A dozen deductions for your small business

Small-business tax rule No. 1: Don’t mess with the IRS.Bankrate’s 2010 Tax GuideTax tips and toolsHow do I … ?Filing and refundsReal estate and capital gainsFamily and educationOn the jobInvestments and retirementCharitable givingYour state taxes

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But that doesn’t mean you should cheat yourself. Take every legal deduction you can. Here are a dozen that even savvy small-business owners and entrepreneurs sometimes forget:1. Home officeConcerned that claiming a home office deduction is tantamount to sending an engraved invitation to an Internal Revenue Service auditor? Don’t be, says Jan Zobel, author of “Minding Her Own Business: The Self-Employed Woman’s Guide to Taxes and Recordkeeping.”

“I don’t agree that the chances of getting audited are greater with a home office deduction,” says Zobel, a San Francisco Bay-area enrolled agent. The key is that you use the term “home office” the same way the IRS does. [Read the full article]

It’s not the risk of low interest rates or reckless fiscal policy. Nor is it the shaky securitization market or unsustainable GDP growth.

Boomers bust the U.S.People buy stocks to make money. And while investors may love, hate, and brag about their holdings for decades, at some point, it comes down to cashing in. After all, you can’t use a share of Berkshire Hathaway to buy a new set of golf clubs.

The largest generation in U.S. history, the close to 80 million Baby Boomers are currently marching into retirement age. And with more than 50% of the value of U.S. financial market assets in their hands, according to one estimate, the pace at which boomers decide to liquidate retirement accounts could determine the overall direction of U.S. stock prices.

If that sounds dramatic, consider that equity prices, as money manger Ken Fisher has often noted, boil down not to P/E ratios or prevailing interest rates, but to market supply and investor demand.

U.S. [Read the full article]

Aon Consulting said Friday it agreed to buy a division of JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s retirement unit for an undisclosed amount.

JP Morgan Compensation and Benefit Strategies, a division of JP Morgan Retirement Plan Services LLC, provides compensation, retirement and health care actuarial services.

Kathryn Hayley, CEO of Aon Consulting, said in a release that the deal strengthens Aon Consulting’s abilities in pension actuarial and advisory services. Aon Consulting is a unit of insurance broker Aon Corp.

Shares of Aon Corp. gained rose 16 cents to $42.50 in midday trading. JPMorgan shares fell 31 cents to $43.33. [Read the full article]

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