News 

US debt hits record under Trump, Republicans mum…

“But despite faster growth, the budget deficit climbed 17 percent to $779 billion last year, the worst since 2012” writes Virginie Montet for yahoo.com. “If we don’t have a strong military, you don’t have to worry about debt, you have bigger problems,” Trump told reporters last week.The massive corporate tax cuts that Trump pushed for at the end of 2017, and the surge in spending, especially in defense, have increased the fiscal deficit for the world’s largest economy.The National Debt Clock shows the bad news about US federal borrowing, swelled…

Read More
News 

A bombshell new report about Trump’s alleged interference with federal investigations ‘raises serious questions’ about whether Matthew Whitaker misled Congress, aides say

“Last week, the Senate confirmed William Barr, a former White House adviser and attorney general under President George H.W. Bush, to serve as Trump’s attorney general” writes Sonam Sheth for businessinsider.com. Before taking over as acting attorney general, Whitaker made several public comments questioning the scope and validity of Mueller’s appointment.Former acting attorney general Matthew Whitaker was unequivocal when he told lawmakers on the House Judiciary Committee that he did not discuss any investigations with President Donald Trump.Whitaker took over as acting attorney general after Trump fired Jeff Sessions last…

Read More
Markets News Regulators 

Fed Chairman Concerned Over Shrinking Bank Market

“Reports said Powell noted that looser community bank regulations may help keep branches open” reports pymnts.com. That may be good news for banks, but some policymakers are concerned that industry consolidation is reducing access to financial services in rural areas.He pointed to the Community Reinvestment Act, which encourages banks to loan to small businesses.Bank mergers aren’t the only factor behind closing bank branches, however.As concerns are raised about how industry consolidation might impact competition, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is warning that it could hinder small businesses’ access to capital…

Read More
News 

Amazon paid no federal taxes on $11.2 billion in profits last year, according to group’s analysis

“That would place the company’s effective federal tax rate below the rate paid by the poorest 20 percent of American households, which had an effective federal tax rate of 1.5 percent in 2015, according to the Tax Policy Center” writes Christopher Ingraham for sun-sentinel.com. Like many other large companies, Amazon reduces its effective tax rate each year using a variety of credits, rebates and loopholes.That would represent nearly half of the total federal tax bill levied on the company’s profit of $11.2 billion, he said.It is the second year in…

Read More
News 

A federal judge placed a gag order on Roger Stone and his lawyers to avoid biasing potential jurors

“A federal judge has placed a partial gag order on the GOP strategist Roger Stone and his lawyers in order not to bias potential jurors” writes Grace Panetta for businessinsider.com. Arash Hashemi, a criminal defense attorney, told INSIDER in a email that partial or full gag orders are “common in most high-profile cases, and in the Roger Stone case Judge Berman Jackson may take this step because Stone has already been vocal about his indictment.”.  Source: businessinsider.com

Read More
News 

Amazon riled up critics by not paying federal taxes — and it’s in a position to offset future profits, too

“Companies can use a federal tax loss carryforward by deducting it from their income in another year or years” writes Francine Mckenna for marketwatch.com. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez slammed Amazon for getting a federal tax refund despite booking billions in profit the last two years.Amazon still had to set aside $565 million for future federal income taxes due, and make an overall $1.2 billion net tax provision that reduced its 2018 net income.Amazon also has tax credit carryforwards of approximately $1.7 billion and federal capital loss carryforwards for income tax purposes was…

Read More
News 

Amazon riled up the left for not paying federal taxes — and it’s in a position to offset future profits, too

“Companies can use a federal tax loss carryforward by deducting it from their income in another year or years” writes Francine Mckenna for marketwatch.com. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez slammed Amazon for getting a federal tax refund despite booking billions in profit the last two years.Amazon still had to set aside $565 million for future federal income taxes due, and make an overall $1.2 billion net tax provision that reduced its 2018 net income.Amazon also has tax credit carryforwards of approximately $1.7 billion and federal capital loss carryforwards for income tax purposes was…

Read More
News 

Newsom, Trump spar over bullet train money

“Gavin Newsom is sparring with President Donald Trump over $3.5 billion in federal money the state was awarded to build a high-speed rail line between Los Angeles and San Francisco” reports thebusinessjournal.com. Newsom, a Democrat, made clear he plans to finish the environmental work required to keep the federal money. “This is CA’s money, allocated by Congress for this project.Trump seized on the issue, tweeting Wednesday that “California has been forced to cancel the massive bullet train project” and must repay the federal government $3.5 billion. “We want that money…

Read More
News 

Was it worth it? Many suffered in Trump’s wall budget loss

“Unpaid federal employees recalled so they can pay federal contractors” writes Columnist Focusing On for washingtonpost.com. Was President Trump’s 35-day shutdown and the menace of another three weeks of dispute worth more than a month without pay for 800,000 federal employees?. Federal employees are getting back pay, though agencies have been slow in fully paying some staffers all they are owed. Source: washingtonpost.com

Read More