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Blog Profile / Business in The Beltway

Filed Under:Business & Finance
Posts on Regator:375
Posts / Week:2
Archived Since:February 28, 2011

Blog Post Archive

How Much Would An Individual Tax Rate Cut Add to the Deficit, and Who Would Benefit?

Reducing tax rates is a guiding principal of most tax reform plans. Even Democrats who see reform partly as a tool to boost revenues agree that some money generated by eliminating tax preferences ought to go to rate reduction. But how much does Treasury lose when Congress reduces individual tax rates, and which taxpayers benefit the [...]

Is Treasury About to Curb Tax Inversions on Its Own?

The Treasury Department put out the word that Secretary Jack Lew is considering regulatory curbs on corporate tax inversions, a step that may be intended to increase pressure on Congress to act once it returns from its summer recess in September. The matter of how much authority Treasury has to limit inversions has generated its own [...]

How REIT Spinoffs Will Further Erode the Corporate Tax Base

While Congress has been obsessing about tax inversions, it turns out another—potentially more important–tax avoidance technique is getting increased attention from the business community: Spinning off tangible assets into Investment Trusts (REITs). Show More Summary

What Ronald Reagan Didn’t Say About the EITC

I like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). It encourages work and allows millions of low-wage workers and their kids to escape a life of poverty. Democrats support it as a critical part of the safety net. Republicans back it because it rewards work and family. Just last week, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) endorsed President [...]

Are Tax Inversions Really Unpatriotic?

President Obama and many congressional Democrats argue that U.S.-based multinational firms are being unpatriotic by moving their corporate addresses overseas in order to reduce their. Obama even implied they are “corporate deserters.” These are powerful, emotionally-charged allegations. Show More Summary

Is It Time To End The Highway Trust Fund Fiction?

Congress is in the midst of another Perils of Pauline political showdown: This time the drama is over how to finance the highway trust fund, which will be unable to pay its bills in a couple of weeks. House Republicans have cooked up one set of gimmicks to keep the money flowing for a few [...]

The Federal Reserve Is Not Ending Its Stimulus

Yesterday, the Federal Reserve confirmed that it would end new purchases of Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities (MBS)—what’s known as quantitative easing—in October. In response, the media are heralding the end of the Fed’s stimulus: “Fed Stimulus is Really Going to End and Nobody Cares,” says the Wall Street Journal. “Federal Reserve Plans to End [...]

What The Hobby Lobby Case Really Means For Business: Nothing

Don’t be fooled by the 'slippery slope' argument: the case will change nothing about how businesses can operate.

The Strange Fruit of the House’s Bonus Depreciation Bill: Congress Would Subsidize Grapes But Not Blueberries

When the Ways & Means Committee sent the House a measure to make permanent extra-generous tax subsidies for firms that purchase capital equipment, I noted in passing that the bill included a provision extending “bonus depreciation” rules to fruit and nut trees. If I had read the bill more carefully, I would have noticed that while [...]

Why Walmart Should Follow Gap’s Lead And Raise Its Minimum Wage

Paying higher wages could help Walmart's business—and that of many employers.

A Failure Of Due Process At FERC

Nearly nine months ago, we began writing a law review article that described the erosion of due process and basic fairness in the Federal Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) enforcement process. Forty-nine pages and 270 footnotes later, our article was published by the Law Journal on May 15th. The following week, on May 20th, the Senate held [...]

Don’t Turn Over IRS Debt Collections To Private Contractors

The latest example of why bipartisanship is not necessarily good: A bill proposed by senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Pat Roberts (R-KN) to require the IRS to hire private debt collectors. The last time Congress made the IRS try this, the agency lost money. It was a terrible idea then and it is a terrible idea now. Schumer and Roberts slipped [...]

Why Proposed Rule To Increase Rail Freight Competition Would Hurt Railroads And Customers

Requiring railroads to allow another carrier on their rails to compete for freight business might lower prices for customers, but it will result in gross inefficiencies and reduce the amount of money available for capital expenditur...

Aereo And The Supreme Court Could Redefine The Digital Home

The court will have to decide if the service is selling the latest generation of rabbit ears or if it is more like a cable company, which needs to pay to retransmit television to its customers. The answer hinges on whether the transmission is public or private. Show More Summary

What’s Behind That 1040? Check Out TPC’s Interactive Tax Forms

Federal income taxes are complicated. That’s why roughly 90 percent of us either hire someone to prepare our tax returns or use computer software to do the job on our own. Only a tenth of us actually sit down and fill out the forms by hand. But it’s still important to understand what goes onto [...]

If You Have High Income, Your Taxes Are Going Up

As the April 15 deadline for filing 2013 income taxes nears, most of us are finding that Uncle Sam will take about the same share of our income as last year. But the story is very different for people at the top of the income ladder. Their taxes are going up, in many cases by [...]

Thank You, Dave Camp

House Ways & Means Committee Chair Dave Camp (R-MI), who said yesterday that he’ll retire from Congress at the end of the year, will leave behind an enormously important achievement.  At a time when too many of his fellow lawmakers substitute easy partisan rhetoric for hard work, Camp wrote a serious tax reform plan. His [...]

Should Tax Reform Be Sold on Values Instead of Economics

Maybe the best way for tax reformers to get political traction is to focus on values, not economics. That, at least, was one take-away from three political scientists who spoke at a Tax Policy Center panel today. Until now, backers of reform have focused primarily on economic arguments: A reformed tax code would increase growth [...]

Mission Impossible? The Challenging Politics of Tax Reform

Everyone agrees that the tax code is a mess. So why is it so hard for Congress and the President to fix it? There are lots of reasons. As observers of House Ways & Means Committee Chair Dave Camp’s tax reform effort have seen, the idea has no natural constituency (except perhaps economists). Some political [...]

An Updated Marriage Bonus And Penalty Calculator

Just in time for this year’s tax filing season, the Tax Center has updated its marriage bonus and penalty calculator. The new calculator lets you see how marriage affects a couple’s income tax liability by comparing their tax bills filing as singles and as a couple for either the 2013 or 2014 tax year. A [...]

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