Amid the 1,650-page, $1.7 trillion omnibus spending legislation passed by Congress last week and expected to be signed by President Biden were several provisions affecting work-sponsored retirement plans and, to a lesser degree, IRAs. Dubbed the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 after the similarly sweeping Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act passed in 2019, the legislation is designed to improve the current and future state of retiree income in the United States.
We suggest our clients consider preparing for the upcoming 2023 tax season by taking advantage of a few important end-of-year tax strategies.
It's important that our clients take action on these tips by December 31, 2022 and find out if they can potentially minimize your tax burden in the spring.
The year 2021 was one of extreme change. January saw the inauguration of President Joe Biden, but not before protesters sieged the United States Capitol. Despite the initial tumult, the year began with hope that increased availability of coronavirus vaccinations would lead to the end of the pandemic. Unfortunately, throughout the year, the emergence of virus mutations, coupled with the uneven distribution of vaccines, saw millions more people become ill or perish after contracting the virus.
You may donate money to charitable organizations throughout the year, for no other reason than your heart-felt desire to support causes that you care about. But if philanthropy is important to you, keep in mind that the associated tax breaks could potentially increase your ability to give. You might consider a more strategic approach to charitable giving, possibly as part of your year-end tax planning.
The Markets (as of market close November 30, 2022)
A late rally at the end of the month helped push stocks higher in November, marking the second monthly advance in a row. Each of the benchmark indexes posted solid monthly gains, led by the Global Dow, which advanced nearly 11.0%. The large caps of the S&P 500 and the Dow rose more than 5.0%. The Nasdaq climbed 4.4%, while the Russell 2000 added 2.2%.
Investors welcomed news from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, who announced that the pace of interest-rate hikes can slow as soon as December, which likely means a 50-basis point increase, ending the string of 75-basis point rate hikes. The Fed may be taking note of the fact that the labor market has begun to cool (see the employment report below), while consumer price increases are showing signs of moderation. Nevertheless, prices remain elevated entering the holiday shopping season. However, business conditions remained generally positive, and consumers continued to spend, despite rising interest rates and decreasing levels of confidence (see report below).
With the holiday season upon us and the end of the year approaching, we pause to give thanks for our blessings and the people in our lives. For those in Fortune 500, it is also a time when charitable giving often comes to mind. The tax benefits associated with charitable giving could potentially enhance your ability to give and should be considered as part of your year-end tax planning.
Tax deduction for charitable gifts
If you are employed in Fortune 500 and itemize deductions on your federal income tax return, you can generally deduct your gifts to qualified charities. This may also help increase your gift.
If you are employed at Fortune 500, it is imperative to consider exchange rates as an opportunity to capitalize and better plan your finances. In late September 2022, the U.S. dollar hit a 20-year high in an index that measures its value against six major currencies: the euro, the Japanese yen, the British pound, the Canadian dollar, the Swedish krona, and the Swiss franc. At the same time, a broader inflation-adjusted index that captures a basket of 26 foreign currencies reached its highest level since 1985. Both indexes eased slightly but remained near their highs in October.1–2
Intuitively, it might seem that a strong dollar is good for the U.S. economy, but the effects are mixed in the context of other domestic and global pressures.
The Markets (as of market close October 31, 2022)
October saw stocks close higher for the first monthly gain since July. Investors were uplifted by hopes that the Federal Reserve will pull back from its aggressive interest-rate hike policy. In addition, solid third-quarter earnings could be a sign that the economy can withstand the battle to lower inflation. Each of the benchmark indexes listed here posted notable gains led by the Dow, which rose nearly 14.0%. The Russell 2000 gained about 11.0%, followed by the Global Dow, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq.
Here are some things for Fortune 500 employees and retirees to consider as they weigh potential tax moves between now and the end of the year.
1. Defer income to next year
Fortune 500 employees must consider opportunities to defer income to 2023, particularly if you think you may be in a lower tax bracket then. For example, you may be able to defer a year-end bonus or delay the collection of business debts, rent, and payments for services. As a Fortune 500 employee, doing so may enable you to postpone payment of tax on the income until next year.
Medicare premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance amounts change annually. Here's a look at some of the costs that will apply in 2022 if you're enrolled in Original Medicare Part A and Part B.
Medicare Part B Premiums
According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), most people with Medicare who receive Social Security benefits will pay the standard monthly Part B premium of $170.10 in 2022.
People with higher incomes from Fortune 500 may pay more than the standard premium. If your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) reported on your federal income tax return from two years ago (2020) is above a certain amount, you'll pay the standard premium amount and an Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA), which is an extra charge added to your premium, as shown in the following table.