Boots & Sabers

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1515, 26 Apr 17

Trump Releases Tax Plan

There’s a lot of good in this:

  • Corporate tax rate of 15%: Such a rate would deliver on Trump’s campaign promise; the current federal statutory rate is 35%.
  • Allows pass-through rate for business owners: Instead of self-owned businesses being taxed at the personal income rate, business owners would have incomes from operations taxed at the 15% rate. So if you own your own business, income from that business would be taxed at the corporate rate. According to The Times, that could apply to the Trump Organization.
  • No border-adjustment tax: The tax on imports was favored by House GOP leaders such as Speaker Paul Ryan and Kevin Brady, the chair of the Ways and Means Committee. Mnuchin said the White House talked to Ryan and Brady but thought the tax did not “work in its current form.”
  • A slight adjustment to individual tax rates: White House officials said there will be three tax brackets with rates of 35%, 25%, and 10%, down from the current 7 brackets and the code would be “simplified.” Cohn told reporters that he did not have the exact incomes associated with the brackets.
  • Double the standard individual tax deduction: This would allow individual filers to deduct their first $12,700 in income from their taxes and $25,400 for joint filers, as opposed to the current $6,350 for individuals and $12,700 for joint filers.
  • A one-time repatriation tax: This would allow companies to bring back money from overseas to the US with a slightly lower, one-time tax. The White House did not clarify the rate at which this money would be taxed. President George Bush enacted a repatriation tax at a 5.25% rate in 2004, but studies show the money brought back mostly went to stock buybacks and dividends rather than hiring workers.
  • Eliminate the estate tax: This would eliminate a tax on assets being transferred via a will after someone dies.
  • A change in tax exemptions for the middle class: According to The Times, the plan will propose an increase in the standard deduction for individuals.
  • Eliminate itemized tax deductions other than charitable donations and mortgage payments: Mnuchin said this provision would close “loopholes” and offset the decrease in base tax rate for high income Americans.
  • Repeal 3.8% tax on net investment income: The tax was levied on “individuals, estates and trusts” with higher than a certain threshold in investment income. For instance, the threshold for an individual was $200,000 in investment income last year.
  • Repeal the alternative minimum tax: This requires some people that have large amounts of deductions to calculate their income tax under the normal tax rate and the alternative and pay the higher amount. According to the Tax Policy Center, this was originally designed to eliminate large deductions by wealthier individuals, but not applies to roughly 5 million people.
  • No infrastructure spending: Reports on Tuesday said Trump was considering including infrastructure spending in the plan to try to win over Democrats. Mnuchin denied the report in the speech, saying the proposal would be “just a tax plan.”

Of course, given Congress’ track record of getting any major legislation passed, we’ll see…


1515, 26 April 2017


  1. Jason

    I don’t like this… “Allows pass-through rate for business owners: ”

    If a business owner is passing through profits from the business as income it should be traced as income at the standard income tax rates. This seems like a gift to the affluent by the affluent.

  2. Jason

    Oh and while I like the idea of simplifying and getting rid of the myriad of credits and deductions, I will wager that once all is said and done, doubling the standard deduction will not offset an overall increase in the tax burden for most middle class’ers. This likely would end up as a net increase for your average dual income 80k – 120k families.

  3. Le Roi du Nord

    I had some time to listen to some talking heads on the radio today and a number of them from both sides of the aisle said this tax plan would add~$2 trillion to the deficit over the next 10 years.  Than doesn’t sound good for any but a few of us…..

    And I’ll agree with Jason on both points above.

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