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Seven Ways the New Tax Fight Could Hit Annuities

What Tax Reform Could Mean for Annuities Republican lawmakers have said a tax overhaul framework would retain incentives meant to encourage retirement security, but uncertainty remains about the direction that reform will take.  This article summarizes several ways changes in federal tax laws could affect annuities, charitable giving, and other aspects of retirement planning. To read the full article in Thi ...

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Four Ways to Generate Ideas Fast

Creativity is a very 21st century virtue.  Relying on your skills as a technician does not seem like a very good idea in the nascent age of AI, regardless of your field.  But being able to generate innovative and imaginative ideas can mark you out as a star, a shining goose laying golden eggs. To read the full article in Management Today, click: Four Ways to Generate Ideas Fast. ...

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This is Your Brain on Retirement

Preparing for Clients’ Cognitive Decline Older clients may experience cognitive decline and memory problems that can lead to loneliness and other negative emotions.  Understanding the ways in which clients' cognition may change—and helping them plan for intellectually stimulating activities—can lead to better outcomes in retirement. To read the full article in the Financial Advisor, click: This is Your Brai ...

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SEC Approves New PCAOB Audit Standards

On June 1, 2017 the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) adopted a new auditing standard to provide additional information to investors.  The new standard received approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission on October 23, 2017.  In this post, Rohan Bose, financial analyst with Mercer Capital, summarizes several of the major changes coming to audit reports in the near future. To read t ...

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Four Great Ways to Lose Talent

Is your firm inadvertently pushing its best staff out the door?  Mark Koziel, CPA, CGMA, explains the four most common mistakes to avoid to retain talent and to best use employees' skills. To read the full article in AICPA Insights, click: Four Great Ways to Lose Talent. ...

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Seven Tips for Managing Sideways

Accountants and business experts agree—if you want to create a stronger team, make a more substantial contribution to your company, and expand your sphere of influence, then you need to think outside the silo.  Eddie Huffman describes how CPAs need to focus more on connecting with and influencing their management peers, not just the people above and below them. To read the full article in the Journal of Acc ...

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Four Etiquette Tips for Videoconference Calls

We have all had those cringe-worthy moments on videoconference calls when a colleague or customer forgets that we can see and hear everything they are doing.  It is hard to be our best selves all the time on screen, especially with videoconferences becoming more common as remote work arrangements and widespread teams become increasingly common.  Lori Sexton, CPA, CGMA, provides you with four considerations ...

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The Importance of Audit Planning

What is the purpose of audit planning if the audit may not ultimately follow the carefully thought out plan?  As may be inferred from Dwight D. Eisenhower's words—"Plans are worthless, but planning is everything"—the value of audit planning is not derived solely from the resulting audit plan.  Daniel Gartland, risk control consultant at CNA, describes the importance of detailed planning. To read the full ar ...

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CPAs Should Shift to Niche Services as Automation Takes Over

Accountants should focus on providing niche areas of service such as business valuation and retirement planning and move away from tasks including bookkeeping and financial reporting because automation and technological advances will take over much of their work.  Dominic Diongson, deputy editor for AccountingWEB, explains. To read the full article in AccountingWEB, click:  CPAs Should Shift to Niche Servic ...

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PCAOB Inspection Scrutiny of Fair Value Measurement Continues

Fair value measurement has been a hot topic during the last few years, increasingly attributable to PCAOB identified audit deficiencies and heightening scrutiny over the existing fair value framework and related auditing standards.  In this post, we take a look at the causes of attention and recent responses from professionals and professional organizations. To read the full article in Mercer Capital's Fina ...

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Beijing Cuts Red Tape for Foreign Firms as it Vies for Investors

Regulation from 1995 requiring companies to set up representative offices in China scrapped, as vice-premier warns of new challenges ahead.  As Washington prepares to unveil a corporate tax-cut plan, Beijing has scrapped cumbersome requirements on foreign businesses that have been in place for 22 years in its latest bid to woo investors. To read the full article in South China Morning Post, click: Beijing C ...

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Helping Clients Understand the ‘Real Cost’ of College Planning

The college selection process can have significant financial implications, so the entire family should be involved in the decision.  The difference in cost between public and private universities is substantial, and the impact on a family's future wealth will be even larger as a result of compound growth. To read the full article in the Financial Advisor, click: Helping Clients Understand the 'Real Cost' of ...

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New Market Evidence Confirms Control Premium Best Practices

The Appraisal Foundation’s forthcoming VFR Valuation Advisory #3, The Measurement and Application of Market Participant Acquisition Premiums (Advisory #3) sets forth best practices for measuring and evaluating the reasonableness of valuation premiums applied in (or implied by) fair value measurements of controlling interests in business enterprises.  Travis Harms, Mercer Capital’s Financial Reporting Valuat ...

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How to Stay Ahead of the IoT Curve

Seemingly overnight, the internet of things (IoT) has become a technology buzzword, challenging businesses to embrace a technology in its infancy before they can firmly grasp the pitfalls and opportunities involved.  Sylvia Edwards Davis explains this concept and what to do to propel your business forward. To read the full article in CGMA, click: How to Stay Ahead of the IoT Curve. ...

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IRS Updates Special Per-Diem Rates for Business Travel

Business travelers who incur expenses while traveling away from home have new per-diem rates to use in substantiating certain of those expenses (Notice 2017-54).  The new rates will be in effect from Oct. 1, 2017, to Sept. 30, 2018.  Sally Schreiber, Journal of Accountancy senior editor, explains. To read the full article in the Journal of Accountancy, click: IRS Updates Special Per-Diem Rates for Business ...

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Market Trends: 3Q17 Update

The first three quarters of 2017 were active for U.S. markets.  Major indices were characterized by low volatility and upward momentum against a backdrop of tightening monetary policy and strong economic indicators.  Private equity saw steady deal flow despite challenging market conditions, and record levels of venture capital deployment were seen amidst declining deal volume as capital continued to gravita ...

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How Revenue Recognition Changes are Affecting Preparers Like GE, Microsoft

FASB and the International Accounting Standards Board designed their converged revenue recognition standard to enhance comparability across industries.  But the standard has presented different implementation challenges to the various business sectors.  Ken Tysiac, Journal of Accountancy editorial director, explains. To read the full article in the Journal of Accountancy, click: How Revenue Recognition Chan ...

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Tips for Giving While Living

Help Clients Kick-Start Their Charitable Efforts Here is a look at questions to ask and tactics to consider while working with clients who want to engage in charitable giving.  Among other strategies, clients may want to consider making multiyear gifts or donating to international causes.  The Adviser's Guide to Financial and Estate Planning, Volume 1, has an entire chapter dedicated to helping you learn ab ...

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Social Capital’s Backdoor Unicorn IPO

We have recently discussed the changing dynamics of the IPO market and startups’ shifting perspectives in regards to going public.  Public offerings have not all gone wrong this year, but latest rounds of unicorn IPO flops appear to have dampened some investors’ outlook on the traditional IPO route.  Nevertheless, unicorn investors still need liquidity and are turning to creative ways to get the IPO pipelin ...

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Five Reasons You Should Join a Professional Association

Personal commitment and synchronized teamwork is what it takes to be an active member of professional associations.  The work may not be physically challenging, but when you partner together and work towards a similar goal, you can achieve great things. To read the full article in CPA Practice Advisor, click: Five Reasons You Should Join a Professional Association. ...

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