Unstructured Finance

Essential reading: Fiscal cliff talks down to the wire

December 28, 2012

Welcome to the top tax and accounting headlines from Reuters and other sources.

* Obama summons congressional leaders for ‘fiscal cliff’ talks. Lori Montgomery and Rosalind Helderman – The Washington Post. President Obama summoned congressional leaders to a Friday summit at the White House in a last-ditch effort to protect taxpayers, unemployed workers and the fragile U.S. recovery from severe austerity measures set to hit in just four days. Also Thursday, House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner announced he would call the House back into session this weekend. And in perhaps the most significant development, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was engaged directly in talks with the White House. He signaled an interest in cutting a deal. Link 

Calendar

December 28, 2012

Some important tax and accounting dates in the weeks to come:

Sunday, Dec. 30

* U.S. House of Representatives returns to work on legislation to avoid tax increases and spending cuts associated with the fiscal cliff that begin to kick in on Jan. 1.

Accounting for retirement benefits produces “phantom” earnings – report

December 27, 2012

The cost of pensions gets plenty of attention, both from the companies that sponsor them and their investors.  Other retirement benefits, including medical costs, don’t garner the same scrutiny.

Wall Street channels Charles Dickens in 2012

December 27, 2012

By Lauren Tara LaCapra

As 2012 comes to an end, it’s clear that Wall Street has had the best-worst year in quite some time.

Obama hearts El-Erian

December 26, 2012

By Sam Forgione and Matthew Goldstein

OK, so it’s not a big gig like being nominated to head the Treasury Dept. But President Obama’s decision to tap PIMCO’s Mohamed El-Erian to head the President’s Global Development Council is no insignificant matter.

Essential reading: Boehner’s budget ‘Plan B’ collapses, and more

December 21, 2012

Welcome to the top tax and accounting headlines from Reuters and other sources.

* Boehner’s budget ‘Plan B’ collapses. Janet Hook – The Wall Street Journal. House Speaker John Boehner, facing a rebellion in his party’s conservative ranks, abandoned his own plan to avert tax increases for most Americans Thursday night, throwing Washington’s high-stakes budget negotiations into disarray and bringing the prospect of tumbling over the fiscal cliff into sudden focus. Link

Blue states lose: how avoiding the U.S. fiscal cliff hits some states harder than others

December 20, 2012

Democratic-voting blue states could face a greater economic fallout from any fiscal cliff resolution than their Republican red state brethren, according to a Dec. 17 white paper  from municipal bond research firm eBooleant Consulting.

Essential reading: Tax impact for small business hard to gauge, and more

December 20, 2012

Welcome to the top tax and accounting headlines from Reuters and other sources.

* Tax impact for small business hard to gauge. John McKinnon – The Wall Street Journal. The latest budget offers exchanged between the White House and Republican leaders would raise tax rates on a tiny fraction of small-business owners, but would still affect a sizeable portion of business activity, studies show. Link

Essential reading: Boehner’s backup tax plan shakes up ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations, and more

December 19, 2012

Welcome to the top tax and accounting headlines from Reuters and other sources.

* Boehner’s backup tax plan shakes up ‘fiscal cliff’ negotiations. Paul Kane and Lori Montgomery – The Washington Post. House Speaker John A. Boehner veered off the bipartisan course he had been charting toward a broad tax-and-entitlement deal with President Obama and instead Tuesday pushed a GOP package to extend tax cuts for income up to $1 million. Link  

Calendar

December 15, 2012

Some important tax and accounting events in the week ahead:

Monday, Dec. 17

* Joint Board meeting of the U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board and the International Accounting Standards Board on revenue recognition. Video webcast.