Browsing all articles tagged with tax
May
18

French President Urges Euro Zone Government

Francois Hollande, French President called on Thursday for an economic government for the euro zone with its own budget the right to borrow a harmonized tax system and a full time president.

At a 150 minute news discussion marking his first year in office a day following economic statistics showed France had fall into recession, the Socialist leader defended his record on economic reform and budget regulation and informed the French people they would have to work a bit longer for a complete pension in future.

Rebutting criticism that France has lost its leadership role in Europe as of its dwindling economic competitiveness, Hollande thought he wanted to create a fully-fledged political European Union within two years.

Hollande said it is my responsibility as the leader of a founder member of the European Union to pull Europe out of this torpor that has gripped it and to reduce people’s disappointment with it.

He accepted that he could face resistance from Germany, Europe’s dominant power, which opposes mutualising debt between member states. Berlin is also reluctant to give the euro zone its own secretariat for fear of deepening division in the EU, among the 17 members of the single currency and the 10 others.

Non-euro Britain’s government previously faces growing domestic pressure to hold a referendum on leaving the bloc.

Hollande stated he wanted Britain to stay in the EU but added, he can understand that others don’t want to join the single currency, however they cannot stop the euro zone from advancing.

Hollande said a future euro zone economic government would debate the main economic and political decisions to be taken by member states, harmonize welfare policies and national fiscal and launch a battle against tax fraud.

He proposed bringing forward planned EU spending to combat record youth unemployment, pushing for an EU-wide transition to renewable energy sources and envisaged a budget capacity that would be decided to the euro zone along with the gradual likelihood of raising debt.

May
11

Tax Officials Cite Momentum, Challenges in Tax Revamp

Two US policymakers from opposed ends of the political spectrum on Friday stated thrust is building for a top-to-bottom revamp of the tax code, however the largest question is whether there is political will to get it done.

Mark Prater, a long-time Republican Senate tax counsel and Mark Mazur, assistant secretary for tax policy at the Treasury Department, cited major policy proposals and two years of public hearings and private meetings that have set the foundation for the first rewrite of the code since 1986.

Mazur, who is Treasury Secretary Jack Lew’s top policy aide on tax issues, said this year the stars are aligned for tax reform in a way they haven’t been, he and Prater spoke at a legal conference in Washington, at the moment it is just a matter of political will.

The two top tax writing lawmakers expect to push legislation through Congress this year to lower most tax rates and simplify the code that many Americans regard as far too complex.

They may have more political liberty to write a bill as Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, a Democrat, is retiring following this term and House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp a Republican is term-limited as chairman.

President Barack Obama says he backs tax reform, while some have said it does not appear to be high on his agenda.

Mazur accepted there are tons of obstacles, including the divide between the parties on whether the tax reforms should produce more revenue. Democrats generally favor doing this as Republicans do not.

Prater, a tax policy aide to Senator Orrin Hatch the senior Finance Committee Republican, agreed energy is building. One advantage he quoted is the January 1 fiscal deal that lifts taxes on Americans making more than $400,000 a year and also established a budget baseline both parties agree on.

Prater said that the playing field is a lot clearer concerning where we are starting from.

He said on the question of whether a tax renovate should lift revenue, that to me is actually a political question that comes down to what the other pieces of the picture are.

Apr
16

California Democrats Hesitant Following Call to Unwind Prop 13 Tax Curb

A push by California Democrats to unwrap part of Proposition 13, the measure to limit the growth of property taxes that started a nationwide revolt, emerge to be losing ground on Monday because leaders in both houses of the state’s Legislature distanced themselves from the proposal.

The cool reaction let some of the air out of a resolution passed at the Democratic Party’s state convention on Sunday that called the measure’s approach to taxes on marketable property unfair and demanding reform.

Rhys Williams, a spokesman for the Senate’s top Democrat, Darrell Steinberg said that we won’t do anything in 2013-2014 if at all we have just been given that super majority by the voters who have hand over us to deliver so let’s deliver that first.

Howard Jarvis, The anti-tax group in Taxpayers Association, which is named for Proposition 13′s original sponsor and opposes any attempts to diminish it didn’t appear too concerned.

Kris Vosburgh, the group’s spokesman said that Pardon me as I give a giant yawn.

