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24 minutes | Jul 22, 2021
Deloitte Partner Defies Accounting’s Diversity Gap
Thalia Smith, a partner at Deloitte, is using her experience as a Black woman in the Big Four to help students looking to break into accounting.Smith, an audit and assurance partner, is leading Deloitte's $75 million effort to close the diversity gap in the accounting profession. Just 2% of the firm's partners, principals, and managing directors are Black.On this week's episode of Talking Tax, Smith talks with reporter Amanda Iacone about her journey to becoming a Deloitte partner and the hurdles she faced as she advanced in an overwhelmingly white profession.Smith earned scholarships that helped her pay for her education and had other support as she prepared for the CPA exam. Deloitte is trying to take out the "luck" element of the process, she said. The firm has committed $30 million to scholarships for hundreds of Black and Latino students.Have feedback on this episode of Talking Tax? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
12 minutes | Jul 15, 2021
Rep. DelBene on the New Monthly Child Tax Credit
Tens of millions of families across the U.S. this week received their first monthly advance on the child tax credit from the IRS.The new monthly payments, which launched Thursday, are the result of a pandemic relief law that also temporarily boosted the credit's value. Households will receive up to $300 per month for each child under age 6, and up to $250 for each child ages 6 to 17.While the expanded credit is currently only on the books for this year, Democratic lawmakers are pushing to make sure it stays around long-term.House Ways and Means Committee member Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.) is among the lawmakers who have long championed an expanded tax credit as a way to help reduce child poverty. On this week’s episode of our podcast, Talking Tax, DelBene talks with reporter Kaustuv Basu about why Democrats pushed for the advanced payments and whether a permanent extension is possible.Have feedback on this episode of Talking Tax? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
18 minutes | Jul 8, 2021
Audit Regulator Could Be in Leadership Limbo for Months
The U.S. audit regulator is slated to get fresh leadership after a turbulent few years that culminated in the removal of its chairman last month.But it could take months for a new slate of leaders to be selected and installed as members of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. The board faces a challenge in improving the morale of the PCAOB’s 800-person staff after a report released last month detailed leadership failures that cultivated a culture of fear and mistrust.Among other issues, the incoming board will have to address a 2020 law related to its oversight of auditors in China and international rules that lay out how firms should police their compliance with ethics and audit requirements.Lynn Turner, former SEC chief accountant, was among those who called for leadership changes at the board. Turner and Daniel Goelzer, a founding PCAOB member, spoke with Talking Tax host Amanda Iacone about what's next for the small regulator and what new board members should do to restore trust. Listen to the episode here.Have feedback on this episode of Talking Tax? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
10 minutes | Jul 1, 2021
European Tax Reporting Rule Has Multinationals on Edge
Large multinational corporations have for a few years now been required to report to the EU how much they pay in taxes to each European country they operate in. But now, after an agreement last month, it looks like those reports will soon be made public.On this episode of our weekly podcast, Talking Tax, Willy de Molina, a transfer pricing partner with Deloitte, talks about the impact this new rule might have. Molina, based in Spain, told Bloomberg Tax editor Joe Stanley-Smith that the headaches this rule could cause go beyond logistics, with possible reputational risks for some companies.Have feedback on this episode of Talking Tax? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
26 minutes | Jun 24, 2021
Digital Advertising Profits Entice State Tax Collectors
Pandemic-related budget fears have prompted states to search for new sources of tax revenue. Lawmakers across the country are beginning to look toward social media as a mother lode of untapped corporate tax revenue.Social media tech giants, of course, aren't a fan of that approach. Maryland’s first-in-the-nation digital advertising tax has drawn legal challenges from Comcast Cable Communications, Verizon Media Inc., and other corporate heavyweights who argue the tax is unconstitutional.On today's episode of our weekly podcast, Talking Tax, Bloomberg Tax's Michael Bologna hosts a pros-and-cons discussion on state digital advertising taxes. Peter Enrich, a law professor at Northeastern University, and Pilar Mata, executive director of the Tax Executives Institute, debate whether states should try to tax Twitter, Facebook, and other media giants.
