Tags: Taxes | higher | Obama | Romney

Taxes Are Headed Higher Whoever Wins the White House

Wednesday, 26 Sep 2012 08:37 AM

By Dan Weil

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Taxes will rise next year, whether President Barack Obama is re-elected or Republican Mitt Romney wins.

First, unless Romney is able to follow through on his dubious promise to overturn the healthcare reform law, individuals with income of more than $200,000 a year will face a 3.8 percent surtax on investment income and a 0.9 percent tax on wages above that amount.

The revenue from those taxes is slated to pay for Medicare.

Editor's Note: Obama Donor Banned This Video But You Can Watch it Here

In addition, without action from the president and Congress, income taxes would revert back to their 2001 levels, meaning the top rate would rise to 39.6 percent from 35 percent now.

The top capital gains tax rate and the dividend tax rate also would increase. Dividends would simply be taxed as ordinary income. That means 43.4 percent for the wealthy, when you figure in the Obamacare surtax.

“I think people understand their dividends are going to be taxed differently, but many of them don’t understand the magnitude of that jump,” Leo Grohowski, chief investment officer of BNY Mellon Wealth Management, tells CNBC.

So, how should investors prepare for higher taxes?

At this point the final outcome is so uncertain that you should be prepared for anything, but stay flexible.

For example, dividend taxes might end up unchanged. So, you don’t want to purge strong dividend performers from your portfolio.

But look to see if there are any weak performers you want to sell if dividend taxes indeed rise.

Editor's Note: Obama Donor Banned This Video But You Can Watch it Here

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