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Blog Profile / Business in The Beltway


URL :http://blogs.forbes.com/beltway/
Filed Under:Business & Finance
Posts on Regator:389
Posts / Week:2
Archived Since:February 28, 2011

Blog Post Archive

How Did Medical Device Makers Become Poster Children for Obamacare Critics

The push to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s tax on medical devices has somehow become a touchstone for GOP efforts to chip away at President Obama’s health care law. But why?  To paraphrase Bogart’s  classic line from Casablanca:  Of all the taxes in all laws in all the world, why did they pick this one? […]

Now is the Perfect Time to Raise Gas Taxes

Let’s see if I have this right: Congress needs to finance highway and transit projects but can’t agree on how. The traditional revenue source is the gasoline tax. Gas prices are at their lowest levels in years and dropping. Consumers would barely notice if they had to pay a bit more now at the pump. […]

Did Cutting Taxes Get Governors Reelected?

At first glance, the message was pretty clear: If you were a governor who cut, you probably got reelected on Tuesday. If you were a governor who raised (or even a candidate who worked for one) you probably lost. It was true in deep red states like Kansas where, against all odds, Sam Brownback […]

Six Things To Watch In the New GOP Congress

Republicans had a very good day yesterday. But can they translate their ballot-box success into a positive legislative agenda? It won’t be easy but here are six clues: Mitch McConnell: He is a brilliant legislative tactician. We know he’ll use those skills to try to outmaneuver Democratic Leader Harry Reid but will he also use […]

Is There Any Chance Congress Will Pass Business Tax Reform Next Year?

In the run-up to week’s congressional elections, Republicans are saying that if they win control of the Senate, they will try to pass tax reform as part of an ambitious “we can get things done” agenda. Is there any possibility that a GOP-controlled Congress could rewrite the provisions of the tax code? The chances are not zero. [...]

Why Lawyers and Economists Can’t Communicate, And What It Means For Tax Policy

Any close observer of the making of tax can see it: Lawyers and economists looking at the same issue through entirely different prisms. I’ve been fascinated by how their respective brains work, and why they have so much trouble communicating with one another. It turns out I am not alone. In a newly published paper [...]

A “Normal” Budget Isn’t Really Normal

Treasury closed the financial books on fiscal 2014 last week. As my colleague Howard Gleckman noted, the top line figures all came in close to their 40-year averages. The $483 billion deficit was about 2.8 percent of gross domestic product, for example, slightly below the 3.2 percent average of the past four decades. Tax revenues clocked [...]

Taxes and Spending Return To “Normal”– But Not For Long

Yesterday, the Treasury Department reported that the deficit for Fiscal Year 2014, which ended on Sept. 30, fell to $483 billion, or about 2.8 percent of Gross Domestic Product. This being, the report was hailed as either an enormous success or dismissed as meaningless.  Who is right? Is it good news or bad news? [...]

Pass-Through Firms Report $800 Billion In Net Income, Can’t Be Ignored In Business Tax Reform

is going through another one of its periodic calls for tax reform. But new research by my Tax Center colleague Joe Rosenberg shows just how hard it is to separate taxation from the individual tax code. And it should serve as a warning to those who think Congress can enact corporate tax reform that ignores these [...]

The Public Wants Clear Rules About Campaign Giving Through Tax-Exempts. Is It Possible?

A poll released today by the conservative Hudson Institute and the liberal group Public Citizen finds that nearly 9 in 10 voters surveyed favor clear rules that define political activities by non-profit tax-exempt organizations. The public’s desire for clarity is not surprising, given the amount of undisclosed campaign money that is flooding through tax-exempt 501(c)(4) [...]

Treasury’s New Rules May Slow, But Won’t Stop Corporate Tax Inversions

Will Treasury’s new rules stop the wave of corporate tax inversions? No they won’t. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew acknowledged as much when the agency proposed the curbs yesterday. Will they slow the practice? Perhaps, but even that is not certain. In a perverse way, Treasury’s most effective weapon may have been ambiguity. Once the Administration announced [...]

Does the Export-Import Bank Make or Lose Money?

Suppose your aunt decides to start a business making pizza ovens. She will design and build the ovens, and her daughter will manage operations. A bank is ready to lend her $100,000 to get started, but it wants someone to co-sign and be on the hook if she misses any payments. She offers to pay [...]

Treasury’s Lew Says Anti-Inversion Decision Will Come Soon, But Offers No Hints About What Or When

In a speech today at the Tax Policy Center, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said the agency will decide “in the very very near future” how it will respond to the recent wave of tax-motivated corporate inversions.  Lew strongly urged Congress to curb the practice on its own, but suggested Treasury might move administratively if lawmakers [...]

CBO Says Federal Tax Revenues Will Rise Because Of Higher Individual Income Taxes

Last week’s Congressional Budget Office fiscal update largely focused on the dangers of rising spending on health care, Social Security, and interest on the debt. But it also projected a significant increase in federal revenues, almost entirely due to a big bump in individual income taxes. CBO projects that individual tax revenue will climb well above its [...]

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 [...]

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