PRINCETON, N.J. –  WithumSmith+Brown PC (Withum), a top-30 nationally ranked audit, tax and advisory firm based in Princeton, NJ with offices throughout the United States and Cayman Islands is providing week-in-review “Trumponomics Think Tank” thoughts from its group of industry leaders specializing in the new President’s proposed tax, international business, energy, insurance, healthcare reform.

Different Times, Different Thinking:

Members of the media are welcome to contact the following individuals directly, however please copy on all correspondence to ensure a timely response.

  • Affordable Care Act: First Step toward Repeal – “Getting right down to business, the House of Representatives approved a budget resolution to repeal the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare. In throwing the task of writing legislation to repeal the law over to committees, it is expected that certain provisions, such as pre-existing conditions and coverage of dependents to age 26, will remain intact. Republicans claim that the law needs to be repealed, citing among other things large increases in insurance premiums and fewer choices of insurers for individuals. Democrats counter that the law should not be repealed without an in-place replacement plan, claiming that millions of Americans will lose their health insurance coverage. Smaller legislative measures, as opposed to one large act, may be most efficient and effective in replacing the law, as indicated by Senate Republican John Cornyn,” said Tony Panico, CPA, Withum partner and practice leader of the firm’s Healthcare Reform Advisory Services. He can address how employers will be affected by changes to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Contact:
  • Drawing the Battle Lines on Tax Reform – “With Republicans controlling the House and Senate, one would think the reform President Trump has promised can be – and will be – quickly achieved, even with the standard Democratic opposition. Perception and reality are different matters altogether. In recent weeks, major differences have arisen between Trump’s vision for the tax law and those shared by other Republican leaders, most notably Kevin Brady, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee and the author of the GOP’s 2016 “A  Better Way,” a blueprint for tax reform. Among the most problematic disparities are the estate tax, corporate taxation of imports/exports and – to a degree – the cap on itemized deductions. Moderate disparities include the tax on income from S corporations, partnerships and sole proprietorships while minimal disparities exist when it comes to ordinary income tax brackets, capital gains/dividends tax rates and standard deduction/personal exemption. Simply put: beyond the rhetoric, tax reform is never easy. Over optimism won out among those—including myself – who proclaimed 2017 the year of major tax change,” said Tony Nitti, CPA, MST, Withum tax partner and a highly regarded com columnist covering tax policy and key court decisions. Nitti also is a nationally recognized author and educator of tax policy who was a member of a collaborative engagement team to review candidates’ tax returns and tax plans on behalf of Bloomberg. Contact:
  • Abandoning the TPP: “As promised throughout the election campaign as part of his America First pledge, President Trump signed an executive order repealing the United States’ involvement in the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Withdrawal from the TPP was a cornerstone of the president’s run-up to the election, yet the deal was in fact a strategy of Democratic and Republication administrations dating as far back as the Cold War. Has this move paved the way for China to gain traction in terms of its trade presence? Will the U.S. retain/add jobs that may or may not have been impacted by TPP’s low-wage member countries? Will this move strain diplomatic relations with countries in Asia? The deal also killed any hope for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership with EU members. Time will only tell if the U.S.’ trade presence – along with its economy and employment health – will be greatly impacted over the short- and long-term,” said Dave Springsteen, CPA, CGMA, MBA, a Withum tax partner and practice leader of the firm’s National Tax Services Group. In this role he oversees all federal, state, local and international tax matters for business entities, individuals, trusts and estates at the firm. Springsteen has affiliations with finance leaders around the globe who can offer thoughts on changes to international policy. Contact:

Withum “Think Tank” Thought Leaders

  • Jason Kunkel, CFA, CBE, FRM, Withum’s certified business economist who analyzes economic data to develop forecasts on a wide variety of issues, including energy costs, inflation, interest rates, exchange rates, business cycles, taxes, and employment levels. Contact:
  • Jim Ferrare, CFA, CPA, president of PWM Advisory Services, the firm’s investment advisory affiliate, which manages over $300M in assets on behalf of high-net-worth clients and $3B overall. He is an innovative thinker with an original perspective on investment trends and the stock market. Contact:
  • Bill Hagaman, CPA, CGMA, Withum’s managing partner and CEO, who specializes in merger and acquisitions and international business. Contact:
  • Tony Sardis, JD, LLM, president of Withum Insurance Advisory Services, the insurance affiliate of the firm. He possesses deep expertise in insurance strategy development for employers of all sizes as well as high-net-worth individuals. Contact:

About: Established in 1974, Withum is an accounting, audit, tax and advisory firm committed to providing quality services and innovative solutions to businesses, non-profits, individuals and communities. The firm, through its 14 national and international-based offices, provides clients with the benefits of a larger organization without compromising the attention and personal service associated with a local business. Ranked among the nation’s 30 largest public accounting and consulting firms, Withum is a member of HLB International, a worldwide network of independent professional accounting firms and business advisors committed to assisting clients build and expand globally.