The Tax Policy Blog

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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October 31, 2014

A new paper by French economists Emmanual Saez and Gabriel Zucman discusses a new technique for using tax returns to estimate top wealth shares. They find that wealth inequality has been increasing such that the top 1 percent now control about 40 percent of all household wealth, as the chart below illustrates.

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October 29, 2014

Tens of thousands of Hungarians rallied to protest a proposal to create a tax on internet usage in Hungary. In response to the first protest on Sunday, the Hungarian government limited its proposal.

The original proposal would create a tax on internet usage of 150 forints per...

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October 29, 2014

In the past three decades, the importance of “pass-through” businesses has grown substantially. The combined net income of sole proprietors, LLCs, Partnerships, and S corporations has increased fivefold and now accounts for more than 50 percent of all business income. C corporations now earn less than half of all business income.

Another way to look at how pass-through businesses have increased in importance is their role as employers. Not only do they account for more than 50...

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October 28, 2014

Next Tuesday, Nevada voters will decide whether or not to give the go-ahead to the margin tax—an economically damaging tax that falls in the gross receipts tax family. Gross receipts taxes (GRTs) only exist in a handful of states across the country (and even that’s too many).

Gross receipts taxes are complex business taxes that are imposed at a low rate but on a wide...

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October 28, 2014

Last month, while Treasury was rolling out new rules to clamp down on corporate inversions, the Chair of the President’s Council of Economic Advisors, Jason Furman, gave a speech at NYU titled Business Tax Reform and Economic Growth. Furman acknowledged that the U.S. corporate tax rate, at 39 percent, is the highest in the developed world. However, he then argued that “more...

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October 28, 2014

I wanted to make sure you saw our new State Business Tax Climate Index, released today.

The Index enables business leaders, government policymakers, and taxpayers to gauge how their states’ tax systems compare. While there are many ways to show how much is collected in taxes by state governments, the Index uses over 100 variables in...

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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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