Business Update – November 1, 2023

Welcome to our Weekly Digest – stay in the know with some recent news updates relevant to business and the economy.

Office Location Update – Ann Arbor By-Appointment-Only

Due to a substantial increase in crime in the area surrounding the Ann Arbor office recently, we’ve decided to make the Ann Arbor office accessible by appointment only. The Ann Arbor Police Department is doing a great job! We see them out there every day, helping people by taking criminals off the streets. Sadly, we cannot say the same thing about the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office. All too often, the very same people we see getting arrested are right back out on the streets, continuing their pattern of disruptive and sometimes violent behavior. The policies and practices of the Prosecutor’s Office are creating an environment in Ann Arbor that is soft on criminals, but hard on everyone else. We take safety very seriously. In an effort to protect and support the continued well-being of our team members, our doors will remain locked at all times. Clients will need to have an appointment to be granted entry to the office.

Our Pinckney office location will remain open and accessible for walk-ins as usual.

U.S mortgage rates soar to highest in more than 23 years

The interest rate on the most popular U.S. home loan last week jumped to the highest since September 2000, marking its seventh straight weekly increase and driving mortgage applications to a 28-year low, a survey showed.

IRS warns American taxpayers to beware of fake charities in wake of tragic crises

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has warned American taxpayers to be on the lookout for criminals soliciting donations and falsely posing as legitimate charities in the wake of a string of natural disasters and conflicts happening across the globe.

One down, two to go: Autoworkers get a tentative deal with Ford

Forty days after the United Auto Workers went on strike against Detroit’s Big Three automakers, the union has reached a tentative agreement with one of the companies in question: Ford. It means deals with General Motors and Stellantis may soon be on the horizon, too.

As the market enters correction territory, don’t blame the American consumer

 The initial third-quarter report on gross domestic product showed consumer spending zooming higher by 4% percent a year, after inflation, the best in almost two years. September’s retail sales report showed spending climbing almost twice as fast as the average for the last year. And yet, bears like hedge-fund trader Bill Ackman argue that a recession is coming as soon as this quarter and the market has entered correction territory.

Financial pressures spurring ‘creative pragmatism’ as U.S. holiday shoppers look to make festive dollars work harder, survey finds

As retailers gear up for the holidays—persistent inflation, high interest rates, and income uncertainties are spurring many consumers to cut back, make trade-offs and get creative with how, where, and what, they spend their money on, according to Accenture’s Annual Holiday Shopping Survey.

Winter Holiday FAQs

Winter holidays are a time of celebration and gift-giving. The National Retail Federation provides data and trends on winter holidays, including spending, shopping, and consumer behavior. The 2023 holiday sales forecast is due for release this week.

20 states that really deliver for taxpayers

Not all states deliver the same level of value for the citizens’ money, but it can be hard to figure out which are offering the best bargains, as it often comes down to tug-of-war between quality of services, and how much taxpayers have to pay for them. To compare return of investment for taxpayers between states, WalletHub looked at the quality of government services, including education, health, safety, economy, and infrastructure & pollution, offered in each state, versus the total state and local taxes that residents pay.

20 states where taxpayers get the least bang for their buck

Tax rates vary greatly from state to state, and living in a high-tax state doesn’t necessarily mean high-quality services — but if you make the move to live in a low-tax state, will you end up getting low-quality services?  WalletHub reviewed the states and ranked the bottom 20 for return on investment.

Meta’s Instagram linked to depression, anxiety, insomnia in kids – US states’ lawsuit

Dozens of U.S. states are suing Meta Platforms (META.O) and its Instagram unit, accusing them of fueling a youth mental health crisis by making their social media platforms addictive.
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Looking for work?

We’re hiring! Our firm is growing, and we are looking for great people to become a part of the team. Successful team members in our firm are hungry, humble, and smart. If you want to use your tax and accounting knowledge to help small business owners better manage their businesses, to have the opportunity to provide a variety of professional services, and if you want to advance your career to a high level, we’d appreciate hearing from you.

  1. Staff Accountant – Ann Arbor
  2. Staff Accountant – Pinckney
  3. Administrator – Ann Arbor

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Contact us if you have any questions or want to discuss the next steps for your business.

Be well,

Your team at Lepper & Company, LLC

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