Grassroots activists, make confident by the Democratic super majority in both houses of the state legislature, have guarantee to take their crusade to the mainstream, and eventually push reluctant lawmakers to take on Proposition 13.

David Mark, political analyst and editor in chief of the website Politics said that it’s in their Democratic hearts it’s on their wish list. However it seems like any real action is not likely to happen any time soon.

Backers plan a two-year campaign to win over public opinion as well as elected lawmakers said that Lenny Goldberg, a Proposition 13 critic who assist write the Democrats resolution.

Apr
15

Alaska Lawmakers Slash Oil Taxes Hope to Spur Output

Alaska official on Sunday gave final approval to a bill cutting state oil production taxes in a change supporters stated was needed to enhanced deteriorating output from aging fields but which critics say will severely damage the state’s finances.

The new system permitted by the Republican dominated legislature does away with a methodology that boost tax rates as oil prices climb, a centerpiece of the aggressive tax legislation championed by ex- governor Sarah Palin.

Alaska will compel a base rate of 35 percent on oil companies net profits in the state, swaping a 25 percent base rate that augmented by 0.4 percentage points for every $1 over a net wellhead price of $30.

Although the old tax system produced billions of dollars in surpluses for the state treasury, it meant Alaska’s tax rate topped 50 percent when oil prices were high. Palin’s successor, Governor Sean Parnell ┬ásaid the cut would set the stage for future growth as the state tries to reverse decades of dropping oil output.

Parnell said in a statement we are indicating to the world that Alaska is back ready to compete, and ready to supply additional energy once again.

According to state Department of Revenue statistics Oil production, from Alaska’s North Slope peaked in 1988 at over 2 million barrels per day led by the Prudhoe Bay field which averaged 1.6 million bpd that year. Production in 2012 averaged 579,400 bpd, with Prudhoe Bay production losing to 265,200 bpd.

The tax change was supported by the three major North Slope oil producers, Conoco Phillips, Exxon Mobil Corp and BP Plc. The companies argued that Alaska’s current tax system is disciplinary and makes the state less attractive than other regions, such as Alberta and North Dakota.

Republicans stated the changes would ultimately coax additional oil into the aged Trans Alaska Pipeline. However minority Democrats railed against it, with Senator Bill Wielechowski saying it handed over billions of dollars, with no sequence attached.

Apr
13

President Barack Obama Income Knock Down in election year, paid 18.4 percent tax rate

According to his tax returns released by the White House on Friday, President Barack Obama paid a successful federal tax rate of 18.4 percent in 2012 and saw income from his bestselling books fall as he ran for re-election.

Obama and his wife Michelle had adjusted gross income of $608,611 previous year, losing from $789,674 in 2011 and paid $112,214 in total taxes, compared to $162,074 in 2011.

Their total income came in at $662,076 down about 22 percent from $844,585 the last year.

According to a White House official, as president, Obama is permitted to a $400,000 annual salary, he reported salary income in 2011 and 2012 of $394,800 and however following deducting pre-tax amounts he paid for his health insurance premium

The Obamas outside business income knock down sharply as the president’s book sales turn down. In 2012, the couple had business income of $258,772 drop from $441,369 in 2011.

Book sales have dropped dramatically since the early days of his presidency. In 2009 his business income from book sales came in about $5.2 million.

The Obamas reported giving $150,034 to aid, representing approximately 25 percent of their adjusted gross income. The biggest gift was $103,871 to the Fisher House Foundation, an organization that provides housing for military families near military hospitals.

Jill and Vice President Joe Biden reported adjusted gross income of $385,072 and paid $87,851 in total federal taxes previous year. Their helpful contributions amounted to $7,190, including some $2,000 in donated clothing and other items.

Apr
11

President Barack Obama Tax Plan Opening Gambit in Potential Tax Rewrite

Obama on Wednesday revitalized a list of his favorite tax thoughts, hopeful to raise $580 billion in new revenues from the wealthy over a decade in a potential opening strategy to forge a deal with Congress to renovate the tax code.

Although certain not to move forward all together, his 2014 budget proposal has elements likely to spur discussion including a proposal to tax derivatives more strictly, as lawmakers weigh a tax code restore and face a limit on the government’s debt limit this summer.

