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调查:华尔街将进行大幅裁员 奖金削减或达20%


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6/23/2020

调查:华尔街将进行大幅裁员 奖金削减或达20%

文 / 林煇智


薪酬咨询公司Johnson Associates Inc调查显示,由于很多企业未能达到2020年的业务和财务目标,无法支持更多在家工作的员工,因此裁员的情况可能会更加普遍。(路透社)

(早报讯)美国一项调查显示,华尔街今年可能将削减奖金20%至15%,并大幅裁员。

路透社消息,薪酬咨询公司Johnson Associates Inc.周二(23日)在发布的一份报告中作出上述预估。报告声称,由于很多企业未能达到2020年的业务和财务目标,无法支持更多在家工作的员工,因此裁员的情况可能会更加普遍。

同时,今年员工的奖金和薪酬将会受到严格的审查,包括上市公司首席执行官的工资及其与普通员工的薪酬比例。

报告指出,华尔街的裁员规模可能很显著,并指许多公司在对抗冠病的期间已意识到某些工作所需的员工其实没那么多。“技术向我们证明,我们不需要那么多的人,不需要那么多的管理层……在许多方面,就业市场将存在许多不确定性。”

报告写道:“受疫情影响和最近人们对公正与平等问题的关注,这将需要对业绩、竞争、社会优先权和客户和员工期望进行周密的分析和平衡。” “这不是充耳不闻的一年。”


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6/22/2020

美銀行存款爆增2兆美元 大銀行最吸金卻不知該貸給誰

(World Journal) 編譯季晶晶


美國的銀行自疫情襲擊以來,存款共增加2兆美元。路透

財經網站CNBC報導,根據美國聯邦存款保險公司(FDIC)資料,自新冠肺炎疫情首次襲美以來,美國銀行帳戶的現金存款激增創紀錄的2兆美元。

金額之高前所未見:光是4月,存款大增8.65億美元,比過去一整年的存款增加幅度還要高。

這是因為疫情產生的反應:透過刺激支票和失業救助,美國政府釋出數千億美元支援小企業和個人。聯準會推出連串計畫支持金融市場,其中包括無上限購債。以及,未來的不確定性使得從兩人小家庭到跨國大企業,都決定囤現金。


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逾三分之二的新增存款湧進前25大銀行,尤其集中在銀行業前幾名的機構,如摩根大通、美國銀行和花旗銀行,在今年第1季,他們的資產成長比其他同業更快。

但根據金融業獨立研究機構Autonomous Research分析師福蘭(Brian Foran),在經濟衰退期間放款極為謹慎的這些銀行,坐擁如山一般高的現金,卻已經想不出該如何使用獲利。

還要一段時間才會知道美國政府前所未見、撒錢救市的成果為何。部分專家擔心美元貶值且通貨膨脹率走高。其他人認為正形成股市泡沫。

福蘭說,對存款戶而言,一個立即可見的後果是,銀行絕對會下調已經低到微薄的利率,因為他們一點也不需要新的存款了。


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6/15/2020

每周600元失業福利下月底停發 政府擬以就業獎金取代

(World Journal) 記者顏伶如


聯邦政府為疫情期間失業勞工提供的每周600元額外失業福利,7月底到期將不再延續。(Getty Images)

白宮經濟顧問庫德洛(Larry Kudlow)14日接受有線電視新聞網(CNN)專訪時說,聯邦政府為新冠病毒疫情期間失業勞工提供的每周600元額外失業福利,到今年7月底到期就不再延續。他說:「我們等於是發錢給民眾,讓他們不上班。金額比他們的工資還高。」

庫德洛說,每周多拿600元失業福利的作法,在疫情發生的前兩個月或許有幫助,也就是疫情最嚴重的時刻,全美各地幾乎處於全面封閉的狀態,但這項措施今年7月就會如期結束。

他進一步表示,幾乎各行各業都認同,這筆每周600元的額外失業福利,變成一種抑制因素,讓民眾失去工作動力。他說,川普政府正在尋找改革方案,為民眾重返職場提供誘因,但計畫規模將不會像疫情紓困方案一樣龐大。