12 minutes | Jun 17, 2021
G7 Tax Agreement Was Big, But Now Comes the Hard Part
After years of grueling negotiations, the world's wealthiest countries reached an agreement on how—and how much—to tax multinational corporations.Now comes what could be a heavier lift: Getting buy-in from the rest of the world.Kate Barton, EY's global vice chair for tax, joins this week's episode of Talking Tax to sort through what the recent G-7 agreement means. She also touches on how getting approval from dozens of other countries—not to mention each of their respective legislatures—could be a more difficult task. Barton tells Bloomberg Tax's Hamza Ali that the pact is indeed as big of a deal as it seems.Have feedback on this episode of Talking Tax? Give us a call and leave a voicemail at 703-341-3690.
20 minutes | Jun 10, 2021
Inside the Frenzied Launch of the PPP Loan Program
The first loan approved through the Small Business Administration's Paycheck Protection Program went out the door just one week after the program was created last spring.At the time, with the pandemic shutting down nearly the entire country, the economic devastation looked like it could be limitless. The PPP was designed to help small business owners survive, offering government-backed loans that could be entirely forgiven if used to cover payroll and other approved business expenses.As the head of the SBA's Office of Capital Access, Bill Briggs was in right in the eye of this hurricane. Briggs joins this week's episode of our podcast, Talking Tax, to reflect on the PPP, which stopped processing new loans about two weeks ago. Briggs, now in the private sector, speaks with Bloomberg Tax's David Hood about the launch of the program, its future, and efforts to stop pandemic relief fraud.
18 minutes | Jun 3, 2021
Congressman Kildee on Expanding the EV Tax Credit
A federal tax credit has played a big role in speeding adoption of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids, offering consumers up to $7,500 off their year-end tax bill if they buy a qualifying vehicle.But Congress designed the credit to phase out as manufacturers established EVs as viable parts of their product line, setting a sales threshold that Tesla and General Motors passed a few years ago.Rep. Dan Kildee (D-Mich.) is among the lawmakers who want to expand the credit as a way to keep encouraging electric vehicle sales as part of a broader climate strategy. Kildee has been fine-tuning a proposal with Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and the White House to expand the credit.In this week’s episode of our podcast, Talking Tax, reporter Kaustuv Basu speaks with Kildee about the future of the tax credit, how it fits into the Biden administration's infrastructure plan, and the move towards all-electric pickup trucks.
9 minutes | May 27, 2021
Pioneering Black CPA Reflects on His Long Career
A few weeks ago, a Talking Tax listener reached out about an episode from last summer that focused on why so few CPAs are Black.Lynnwood G. Campbell's stories from a more than 40-year-long career in accounting were so fascinating, we invited him on this week's show. Campbell, now retired, started out at what is now PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, then spent decades at the Treasury Department.Campbell spoke with podcast hosts Amanda Iacone and Jeff Leon about why he went into accounting in the late 1960s, the fortuitous way he landed at PwC, and how he managed to thrive at a time when most other Black accountants weren't able to.
14 minutes | May 20, 2021
Red Hot SPAC Market Cools After Accounting Warning
The market for special-purpose acquisition companies, or SPACs, was all the rage over the last year, with exponential asset growth in just a few months plus the involvement of celebrities like R&B singer Ciara and former Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez.Then, last month, the Securities and Exchange Commission threw a sudden damper on it: new accounting guidance that forced many SPACs to issue financial restatements, which continue to appear just about daily.Did the SPAC market just hit a wall? Or was it more like a speed bump?On today's episode of our podcast, Talking Tax, Bloomberg Tax's Nicola White speaks with Demetrios Frangiskatos of BDO about why the SPAC market got so hot, what the SEC's guidance really did to it, and where it might be heading in the near future.
