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Tax Facts 2016-2017, Business, Jobs and You

April 17th, 2017 Comments off

(Image credit: Shutterstock, provided under fair use guidelines.)

Thousands of manufactured housing professionals – along with several million manufactured home owners – join with citizens from coast-to-coast in the final mad dash to complete and file their 2016 income tax returns by the midnight, April 18, 2017 deadline.

Thus MHProNews is hereby providing key facts from a variety of sources about the income tax that will prove eye-opening and useful, as tax policy will soon take center stage in Washington, D.C.

How High Are Current Federal Tax Collections?

MHProNews has learned from CNSNews that, according to the federal government’s Monthly Treasury Statement, the government collected record amounts of individual and payroll taxes in the first six months of the fiscal year (Oct. 1, 2016 thru March 31, 2017), raking in $695,291,000,000 in individual income taxes.  That’s $7,387,280,000 more than the $688,003,720,000 in individual income taxes that the federal government collected in the first six months of fiscal 2016. (All figures herein are using constant 2017 dollars.)

(Image credit: CNSNews)

Social Security and other payroll taxes collected by the IRS for the first six months of the fiscal year (FY) amounted to $547,591,000,000, about $2,731,820,000 more than the $544,491,000,000 in Social Security and other payroll taxes that the government collected in the first six months of fiscal 2016.

However, compared to the first six months of FY 2016, total tax collections dropped from $1,513,124,070,000 in total to $1,473,137,000,000, a decline of $39,987,070,000, largely due to a drop in corporate income tax collections. Corporate receipts fell from $124,954,730,000 in the first six months of FY 2016 to $100,234,000,000 (in constant 2017 dollars) for the same period of FY 2017, a drop of $24,720,730,000.

Additionally, customs duties collections also fell $1,179,869,000 in the first six months of FY 2017 over the same period of 2016; and excise tax collections dropped as well, falling $2,745,320,000 for that same period, all in constant 2017 dollars.

(Image credit: CNSNews)

This results in the federal government running a $526,855,000,000 deficit through the first six months of this fiscal year, because while the Treasury was collecting $1,473,137,000,000 in total taxes, it spent $1,999,991,000,000.

Based on the 153,000,000 people working in the U. S., the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the $1,473,137,000,000 collected in total taxes collected equates to $9,628 for each working person. The $526,855,000,000 deficit equals about $3,443 for every person with a job.

How Much Time is Being Spent on Income Tax Related Items?

As Forbes informs MHProNews, Americans will spend over 8.9 billion hours complying with IRS requirements for tax year 2016, amounting to 225,500,000 work weeks, based on a 40 hour week. According to The Tax Foundation, compliance will cost $409 billion for the year.

Why so expensive? Why so long?

The Tax Code has grown from 409,000 words in 1955 to 2.4 million words today, adding the equivalent of 89 words per day, with more to come despite Congress being in session only 111 days in 2016.

That doesn’t include Tax Regulations (the official interpretation of the Tax Code), which alone amounts to 7.7 million words, plus Proposed Regulations which are still waiting comments and testimony. There are also some 60,000 pages of related tax-related case law. All that time and complexity is good for tax lawyers, but reduces productivity and are barriers that discourage small business creation and expansion. So simplifying the code would create jobs and more news businesses, per the experts.

Snapshots of Income Tax History

(Chart credit: Americans for Tax Reform)

This chart at the left documents the growth of the income tax since its enactment 104 years ago. As Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, said: “The American Income Tax is perhaps the most dramatic example of how government grows at the expense of liberty. Slowly. Constantly, Inexorably.”

Bottom Lines

An upcoming, follow up report will spotlight opportunities that the federal government has to save on expenditures, and thus cut the ballooning federal deficit. Armed with these facts, professionals are in a better position to discern truth from fiction as the debate over federal tax policy will soon be raging. ##

(Image credits are as shown.)

Submitted by Matthew J. Silver to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Jobs Report at the Start of the Trump Economy

February 4th, 2017 Comments off
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Image credits, Live Satellite News, text graphics, MHProNews.

The second full week of the Trump Administration came to an end on Friday, and brought with it the first jobs report under the new commander in chief.

U.S. employers added the most workers in four months, while wage growth slowed slightly more than projected.

According to CNSNews, the report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showed total nonfarm payroll employment rose 227,000, beating estimates of a rise to 180,000. The unemployment rate ticked up a tenth of a point to 4.8 percent.

The Labor Department’s “Employment Situation Report” is released monthly, and it reflects data gathered in the pay period that includes the 12th of the month. Labor participation was up two-tenths of a point to 62.9 percent.

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Credit: CNS News.

This means that the report released today reflects the situation just prior to when President Trump was sworn in on January 20th.

As Daily Business News readers are aware, the January report reflects anticipation of President Trump’s policies, meetings and movement prior to taking office, including the highest Small Business Optimism Index in 37 years from the NFIB.

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Juanita Duggan, President and CEO of the National Federation of Independent Business (credit, NFIB).

We haven’t seen numbers like this in a long time,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan. “Small business is ready for a breakout, and that can only mean very good things for the U.S. economy. Business owners are feeling better about taking risks and making investments.

Private employment, excluding government agencies, rose by 237,000 after a 165,000 increase in December. Government employment fell by 10,000 and factory payrolls grew by 5,000.