他舉例說:「例如提供金額較少的支票,對於回去就業提供某些獎金。」

庫德洛說:「我們還會推出其他配套措施,包括紓困回饋金(tax rebates),還有我覺得成效甚佳的「薪資保護貸款計畫」(Payroll Protection Program,簡稱PPP)。」

他說,由於經濟重啟,商店紛紛開門營業,失業率開始降低,因此不再需要額外失業福利。他指出:「我認為我們正在一步步向前進。我們已經重新開放,經濟慢慢恢復,隨之而來的是工作機會也回來了。我們不希望這個發展受到干擾。」

對於CNN新聞節目主持人塔柏(Jack Tapper)詢問,很多美國人其實希望回去上班,可是卻發現流失的就業機會已經不復存在,庫德洛則說:「我覺得這個論述合情合理。我個人是同意的。我覺得大家都想回去上班,我也覺得大家都樂見經濟重啟,大家都迫不及待想要出門走走。」

庫德洛說:「然而,某種角度來看,誘因還是很重要的。我們從不同企業以及各個產業所聽到的意見反應,都說額外失業津貼造成了某種程度的影響。」






6/08/2020

失業金詐騙大增 260億恐遭盜領

(World Journal) 記者顏伶如


當局估計,政府發放的失業金可能高達260億元遭到濫用。圖為華盛頓州就業安全廳。(美聯社)

美國失業民眾激增,相對讓詐騙分子增加犯案機會,全美各州近來頻傳失業補助被不肖人士盜領的案件。數以百萬計因為丟掉飯碗而手頭困難的勞工來說,處境如同雪上加霜,而對於工作量已大幅增加的州政府主管部門來說,則造成進一步負荷。

從華盛頓州到緬因州,幾乎全美各州政府近來紛紛發現,失業補助申請詐騙案件越來越多。根據媒體報導,聯邦機構將針對這股歪風展開打擊。

勞工部督察長道爾(Scott Dahl)對眾院政府運作小組委員會指出,即使在最好的狀況下,約有10%的失業福利申請案件是有問題的,「而我們目前則處於最糟糕的狀況當中」。


全美許多商店因新冠肺炎疫情而被迫關閉,使得數以千萬計勞工申請失業福利。(美聯社)

道爾估計,政府發放失業金中,恐怕高達260億元遭到濫用,其中絕大部分落入詐騙分子之手。

詐騙猖獗,導致受到失業打擊的民眾,對於原本應可依法領取的失業補助,還要大費周章努力爭取,才能拿到。

非營利組織「防身分竊取資源中心」(Identity Theft Resource Center)主席兼執行長維拉斯奎茲(Eva Velasquez)表示:「我們非常關切失業民眾目前的處境,也很關注這些失業補助詐騙案件何時能夠解決,好讓民眾拿到錢,可以過日子。」

受到疫情影響,聯邦政府對於失業勞工增加提供每個月600元救濟金,讓詐騙分子認為有利可圖。申請失業補助的手續更新、主管機關工作負擔沉重,加上政府作業系統老舊,都提供了犯罪分子上下其手的空間。

資安專家指出,不肖人士利用竊得的民眾個資,冒名申請失業補助,這些具有高度敏感的個資,則是從過去幾次資料庫遭駭事件中外洩的,或者是州政府作業系統遭駭而曝光。許多受害民眾根本不知道自己遭人冒名申領失業補助,直到因為丟掉工作而提出申請時才赫然發現。

專家指出,民眾如果發現這種狀況,應向州政府、雇主提出詐騙檢舉,並且向警方報案。






2/6/2020

不只有錢人 「這種納稅人」也容易被查稅

(World Journal) 編譯馬永慶


年入超過50萬元的富人和低於2萬5000元的窮人,較可能被國稅局查稅。(美聯社)

