The market has returned to 2007 highs, and life is good, at least for a while. Congress and the president have avoided the fiscal cliff — at least this fiscal cliff, and life is good. And, finally, after years of extra accounting expense and tax pain and suffering, both for taxpayers and for their accountants, we have tamed the fire-breathing, alternative-minimum-tax dragon — we now have an indexed AMT.
Did I mention the estate and gift exemption? It’s indexed, too, and this year, it is $5.25 million. So it’s not only life that is good, death is better too. (Although death has probably not ever been as good for modern taxpayers as it was for George Steinbrenner, former owner of the New York Yankees. Steinbrenner had the good sense to die in a year when there was no estate tax.)
The main thing is probably certainty. We have some now, and business loves to know the score. While unemployment is still a problem, it appears as though we may have another decent market year. If so, it would be pretty doggone nice for all of us who are probably still stressed still from dealing with The Great Debacle, which began its run in 2007-2008.
Have a fantastic week and enjoy a dollop of political certainty, okay?