Estimates for Q4 growth are below 1%

January 19th, 2016  // News

Various economic forecasts predict US economic growth of less than 1% in the fourth quarter of 2015. The Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta predicts Q4 growth of 0.6%, for example, and Morgan Stanley estimates growth of just 0.1%. The first official reading is scheduled for Jan. 29. Read more

Applications up for unemployment benefits

January 15th, 2016  // News

The number of applications for unemployment benefits increased 7,000 to 284,000 last week. The unexpected increase is the second-highest level since July and suggests that the labor market may be cooling. Read more

Markets Stunned as US Oil Falls Below $30 a Barrel

January 14th, 2016  // News

The price of US oil has dropped under $30 a barrel for the first time in 12 years, setting off a chain reaction worldwide. BP says it will cut its workforce by 5%, and Brazil's state-run Petroleo Brasileiro has scaled back planned investment. Wells Fargo, a major lender to the energy sector, says US shale producers can't survive if oil holds below $40 a barrel for a long time. Read more

Americans’ financial picture looks solid, but CPAs are wary

January 14th, 2016  // News

The financial well-being of the typical American is better than it was a year ago, according to the PFSi, a proprietary AICPA index. Loan delinquencies and inflation are down, but CPA executives are less optimistic about their organizations' prospects than they were last year. Read more

US poised for longest economic expansion since World War II, bank says

January 12th, 2016  // News

The US economy is on track to grow through 2020 and possibly longer, despite slowdowns in China and elsewhere, according to Morgan Stanley. That would make the recovery from the financial crisis the longest expansion since World War II. Solid employment growth, high consumer confidence, declining personal debt and significant strengthening of corporate balance sheets are among reasons, the bank says. Read more

Earnings season likely to confirm US profit recession

January 11th, 2016  // News

Major US companies stand a good chance of reporting fourth-quarter results that show earnings have fallen two quarters in a row, marking a recession. Forecasts call for a 4.2% decline in earnings and a 3.2% decrease in revenue for companies in the Standard & Poor's 500 index. Read more

US economy added 292,000 jobs last month

January 8th, 2016  // News

US employers added 292,000 jobs last month, exceeding economists' expectations. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5%. In addition, the Labor Department revised figures for the two previous months, adding a total of 50,000 jobs. In 2015 as a whole, payrolls increased by 2.65 million jobs. Read more

New standard tackles recognition and measurement of financial instruments

January 7th, 2016  // News

The Financial Accounting Standards Board issued a standard Tuesday that makes targeted changes to existing GAAP for the recognition and measurement of financial instruments. Read more

Taxpayer advocate says IRS may go too far in moving services online

January 7th, 2016  // News

The Internal Revenue Service plans to move more taxpayer services online as it continues to deal with limited resources, but that could "unintentionally undermine taxpayer rights," according to a report from Nina Olson, the national taxpayer advocate. The IRS responded by saying that it is still "fully committed to personal service to taxpayers." Read more

S&P 500 drops 1.5% on first trading day of 2016

January 5th, 2016  // News

About $289 billion in market value was wiped out Monday as the Standard & Poor's 500 index declined 1.5% in the first day of trading this year. It was the worst start for Wall Street since 2001. The sell-off began in China and deepened because of news that US manufacturing activity had fallen. Read more





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