Senate Passes 3% Withholding Tax Repeal

Obama expected to sign the legislation into law in a matter of weeks

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The Senate on Thursday passed, 95-0, the bill to repeal the 3% withholding tax on government contractors that the full House approved on Oct 27. President Barack Obama is expected to sign the legislation into law.

The 3% withholding tax mandate, which was enacted as part of the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005, would adversely affect advisors and their clients that do business with local, state or federal government entities.

For a broker-dealer or advisor, the 3% withholding tax could directly affect an advisor that, for instance, “helps run the local government’s 401(k) plan,” said Chris Paulitz, spokesman for the Financial Services Institute. For clients, if they are “cutting lawns for government buildings, they lose that 3% of their pay throughout the year—money they could [give to] an advisor to invest for them, or to create more jobs in their business.”

FSI President and CEO Dale Brown added in a statement applauding the House’s repeal of the measure that “businesses that provide services to the government deserve to be paid in full and due upon receipt. They shouldn’t be forced to lose a percentage of their pay they could be investing throughout the year or using to hire additional employees.”

The withholding tax, Brown went on to say, “could create cash flow problems as well as draining capital that could be used for job creation and business expansion.”

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