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Don’t Forget About These 5 Commonly Forgotten Tax Deductions - Wall Street Cheat Sheet

ERIC MCWHINNIE/ Wall Street CheatSheet




Tax season is officially here. The Internal Revenue Service is now accepting and processing taxreturns. Considering there will be nearly 150 million individual returns filed this year, Americans should double-check their forms and make sure common deductions are not missed.

The timeless saying, “It’s not how much you make, it’s how much you keep,” is best applied at taxtime. Americans will spend more on taxes than they do on food, clothing, and housing combined, according to the Tax Foundation. Employees will work about an average of 25 days to pay their payroll taxes, 14 days for sales and excise taxes, 12 days for property taxes, and 7 days to pay other taxes such as estate taxes. Since corporations often pass expenses to...  Read More

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You Can Still Escape Sales Tax Online - Forbes

Robert W. Wood, Contributor

If you are paying sales tax on all your internet purchases you’re in the minority. Many transactions still escape it legitimately and many others slip through the cracks. Most of us got used to convenient online buying. The bonus of no tax was sweet, but it was always clear it wouldn’t last.

45 states and the District of Columbia have sales tax. Each has a use tax too. Property purchased online and brought into your state triggers use tax. The only states without sales and use taxes are Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire, and Oregon. Thus, unless you are in one of those 5 states, you probably should have been paying use tax all along on purchases escaping sales tax.

...  Read More

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America's 5 Most Hated Taxes - The Motley Fool

By Sean Williams 



Halloween has come and gone, but I'd bet that I can scare the heebie-jeebies out of a vast majority of you by uttering one word.

Up to the challenge? Think you can handle it? Because here it comes ...

Taxes!

OK, fright may not be so much the word as anger, frustration, or the sudden urge to pull your hair out mixed with an overwhelming need to scream profusely at the governmental agency that's taxing you.

Taxes are what we might refer to as a necessary evil. Taxes help fund many branches of our government, which in turn provide for federal jobs, health and financial security for retirees in the form of Social Security and Medicare, and social funding for schools, prisons, clinical research projects, our national defense, and a vast number of other social projects.......

...  Read More

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Weddings get too costly — for guests

43% say they’ve declined invitations because of the expense
By Quentin Fottrell MarketWatch
 



Throwing a wedding costs a fortune. Going to one isn’t a bargain either. As guests struggle to afford to attend, the bride and the groom both could end up left at the altar, a new survey suggests.

As the cost of attending weddings increases, so does the volume of RSVPs marked “Declines with regret.” Some 43% of Americans say they’ve declined to attend a wedding for financial reasons, according to a new poll by the American of Consumer Credit Counseling. The average cost of attending a wedding — including expenses like hotel stays, bachelor and bachelorette parties, child care, and party attire — reached roughly $539 this year, up 60% from 2012, according to anAmerican Express...  Read More

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Why Are Walmart Stores Such A Mess?




Walter Loeb, Contributor
Forbes

I cover major developments in the retail industry 


(Image credit: AFP/Getty Images via @daylife)

Over the years I have visited many Walmart stores and have seen some very disorderly stores. But I found a store in total disarray during my visit last Saturday to the Pittsfield, Massachusetts store (number 1201).  It was disturbing.

Everywhere I looked, whether it was the men’s, women’s or juniors departments, merchandise was not well assorted by style, size, or color. There was no fashion message; and the presentation was poor–goods hung loose on separate racks in a most unattractive way. In the women’s intimate apparel department there were many bras on the floor – certainly unappealing, not to mention an unsanitary condition.
 

...  Read More

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US economy adds 195K jobs, jobless rate 7.6 pct.

By CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER, AP Economics Writer

(AP) — U.S. employers added 195,000 jobs in June and hiring was more robust in the two previous months than earlier estimated. The gains raise hopes for a stronger economy in the second half of 2013.

The Labor Department said Friday that the economy also added 20,000 more jobs in May and 50,000 more in April than initially reported. The unemployment rate stayed at 7.6 percent, but for a good reason: More people started looking for work. The government counts people as unemployed only if they are searching for jobs.

...  Read More

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How Disney Turned Itself Around in the 1990s & Tonto

By Brendan Byrnes The Motley Fool

We talk with author and media theorist Douglas Rushkoff, who has published 10 books on media, culture, and technology. He joins us to discuss his most recent work,Present Shock, about living in today's immediate, always-on world.

In this video segment, Douglas explains why Disney's (NYSE: DIS  )  attempt to leverage its legacy products and characters didn't work, and how "living in RAM" succeeded where Mickey was doomed to fail. The full version of the interview can be found here. ....
 

Douglas Rushkoff: There's one way for Disney to make money, and the way they were looking to do it in the late '80s and early '90s was by selling off their historical assets on a certain level, or selling them out. "Oh, here's Mickey again." "Here's Cinderella." "Here's...  Read More

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What China's Stagnating Economy Means for the World

By Dan Carroll | The Motley Fool


Crunch! That's the sound of China's manufacturing sector as the slowdown intensifies in the world's second-largest economy. The country's once-powerhouse economic growth has slowed from a double-digit percentage rise just a few years ago to growth of less than 8% projected for this year, and manufacturing has fallen right alongside that number. HSBC's Flash Purchasing Managers Index for China, showing the health of the manufacturing industry nationwide, declined to 48.3 in June, dropping nearly a full point from May's reading and now solidly in contraction territory.

...  Read More

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Cramer: A 'Nightmare Scenario' for Both Bulls and Bears

By: Paul Toscano | Producer, CNBC.com


CNBC's Jim Cramer has become more cautious on the market right now and conditions are creating a "nightmare scenario" for just about everyone involved, he said on "Squawk on the Street" Monday.

"I don't like the market as much because I do believe the quarters aren't going to be that great. I just don't think they're going to be blowout," Cramer said. "What I'm calling for is a market which doesn't really do anything." 

"I have gotten more cautious. The mechanics of the market are going to play out here," he said. 

This caution is based on the impending "markup" period by aggressive growth funds that are looking to preserve gains, and this kind of rationale can trump market fundamentals. Along with the upcoming Fed meeting,...  Read More

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Duke Grad Student Secretly Lived In a Van to Escape Loan Debt

By Mandi Woodruff | Business Insider
 

 

By the time Ken Ilgunas was wrapping up his last year of undergraduate studies at the University of Buffalo in 2005, he had no idea what kind of debt hole he'd dug himself into. 

He had majored in the least marketable fields of study possible — English and History — and had zero job prospects after getting turned down for no fewer than 25 paid internships. 

"That was a wake-up call," he told Business Insider. "I had this huge $32,000 student debt and at the time I was pushing carts at Home Depot, making $8 an hour. I was just getting kind of frantic." 

Back then, student loans had yet to become the...  Read More

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