被國稅局查稅的機率愈來愈低,但即使如此,某些群體面臨查稅的可能較高。

國稅局最近表示,由於執行查稅工作的人員減少,在2019會計年度,個人報稅表的查稅率為0.45%,低於2014會計年度的0.9%。

根據國稅局按收入範圍畫分的查稅數據,富人和窮人這兩個群體更可能引起國稅局的注意。



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貧窮納稅人(年入低於2萬5000元)的查稅率為0.69%,比整體查稅率高50%以上。這同時表示,除了收入超過50萬元的富人以外,低收入納稅人比其他任何群體更有可能被查稅。

稅務專家邦南肯特(Eric Bronnenkant)說,低收入家庭比一些較富裕的納稅人更容易被查稅,這似乎違反直覺,但這是由於國稅局檢查與「工作所得抵稅」(EITC)相關的詐欺和錯誤所致。EITC是為中低收入納稅人設立的報稅抵免,如果他們有至少三個孩子,可獲得高達6600元的抵稅。




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「預算與政策重點中心」指出,多達四分之一EITC申報包含錯誤,通常是因抵稅規則過於複雜,使得國稅局加強檢查低薪工人的稅表是否有錯。但欺詐行為也存在,例如有些夫婦各自以一家之主的身分,以及分開申報子女,以獲取最大的抵稅。

年入超過50萬元的納稅人,其查稅率急劇上升。而年入至少1000萬元的富裕納稅人,在所有群體中的查稅率最高,超過6%。


    
   
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「新英格蘭投資與退休集團」的稅務計畫主管迪本尼多托(Glenn DiBenedetto)說,最不可能被查稅的群體是年入10萬至20萬元的中上階層家庭,他們的查稅率大約是0.44%,因他們的稅表出錯可能較低。這個群體多數從雇主收到W2表格,國稅局可以核實其中的數據,並依靠標準扣除額而不是逐項扣舉,從而消除某些扣稅詐欺的可能性。






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2/6/2020

Taxes 2020: These two groups of taxpayers face the highest audit rates

By Aimee Picchi

Taxes are one of life’s certainties, but getting audited by the IRS is increasingly less certain these days. In fact, an audit is about half as likely as it was five years ago.

Even so, some groups face higher audit rates than others.

The tax agency is auditing fewer individual taxpayers not because we’re more honest, but because the IRS is working with fewer employees. The agency’s workforce has dropped from 94,000 workers in 2010 to roughly 78,000 in the most recent fiscal year, according to IRS data.

With fewer agents available to perform audits, the agency’s audit rate has been whittled to 0.45% of individual returns in fiscal 2019, the IRS said recently. That compares with an audit rate of 0.9% in the fiscal 2014.


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Two types of taxpayers are more likely to draw the attention of the IRS: the rich and the poor, according to IRS data of audits by income range.

Poor taxpayers, or those earning less than $25,000 annually, have an audit rate of 0.69% — more than 50% higher than the overall audit rate. It also means low-income taxpayers are more likely to get audited than any other group, except Americans with incomes of more than $500,000.

The least likely group to get audited? That would be upper-middle-class households with an annual income of $100,000 to $200,000. Their audit rate, at about 0.44%, is low because their returns have less room for error, says Glenn DiBenedetto, director of tax planning for New England Investment and Retirement Group. This group likely receives W2s from their employers, data that the IRS can verify, and relies on the standard deduction rather than itemizing, which cuts out the potential for fudging some deductions.


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Poor taxpayers

It may seem counterintuitive that low-income households are more likely to get audited than some wealthier taxpayers, but it’s due to the IRS checking for fraud and errors related to the Earned Income Tax Credit, says Eric Bronnenkant, head of tax at financial-services firm Betterment. The EITC is a tax credit for low- to medium-income taxpayers, who can receive a credit worth as much as $6,600 if they have at least three children.

“If you are a single parent with multiple children and with income in the $25,000 range, that is likely the person who will likely get the most amount of money from the EITC,” he notes. “One of the problems is there is EITC fraud.”

As many as one-quarter of EITC claims contain an error, often due to the complexity of the credit’s rules, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. That heightens the IRS’ interest in examining low-wage workers’ returns for errors, tax experts say. But fraud also exists, such as when families game the system by splitting up children between married parents who then both file as head of household to maximize credits, the IRS says.






