Weekly Update – December 9th, 2022
It’s December 9th, not a scary date to most of us, nor does it sound like time is running out, but it is. There is still time for tax planning, and please don’t groan but this excites me. Yes I’m a bit nerdy, but I do love this time of year. This is a great time for our year-end client meetings which may culminate with a plan enabling our client to skip their fourth quarter estimate as the funds are used instead to affect tax savings. Just last week a client gave me a budget of $90,000 which we were able to convert to enhanced deferred income contributions, payment of PTET and purchase of much needed quipment all of which saved “a ton” of taxes. Over the next few weeks let’s add tax planning to holiday party and gifting planning for a happy holiday season!
Not to brag, but last week I spoke/wrote about our 90 day action plan and I am excited to report our office is right on target, big kudos to us and hoping some or all of you are using this process too. Take a look at this video I recorded about the value of useing a 90 day action plan.
For those of you planning a road trip don’t forget to reassure your pet that they are joining you, or you might find a large dog (Sampson) sitting in your “carry on” lugage like my daughter Jessie did…
I am so glad we still have temerate weather here in the New York metropolitan area and the sunrise is after 7AM, gotta love daylight savings time…
Wishing you all a great weekend and holiday season.
WEEKLY TAKE AWAY
We conducted a “test” this month, we did not remind our clients to upload, mail, or drop off their monthly paperwork (yes, some still deal with paper). Amazingly the information started showing up in our portal, mail box and by delivery. Instead of calling with our “annoying request” I made thank you calls and was able to catch-up on news about family and holiday plans. I guess my take-away is to continue to have faith in our clients that when the first of the month rolls around they realize it’s time to download, save and forward us their financial documents.
TAX ISSUES/TAX PLANNING
Proposed Tax Bill Aimed at US Oil Companies
Many tax laws are created to affect behavior, the “Close Big Oil Tax Loopholes Act” is aimed at removing key tax provisions enjoyed by oil producers such as drilling cost deductions, deep water royalty relief and carbon capture credits for enhanced oil recovery. It would also tighten up rules around deducting foreign taxes and the “depletion allowance” for oil and gas wells. Let’s not get our hopes up on this one as similar legislation was proposed since 2010.
Follow the Rules for Employee Benefits or Else…
Is anyone else following the news about the two Trump Organization companies: Trump Corporation and Trump Payroll Corporation, who, along with the company’s longtime chief financial officer, Allen Weisselberg were found quilty this week of the July 2021 indictment. They were accused of using a variety of methods to reduce payroll liability from executive salaries through untaxed bonuses and luxury perks worth millions. Allowable employee benefits are a great way to assist employees without increasing their paycheck, they include:
- health insurance, dental and vision coverage
- local public transportation assistance
- small value group term life insurance
- paid vacations and sick leave
- continuing education and/or medical insurance stipends
- college grants and scholarships
It is critical to understand and follow the rules and DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT.
What is form 1099-k and Will I Receive One?
A provision in the American Rescue Plan Act lowers the minimum reporting threshold for payment cards transcations and third payment networks (debit, credit, PayPal, Venmo and other cash apps). Prior to January 2022 the filing threshold was $20,000 and if there were more than 200 transcations. Thresholds for 1099-MISC and 1099-NEC have been $600 for years, now the threshold for 1099-K will be the same as for other payment methods for business related goods and services. Read more here. Remeber our tax system is voluntary and as such you are required to report all income (and specific related, allowable, ordinary and necessary business expenses) on your income tax returns. To underreport is fraud which carries severe IRS underpayment penalties; “ignorance of the law is no excuse”. My reccomendation is to make sure you are in compliance and to work with a knowledgable and trustworthy tax advisor.
A Down Market Can be an Opportunity
Stocks started the week with a tumble on Monday, due to fears that the Federal Reserve may continue tightening until it tips the economy into a recession. Other analysis show that media and bank stocks tend to suffer during recession. This may be an opportunity to work with your investment advisor to re-balance your portfolio, loss harvest for tax purposes and/or make your annual IRA or ROTH IRA contribution and hope for the long term increase in those accounts.
Cryptocurrency Exchange Founder Pledges to Testify
Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried says he would like to testify before the House financial services committee once he has finished learning about the failure of FTX.
Why are Economists Still Pessimistic
With both jobs and wages up, some economists are asking why the doom and gloom attitude toward the market continues. “Employment is robust, but the money being earned is eroded by soaring inflation. Meanwhile, the safety net of savings that families might need is getting smaller. In short, people are not prepared for the recession that might be lurking around the corner.”
Just this morning my daughter texted me a notice that the cost of our beloved Nespresso pod sleves will be increasing in 2023 as their costs have increased and they choose to keep up the quality of their product by increasing their prices. Just last week my blog included a short discussion on Conscious Spending.
165,000 Americans Took on a Second Job Last Month
On Friday the government reported the economy added 263,000 jobs in November, but an overlooked data point showed a huge surge in the number of people holding second jobs.
Oil Prices Rise as G7 Implements Cap on Russian Crude
The G7 implemented a cap on the price of Russian oil at US$60 a barrel on Monday. However, Russia said it will not accept the price cap and threatened to stop exporting oil to countries adopting the measures.
What to Do if You Lose Your Job Near Retirement or at Any Time
There are some things you can do to reduce the damage caused by a late-career job loss. Great summay artice from Kipplinger personal finance “4 Steps to Take if You Lose Your Job Near Retirement”. I think these are great tips no mater what:
- Assess and adjust your budget
- Evaluate your savings
- Assess your social security options
- Have a plan in place
I am adding:
- Assess your deferred income accounts. You may be able to borrow from them, or it could be a good time to take distributions at a lower tax rate.
- Contact your financial advisor to discuss options
5 Ways to Save on Groceries as the Cost of Living Rises
I feel that we revisit this issue all the time, especially as inflation puts pressure on all of us. I came accross this article from The Ascent “5 Ways to Save on Groceries in 2023″. Of course I have added some edits to their suggestions:
- Buy in bulk (at those big box stores – but only items with a long shelf life)
- Clip and use coupons; check the weekly supermarket flyers for more economical meal planning and consider buying and freezing some great seasonal deals (purchase and freeze turkey and ham for later)
- Minimize shopping trips; plan your weekly meals befor you go and stick to your list
- Maximize credit card rewards; we love “shopping” with my amazon rewards dollars
- Practice conscious spending
Good luck and bon appetite!
- 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.