You read about them almost daily—GDP, CPI, Consumer Confidence—but just what are they and what do they mean? These are economic indicators that are based on statistics and surveys. The indicators provide economists, governments, investors and even the media information regarding our nation’s economic health. For explanations on each of these indicators, read this Financial Tip.
When gathering your previous year’s tax information or planning for the current year’s taxes, it is important to consider how you keep your personal records. Some basic records that everyone should keep include: W-2 Forms, bank statements, invoices, insurance records and various investment information. For more information on which records are vital to keep and organize for the tax season, read this C.P.A. Insight.
When developing an estate plan, one must know what type of property is owned and the type of ownership interests held. Real and Personal are the two basic types of property, and they can be owned in different forms. For more on property and ownership interests and how it affects you, read this Financial Strategy.
When creating a budget, it is helpful to assign percentages to major categories. This article lists typical family budget percentages.
When creating a budget, you need to separate your expenditures into required or optional categories. This article contains a sample list of mandatory and discretionary expenses.
Creating a budget should allow you to see precisely where your money is spent each month. The basic steps include recording all of your income, and then divide your expenses into mandatory and discretionary. For more guidance on creating a budget, read this C.P.A. Insight.
In a little over 40 days, the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 takes full effect. This act alters how credit card issuers market, advertise and manage consumer credit cards. For more information on the changes and what your options are as a consumer, read this Financial Strategy.
About 75% of the businesses in our country are structured as sole proprietorships, unincorporated businesses that consist of one individual owner. This business structure is the simplest and least expensive to form and dissolve; however, it opens the owner to unlimited personal liability and debts of the business are debts of the owner. For more information on sole proprietorships, read this C.P.A. Insight.
Hedge funds are investment funds that are free to invest in almost any investment opportunity, utilizing a broad array of investment strategies. Initially, hedge funds were designed to hedge against market risk, and while some still do, others take on excess risk in hopes of outsized gains. For more information on hedge funds, read this Investment Whys.
Capital gains can have a serious impact on your tax situation. It is advisable to plan ahead, as present law provides different tax rates for different types of property with rules provided by a complex tax code. For more information on capital gains and their treatment, read this C.P.A. Insight.