Chris Krueger, an analyst at Guggenheim Partners stated that these are all opening bids in any possible grand negotiate, so from that perspective they are significant.

Congressional Republicans mostly blasted the Democratic president’s budget proposal, weighing the difficulty policymakers have had forging a long-term deficit cutting plan.

Obama’s budget does not seek to lift individual tax rates as he has proposed in prior budgets. For years, he sought to elevate rates on household income over $250,000.

Republicans and Obama agreed during previous year’s fiscal cliff battle to elevate rates for households earning more than $450,000 a year, to 39.6 percent from 35 percent.

Obama’s budget also recommended a new Buffett tax, a minimum tax rate for the rich named for investor Warren Buffett, that stage in a minimum 30 percent tax rate on household income over $1 million.

The bid renew Obama’s offer previous year to Republican House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner during the discussion to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff of looming tax hikes.

The budget also reprized a proposal to limit tax breaks between wealthier taxpayers, opening at household income of roughly $250,000, limiting the value of deductions and loopholes in determining taxable income. A phased-in limit on deductions is now part of the tax code for more wealthy taxpayers.

The new cap would apply to the same list of breaks proposed in previous years , including the charitable tax break and the exception for municipal bond interest.

One encounter Obama proposed to fight once more is over the estate tax, pitching to lift it to 45 percent for estates worth over $3.5 million, following a deal to cap it in January at 40 percent for estates over $5 million.

Apr
10

President Barack Obama Budget Targets Millionaires, Replaces Sequester Cuts

The White House on Wednesday proposed a budget that harshly trims the US deficit over three years by forcing millionaires to pay more in taxes and pass spending cuts that replace the sequester reductions that went into place previous month.

President Barack Obama’s fiscal 2014 budget blueprint guarantee that those making $1 million a year or more would have to pay at least 30 percent of their income following gifts to charity, in taxes.

Senior administration officials told that boost, along with spending cuts and a 28 percent cap on tax deductions for lofty earners, would bring the US budget deficit down to 2.8 percent of GDP by 2016. The unbiased Congressional Budget Office in February projected the US deficit to be 5.3 pct of GDP this year.

The president’s budget placed little chance of being pass into law. However senior administration officials said that in spite of Republican leaders’ confrontation to tax increases, they hoped it could lead to a deficit reduction.

They carry on to be people who are on the Republican side in the Senate at least, who are saying things that would give you some expectation that there is a course to a deal.

President is breaking from the tradition of using the mostly symbolic budget release to outline his ideal spending and tax proposals. Instead he is annoying to relaunch talks to resolve a long-running fiscal battle with his Capitol Hill adversaries.

To do so Obama is offering a acknowledgment that has enraged many of his supporters, adopting a less generous determine of inflation to calculate cost of living raise for the beneficiaries of many federal programs. One result would be reduce benefits for most recipients of the popular Social Security retirement program.

While Obama has vowed to shield some of the most vulnerable beneficiaries, the proposal has drawn strong opposition from Democrats and groups representing elderly and the labor.

At the same time his budget suggestion faces seemingly insuperable opposition from Republican leaders, who refuse any new tax revenues.

Obama’s expectation is to build a coalition of lawmakers willing to compromise, while most observers see that as unlikely. He has invited 12 Republicans to dinner at the White House on Wednesday in an effort to make softer resistance.

Apr
8

Republican Senator Perceive President Barack Obama budget offer as positive

Lindsey Graham, South Carolina senator on Sunday turn into the first prominent Republican to publicly praise but lukewarmly, the budget proposal the White House outlined previous week.

Graham stated that as he believes President Barack Obama’s plan is overall bad for the economy, there are piece of his budget that he think are optimistic, and that could set the stage for a broad negotiate to put the nation’s finances on a stronger footing. He was talking on NBC’s Meet the Press program.

Graham, a conventional who has deviated from party positions in the past, and has stated he would consider lifting up to $600 billion in new tax revenue if Democrats accept important changes to Medicare, the government health program for elderly Americans, and Medicaid the health safety net for low income people.

The White House on Friday stated the president would suggest a budget that would offer cuts to supposed entitlement programs such as Social Security, a Medicare, and retirement program in exchange for augmented tax revenues and a commitment to spend money on education and infrastructure repair.

