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11 post(s) found

Phil Mickelson's Insider Trading Scandal: No Penalty Stroke?

Phil Mickelson

The Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) last month issued a statement alleging that famous golfer Phil Mickelson profited to the tune of at least $931,000 due to insider trading. While the two other men implicated in the case, a professional gambler and a former board member of Dean Foods, are facing potential jail time (the typical punishment in such situations), Mickelson hasn't been charged with any crime at all.

The U.S. federal government has been investigating this case for decades, but instead of being contrite and owning up to the alleged crimes Mickelson's lawyer issued a statement stating the pro golf player is an "innocent bystander" and he is not deserving of the focus and "false finger pointing."

Yes, Mickelson agreed to pay back the $931,000, as well as about $100,000 in interest, to the government. But as per the SEC's own rules, he should have never been in possession of this money in the first place.

Instead of facing jail time, however, Mickelson merely had to cut a check for $931,000. He didn't even have to promise to not engage in similar behavior in the future. Even for someone worth so much money, handing $931,000 to the government without putting up a fight seems suspicious.

Profitable Businesses to Start In 2016

Startup2016

Many consider self-employment the American dream and strive towards leaving their jobs behind. Lets take a look at some business that will be profitable in 2016 if you are one of these individuals looking for a business idea. You might consider what you know about and what you are good at doing. But looking at profitable industries can also be of great help.

The metals industry has a good profit margin, around 10% net, and there is plenty of demand at this time for coating and engravers. The repair of electronic equipment is something that everyone is looking for to save some money in comparison to purchasing the latest version. Net profit in the industry is a little bit better than 10.3%. Another place to look is technological consulting. Help companies get up to speed on new products and services in the marketplace.

Day Trader Tax Strategies Can Save Money

Day Trader Taxes

If you are a day trader, the following day trader tax strategies are for you.

Are you in the habit of trading stocks frequently on a daily basis? If so, there are some things you need to understand about the way the US government views this habit. If not, you could find yourself consumed with paperwork come April 15, and your profits will shrink once the IRS takes its share.

Here are some things you need to know if you are an active investor seeking to reduce your tax bills.

Trader versus Investor

These words each have special meaning in the tax world and carry with them some positives and negatives. By IRS definition, most individuals are considered investors. However, if your days are spent buying and selling, you are more likely a trader. Having this title could save you some serious cash at tax time. What is more, your investing expenses, like computer and other home office equipment are fully deductible.

H&R Block Earnings And Performance

H&RBlockTaxPrep

H & R Block is experiencing some bad moments as a result of the delay in the commencement of tax filing for the current year. The company made it known last year that their earnings have taken a bad shape and the situation is worsened by the fact that the company also had a loss in the last quarter. The unstable value of the currency also worsens the condition.

The situation looks horrible to them. Things do not seem favorable as there have been series of loses in recent times. For example, the last auditing showed that the value of shares dropped by more than 5%, making the stock to be valued at about $31. The effect of that downward trend still has an effect in the value of stocks in the current year.

Etsy Stock Jumps Even With Loss

Etsy

Etsy reported its fourth quarter results with $88 million in revenue and a 4 cent loss. The revenue was slightly higher than expected but the loss was 3 cents more than they thought. Gross merchandise sales leaped 23% in the quarter compared to the fourth quarter a year ago. The stock moved higher 13% after the announcement in after hours trading.

Sellers on the site number over 1.6 million in the quarter. And buyers on the site increased to 24 million. The stock had a strong initial offering last year but has struggled since then, still trading lower than its starting price.

Insider Buying With the Worst Yearly Market Start

2016 has been the worst ever start to a year of trading for the US stock market. The VIX is hovering near 30 as investors are exiting positions and moving into safer positions. The release of earnings reports for quarter four of 2015 hasn’t helped the markets recover very much either. The price of oil continues to dominate headlines and stock movements as oil stocks move lower and the price of oil declines.

Surprisingly insider selling hasn’t moved higher with overall selling in the market. And some insiders are actually taking this opportunity to purchase more shares of their companies.

Barnes and Noble (BKS) saw a director purchase 5000 shares recently as the stock has bottom out around $8.25 a share. The stock is down 44% this year as the Nook didn’t deliver on sales and the retail business has suffered with Amazon dominating book sales nationwide. Sales at retail declined from $1.84 billion to $1.80 billion over the last year. Digital sales including Nook devises fell from $133.9 billion to $97.8 billion. This one director, Scott S Cower, sees some upside but investors and hedge funds are still resistant to going long.

How Long To Hold Your Tax Records

taxdocs

The IRS is able to audit your tax return for three years after you file it and  you are able to amend a tax return for three years after it is due. So you should keep at least 3 years of tax forms and tax documents, showing all your income, expenses and deductions for that amount of time. This year, you will want to have tax files for 2014, 2013, and 2012. Obamacare has also added the need to keep track of health insurance records along with your tax documents starting this tax season.

TurboTax Fraud Issues Halt State Filing For a Day

Feb 10 2015
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TurboTax State Returns

Last Friday around 6pm, TurboTax resumed state filing after a day of pausing the process as a number of fraud filings were sent through the service. Identify thief's are using the popular tax software to file fake state returns for individuals who’s information has been stolen.  The refunds are cashed by the thieves without the affected government agency or the individual knowing there was an issue. CEO of Intuit, Brad Smith, reported that his company attacked the issue and felt comfortable moving forward within the 24 hour period.

How to Track Down Debtors Around the World

English: Loan payment schedule of a 1-year, fi...

English: Loan payment schedule of a 1-year, fixed-size payment loan with 3% monthly interest. Shows the accumulation of the interest, the payments and how much of the total cost consists of interest. The effective annual percentage rate is calculated. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How to Track Down Debtors Around the World

It is becoming less and less common for businesses to know their customers personally, especially if those customers live on a different continent. There was a time when companies only did business with their neighbors, people with whom their kids went to school. The internet has made it possible now to have customers who do not even speak the same language you do, much less have the same laws. While such a global economy has proved beneficial for many, it is not without its challenges. When laws vary by country, how will your company enforce contracts when payments are past due?

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