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Accounting News Roundup: Ireland Closes Their Infamous Loophole; No Nite Moves at Supreme Court; The Fight Against Securities Fraud Lawsuits | 10.16.13

House GOP Abandons Its Proposal [WSJ]
Last-minute protests from conservatives in the House created a day of delay and confusion in Congress's efforts to avoid a U.S. debt default, as Republican leaders failed to craft a GOP budget proposal that could muster enough votes to pass. In an embarrassing retreat for House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio), House leaders had to cancel plans to bring a GOP bill to the floor for a vote Tuesday night. The setback came two days before the Treasury says it will have trouble meeting the nation's financial obligations. Senate Democratic and Republican leaders resumed negotiations and neared agreement on a compromise that had been put on hold while they awaited House action.

Senate Leaders Resume Fiscal Talks as House Scraps Vote [Bloomberg]
U.S. Senate leaders are rushing to lock up an agreement to end the fiscal impasse, stepping in after House Republicans’ last-minute plan to avert a U.S. government default collapsed. The emerging Senate accord may be announced as early as this morning, though passage in the Republican-led House is far from assured and one ratings company yesterday placed the U.S.’s AAA credit rating on a negative watch.

Measured praise from U.S. senators on Irish tax loophole change [Reuters]
Two senior U.S. senators on Tuesday lauded Ireland for its decision to close a loophole used by Apple Inc to shelter over $40 billion from taxation, but stressed questions linger about Dublin's role in corporate tax dodging. "Ireland's promise to reform its tax rules to stop multinationals from using Irish subsidiaries to escape or defer paying taxes anywhere in the world is encouraging," senators Carl Levin and John McCain said in a joint statement. "Important questions do remain, however," they said.

Supreme Court says 'no' to NY strip club's tax relief plea [DMWT]
I'm sure Clarence Thomas is disappointed.

Clinton: Corporate Tax Rate ‘Needs to Come Down’ [TF]
“All over the world expenditure has not gone down,” Clinton said. “[B]ut there has been a shift away from corporate taxes to consumption taxes and income tax. We need to reform our corporate tax rate, not to the same level as Ireland but it needs to come down.” 

A Push to End Securities Fraud Lawsuits Gains Momentum [DealBook]
Securities fraud litigation — suits against companies for disclosure violations of the federal securities laws — has been a big business over the years. From 1997 to 2012, more than 3,050 securities litigation cases were brought, according to Cornerstone Research, a financial and economic consulting firm. Companies and their insurers paid $73.1 billion in judgments and settlements, and plaintiffs’ lawyers alone collected almost $17 billion in fees, Cornerstone’s research shows. Not surprisingly, corporate America has spent decades criticizing this type of litigation as little more than costly nuisance suits. Not only that, since the chief executives and other officers who are accused of having made fraudulent statements never have to pay out of their own pockets, the companies end up paying their own shareholders. In other words, shareholders are really paying this money to themselves — with a nice tip for the lawyers, of course.

Man flips out over price of ranch packet [SPI]
A man wanting more ranch dressing than he could get for free at a Ballard Jack in the Box Monday afternoon assaulted a customer who tried to intervene in a conflict between the ranch consumer and cashier, Seattle police report. Just before 12:30 p.m., a man approached the counter at the Northwest Leary Way restaurant to ask an employee for some ranch dip. The employee handed him two packets of ranch, but the man asked for a third packet. When the clerk told the man that a third ranch packet would cost him a quarter, the man threw a tantrum and yelled about being overcharged, according to Seattle police reports.

Posted in ANR