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The Daily

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS FOR TUESDAY - 3.15.16

By:
Maya Lindsay
Published Date:
Mar 15, 2016

NYSSCPA Members in the News

Westchester Chapter
Need help with your tax questions?
Poughkeepsie Journal
The Poughkeepsie Journal will host its annual Tax Counsel Clinic 5-7 p.m., March 23, with Poughkeepsie-area CPAs. Experts from the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants will be available to answer your looming tax filing questions, help you define undiscovered deductions, teach you the basics of common tax credits and educate you on all you need to know about the Affordable Care Act’s tax implications and more. 

Matt Bryant (Rochester)
Free help with taxes
WROC Rochester First
CPA Matt Bryant discussed some free resources available to people looking to complete their tax return Monday on News 8 at Sunrise. Bryant, the President of the Rochester Chapter of the New York State Society of CPAs, said there are a number of free resources available to help with your tax return.  The Internal Revenue Service and the Free File Alliance - a group of income tax software companies - make free tax preparation software available online. 

Other Accounting and Financial News Stories 

Emerging-Market Currency Rally Is Too Good to Last
Wall Street Journal
Investors in emerging markets can be forgiven a little existential angst. For them, Jean-Paul Sartre’s famous line needs extending: Hell is not just other people, but other people’s central banks. Emerging markets have been caught between the two biggest themes of our times: expectations of a stronger dollar engineered by the U.S. Federal Reserve and fear that the People’s Bank of China will allow a much weaker yuan. Both hurt emerging markets, where companies have large dollar-denominated debts and export a lot to China. The squeeze loosened this year, and investor relief propelled emerging-market stocks, currencies and bonds upward.

FASB Updates Standards for Put and Call Options
Accounting Today
The Financial Accounting Standards Board’s Emerging Issues Task Force has issued an accounting standards update for contingent put and call options in debt instruments. FASB noted that the existing standards for derivatives and hedging require embedded derivatives to be separated from a host contract and accounted for separately as derivatives if certain criteria are met. One of those criteria is if the economic characteristics and risks of the embedded derivatives are not clearly and closely related to the economic characteristics and risks of the host contract.

Calm Day on Wall St. as Investors Await Fed Meeting
New York Times
Stocks barely budged on Monday on Wall Street, finishing mixed as lower oil prices pulled energy companies down while hotels and travel-related companies rose. Trading was quiet ahead of the Federal Reserve’s meeting this week, which is expected to shed some light on the possibility of a future increase in benchmark interest rates. The market “seems to quiet down ahead of the Fed,” said Peter Stournaras, a BlackRock portfolio manager.

SEC Clears Accounting Watchdog’s Budget but Flags Spending
Wall Street Journal
The U.S. watchdog of public-company auditors is itself increasingly under the microscope. The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, a little-known body that polices the biggest U.S. accounting firms, won begrudging approval Monday of its $257 million budget. Two members of the Securities and Exchange Commission, which oversees the PCAOB, voiced persistent concerns about spending at an agency that pays each of its five board members more than $540,000 a year.

Shaky finances plague most city nonprofits, study shows
Crain’s New York Business
The 2015 bankruptcy of FEGS, the largest social service nonprofit in New York, shook the confidence of the city’s nonprofits. Almost overnight, an 80-year-old, $250 million agency serving 120,000 people disappeared. And FEGS wasn’t a one-off. After turmoil over finances at Cooper Union and the collapse of the New York City Opera, many board members are now asking these questions about the organizations they govern: What risks do we face? Are we doing the right things to understand and mitigate them? And how should we balance financial risk against programmatic reward? 

The Fed’s Dot Plot Thickens
Wall Street Journal
Call it the Federal Reserve that cried wolf. As Fed officials gather Tuesday for their two-day conclave, one thing from prior meetings stands out: This Fed has been more cautious on interest rates than even its own policy makers would let you believe. Take, for instance, the Fed’s closely watched dots graph, to be unveiled Wednesday along with a policy statement, other economic forecasts and Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s news conference.