8 December 2018 FT — Articles to Read

8 December 2018


Question: What are the top nine (9) tax deductions for the average American?


Opec output cut defies White House – Pg. 1

–          Opec and its oil-producing allies have agreed to cut production by 1.2m barrels a day, defying Donald Trump’s calls to keep output high and sending crude prices rocketing 5% higher

–          Opec delegates said the deal was aimed at damping concern over supply glut that has pushed prices 30% lower in the past two months

–          One delegate said the 1.2m b/d cut would be split 800,000 b/d for Opec members and 400,000 for countries outside the cartel, including Russia, which have allied with Opec since 2016


US wage growth points to further rate rise – Pg. 3

–          US wage growth held firm in November even as hiring dipped, offering evidence the labour market remains robust enough to justify at least one more rise in short-term interest rates by the Federal Reserve this month

–          Year-on-Year wage growth was unchanged at 3.1%, equal to the quickest pace since April 2009…

–          The US economy remains on a solid footing as companies continue hiring, amid worries over trade relationships with China and a slowing housing market.  Traders are expecting a further quarter-point rate rise from the Fed on December 19, which would be the ninth increase in the current cycle

–          Monthly payroll gains averaged 212,500 during the first 10 months of the year, the latest figures showed, faster than the 182,000 logged in 2017.  Hiring remains strong enough to keep the unemployment rate steady at 3.7%, the lowest level since 1969

–          Treasury yields, which move inversely to price, whipsawed.  Yield on the benchmark 10-yeaer note initially dropped 2bps to 2.88% but quickly recovered to trade 3bp higher at 2.90%


Bullish US business leaders lose some of their confidence – Pg. 10

–          Business confidence in the US has suffered another fall from the record highs it hit at the start of 2018, as Donald Trump’s tariff-heavy trade agenda weighs on chief executives’ outlook for their companies’ sales, investments and hiring plans

–          The tax cut turbocharged profits, helping S&P 500 companies report average earnings growth of 28% for their latest quarter, and funded marked increases in capital expenditures, dividends and, most notably, share repurchases


Answer: (9) State and local general sales tax deductions; (8) Charitable Contributions Deductions; (7) Total Standard Deduction; (6) Miscellaneous Deductions after 2% AGI limitation; (5) Interest Paid on Investment Deductions; (4) Medical and Dental expenses after AGI limitation; (3) State and Local Income Tax Deductions; (2) Gambling losses and other unlimited miscellaneous deductions; (1) Casualty and Theft losses deductions