Obama’s proposal, which will officially be made public on Wednesday is a symbolic document, and both the House of Representatives and Senate have already passed their own budget resolutions.

The president’s adviser have said that he hopes to use the offer to appeal to sufficient middle of the road lawmakers of both parties to pass a broad deal to cut the budget deficit.

Obama also expect to reverse the deep spending cuts that automatically kicked in March 1 as a consequence of the failure of the Congress and White House to reach an agreement on replacing them.

John Boehner, House Speaker stated previous week the president was ignoring Republicans staunch opposition to any tax hikes. And independent Senator Bernie Sanders stated he would resist any efforts to lower payments to Social Security beneficiaries.

Graham further said that the president is showing a little bit of support here, this is somewhat encouraging, his overall budget’s not going to make it however he has sort of made a step forward in the privilege reform process that would allow a guy like me to begin to talk regarding flattening the tax code and generating more revenue.

Apr
6

President Barack Obama Tries to Encourage Republicans With Cuts in Budget

President Barack Obama will offer cuts to Social Security and other benefit programs in a budget offer coming week aimed at captivating over enough congressional Republicans to pass a broad deal to reduce the deficit.

Although Obama’s prior budgets have principally been ignored in Congress, the White House wants to use this year’s suggestion to be released on Wednesday, to move away from the fiscal fights that have consumed Washington since 2010.

However several attempts to reach an agreement balancing tax increases with spending cuts have failed, and prediction for a grand bargain remain soften. John Boehner ,House of Representatives Speaker, who let taxes climb for the wealthiest Americans earlier this year, has ruled out any additional revenue increases and was lukewarm regarding Obama’s latest proposal.

When the president visited the Capitol previous month, House Republicans declared a desire to find common ground and urged him not to make savings we agree upon conditional on another round of tax boost, if reports are accurate the president has not notice that call.

Obama also faces confrontation from fellow Democrats over his offer to apply a less generous measure of inflation to calculate cost of living raise that would affect Social Security and other government programs when he reveals his budget.

That change would effect in lower payments to some beneficiaries of the Social Security pension program and is staunchly opposed by many of the president’s party as well as retiree groups and labor.

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent who votes with the Democrats said that he is terribly disappointed and will do everything in my power to block President Obama’s offer to cut benefits for Social Security recipients.

Rudolph Penner, a former Congressional Budget Office director said that he believe that he would like to have is a impressive bargain which puts these fiscal issues behind them for a good number of years. If he does not get the grand bargain his second term is not going to be a very cheerful one.

Apr
3

A fiscal Cautions from two former budget chiefs

Two ex- budget chiefs who worked for presidents from opposing political parties stated on Monday that the government should decrease military spending, end decade-old income tax cuts and scale back Social Security payments to reduce the federal deficit.

David Stockman, who was a key architect of tax cutting policies and Republican Ronald Reagan’s budget director from 1981 to 1985, and Peter Orszag, budget director for Democratic President Barack Obama from January 2009 until July 2010, agreed that the US spends more on defense than is needed.

Both also stated that the country would be well served if wealthier citizens paid more taxes and took less significant benefits from the government in their old age.

Orszag said that the governments are right to use spending to stretch out the economic regulation to keep huge segments of population from losing their jobs, which itself can sourced long lasting problems.

The Great Deformation is the men spoke on the eve of the official publication of Stockman’s new book, the Corruption of Capitalism in America.

Stockman criticizes politicians of both parties, opening with Democrat Franklin Roosevelt in the 1930s and including his former boss Reagan as well as previous Republican President George W. Bush.

Stockman advises investors to sell their securities and hold cash as an alternative. He confess he does not believe Washington will adopt his advice.

Orszag stated Stockman was not correct to place so much blame for the budget deficit and weak economy on government policies. Changes from new technology and global trade have hurt employment and incomes.

Some $85 billion of comprehensive government spending cuts automatically took effect on March 1 following Congress and the White House failed to agree on federal budget decisions. The drain of money has placed pressure on the US Federal Reserve to keep interest rates low to prop up the economy.

Washington is having returning fiscal showdowns over how to slash the budget deficit and $16 trillion of national debt, which was build from years of spending on wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and stimulation for the US economy.