15 minutes | May 13, 2021
Biden, Yellen Inject New Life Into Global Tax Talks
The Biden administration has given a boost to a years-long effort toward global agreement on digital tax rules as negotiators work to strike a deal in the coming months.Since she took office, Janet Yellen’s Treasury Department has started to reshape the conversation on both elements of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s two-part plan for a global tax overhaul. Treasury’s proposal to simplify the OECD’s “Pillar One”—which would move more tax revenue to countries where companies have users or consumers, instead of their headquarters—has helped move the talks past a stalemate. And a Biden administration proposal to hike the U.S.’s own global minimum rate to 21% has shaken up negotiations at the OECD over the minimum corporate tax rate, known as “Pillar Two.”On this week's episode of our podcast, Talking Tax, we hear from Marcus Heyland, managing director of tax at KPMG in Washington. Until March, Marcus was a tax policy adviser at the OECD, where he worked on the Pillar One and Two plans.Bloomberg Tax's Isabel Gottlieb talks to Heyland about the impact of the new U.S. administration on the global talks, and what issues negotiators are still grappling with as they try to reach an agreement this year.
16 minutes | May 6, 2021
New York Democrat Suozzi Takes on the SALT Cap
Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-N.Y.) is among lawmakers from high-tax states who want to repeal the $10,000 cap on deductions for state and local taxes paid. Individuals in Democratic states like New York and California have seen their tax bills go up as a result of the cap, which was part of the 2017 tax law.Suozzi is leading the fight against the cap, trying to pressure the Biden administration and leaders in Congress to include the repeal in an upcoming legislative package.In this week’s episode of Talking Tax, reporter Kaustuv Basu talks to Suozzi about the battle to get rid of the cap and what he sees happening in the next few months.
15 minutes | Apr 29, 2021
Wealth Advisers Grapple With Latest Biden Tax Plan
President Joe Biden this week outlined his plan to increase taxes on wealthy individuals as a way to pay for investments in childcare and education.An almost doubling of the federal capital gains tax rate and a provision curtailing a tax break on property transferred to heirs at death are among the changes in the American Families Plan. But noticeably absent are any increases to the estate tax—either by raising the top rate or by cutting the amount that wealthy families can pass on to the next generation tax-free, both of which are issues Biden campaigned on.In this week's episode of Talking Tax, reporter Allyson Versprille speaks to Brad Dillon, a senior wealth strategist at UBS Group AG in New York City.Dillon discusses the impact the Biden plan would have on wealthy individuals if enacted and whether it makes sense to plan for those changes now.
12 minutes | Apr 22, 2021
Supreme Court to Weigh in on State Charity Oversight
The U.S. Supreme Court will consider a case Monday involving a California law requiring nonprofits to disclose the identities of their major donors to state officials.Americans for Prosperity Foundation, a Charles Koch-backed nonprofit, and the Thomas Moore Law center argue that the law violates the First Amendment and have asked the high court to review a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upholding the law.The case has drawn attention for its potential impact on elections: Supporters of the law say it protects the charitable sector from a flood of anonymous, politically motivated donations.On this episode of our weekly podcast, Talking Tax, Bloomberg Law’s Jeff Leon talks with University of Notre Dame professor Lloyd Hitoshi Mayer about the case, Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Becerra.
20 minutes | Apr 15, 2021
Pandemic-Challenged IRS in Line for Big Funding Boost
It has been a challenging year for the IRS, which is dealing with yet another prolonged tax-filing season while also distributing pandemic relief payments to hundreds of millions of people.Those challenges come at a time when the agency has struggled for years to carry out its core duties of auditing returns, collecting taxes, and answering its phones due to underfunding and staffing shortages.President Joe Biden is seeking to reverse these trends through a substantial increase to the IRS’s budget—he asked Congress to boost the agency’s baseline funding by more than 10% to $13.2 billion. The president hopes a bigger budget will allow the IRS to audit more wealthy individuals and corporations and plans to pair the increased enforcement revenue with tax hikes on corporations to pay for his infrastructure plan.In this week’s episode of Talking Tax, reporter Allyson Versprille speaks to former IRS Commissioner John Koskinencq about how years of budget cuts have impacted the IRS and what an increase—like the one requested by the Biden administration—would mean for the agency.
