The first U.S. tax filing season under the overhaul that President Donald Trump signed into law at the end of 2017 got off to a slow start in the first week, with data released on Friday showing a significant drop in returns and refunds.
According to the Internal Revenue Service, the total number of returns received in the week ending Feb. 1, 16.04 million, was down 12.4 percent from the week that ended on Feb. 2, 2018. Only 13.31 million returns were processed, down 25.8 percent from the year before. The average refund of $1,865 was 8.4 percent smaller than the average refund in the period last year.
The partial government shutdown – at 35 days, the longest in U.S. history – ended three days before the tax filing season officially opened on Jan. 28. The final deadline is Apr. 15.
Republicans passed a $1.5 trillion tax overhaul in the final weeks of 2017 that cut rates for both individuals and corporations, giving fellow Republican Trump a major policy victory. Democrats had warned that the cuts and other changes in the overhaul would primarily benefit the country’s wealthiest, and many are eager to see how it will affect average Americans.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement on Friday that the 2019 “filing season has successfully launched with millions of tax returns having been filed.”
Reporting by Lisa Lambert
Suspect behind NYC subway bomb scare arrested after being found unconscious in the Bronx: report
On Saturday, CNN's New York correspondent Polo Sandoval reported that a suspect wanted for placing suspicious rice cookers in New York City subway stations has been arrested after being found unconscious at an address in the Bronx.
"Less than 24 hours it took the NYPD to track down this man in relation to the scare that took place here in New York City," said Sandoval. "A source close to the investigation saying that the individual that they were trying to track down to speak to was apparently placed into custody at about 2AM This morning. He was found unconscious in the Bronx here in New York. He is currently hospitalized."
It’s not Democrats who are making guns a political issue: It’s all the dead bodies
We can’t keep up. We can’t keep up with the lies, we can’t keep up with the racism, we can’t keep up with the anti-immigrant hysteria, we can’t keep up with the firings and resignations, we can’t keep up with the flat-out lunacy, but most of all, we can’t keep up with the dead bodies.
In a single week, between Sunday, July 28, and Saturday, Aug. 3, there were three separate mass shootings in this country. In Gilroy, California, at a popular garlic festival, a man wearing a bulletproof vest and carrying an AK-47 style assault rifle, killed three people and wounded 13. Two of the dead and several of the wounded were children. The shooter had six high-capacity magazines in his possession: one was a drum magazine holding 75 rounds of 7.62 mm ammunition, and the other five held 40 rounds. He had bought the AK-47 and ammunition just three weeks before he opened fire on the festival goers.
Trump is terrified a recession is coming — and he has no plan if it does: report
Economists and analysts overwhelmingly agreed this week that a recession is, if not looming, appearing to be much more likely in the near future than it was before.
But in President Donald Trump's White House, such pessimism is verboten. According to multiple reports, Trump's team has been emphasizing rosier economic numbers and brushing off signs of a coming downturn. Trump even suggested that he "suspects many economists and other forecasters are presenting biased data to thwart his reelection," according to the Washington Post. (Trump previously complained that positive economic reports under President Barack Obama were fake.)