Small Biz Tip: Taxes: Business Tax Breaks

Tips from March 10, 2010Are you collecting the maximum tax breaks from the stimulus law passed last year? Here are the 5 best business tax breaks. Bonus depreciation. Allows a business to deduct 50% of the cost of a new asset in the year it is placed in service. Section 179 expensing. A small business can elect to expense up to $250k of the cost of qualified assets. Net operating losses. Under the new law, most businesses can elect to carry back losses for up to 5 years, instead of the usual 2 years. Discharge of business debt. The stimulus law allows businesses to recognize discharge of indebtedness income over 5 years, rather than all in 2009. Exclusion of gain on the sale of qualified small business stock. Increased to 75% for any gain from a sale between Feb 09 and Jan 11. Daily Overview: Keep the 2009 stimulus law in mind when you are calculating your taxes this year.  Big thanks to... [Read Full Article]


New Credit Card Rules' Double Standard

In the NewsStimulus Funding for SBA Loans Runs Out—AgainIn a case of legislative déjà vu, the Small Business Administration has announced that funding for two popular lending programs is on the verge of running out - again. WSJ.comIn the NewsConsumers Buy Into 'Buy Local'More groups are forming to send shoppers to home-grown independent businesses. But their impact on jobs is hard to quantify. BusinessWeek.com Management & Operations [Read Full Article]


Consumers Do Homework Before Buying This Holiday Season

Government, Politics, and the Economy Is It Too Early to Start Thinking About a Rebound? It may not feel like it yet in your town or in your industry, but there are indications that things are getting better. NYtimes.comManagement and OperationsHow to Not Go Out of BusinessStart by studying how your best customers interact with your brand and its competitors, then brainstorm ways to address any shortcomings. BusinessWeek.com Management and Operations [Read Full Article]


Ten Things Never to Say to a Customer

  Government, Politics and the Economy Democatic Senators: Climate-Change Legislation Should Be Dropped This Year Four Democratic senators as calling for the Senate to abandon efforts to pass legislation curbing greenhouse-gas emissions this year and concentrate on a narrower bill to require use of renewable energy. Bloomberg.com Management and Operations 10 Things Not to Say to Customers There are great things to say to a customer, and then there are things that will drive that same customer into the arms of the competition. Here are the top 10 things not to say to a customer and what you and your people should say instead.... [Read Full Article]


Unemployment and Consumer Spend Highlight Stimulus Policy Failures

It seems that with rising unemployment and ever tighter budgets, American consumers missed the message that we are in an economic recovery. We hear talk of the recession “bottoming out” or that economists see this or that “good sign” or that the Treasury Secretary has “green shoots” in his sights. The fact is, all these people talking about how the recession is ending would have just as much success predicting what the economy will do if they slaughtered a goat and tried to read the entrails.  If you want to know what the economy is really up to, go to the people who are there, in the trenches, each and every day. Talk to the people who are on the unemployment lines, the salespeople in shops—people who live with the recession and must cope with it every day—not the bureaucrats and statisticians in Washington trying desperately to spin the numbers, including this group and excluding that in order to be able to report something that the Adminis... [Read Full Article]


Leadership: It's Vision, Not Bullying

Government, Politics and the Economy Jobless Claims Rise There was an unexpected jump in first-time unemployment claims even as continuing claims drop. FoxBusiness.com Management and Operations The Most Annoying People to Work With: The Top 13 Irritations Wherever you work, even in your own business, you find people who have turned the merely annoying into high art. Now that art has been classified and here are the top 13 offenders. ManageSmarter.com [Read Full Article]


Poor Sales Leading to Small Business Closures

Government, Politics and the Economy Survey: Poor Sales Lead to Business Closings According to a recent NFIB survey, poor sales are the number-one problem afflicting America's small businesses. Moreover, few small business owners expect consumers to start spending again any time soon. CNNMoney.com Fed to Keep Rates Steady and Slow Bond Purchases The Federal Reserve is holding interest rates steady and intends to "slow the pace" of its emergency bond-buying program. USAToday.com Management and Operations [Read Full Article]


Stay Afloat by Going Green

Government, Politics and the Economy Congress Urged to Raise Debt Limit Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner has saddled Congress with the task—for the second time this year—of quickly increasing the maximum amount of money the federal government can borrow, something increasingly unpopular with the American people. WSJ.com Management and Operations Are Your Employees Ever Really Off? n the age of online social networking, when the goings-on in your business tweeted or written on Facebook walls, the after-hours activities of your employees may count as much as what they're doing "on-the-job." ManageSmar... [Read Full Article]