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Accounting News Roundup: Fiscal Commission Report Reactions; Pivot Table Won’t Add Up, You Say?; The IRS Needs Volunteers, Connecticut! | 11.11.10

Veterans Day – November 11 [DVA]
Remember those who served.

Deficit Panel Pushes Cuts [WSJ]
A White House commission laid out a sweeping proposal to cut the federal budget deficit by hundreds of billions a year by targeting sacrosanct areas of U.S. tax and spending policy, such as Social Security benefits, middle-class tax breaks and defense spending.

The preliminary plan in its current form would end or cap a wide range of breaks relied on by the middle class—including the deduction for home-mortgage interest. It would tax capital gains and dividends at the higher rates now levied on wage income. To compensate, one version of the plan would dramatically lower and simplify individual rates, to 9%, 15% and 24%.

Deficit Panel Co-Chair Plan Is Tough, Creative, and Credible, But What Next? [TaxVox]
The Fiscal Commission gets a thumbs-up from The Tax Policy Center, “The co-chairs of President Obama’s much-maligned bipartisan fiscal commission have proposed a remarkable plan for both reducing the federal deficit and reforming the tax code. It is remarkable because it’s tough, specific, credible, and even creative. On the spending side, it carefully spreads the pain throughout government. And on the tax side, it makes a strong case for reform and presents no less than three ways to get there.”

Incorrigible: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Must Go [Forbes]
Francine McKenna’s latest at Forbes takes on the GSEs.

2010 Tax Filing Season Statistics [TaxProf Blog]
70% of 141.5 million tax returns were e-filed; average refund of $3,189.

Scaled back mortgage-interest deduction raises concerns [On the Money/The Hill]
Michael Berman, chairman of the Mortgage Bankers Association voiced concern over the plan to limit mortgage deduction to exclude second residences, home equity loans and mortgages over $500,000.

“Given the fragile state of the nation’s housing market, now is not the time to be scaling back incentives for homeownership,” he said today in a statement. “The mortgage interest deduction is one of the pillars of our national housing policy, and limiting its use will have negative repercussions for consumers and home values up and down the housing chain.”

Spreadsheets: Why Pivot Tables Won’t Sum [CFO]
Your dilemma – solved!

The Daily Docket: Ambac, IRS Strike Deal [Bankruptcy Beat/WSJ]
“Ambac Financial Group Inc. struck a deal with the Internal Revenue Service Tuesday that requires the IRS to notify the bond insurer before taking any actions involving hundreds of millions of dollars in tax refunds.”

A Strategic Plan for Internal Audit [Marks on Governance/IIA]
News you can use.

IRS looking for help [Bristol Press]
Calling all Connecticut residents who are feeling charitable – VITA/TCE volunteers are needed.

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