23 June 2008
The Internal Revenue Service allows businesses to invest funds, tax free, in
alternative transportation for employees. Currently, employers can provide up to
$115 a month in qualified transportation benefits. These can include van pools,
bus tickets and other mass-transit options.
And even if my employer isn't hip to paying for my transportation costs to get to and from work everyday, I can always try this:
If the employer can't afford to do that, another option that's available is
to implement a flex-spending plan for employee transportation.
Under this provision, employees can have up to $115 a month deducted, pretax, for
transportation expenses and another $200 a month can be deducted pretax for
"That has no cost to the employer, but because it is pretax, that would
help employees," Thalacker said. "You don't see this used often. I've only had
one employer call me about that provision."
22 June 2008
21 June 2008
Recent history says that when a financial trend gets popular, it gets riskier too. Think subprime mortgages.Any lending venture involves a degree of risk, but the more I think about it I don't see "micro-finance" causing any "major" problems. The whole idea is to make small loans. Even if default rates skyrocket on these loans at some point in the future, there won't be billions of dollars at stake.
Related Links: Private Sector Development Blog, Marginal Revolution