Category: Taxes

What I'm Reading This Weekend (June 30-July 1)

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Jun 29, 2018
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Personal Finance, Economics, Student Loans, Current Events, Taxes, Credit Cards, Credit Scores
Economics Here is an interesting, though depressing look at the employment trends and lack of upward mobility among workers in the lowest quartile. The markets seem to be taking the impending trade war seriously this week. Student Loans Student debt forgiveness is good news. The bad news? Forgiveness comes with a tax bill. Employers offering help repaying student loans to attract workers in a tight labor market. Personal Finance Taxes: Have you heard about the post card sized 1040? Here is...

What I'm Reading This Weekend (June 23-24)

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Jun 22, 2018
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Current Events, Employment, Personal Finance, Taxes, Stocks, Insurance
Today’s Headlines: States cleared to charge sales tax on online sales and banks pass first phase of the Fed’s stress tests, wait to hear if they can buy back shares or increase dividends.  Demographics/Employment As baby boomers retire, there are fewer workers to take their places. Who will support them? This WSJ article includes some informative maps. The FRB of Atlanta published an article detailing its findings on industries facing a shortage of workers. One aspect of...

Question of the Day: What's the #1 expenditure for the average American household?

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Jun 04, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Budgeting
Answer: Housing Here are the top 5 expenses for households (with amounts spent in 2016 ): Housing ($18,886) Transportation ($9,049) Food ($7,203) Personal insurance and pensions ($6,831): largely Social Security payments Healthcare ($4,612) Questions: What are some examples of housing costs? transportation costs?  Do you think these costs are about the same across your state? Explain.   Average income for American household in 2016 was almost $75,000. One rule of thumb is that...

Question of the Day: What percent of taxpayers don’t know what a W-4 is?

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Apr 18, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Current Events, Research
Answer: 57% Questions: Do you know what a W-4 is? If so, Explain what it is in your own words. How did you learn about it?  Given that anyone who earns a paycheck has to complete a W-4, why do you think so many people still don't know what it is?  You are hired by the I.R.S. to rename the W-4 so more people will remember it. What would you call it?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom....

Math Spotlight: Nothing can be said to be certain, except MATH and taxes

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Apr 18, 2018
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Math, Taxes, Teaching Strategies
So yesterday was the beloved TAX DAY here in the US. Funnily enough, the IRS website was down so maybe those procrastinators will get lucky and be given an extension (update: they were given one more day). I’m sure that students are asking all types of tax questions due to both current events and the tax season, so it is only fitting that we highlight a Taxes Activity related to Math for our Math Spotlight this week! Drum roll…To kick it off, CALCULATE: Completing a 1040EZ is a...

Question: Who pays more in income taxes: corporations or individuals?

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Apr 17, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Research
Answer: Individuals pay five times more ($1.66 trillion) compared to corporations ($324 billion) based on fiscal year 2017 projections Questions: Who do you think should pay more in taxes? Why? When it comes to lobbying Congress on taxes, who do you think has more power: individuals or corporations? Explain.  What do you think is a more powerful boost to the economy: a dollar of corporate tax cuts or a dollar of individual tax cuts?   Click here for the ready-to-go...

Question of the Day: Where are the most federal tax dollars spent? a) Defense b) Education c) Health

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Apr 16, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Current Events, Research
Answer: Health Questions: Did the answer surprise you? Why?  Why do you think that health costs are such a large part of the federal budget?  If you could prioritize spending among these three categories, how would you order them from most to least important? Explain.  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers (National Priorities Project): Tax Day materials...

Question of the Day: What is the deadline for filing your 2017 tax return?

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Apr 15, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Research, Current Events
Answer: April 17, 2018 Normal deadline is April 15th but 15th is a Sunday and D.C. has Emancipation Day holiday on 16th 59% of consumers don’t know when their taxes are due Questions: Just like school work, why is it important to know the deadline to file your tax return? Can you file your tax return early? Why might be a reason to file BEFORE the deadline?  Why do you think the IRS gives people a few months in order to file their tax return?  Click here for...

