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The Canada Pension Plan is getting more changes: Here are five things you need to know

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Canada Pension Plan during their meeting this week. Here are five things to know.

1) A new mechanism will be introduced so Canadians who take time out of the workforce to raise children or due to disability don’t see a drop in their retirement benefits. The new portion of CPP will have “drop-in” provisions that will assign a higher income for those years and use that to calculate retirement benefits. The Finance Department defends the use of drop-in provisions because the “enhanced” CPP, as it is known, is based on a fixed, 40-year benefit accrual period making it easier to drop in amounts rather than dropping out years as is the case in the base CPP.

Read more from Financial Post

Intuit to Acquire TSheets: It’s About Time

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Intuit® is taking the next step in making the QuickBooks® platform the smarter way to do business by signing an agreement to acquire TSheets, a leading platform that small and medium businesses, self-employed professionals, and accountants use to automate time tracking and scheduling for them and their workers.

Intuit QuickBooks leverages the world’s largest small business and self-employed ecosystem to simplify and automate key business tasks, such as payroll, invoicing and payments. With more than 12,000 customers already using and loving QuickBooks and TSheets side-by-side today, bringing them together for millions of small businesses will make manual time tracking a thing of the past. Businesses will have a single, seamless solution to track time, streamline invoicing and simplify paying their workers with complete confidence.

Read more from Intuit

We can’t rely on IT forever: Why accounting must not be immune to innovation

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 Innovation is a necessary part of any industry, but some sectors are slower than others when it comes to embracing technological change. In recent decades, accounting has become one of the worst laggards.

The blame does not rest entirely on the shoulders of accountants either, but it does represent a systemic issue – accounting departments aren't typically viewed as a strategic pillar of the business.

According to a 2017 survey by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, nearly three-fourths (74 per cent) of CPAs say finance and accounting should play an important role in an organization's innovation efforts. However, just 30 per cent of respondents said finance and accounting actually contribute to innovation.

Read more from Globe and Mail

It's that time to break out the year-end tax-planning playbook

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The whiff of nutmeg, sprinkled atop a freshly-brewed eggnog latte, can only mean one thing — year-end tax planning season is upon us, once again.

While it’s true that the list of year-end tax planning tips doesn’t vary much from year to year, for 2017, there a few unique planning opportunities that are worth considering to save you some tax when you file your return next spring.

TAX LOSS SELLING

It may seem odd to talk about tax loss selling in a year in which many investors’ non-registered portfolios are generally up, but you may still be holding on to that “sure thing” penny-stock your great uncle tipped you off about a few years back that’s just about to rebound. If your patience is running out, now may be a good time to consider dumping that stock, doing some tax-loss selling to offset some of the gains you may have realized when you sold off some winners in 2017.

Tax-loss selling involves selling investments with accrued losses, typically at year end, to offset capital gains realized elsewhere in your portfolio. Any net capital losses that cannot be used currently may either be carried back three years or carried forward indefinitely to offset net capital gains in other years.

 Read more from Financial Post

The trouble with capital gains taxes, and why we're likely still stuck with them

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Canada’s capital gains tax should be reduced or abolished as a number of countries have done, according to an economic note published this week by the Montreal Economic Institute, an independent, non-partisan, not-for-profit research and educational organization.

“Capital formation is one of the foundations of economic growth. Yet investment in Canada has fallen 18 per cent since 2014. Now that the oil industry boom is behind us, it’s obvious that Canada has a chronic problem. The capital gains tax reduces the availability of capital, and makes it more expensive for companies. Who ends up paying the price? Workers in particular, through fewer jobs and lower wages,” explains Mathieu Bédard, economist at the MEI and author of the publication.

Prior to 1972, Canada didn’t tax capital gains at all. The Carter Commission Report recommended 100 per cent taxation of capital gains. But the law, as originally introduced, ultimately decided to tax only 50 per cent of gains. Subsequent governments increased the inclusion rate to 66 2/3 per cent in 1988, then increased it again to 75 per cent in 1990. A decade later, it was dropped back down again to 66 2/3 per cent on Feb. 28, 2000 and then further reduced on Oct. 18, 2000 to 50 per cent, the inclusion rate that still applies today.

Read more from Financial Post

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