9 minutes | Apr 8, 2021
For Cannabis Companies, Tax Law Hinders Growth
The cannabis industry is booming, but a provision in the federal tax code is holding it back, two attorneys in the industry said.The provision, Section 280E, doesn’t allow for tax deductions or credits stemming from trafficking in controlled substances, such as cannabis. The provision means some cannabis businesses owe more money to the IRS than they bring in, and is a frequent subject of litigation.The issue is increasingly coming into focus as states have moved to legalize marijuana. Last month, New York became at least the 15th state to allow adults to use cannabis. Progress at the federal level is still politically complicated. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has said he plans to pursue comprehensive marijuana legislation, although President Joe Biden has yet to endorse full legalization.On this episode of our weekly podcast, Talking Tax, host Jeff Leon speaks with Iran Hopkins and Jonathan Robbins, two attorneys with the firm Akerman, about why the tax code provision exists and about whether the cannabis industry can flourish if it remains.
21 minutes | Apr 1, 2021
Dissecting Biden's Infrastructure Plan Tax Hikes
President Joe Biden this week unveiled his plan to pay for sweeping infrastructure investments by raising taxes on corporations.The proposals include raising the corporate tax rate to 28%, imposing a 21% global minimum tax on U.S. companies, and giving the IRS more resources to crack down on tax evasion.In this week’s episode of Talking Tax, reporters Allyson Versprille and Colin Wilhelm speak to Austan Goolsbee, former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President Barack Obama, and DJ Gribbin, former special assistant to President Donald Trump for infrastructure.Goolsbee and Gribbin discuss the impact of Biden’s proposed tax hikes on U.S. competitiveness and challenges the administration will face getting the plan through Congress.
17 minutes | Mar 25, 2021
Tax Teams Still Struggling With Virtual Work a Year In
Once again, we are in the middle of a protracted tax filing season. And for yet another year, tax execs closed the books virtually.This week on our podcast Talking Tax, we hear how the season is going for corporate filers. Host Amanda Iacone speaks with Rema Serafi, national managing partner for tax at KPMG, about how tax directors are coping with having to close the books while their teams are working remotely. She also talks about some of the compliance challenges just around the corner.
14 minutes | Mar 18, 2021
Diving Into the Effects of a Longer Tax-Filing Season
The IRS announced this week that it would push back the deadline for some individuals to file and pay their taxes, a move that comes as the agency and taxpayers are grappling with changes in the new pandemic aid law.In this week’s episode of Talking Tax, reporter Amanda Iacone speaks with Scott Berger, a tax principal at the firm Kaufman Rossin, about how the delayed deadline may affect his clients.Berger also talks about how the IRS’ delay of this season’s deadline comes despite the agency still not having resolved all of the issues from the last filing season. The agency also extended last year’s filing season, as the Covid-19 pandemic began.
14 minutes | Mar 11, 2021
Americans Navigating Another Chaotic Tax Season
We are in the heart of tax filing season in the U.S. and, so far, it appears to be going much better than last year. That, however, is an extraordinarily low bar, given that last year's season ran up against the outset of a global pandemic.On this episode of our weekly podcast, Talking Tax, we launch a two-part series looking at how tax season is going and whether any of the problems from last year still linger. Next week, we will be looking at corporate and business filers. But today the focus is on individuals.Bloomberg Tax's Allyson Versprille speaks with Aisha Servaty, an attorney and director of Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid's Low Income Taxpayer Clinic. Servaty says many of the problems from last year's filing season haven't been resolved and talks about what state and federal officials could do to fix them.
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