Archive - February 17, 2009

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Key Tax Changes in the Final Version of the Stimulus Bill
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Is Investing Now Like Trying To Catch A Falling Knife?

Key Tax Changes in the Final Version of the Stimulus Bill

The final version of the 1071-page American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 is due to be signed by President Obama tomorrow. My summary of the bill’s key tax items two weeks ago was not far off the mark, but there are a number of nips and tucks in the final version.

“Making Work Pay” tax credit
The refundable credit in the amount of 6.2 percent of earned income finally settled in at a limit of $400 for single returns and $800 for joint returns in 2009 and 2010. The credit starts being phased out at adjusted gross incomes (AGI) …

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Is Investing Now Like Trying To Catch A Falling Knife?

Due to the treacherous equities markets of the last 16 months, many individuals are afraid to invest new dollars at this point. Most would prefer to wait until the outlook is clear and the crisis is over before diving back into the market.

However, waiting until the outlook is clear is frequently very costly for investors. Reviewing the beginning of 22 bull markets, the Leuthold Group found that bull market gains have been front-end loaded. The average gain was 18.1 percent in the first three months of a bull rally, 26.4 percent in the first six months, and 45.8 percent …

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