Investment planning

SEC adopts crowdfunding rules

The Securities and Exchange Commission adopted rules that will permit companies to offer and sell securities through crowdfunding.

Other people’s money

Seemingly disparate services such as investment advisory, bill-paying, and estate planning all have a common denominator: the CPA’s involvement with other people’s money.

Tax-efficient investing in gold

Whether as bullion, coins, funds, stocks, or derivatives, gold holds an age-old fascination. Smart investing takes into account how gains are taxed.

Financial planning

Investors’ confidence in investing in U.S. public companies—and in audited financial information released by those companies—has risen to a seven-year high in 2014.

Investors’ confidence in U.S. public companies grows

Investors’ confidence in investing in U.S. public companies—and in audited financial information released by those companies—has risen to a seven-year high in 2014. According to the Center for Audit Quality’s (CAQ’s) Main Street Investor Survey, 80% of 1,049 investors surveyed said they have some, quite a bit, or a great

The accidental investment adviser

CPAs often are solicited for advice regarding potential investments. A CPA should refrain from providing specific investment advice unless he or she has been adequately trained and licensed to serve as an investment adviser.

Trader or investor?

In two decisions in 2013, Endicott, T.C. Memo. 2013-199, and Nelson, T.C. Memo. 2013-259, the Tax Court maintained a high hurdle that taxpayers must clear to show they are in the trade or business of trading in marketable securities rather than acting as investors. Aside from dealers in securities (those

How to protect investors’ assets

The recent financial crisis magnified the importance of investor protection. Regulators can play a vital role in ensuring that securities firms protect client assets. The International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) on Wednesday published eight principles to guide regulators as they supervise securities firms on the protection of client assets.

SEC issues reminder on investment adviser due diligence

Investment advisers need to follow appropriate due-diligence processes when recommending or placing clients’ assets in alternative investments such as hedge funds, private-equity funds, or funds of private funds, the SEC said in a risk alert issued Tuesday. According to the alert from the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations

Final and proposed regs. issued on 3.8% net investment income tax

Late on Tuesday, the IRS issued final and proposed regulations giving guidance on the application and computation of the 3.8% net investment income tax imposed by Sec. 1411 (T.D. 9644 and REG-130843-13). The final regulations adopt, with changes, proposed regulations issued late in 2012. Starting in 2013, Sec. 1411 imposes

New opportunities for CPAs in proposed crowdfunding rules

Rules on crowdfunding proposed by the SEC on Wednesday would create opportunities for startups and small, private businesses to raise cash through internet-aided sales of securities—and would create opportunities for work by CPAs. The SEC commissioners voted 5–0 to propose the rules that are designed to comply with a provision

Federal impasse could crush investor confidence, survey shows

The federal government shutdown and the lack of congressional agreement on raising the debt ceiling have the potential to crush investor confidence, according to a new Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) survey. If the shutdown lasts another week, investor confidence in U.S. capital markets would shrink to 60% from 69%,

Self-directed IRAs: A tax compliance black hole

The appeal of investing retirement funds outside of the typical securities market has driven a surge in the use of self-directed IRA (SDIRA) investment structures. These structures come in various forms, but they all start when an IRA account holder forms an SDIRA with a custodian (e.g., a bank or

The qualified dividend multiplier effect

With the passage of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, P.L. 112-240, taxpayers can continue to save significant taxes on qualified dividends and long-term capital gains. Excluding the special 25% and 28% rates, Sec. 1(h)(1) now provides for three rates on qualified dividends and long-term capital gains (preferential income):

The brave new world of cost basis reporting

Recent tax law changes have made accurately calculating and reporting clients’ capital gains even more critical with higher effective tax rates being imposed on those with higher adjusted gross income (regardless of source) and the new Sec. 1411 net investment income tax taking effect for tax year 2013. It had

SEC strengthens broker-dealer audit requirements

The SEC on Wednesday approved rule amendments that strengthen audit requirements for broker-dealers. The amendments are intended to increase protections for investors whose money and securities are turned over to SEC-registered broker-dealers. The final rules are available on the SEC’s website. Under previous rules, broker-dealers are required to file annual

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VIDEO

Will the Affordable Care Act be repealed?

The results of the 2016 presidential election are likely to have a big impact on federal tax policy in the coming years. Eddie Adkins, CPA, a partner in the Washington National Tax Office at Grant Thornton, discusses what parts of the ACA might survive the repeal of most of the law.

QUIZ

News quiz: Scam email plagues tax professionals—again

Even as the IRS reported on success in reducing tax return identity theft in the 2016 season, the Service also warned tax professionals about yet another email phishing scam. See how much you know about recent news with this short quiz.