• 30 Dec 2014 at 12:45 PM

Attention Mutual-Fund Investors

You weren't counting on one of these, were you?Did you know that you have to pay taxes—like, all of them—on your mutual fund returns even when they suck? In fact, especially when they suck, but not badly enough? Well…

When they sell their holdings, mutual funds have to pay out any profits as taxable capital gains unless they can offset them against losses. After nearly six years of a raging bull market, most funds have no big losses left.

So, even after underperforming the market badly this year, funds are doling out startlingly big tax bills for their investors.

Of course, you always have recourse to the old-fashioned way of dealing with a mutual fund that’s pissed you off. Like, say, the “hedge-like” MainStay Marketfield, which would have been a great hedge this year if you wanted to cancel out all of those other mediocre returns you were earning in your other investments. Which, it turns out, most people do not want to do. Read more »

deutsche-bank-logo-on-a-cupcakeFederal prosecutors in Manhattan on Monday sued Deutsche Bank, claiming that it owes the United States government about $190 million in unpaid taxes, penalties and interest. Prosecutors contend the tax liability stems from a transaction that Deutsche Bank undertook 14 years ago. The bank had acquired a company that held three million shares of Bristol-Myers Squibb. The shares appreciated in value and, federal prosecutors say, the bank came up with a “scheme to evade” paying tens of millions of dollars in capital gains taxes on the shares when they were eventually sold. But Deutsche Bank, which has large operations in the United States, contends that it reached a settlement with the I.R.S. over the same tax dispute in 2009. “It is not clear to us why we are being pursued again for the same taxes,” the bank said in a statement. It said it intended to “vigorously” fight the lawsuit. [Dealbook]

MTV’s “Jersey Shore” star Michael “The Situation” Sorrentino and his brother were indicted Wednesday on charges of filing false tax returns involving $8.9 million income. Michael was charged with two counts and his brother Marc with three counts of filing false tax returns for 2010 through 2012, according to the Department of Justice. Michael Sorrentino was also accused of failing to file a tax return for 2011. “The brothers allegedly also claimed costly clothes and cars as business expenses and funneled company money into personal accounts,” U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman said. “The law is absolutely clear: Telling the truth to the IRS is not optional.” [CNBC]

If you’re up to speed on the latest trends in Where Rich U.S. Citizens Are Talking About Moving To Beat What They Believe Is An Oppressive Tax Code, you know that Puerto Rico is high on the list. Working in its favor is the fact that it’s a relatively quick trip (versus, say, Singapore), the weather’s pretty good, and there are some decent private schools for Junior and Buffy to attend. Sure, the crime is something to think about, but probably the biggest impediment? The thing that’s gotta be figured out stat if the territory is going to make John Paulson some serious money on his bet that millionaires are going to start moving their en masse? The god damn line at Quiznos. Read more »

It seems all of the sound and fury—and then nothing—surrounding whether to close the carried-interest loophole/raise taxes on hedge and private-equity fund managers may have been (it wasn’t), but was certainly unnecessary. Maybe. Read more »

  • 06 May 2014 at 5:05 PM

Now Everything Is Illegal In Singapore

Including evading U.S. taxes.

Singapore has reached a tax information-sharing agreement with the United States under a new law meant to combat offshore tax dodging by Americans, a U.S. Treasury Department spokeswoman said on Monday.

The deal, which was expected for more than a year, will make it much easier for institutions in one of Asia’s biggest wealth management centers to comply with U.S. rules, and puts it ahead of rival Hong Kong which is yet to finalize a deal….

Like most of the other FATCA deals, the Singapore agreement will allow firms to report U.S. account-holder information to their local tax authority, which will send it along to the IRS, saving them from dealing directly with the U.S. tax authorities.

U.S., Singapore reach agreement on tax evasion: U.S. Treasury [Reuters]

  • 15 Apr 2014 at 1:28 PM

Tax Day Watch ’14: The Travails of The 1%

Sure, the top hundredth earned a bunch of extra money, on average, last year. But did you know that they have to hand some of that over to the federal government so it can buy those 47% ciphers healthcare or teachers or some other bullshit? And that next year, after they earn about $330,000 more this year than they did last year, they’ll have to pay even more? Read more »

Of course, that money could be redeployed to any politician willing to listen to reason. Surely, someone wants Ken Langone’s vote. And check. Read more »