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Many middle market companies are unaware of the impending May 25 deadline to comply with the European Union's (EU) General Data Protection Regulation, better known as GDPR. The EU passed GDPR two years ago to provide enhanced privacy and data protections for its citizens, and beginning May 25, 2018, companies that process personal data of EU residents are subject to GDPR - including those based in the US. The ensuing fines for non-compliance with GDPR can be up to 20 million Euros ($24 Million USD), or 4% of the company's worldwide annual revenue.

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Revenue Procedure 2018-27 provides relief for those with family coverage under high deductible health plans (HDHP) in regards to the annual deductible contributions limit for 2018 health savings accounts (HSA) under Internal Revenue Service Code section 223. The maximum coverage was initially issued as $6,900 on May 4, 2017. On March 2, 2018 the limit was reduced to $6,850 after tax reform changed the calculation for 2018 and future years.

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According to a new Standard & Poor’s report, there are two key indicators that will tell you what kind of shape the manufacturing industry is in. The first is the Institute for Supply Management’s Purchasing Manager’s Index and the second is the Federal Reserve’s Capacity Utilization Index for motor vehicles and parts. A reading above 50 percent for the ISM index indicates that manufacturing is expanding in the US, and below 50 means that it is contracting.

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At the end of 2017, the largest corporate tax cuts in United States history were passed thus reducing the top corporate rate from 35 to 20 percent. This will allow repatriation of billions of dollars from overseas and many corporations to pass along bonuses and pay raises to their employees, boosting wage growth with average hourly earnings rising to 2.9 percent in January from a year earlier. Combining wage growth with an unemployment rate of 4.1 percent created the best outlook heading into 2018 for employees in almost a decade.

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A wave of hackers is anticipated in an industry dependent on sensitive data, intellectual property and trade secrets. Maintaining a high level of cyber security is vital for the manufacturing industry. Generally defined as companies in the automotive, electronics, textile, and pharmaceutical space, these companies struggle to protect their anticipated wave of hackers as well as prevent or mitigate any damage, manufacturing companies must adopt a relevant framework, protect their data, educate employees and implement official cyber policies.

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The Texas Tax Amnesty Program will begin Tuesday, May 1, 2018. The program offers a limited opportunity to certain delinquent taxpayers to bring their tax accounts into compliance with state tax law without incurring penalties and interest on any amounts due to the state. Amnesty applies to tax periods prior to Jan. 1, 2018, and only includes those amounts that have not been previously reported to the Comptroller's office.

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Signed into law by Governor Rick Snyder on March 19, Michigan Public Act 81 of 2018 revises continuing education requirements for licensed CPAs.

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For 2018, the standard deduction amounts will increase to simplify the deduction scheme. More taxpayers will find it beneficial to claim the standard deduction. Itemized deductions have been modified for the 2018 tax year following tax reform. Many of the itemized deductions have either disappeared or changed. Here is how the itemized deductions found on Schedule A have changed.

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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently warned of a new twist on an old phone scam. Criminals will use telephone numbers that mimic IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers (TACs) in order to trick taxpayers into paying non-existent tax bills.

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GuideStar® is a major player and one of the top charity watchdogs in the United States. Through their website at www.guidestar.org, they provide all tax exempt entities in the US with the ability to tell their story, share their mission and solicit program funding. This article highlights how big data from tax exempts and their tax filings of form 990 can be leveraged to provide valuable information to the Not-For-Profit (NFP) sector.

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