It's Tax Time: How About Some Videos To Engage Your Students?

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Apr 15, 2018
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Taxes, Video Resource
Here are three videos (with three questions for each) that do a good job of engaging your students with a "not so easy to engage" topic: PBS 2 Cents Project: How do your tax dollars get spent? [4:34] What is the FICA tax that gets deducted from your paycheck?  How do today's tax rates compare with tax rates over the last 100 years? What are the three largest items that get paid from federal income taxes?  Hear Philip and Julia, producers of 2 Cents, on this NGPF Podcast Your Tax...

NGPF Podcast: Tim Talks To Philip Olson and Julia Lorenz-Olson, Stars of PBS Two Cents Project

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Apr 13, 2018
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Podcasts, Behavioral Finance, Video Resource, Taxes
Julia Lorenz-Olson and Philip Olson are two self-described theater kids who gradually got interested in finance (something about being a starving artist). This interest mushroomed into a career switch and ultimately to them starting their own fee-based financial planning firm, The Art of Finance. What caught our attention recently, however, was their weekly show about personal finance for millennials and Gen Z on PBS, Two Cents. This series has rocketed up the charts with their first ...

What’s New With…….Taxes

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Apr 12, 2018
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Taxes, Current Events, Economics
It’s Tax Time - Tax Week (they are due on Tuesday), so what better time to take a look at the past quarter’s tax headlines. 2017 Tax Filing Do you put off your taxes until the last moment? Now is your time, and here are some things to check to make sure you are taking full advantage of deductions and credits before new tax laws go into effect. And do your math correctly, sign the form/check, and put a stamp on it!!!! Avoid making the mistakes people make that delay their refunds....

In The Trenches: The Impact of Personal Finance Education

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Apr 10, 2018
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Teaching Strategies, Case Study, Taxes, Professional Development, Interactive
Look for this new column, "In The Trenches," to become a regular feature on Tuesdays for the NGPF Blog. Teachers will share their experiences in the classroom and how they apply what they learned at NGPF PD events (FinCamps, FinCamps PLUS, Summer Institute and Summit). This week, we focus on how two NJ educators applied what they learned at the recent NGPF Summit. Kay Paolucci: Barringer Academy of STEAM (Newark, NJ) I wanted to share my experience with the 1040EZ activity. The activity supplies...

What I'm Reading This Weekend (3/3-3/4)

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Mar 02, 2018
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Article, Investing, Taxes, Budgeting, Behavioral Finance
Personal (mostly financial) news you can use: Getting ready for tax season, what makes you more likely to be audited by the IRS? Next time you pick up a prescription at the drug store, maybe you should ask what the cash price would be.   (Pharmacists can’t volunteer that information.) Anyone living in Ohio?  Watch for a ballot initiative in November for payday lending reform.  The issue is important for all to understand. It can’t hurt to include some good advice...

Question of the Day: What percent of tax returns get audited by the I.R.S.?

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Feb 22, 2018
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Question of the Day, Taxes, Research
Answer: 0.8% (less than 1 in 100) Questions: Why do you think the percentage of returns that get audited is so low? Explain your reasoning. Why do you think that taxpayers are so afraid of being audited? Is their fear warranted? Do you think that low audit rates can contribute to more taxpayers "cheating" on their tax returns? Why or why not?  Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom. Behind the numbers...

What I'm Reading This Weekend (2/17-2/18)

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Feb 17, 2018
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Investing, Taxes, Debit Cards, Current Events
What happens when tight labor markets meet tax cuts meets increased government spending? The I-word returns as a key concern of central bankers. After a decade of slumbering 1-2% annual inflation figures, expectations reset for what's ahead as well (which might explain the recent stock market drop): January CPI data was released Friday.  Consumer prices rose more than anticipated in January.   The NYT has an informative article on How Inflation Works. USA Today tries to help us...