Tax Blog

Our tax blog is dedicated to CFOs, Tax Directors and Business Owners looking to improve profitability, grow their business or implement a succession plan. At Armanino, we see the tax function as a key strategic tool—as nothing less than a vital means of moving you and your company forward. While we excel in making sure our clients meet regulatory requirements—both domestic and global—that just scratches the surface of what we do.

May 31, 2016

Stock Market Volatility Can Cut Tax on a Roth IRA Conversion

This year’s stock market volatility can be unnerving, but if you have a traditional IRA, this volatility may provide a valuable opportunity: It can allow you to convert your traditional IRA to a Roth IRA at a lower tax cost. Traditional IRAs Contributions to a traditional IRA may be deductible, depending on your modified adjusted …

January 11, 2016

Could You Save More by Deducting State and Local Sales Taxes?

For the last several years, taxpayers have been allowed to take an itemized deduction for state and local sales taxes in lieu of state and local income taxes. This break can be valuable to those residing in states with no or low income taxes or who purchase major items, such as a car or boat. …

November 16, 2015

Reduce Taxes on Your Investments With These Year-End Strategies

While tax consequences should never drive investment decisions, it’s critical that they be considered — especially by higher-income taxpayers, who may be facing the 39.6% short-term capital gains rate, the 20% long-term capital gains rate and the 3.8% net investment income tax (NIIT). Holding on to an investment until you’ve owned it more than one …

October 26, 2015

Save Tax — or At Least Defer it — by Carefully Timing Business Income and Expenses

The first step to smart timing is to project your business’s income and expenses for 2015 and 2016. With this information in hand, you can determine the best year-end timing strategy for your business. If you expect to be in the same or lower tax bracket in 2016, consider: Deferring income to 2016. If your …

October 12, 2015

Your Exec Comp Could be Subject to the 0.9% Additional Medicare Tax or the 3.8% NIIT

The additional Medicare tax and net investment income tax (NIIT) apply when certain income exceeds the applicable threshold: $250,000 for married filing jointly, $125,000 for married filing separately, and $200,000 for other taxpayers. The following types of executive compensation could be subject to the 0.9% additional Medicare tax if your earned income exceeds the applicable …

October 5, 2015

Should You “Bunch” Medical Expenses into 2015?

Medical expenses that aren’t reimbursable by insurance or paid through a tax-advantaged account (such as a Health Savings Account or Flexible Spending Account) may be deductible—but generally only to the extent that they exceed 10% of your adjusted gross income. Taxpayers age 65 and older can enjoy a 7.5% floor through 2016. The floor for …

September 7, 2015

When Will Congress Pass “Extenders” Legislation to Revive Expired Tax Breaks for 2015?

With Congress returning from its August recess, this is the question on tax-savvy Americans’ minds. Many valuable tax breaks aren’t permanent, so Congress has to pass legislation extending them to keep them in effect. Unfortunately, Congress often waits until the last minute to do so. For example, Congress didn’t pass 2014 extenders until December 2014, …

August 10, 2015

Teens in Your Family with Summer Jobs? Set up IRAs for Them!

Teenagers’ retirement may seem too far off to warrant saving now, but IRAs can be perfect for teens precisely because they’ll likely have many years to let their accounts grow tax-deferred or tax-free. The 2015 contribution limit is the lesser of $5,500 or 100% of earned income. A teen’s traditional IRA contributions typically are deductible, …

June 23, 2015

Opening the “Back Door” to a Roth IRA

A potential downside of tax-deferred saving through a traditional retirement plan is that you’ll have to pay taxes when you make withdrawals at retirement. Roth plans, on the other hand, allow tax-free distributions; the tradeoff is that contributions to these plans don’t reduce your current-year taxable income. Unfortunately, modified adjusted gross income (MAGI)-based phaseouts may …

May 12, 2015

You’re a Real Estate Investor, but are You a “Professional”?

Income and losses from investment real estate or rental property are passive by definition — unless you’re a real estate professional. Why is this important? Passive income may be subject to the 3.8% net investment income tax (NIIT), and passive losses are deductible only against passive income, with the excess being carried forward. To qualify …

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