Mid-Year Look-Back and a Look-Forward

July is a perfect month to look back at the full-year plan established in January and re-forecast the balance of the year.  While a “best practice” for any business is to monitor success monthly, at reaching targets established at the beginning of the year (Communicating and Monitoring Success at Reaching Strategic Goals http://cfotips.com/?p=26); there is additional value in reviewing your full-year plan to understand if you are reaching your goals?

Look Back

Items for your consideration with references to topic specific CFOTips blog posts are as follows —

Review company success at generating revenue through marketing and sales

– Marketing Economics http://cfotips.com/?p=226.

-Activity Based Costing and Sales Management http://cfotips.com/?p=57.

-Bridging the gap between Sales and Finance http://cfotips.com/?p=133.

Review your company’s financial health

– For a Business – Cash Flow is King http://cfotips.com/?p=139.

– Bad Debt Strategies http://cfotips.com/?p=69.

Review if your company is operating efficiently and as expected

– Process Improvement to Eliminate/Contain Non-Value Added Costs in the Services Industry http://cfotips.com/?p=42.

-Internal Audits – “Inspect what you Expect”  http://cfotips.com/?p=325.

Review customer accounts

-Relationship Development after the Sale http://cfotips.com/?p=353.

-The Voice of the Customer http://cfotips.com/?p=154.

Review your position in the market

– How You Compare, i.e. Competitive Analysis Tactics http://cfotips.com/?p=328.

Look Forward

If after this review you are confident that you understand the reason for any variance, plan for the balance of the year –

-Re-forecast your projections.

-Evaluate if strategies identified at the end of last year make sense for the balance of this year.

-Ensure optimal tax planning – state and federal.

Finish the year strong!

Author: Regis Quirin
Visit Regis's Website - Email Regis
Regis Quirin is a financial executive with 23 years of corporate experience, i.e. New York Stock Exchange, JP Morgan Chase, and GMAC ResCap; and 15 years working with small and medium-sized entities, i.e. joint ventures, start-up entities, established businesses. In 2014, Regis published "Redesign to Turnaround Underperforming Small and Medium-Sized Businesses" available via Amazon.

Is Tax planning even possible in this environment?

With six months remaining in 2012, a sound recommendation would be to review expiring tax provisions (individual and business) and plan accordingly, to ensure you are prepared.  Are there tax benefits today that you would like to take advantage of before the opportunity passes?

Every year the Joint Committee on Taxation produces a list of expiring tax provisions over the next ten years (https://www.jct.gov/).  The most recent version was published January 6, 2012. According to this document, the number of expiring provisions, by year, is as follows –

List of Expiring Federal Tax Provisions
Joint Committee on Taxation
2011 60
2012 41
2013 8
2014 6
2015 0
2016 5
2017 1
2018 1
2019 0
2020 1

Now consider the proposed 2013 federal budget which extends, enhances and adds new tax provisions.  Some of the business recommendations include: extending first-year depreciation deductions for certain property; granting a temporary income tax credit for job creation and wage increases; offering tax incentives for locating business activity in the US and prohibiting tax deductions for shipping jobs overseas; changing the Research & Experimentation credit; and, increasing the amount of deductible start-up expenditures.

Are there activities that you are considering implementing in 2012 that if you waited until 2013 would allow you to take advantage of proposed tax benefits?

How do you plan if you do not know for sure what will end and what will be enacted? You can expect that during the last four months of 2012, while the US is focused on the Presidential election, Congress will be considering approving a 2013 Federal Budget, which may include extending expiring tax provisions.

As recently as June 6, 2012, Bloomberg reported, “Former President Bill Clinton said Congress may have to temporarily extend all expiring tax cuts and spending into early 2013 to give lawmakers time to reach a deal on deficit reduction.”  While extensions are common, the suggestion of extending “all” seems very aggressive, but plausible.

Author: Regis Quirin
Visit Regis's Website - Email Regis
Regis Quirin is a financial executive with 23 years of corporate experience, i.e. New York Stock Exchange, JP Morgan Chase, and GMAC ResCap; and 15 years working with small and medium-sized entities, i.e. joint ventures, start-up entities, established businesses. In 2014, Regis published "Redesign to Turnaround Underperforming Small and Medium-Sized Businesses" available via Amazon.