The Tax Policy Blog

November 10, 2014

Some of the most heated debate over taxes focuses on a single feature of the tax code: the top marginal rate. Some people argue that the top marginal rate on income is an important feature in the incentives to work and invest. Others argue that the top bracket of the income tax is a key source of revenue for public priorities. Both arguments are fair.

In 2012, a deal was passed that increased the top marginal rate from 35% to 39.6%. In order to illustrate the effects of the top...

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November 10, 2014

Young adults in the United States are not saving. In fact, on the whole people under 35 are facing a saving deficit of close to 2 percent.

According to the Wall Street Journal and new data from Moody’s Analytics, the savings rate for those under 35 group has fallen from its post-...

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November 07, 2014

I find myself increasingly puzzled by the monthly ritual of wall-to-wall reporting on “jobs day.” The first Friday of every month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases a report on the employment situation in the country. While I appreciate the importance of the size of the labor market in general – in fact, much of my work on our Taxes and Growth project is about the labor supply – I think monthly updates can be a needless distraction from the big picture. This is especially because the...

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November 06, 2014

When businesses suffer losses in a calendar year, well-structured corporate tax codes allow them to deduct those losses against previous or future tax returns. These provisions are called net operating loss (NOL) carrybacks and carryforwards. While the federal code allows 20 years of NOL carryforwards and 2 years of NOL carrybacks, states vary widely on their net operating loss policies.

Net operating loss deductions are important because...

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November 06, 2014

The Medical Device Tax levied as part of the Affordable Care Act is likely to be re-examined as a result of Tuesday’s election. The tax is controversial, especially in Minnesota, where the medical device industry employs a lot of people. In a symbolic vote last year, 79 senators voted for a repeal of the tax in a budget...

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November 05, 2014

Like many of you, I was a little bit blown away by some of the election outcomes last night, particularly the unexpectedly close U.S. Senate race in Virginia (looks like Warner will win by a hair), and the Illinois, Maryland, and Massachusetts gubernatorial races (all those mansions flipped Republican). The Washington Post has a nice list of “firsts”...

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November 05, 2014

One of the most obvious questions from Tuesday’s election results is: what does this mean for tax reform?

I think it certainly enhances the prospects of Congress and the president reaching a grand bargain on overhauling the tax code, however the likelihood that it will be this Congress and this president making such a deal seem pretty remote.

Even before the election, the conventional wisdom in the...

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November 05, 2014

Each time you purchase your favorite coffee and pastry at the corner shop, you get a receipt that tells you exactly how that money was spent and the taxes paid. Since April, taxpayers can do the same with their federal income taxes, social security taxes, and Medicare taxes for 2013. The White House has a tool that allows users to input their exact tax burden and see just...

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November 05, 2014

Two days ago, we listed tax initiatives we were watching in the states. Here are the results, using the most up-to-date numbers available:

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Result

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November 05, 2014

One of the initiatives we were watching most yesterday was the vote on implementing a “margin tax” in Nevada, which was an attempt to raise revenue for public schools. Today, the news is that the initiative was voted down in a landslide, 78.8 to 21.2 percent with 95 percent of precincts reporting as of post time.

If you’ve been following our blog, you’ve seen the two posts my colleague Liz Malm...

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November 03, 2014

UPDATE: Results of state and local ballot initiatives have been posted here.

Tomorrow, voters in eighteen states will weigh in on state and local tax policy through ballot initiatives covering everything from taxpayer protection measures in North Dakota and Tennessee to a vote on a proposed margin tax...

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November 03, 2014

The European Union (EU) has requested that the World Trade Organization (WTO) establish a panel to review Brazil’s discriminatory taxes. Brazil has a series of tax exemptions for domestic firms and customs duties on imports that increase the price of EU goods by up to 80 percent in Brazil. In addition, the tax exemptions require Brazilian manufactures to use locally sourced components. The EU argues that these tax...

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November 03, 2014

Last week, the IRS released its calculation of the 2015 tax brackets and other parameters.

Every year, the IRS adjusts more than 40 tax provisions for inflation. This is done to prevent what is called “bracket creep.” This is the phenomenon by which people are pushed into higher income tax brackets or have reduced value from credits or deductions due to inflation instead...

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October 31, 2014

Next week, Nevada voters will cast their ballots and decide whether or not Nevada will institute a margin tax. The tax is a modified gross receipts tax (a type of tax only five other states have) and is modeled after the Texas margin tax. Last March, I explained two big reasons why the Texas margin tax is the poster...

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October 31, 2014

The National Association of Enrolled Agents recently released a warning that the Affordable Care Act Marketplace may complicate tax returns. The NAEA is an organization of tax professionals that are specially licensed through the Department of Treasury and can represent individuals directly to the IRS. According to the group, insurance...

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Subscribe to Tax Foundation - Tax Foundation's Tax Policy Blog The Tax Policy Blog is the official blog of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization that has monitored tax policy at the federal, state and local levels since 1937. Our economists welcome your feedback. If you would like to send an e-mail to the author of a blog post, please click on that person's name to locate his or her e-mail address or visit our staff page here.

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