Rich taxpayers

Audit rates sharply spike for taxpayers with an annual income of more than $500,000. In fact, wealthy taxpayers with annual income of at least $10 million have the highest audit rate of all groups, at more than 6%.

“Statistically, the people over $10 million still have the highest percentage, but their rate of audit is declining,” DiBenedetto says.

With the reduction in IRS staff, all income groups have seen a decline in their audit rates, although the rich have enjoyed a sharper reduction than the poor. For instance, Americans with annual incomes of more than $10 million have enjoyed a 75% decline in audit rates since 2013, according to the most recent data from the IRS. The audit rate for taxpayers earning less than $25,000 has dipped about 30% during the same period.

Deduction red flags

Some types of taxpayers may receive more scrutiny because they have more room to fudge the numbers, tax experts say.

Take self-employed workers, who can enjoy a host of deductions that aren’t available to other employees, such as the home office deduction and write-offs for business expenses.

Deductions for self-employed workers not only reduce their income subject to federal and state income taxes, but for payroll taxes, points out Betterment’s Bronnenkant. That can provide an incentive for some people “to make up a deduction,” he notes — potentially drawing the interest of the IRS.

Another red flag is tax returns with round numbers, says DiBenedetto. Taxpayers might be tempted to “round up,” by, say, estimating a charitable contribution at $1,000, but that can flag the IRS that a taxpayer may not be reporting the exact amount they spent or donated, he adds.

The best defense is to keep detailed records and receipts for expenses and deductions, tax experts say.

“Number one is keeping all of your receipts for all of your expenses,” Bronnenkant says. “Candidly, most people are pretty awful about that.”


Source: https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2020/01/31/taxes-2020-audits-most-likely-happen-these-two-groups/4552393002/




IRS issues standard mileage rates for 2020

IR-2019-215, December 31, 2019


WASHINGTON — The Internal Revenue Service today issued the 2020 optional standard mileage rates (PDF) used to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile for business, charitable, medical or moving purposes.

Beginning on January 1, 2020, the standard mileage rates for the use of a car (also vans, pickups or panel trucks) will be:

  • 57.5 cents per mile driven for business use, down one half of a cent from the rate for 2019,
  • 17 cents per mile driven for medical or moving purposes, down three cents from the rate for 2019, and
  • 14 cents per mile driven in service of charitable organizations.

The business mileage rate decreased one half of a cent for business travel driven and three cents for medical and certain moving expense from the rates for 2019. The charitable rate is set by statute and remains unchanged.

It is important to note that under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, taxpayers cannot claim a miscellaneous itemized deduction for unreimbursed employee travel expenses. Taxpayers also cannot claim a deduction for moving expenses, except members of the Armed Forces on active duty moving under orders to a permanent change of station. For more details, see Rev. Proc. 2019-46 (PDF).

The standard mileage rate for business use is based on an annual study of the fixed and variable costs of operating an automobile. The rate for medical and moving purposes is based on the variable costs.

Taxpayers always have the option of calculating the actual costs of using their vehicle rather than using the standard mileage rates.

A taxpayer may not use the business standard mileage rate for a vehicle after using any depreciation method under the Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS) or after claiming a Section 179 deduction for that vehicle. In addition, the business standard mileage rate cannot be used for more than five vehicles used simultaneously. These and other limitations are described in section 4.05 of Rev. Proc. 2019-46 (PDF).

Notice 2020-05 (PDF), posted today on IRS.gov, contains the standard mileage rates, the amount a taxpayer must use in calculating reductions to basis for depreciation taken under the business standard mileage rate, and the maximum standard automobile cost that a taxpayer may use in computing the allowance under a fixed and variable rate plan. In addition, for employer-provided vehicles, the Notice provides the maximum fair market value of automobiles first made available to employees for personal use in calendar year 2020 for which employers may use the fleet-average valuation rule in § 1.61-21(d)(5)(v) or the vehicle cents-per-mile valuation rule in § 1.61-21(e).



Source: https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/irs-issues-standard-mileage-rates-for-2020










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