York Times has an online newsletter on K-12 and higher education
- The Wall Street Journal has a collection of articles on education
- The Louvre has digitized 482,000 artworks from its collection
- PC Magazine explains how to carry your vaccination card on your phone
- How to create a strong password
We sincerely hope that you and your family are well and remain well. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We are here for you.
If you need help with your accounting, want to create a tax minimization plan, want to discuss your business growth plan or your finances, are concerned about retirement goals or need to be held accountable for your 90 day action plan, contact us for a complimentary discovery session or an appointment to just get started.
Get in touch
Contact us if you have any questions or want to discuss the next steps for your business.