Tax and Business Alert - December 2015



Welcome to this month's edition of the Tax and Business Alert. Our goal is to provide you with current articles on various tax and business topics. The articles are intended to keep you up to date on trends and issues that may impact your business and personal financial affairs. Please contact us if you have questions about any of the issues discussed.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT CAPITAL GAINS AND LOSSES
This article offers facts about capital gains and losses, discussing concepts such as long- vs. short-term losses, carryover losses, deductible losses, net capital gain, and more. Read more...

PROVIDING TAX-FREE FRINGE BENEFITS TO EMPLOYEES
An important part of any compensation package is fringe benefits, especially tax-free ones. From an employee's perspective, one of the most important fringe benefits is medical coverage. Disability, life, and long-term care insurance benefits are also significant to many employees. Fortunately, these types of benefits can generally be provided on a tax-free basis to employees. This article takes a look at these and other common fringe benefits. Read more...

EDUCATION PLANNING: IT'S BEST TO START EARLY
The increasing costs of higher education have made education planning an important aspect of personal financial planning. However, because the actual expenditure will not be incurred for many years, it is often given a low current priority. Unfortunately, this tendency to postpone the issue may eliminate several education planning strategies that must be implemented early to be effective. This article examines the costs and discusses six methods to pay for college. Read more...

SENIORS AGE 70½ TAKE YOUR REQUIRED RETIREMENT DISTRIBUTIONS BEFORE YEAR END
The tax laws generally require individuals with retirement accounts to take annual withdrawals beginning at age 70½. Failure to take a required withdrawal can result in a penalty of 50% of the amount not withdrawn. This short article explains why it's usually (but not always) advisable to take a distribution before the end of the year. Read more...

EARN 5% OR MORE ON LIQUID ASSETS
Paying off a home loan having an interest rate of 5% with one's excess liquid assets is just like earning 5% on those funds. This short article notes the benefit of paying down debt. Read more...

This publication is distributed with the understanding that the author, publisher and distributor are not rendering legal, accounting or other professional advice or opinions on specific facts or matters, and, accordingly, assume no liability whatsoever in connection with its use. The information contained in this newsletter was not intended or written to be used and cannot be used for the purpose of (1) avoiding tax-related penalties prescribed by the Internal Revenue Code or (2) promoting or marketing any tax-related matter addressed herein. © 2015