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Tax Law Offers a Carrot to Gig Workers. But It May Have Costs.

The provision may also turn out to be a boon for employers who are trying to reduce their payroll costs. Workers hired as contractors, who tend to be cheaper, may be less likely to complain about their status under the new tax law.“Firms currently have a lot of incentives to turn workers into independent contractors,” said Lawrence Katz, a labor economist at Harvard. “This reinforces the current trends.”But it could lead to an erosion of the protections that have long been a cornerstone of full-time work.Formal employment, after all, provides more than just income. Unlike independent contractors, employees have access to unemployment insurance if they lose their jobs and workers’ compensation if they are injured at work. They are protected by workplace anti-discrimination laws and have a federally backed right to form a union.Those protections do not generally apply to contractors. Nor do minimum-wage and overtime laws.“What you’re losing is the safety nets for those workers,” said Catherine Ruckelshaus of the National Employment Law Project, an advocacy group.Traditional full-time jobs also insulate workers against the peaks and troughs in the demand for their services. Consider, for instance, the erratic income of retail or fulfillment-center workers hired in the fall and let go after the holidays.PhotoWorkers like janitors were once typically on the payrolls of large companies, enabling their wages to rise with those of other employees if the business did well. Now, such work is increasingly done by contractors.Credit Lucy Nicholson/ReutersAnd because companies have internal pay scales, the lowest-paid employees tend to make more than they would on the open market.Continue reading the main story“It used to be that companies like G.M […]

In a Complex Tax Bill, Let the Hunt for Loopholes Begin

NYT

View original post here: In a Complex Tax Bill, Let the Hunt for Loopholes Begin

Op-Ed Columnist: The End of Trump and the End of Days

But the end of the world? Come on. That’s not par-for-the-course hyperbole […]

U.S. Tax Bill May Inspire Cuts Globally, While Fueling Trade Tensions

“It’s a huge incentive to governments around the world who want to see more investment to be part of that,” said Andrew Mackenzie, the chief executive of the mining giant B.H.P. Billiton, which has its headquarters in Australia and major operations in North and South America. “They will have to follow suit.”Corporate rates were already on a downward trajectory. Many countries have used low taxes as an advantage over the United States, which offers a huge domestic market, plentiful venture capital and relatively light workplace regulation.“There will be pressure for a new round of lowering corporate taxes,” said Stefano Micossi, the director general of Assonime, an Italian association of publicly listed companies.China, a frequent target of Mr. […]

With Tax Overhaul, Trump Fulfills a Campaign Promise and Flexes Republican Muscle

NYT

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House Gives Final Approval to Sweeping Tax Overhaul

NYT

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G.O.P. Finally Notches 2017 Victory While Bracing for 2018 Verdict

NYT

Excerpt from: G.O.P. Finally Notches 2017 Victory While Bracing for 2018 Verdict