Retailers increased payrolls by 45,900. Employment in financial activities was up 32,000, professional and business services rose by 39,000, and leisure and hospitality was up 34,000.

Per Bloomberg, hiring in construction, retail, finance and professional services helped labor numbers. The 36,000 increase in construction payrolls was the largest since March.

 

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Credit: CNS News.

Today’s report reflects the consumer confidence that the Trump presidency has inspired,” said White House press secretary Sean Spicer.

President Trump campaigned on how to make America work again. Even before he took office, the markets knew he would deliver on that promise.”

Spicer was optimistic, but also mentioned that Trump remained realistic about what needs to happen next.

The president’s already taken significant steps to turn our economy around and he is looking forward to ensuring that every American who wants a job has the opportunity to find one,” said Spicer.

While the president’s definitely pleased that the job growth has far surpassed expectations and that the labor force participation is rising, he also recognizes that there is a lot more work to be done.

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Dr. Ben Carson at his confirmation hearing. Credit: Fox News.

President Trump’s actions leading up to, and after, his inauguration, stand to have significant positive impact on the manufactured housing industry. One of the most influential was the President’s nomination of Dr. Ben Carson for HUD Secretary, and his comments on the importance of manufactured housing.

For more on President Trump’s activity, including the Executive Order regarding Dodd-Frank, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Unemployment Rate Tells One Story; Labor Participation Rate Determines Revenue, Federal Debt

August 8th, 2016 Comments off

Labor_Participation_Rate_CNBC_Bureau_of_Labor_statistics postedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsEach first Friday of the month the Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics issues its jobs report for the previous month—commonly called the U-3 number–an abundance of employment-related data, each of which has a story about the employment scene.

While the official unemployment rate held steady at 4.9 percent—called the “total unemployed, as a percent of the civilian labor force”– most economists look beyond that to what they call the U-6 number, which provides a broader perspective. That rate fell in June to 9.6 percent, the lowest level since April 2008, but rose slightly in July to 9.7 percent. It is defined as all the unemployed, plus “persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the labor force.” In other words, it is the unemployed, underemployed and the discouraged, as cnbc informs MHProNews.

Of concern is the labor force participation rate, which measures what part of the population is employed or seeking employment. That rate rose one tenth of a percent to 62.8 percent.

While job growth was only 24,000 in May, June’s numbers swelled to 292,000 and July another 255,000 jobs were added, statistics which have fueled a rise in wages following several years of tepid growth.

July’s average hourly wage rose to $25.69, while weekly wages hit $886.31.

Jobs are an important battleground in the race for the White House. Democrat Hillary Clinton has called for an increased spending in infrastructure programs, promising workers in a speech outside Denver “millions of jobs with rising incomes.”

Republican candidate Donald Trump meanwhile claims the Obama administration has allowed American companies to ship jobs overseas without creating growth at home. Trump also noted that then-Senator Clinton promised jobs in New York state that didn’t materialize.

While ten million jobs have been added since President Obama took office, it is the equivalent of about half the jobs added during Bill Clinton’s tenure in the White House, and a bit less than those added when Ronald Reagan was president.

Meanwhile, according to cnsnews, 94,333,000 Americans were not in the active labor force in July, just a bit of improvement from the 94,517,000 in June.

In July, while the unemployment rate remained at 4.9 percent, the number of those unemployed dropped 13,000 to 7,770,000, as the number of those employed rose 420,000 to 151,517,000.

The nation’s civilian noninstitutional population, comprised of all people 16 or older who were not in the military or an institution, reached 253,620,000 in July. Of those, 159,287,000 participated in the labor force, either holding a job or actively seeking one, equaling 62.8 percent of the 253,620,000 civilian noninstitutional population.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issued a report in July predicting that the labor force participation rate will fall to 58 percent in 2046. The number obviously may change based on any number of demographics, a change in male and female roles, economic conditions, technological developments as well as medical breakthroughs that could increase the age of the work force.

However, if the labor force participation hits 61 percent in 2046, the higher gross domestic product (GDP) would lead to increased revenues, higher interest rates, smaller budget deficits as well as less federal debt.

Conversely, if labor participation drops to 55 percent in 2046, the slowdown in economic growth will result in larger budget deficits and more federal debt.

Finally, the CBO forecast that the labor force will grow at the average rate of 0.4 percent per year during the coming 30 years, compared with 1.5 percent from 1966 to 2015. ##

(Graphic credit:CNBC/Bureau of Labor Statistics–labor force participation rate)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

 

Does Dodd-Frank Compliance take more than 10 million man hours a year?

November 3rd, 2011 Comments off

cfpb logo posted on MHProNews.com

CNSNews reports on a story worth fact checking. They allege that it takes businesses 10.2 million man hours a year by to comply with Dodd-Frank Regulations. They compared this with the 5.5 million man hours needed to manufacture “every iPhone out there.” The regulatory burden is costing Americans jobs and reducing productivity, while among the many hired for the new Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB), they assert that 228 government financial regulator positions are paying more than $225,000 a year.  One modest regional manufactured housing lender told MHProNews that compliance costs for their firm was about $500,000 a year.

(Graphic Credit: CFPB Logo)