Wealth & Risk Management Blog

William Byrnes (Texas A&M) tax & compliance articles

Posts Tagged ‘Government’

Dodd-Frank Whistleblowing—Rewarding the Robbers?

Posted by William Byrnes on September 13, 2011


Dodd-Frank’s whistleblower provisions may be more effective than originally anticipated, but will they lead to increased corporate compliance?

The whistle blower rules have received cristicism from some who believe the procedures will hinder compliance procedures rather than improve them. The liberal Whistleblower provisions have also raised concerns about the already overcommitted SEC being overwhelmed by frivolous claims by employees who view the program as a lottery with multi-million dollar payouts.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of Dodd-Frank updates in Advisor’s Journal, see Is Barney Frank’s Resolve to Implement Dodd-Frank Weakening? (CC 11-95).

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Is Barney Frank’s Resolve to Implement Dodd-Frank Weakening?

Posted by William Byrnes on September 1, 2011


Facing the onslaught of Republican legislative attempts to weaken Dodd Frank, Barney Frank (D-MA) seems unconcerned. His unwillingness to push for the prompt implementation of Dodd-Frank suggests that his resolve is weakening. And in recent weeks, Representatives have used the implementation lull to introduce a handful of bills that, if passed, would repeal or delay parts of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act.

Dodd-Frank implementation was originally scheduled to launch July 21, but Mr. Frank has no reservations against allowing agencies more time to translate the abundant volume of provisions of the  reform into regulations. “There’s no gun at their heads. Nobody gets fired,” he stated.

However, by allowing for this delay, Mr. Frank risks giving the Republicans time to repeal Dodd-Frank one provision at a time.

Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of Dodd-Frank financial reform in Advisor’s Journal, see Republicans Look to Erode Dodd-Frank (CC 11-75).

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The Perils of Top-Hat Plans

Posted by William Byrnes on July 22, 2011


An executive top-hat plan can be a great way to become desirable to highly qualified executives or supplement a business owner’s compensation. However, these plans are accompanied with a significant downside. Because the plans are generally unfunded, major events at the sponsor, like a sale or insolvency, can decimate a plan and leave participants empty handed. The effect on a top-hat plan when a sponsor liquidates its assets is illustrated by a recent Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals case. Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

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NCOIL Announces New Annuity Suitability Penalties

Posted by William Byrnes on July 20, 2011


Producers and carriers may soon face more stringent compliance requirements, and increased liability for making unsuitable recommendations, when selling annuities. The regulatory change will happen at the state level as a result of the National Conference of Insurance Legislators (NCOIL) executive committee voting unanimously on March 6 to adopt the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) Suitability in Annuity Transactions Model Regulation.  Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of life insurance regulations in Advisor’s Journal, see NCOIL Adopts Model Act Requiring Insurers to Inform Consumers of Settlement Options (CC 10-104).

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Did You File Your Taxes?

Posted by William Byrnes on May 2, 2011


A recent report by the Internal Revenue Service shows that total return filings are down this year as compared to the same time last year.  The report shows that over 51.927 million individual taxpayers have filed through the end of February 2011.  During this same period for the 2009 taxable year/2010 filing year the total number of returns by the end of February was around 53.556 million.  The difference between the two years amounts to approximately a decrease of three percent.

What’s more, the average refund for the 2010 tax year/2011 filing season is also down from calculations from the same time last year. This year’s average individual refund is currently $3,129, down $20 from $3,149 in 2010.  Read the analysis at AdvisorFYI

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Could QE2 Spawn 70s Style Stagflation?

Posted by William Byrnes on April 13, 2011


The Federal Reserve may consider downsizing its original plan to purchase $600 billion in Treasury bonds over fear that inflation could be driven to dangerous levels by the revitalized economy.  Quantitative easing—the purchase of Treasuries by the central bank—is intended to raise the price of Treasuries, which should lower long-term interest rates and provide banks with cash to lend to their customers. The expectation is that lower long-term rates will encourage home refis and boost corporate investments and expansion, which, it is hoped, will created new jobs.  Read this complete analysis of the impact at AdvisorFX (sign up for a free trial subscription with full access to all of the planning libraries and client presentations if you are not already a subscriber).

For previous coverage of quantitative easing in Advisor’s Journal, see Fed to Purchase $600 Billion in Treasuries in Move to Stimulate Economy (CC 10-94).

 

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The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report

Posted by William Byrnes on April 5, 2011


Why is this Topic Important to Wealth Managers? This topic discusses the evaluation report of the financial crisis issued by a Congressionally appointed body. The report presents discussion of events and causes leading up to the ordeal, as well as indications and factors which presented its forthcoming. The discussion is aimed to allow wealth managers to intelligently discuss some causes of the financial crisis with clients and colleagues.

There was a new report issued earlier this year by the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, which was created to “examine the causes of the current financial and economic crisis in the United States.” [1] In this report, the Commission presents to the President, the Congress, and the general public the results of its examination and its conclusions as to the causes of the crisis.

The Commission was established as part of the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act passed by Congress and signed by the President in May 2009. [2] The independent panel was selected by Congress and composed of private citizens with experience in areas such as housing, economics, insurance, market regulation, banking, and consumer protection.

The report is intended to provide a historical accounting of what brought our financial system and economy to a precipice and to help policy makers and the public better understand how this calamity came to be.

Below are some of the findings issued in the report:  Read the analysis at AdvisorFYI

 

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AdvisorFX Whitepaper covering the impact of financial reform in the insurance industry

Posted by William Byrnes on December 17, 2010


Much has been written about financial reform in the popular press. But where can insurance professionals find specific guidance on how the “Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act” (“the D-F Bill”) affects them?

For the insurance industry, the focus of the 2,000-page D-F Bill is Title V, which creates a Federal Insurance Office (FIO) within the U.S. Treasury. Under Title V, the Secretary of the Treasury is given rulemaking authority to implement and delegate the new duties of the FIO. The D-F Bill also establishes that surplus and reinsurance insurers will be subject to the regulation of their “domicile” instead of having to comply with multiple state requirements.

The FREE white paper we have prepared covers all of this—and more—in clear and concise detail.  Please CLICK HERE to access and download your copy from AdvisorFX—absoluetely FREE

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