With President Obama sort of signing the fiscal cliff tax deal into law comes this unsurprising tidbit from an unsurprising corner:
Goldman Sachs Group Inc. handed insiders including Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein and his top lieutenants a total of $65 million in restricted stock just hours before this year's higher tax rates took effect….
Such vesting of previously granted restricted shares typically takes place in January, when Goldman also pays out bonuses for the prior year.
The early awards weren't limited to the top officers, a Goldman spokesman said. He declined to say how many people at Goldman received the early vesting or to elaborate on the timing of the move.
But while Lloyd & Co. count their lower-taxed millions, others are tackling more important matters about the deal: Who gets the most credit, President Obama or old-timey Senate buddies Joe Biden and Mitch McConnell? And is anyone happy about the deal?
While taxes are expected to increase for most Americans as a result of the deal between the White House and Congress to end the fiscal impasse in Washington, corporate America was more fortunate. A bevy of tax breaks and credits that had been scheduled to expire at the end of 2012 will be extended for another year, costing taxpayers $46.1 billion over the next decade, according to Congress’s Joint Committee on Taxation….
Many of the provisions survive because they are so obscure. A $62 million tax credit for employers in American Samoa benefits StarKist, which is the largest private employer in the South Pacific island chain, with nearly 2,000 workers there….
Others, like the one that allows filmmakers to deduct the first $15 million in production expenses for movies made in the United States, are much more narrowly focused but have loyal supporters that manage to keep them alive year after year. Another beneficiary of Congressional largess is Nascar, which will enjoy a $78 million subsidy for racetrack construction over the next 10 years.
Goldman Awards Stock Ahead of Tax Rise [WSJ]
Obama Signs Tax Deal Remotely Using Autopen [NYT]
Why It's Hard to Score the Fiscal Deal [FiveThirtyEight]
Obama's Warning to Boehner Started Road to Budget Plan [Bloomberg]
How Deal Was Made, Unmade, Then Saved [WSJ]
Fiscal Cliff Deal a Disaster [Forbes]
Corporate America voices frustration on fiscal cliff deal [Reuters]
Lockheed CEO Hewson greets employees, comments on sequestration delay [Washington Biz Journal]
<http://video.foxbusiness.com/v/2069194429001/ethan-allen-ceo-fiscal-cliff-compromise-is-short-term-fix/>Ethan Allen CEO: Fiscal Cliff Compromise is Short-Term Fix [Fox Biz video]
Donald Trump slams fiscal cliff deal, scolds Republicans [SheKnows]
Some Breaks for Industries Are Retained in Fiscal Deal [NYT]