Tax News

September 2, 2016 12:07 pm

If you need money, turning first to those you know is a common practice. You don't have to fill out forms or pass credit tests to obtain the funds you need if your family and friends can afford to hel...

January 15, 2016 10:17 am

When you sell stocks, bonds, and mutual fund shares, your gain or loss depends on your basis in the securities. Keep in mind that the higher the basis, the lower the gain or greater the loss. Tax rule...

December 9, 2015 10:10 am

There are about $173 billion in U.S. savings bonds outstanding. This makes this type of investment one of the largest assets held by individuals. Savings bonds enjoy certain special tax treatment. Her...

August 31, 2015 12:08 pm

While the Bernie Madoff scam came to light in 2008, there continues to be a seemingly unlimited number of fraudulent investment schemes afoot. Those promoting these schemes can be very convincing, and...

June 22, 2015 8:53 am

Crowdfunding is the practice of raising small amounts of money from a large number of people to fund specific projects or ventures. These activities can be personal, charitable, or business-related. A...

July 26, 2013 11:16 am

A working spouse can contribute to an IRA on behalf of a nonworking spouse to grow the retirement savings of the couple. The contributions cannot exceed the earned income of the working spouse. In hon...

February 15, 2013 2:45 pm

The term Swiss bank account conjures up visions of wealthy individuals stashing cash where no one would know about it. Things have changed with the recent signing of an agreement of cooperation betwee...

June 26, 2012 7:11 pm

If you lend money and fail to charge interest at a rate at least equal to the applicable federal rate (AFR) for the term of the loan, you may be subject to below-market loan rules. These rules require...

April 18, 2012 11:44 am

Distributions from qualified retirement plans and IRAs before age 591/2 are not only taxable but also subject to a 10% early distribution penalty. However, there are a number of exceptions that a taxp...

October 19, 2010 12:00 am

With interest rates so low for so long, many taxpayers have abandoned interest-bearing investments in hopes of greater returns. Still many other taxpayers continue to favor certain types of interest-b...

October 18, 2010 12:00 am

We are at a crossroads of considerable importance-the stock market appears to be on the rise, but favorable capital gains rates are poised to expire. In order to plan your investment moves between no...

October 18, 2010 12:00 am

Social Security benefits and other amounts can be adjusted annually for inflation. However, because of the cost-of-living formula used for this adjustment and the lack of any significant inflation, th...

February 3, 2010 12:00 am

In the past couple of years, the stock market has decimated the retirement accounts of many people. Others who lost jobs were forced to tap into retirement savings for living expenses. All in all, the...

March 17, 2009 12:00 am

By Leland B. Hevner, President of the National Association of Online InvestorsI don't have to tell you that 2008 was a disaster for individual investors. It was the worst year for stocks since 193...

November 1, 2008 12:00 am

The stock market can be up 500 points one day and down a similar amount the next. The swings in the market make investment moves challenging. Here are the tax rules you need to know about your securi...

October 17, 2008 12:00 am

The IRS has announced cost-of-living adjustments to various limits for qualified retirement plans in 2009. There is a potential for greater contributions. Some key numbers to watch:For 401(k) plans,...

September 2, 2008 12:00 am

Taxpayers may be subject to the alternative minimum tax (AMT) when they exercise incentive stock options (ISOs). The reason: The spread between the fair market value of the stock at the time it is ac...

July 16, 2008 12:00 am

The top rate on most long-term capital gains and qualified dividends for regular tax purposes is 15%. But there's a trap: Taxpayers with such income who are subject to the alternative minimum tax...

July 7, 2008 12:00 am

In today's tough economy, investments in personal portfolios, 401(k) plans, and individual retirement accounts (IRAs) may be down. Fortunately, the tax law lets you ease your financial pain by claimin...

April 25, 2008 12:00 am

If you participate in a 401(k), 403(b), or 457 plan and leave your employer, you have a unique opportunity to profoundly impact your future retirement income. Instead of leaving the funds in the plan ...

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Tax Glossary

Estimated tax

Advance payment of current tax liability based either on wage withholdings or installment payments of your estimated tax liability. To avoid penalties, you generally must pay to the IRS either 90% of your final tax liability, or either 100% or 110% of the prior year’s tax liability, depending on your adjusted gross income.

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