News Articles

Showcase These 5 Essential Skills to Show You're a Standout Remote Worker

Published on November 23, 2020

Showing you have the essential skills needed to be an effective communicator in different areas can help you land the job you’ve been eyeing—especially if it’s a remote position.

Your workplace communications dictate how successful you are on the job—and they also affect your productivity. In fact, the 2019 Workplace Productivity and Communications Technology Report found that nearly 15% of employees’ total work time is being wasted on poor and inefficient communications.

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Legalization: What's Ahead with Cannabis Accounting

Published on November 23, 2020

Ballot initiatives relating to cannabis will be voted on in five states — Arizona, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey and South Dakota — this November. Topics being considered are presented in Marijuana on the ballot

If you are a CPA working with clients in the cannabis industry, or if you think you might in the future, you’ll want a firm grasp of the issues regarding cannabis accounting. 

Cannabis? Marijuana? THC? CBD? Hemp?
Like most industries, the cannabis industry has its own vocabulary. 

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Testing FASB's Goodwill Impairment Model Through a Pandemic

Published on November 23, 2020

Many have started to question the goodwill impairment model under FASB ASC 350-20 and whether it paints the most accurate financial picture in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. In September, the Private Company Council, the American Institute of CPAs’ Technical Issues Committee and Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council raised issues with the Financial Accounting Standards Board related to the current goodwill impairment model and whether we need an alternative solution or practical expedient. 

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IRS Issues Details on W-2 Reporting on Payroll Tax Deferral

Published on November 23, 2020

The Internal Revenue Service has posted instructions for both employers and employees about how to handle the Form W-2 reporting for the payroll tax deferral under President Trump’s executive action. 

Trump signed a memorandum in August to defer the 6.2 percent employee’s share of Social Security taxes from Sept. 1, 2020 until Dec. 31, 2020, but the taxes would need to be repaid by April 30 of next year. So far, relatively few companies have implemented the tax deferral as it would need to be repaid by either the employees or employer. However, the federal government and military are both implementing it. The payroll tax deferral only applies to employees with biweekly pre-tax income of less than $4,000, with the goal of stimulating the economy in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. 

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IRS Adjusts Tax Item Amounts for 2021 Due to Inflation

Published on November 23, 2020

The Internal Revenue Service issued its annual inflation adjustments Monday for tax year 2021, revising more than 60 tax provisions, including tax rate schedules, standard deduction amounts and more. 

Other provisions in Revenue Procedure 2020-45 include:

(Source:  AccountingToday – Daily Briefing – October 27, 2020)

 

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FASB Proposes Three Improvements to Leases Standard

Published on November 23, 2020

The Financial Accounting Standards Board issued a proposed accounting standards update Tuesday to improve three areas of its lease accounting standard. 

For lessors, the proposed changes would amend the classification requirements for leases in which the lease payments are mostly variable by requiring lessors to classify and account for those leases as operating leases. In doing so, FASB said the risk of lessors recognizing losses at the start of the lease for sales-type leases that are expected to be profitable would be mitigated by the improvements in the standard. FASB believes the resulting financial reporting would more faithfully represent the underlying economics of the lease. 

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Accounting and Financial Controllers Steer the Ship

Published on October 20, 2020

Accounting and financial controllers are some of the hardest-working executives in an organization, but unfortunately, they are often overlooked. There are more than 250,000 controllers in the United States, and 810,000 worldwide, yet CFOs and the C suite seem to get all the media attention. 

Around the world, companies and organizations turn to their controllers for everything from compliance to cash flow, internal controls and closing the books. With nearly a million people with controller job titles worldwide, there are nearly three controllers to every one CFO in the U.S., and more than five-to-one controllers to CFOs worldwide. 

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Risk Alert: COVID-19 and the Return to Work

Published on October 20, 2020

The emergence of the novel coronavirus quickly upended the way businesses, including accounting firms, around the United States operated. Shelter-in-place orders prompted millions to pivot nearly overnight to halt business travel, begin working from home, and use virtual conferencing software to substitute for what previously would be in-person meetings and visits. 

Now some CPA firm leaders may be considering how to phase staff back to the office environment, given that some parts of the country are experiencing lower community transmission rates of the pathogen. 

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IRS Releases Final Rules on Business Meals and Entertainment

Published on October 20, 2020

The IRS issued final regulations (T.D. 9925) implementing provisions of the law known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), P.L. 115-97, that disallow a business deduction for most entertainment expenses. The regulations also clarify the treatment of business deductions for food and beverages that remain deductible, generally limited to 50% of qualifying expenditures, and how taxpayers may distinguish those expenditures from entertainment. 

The final regulations adopt, with a number of clarifications in response to comments, proposed regulations issued in February 2020 (REG-100814-19; see also “Proposed Regs. Issued on Meal and Entertainment Expense Deductions,” JofA, Feb. 24, 2020). The proposed regulations were based, in turn, on Notice 2018-76, published in October 2018. 

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Let's End the Debate: Automation Will Never Replace Accountants

Published on October 20, 2020

Automation has brought significant changes to the accounting profession over the last decade. While some tools have made accountants’ lives easier, others have chipped away at their roles as startups seek to disrupt a legacy industry. The tech companies that developed these tools have also created and perpetuated a false debate about whether automation will overtake the industry completely and make accountants irrelevant. 

It’s time to end that debate. A valued accountant is a holistic business advisor to clients, solving human problems that technology simply cannot — and will never be able to — solve on its own.

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