- HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:
Finance minister upbeat on property market
Local gold likely to hit Bt15,500/baht in 3rd quarter
Scam warning for U.S. Taxpayers
Finance minister upbeat
on property market
Finance and Deputy Prime Minister Surapong Suebwonglee has voiced confidence
that the property business will grow markedly in the second half of this
year once measures issued to stimulate the sector start to take effect.
Speaking after presiding over the opening of the 18th House and Condo Fair
exhibition in Bangkok last week, he said the property sector is considered a
key area of government focus for jump-starting the economy.
He said the current governmentís measures to reduce the ownership transfer
fee and specific business tax for homebuyers would help boost house purchase
Dr. Surapong said he has already discussed with the Secretariat of the
Council of State a process to put the measures into effect and they will be
proposed for royal approval before being published in the Royal Gazette. It
is expected the measures would take effect soon.
Athip Prechanont, president of Supalai Plc, said the public would take a few
months to decide on house purchases once the economic stimulus package is
issued and he believed total sales of houses would increase after mid-year,
which would also help boost supporting industries. He said he expects the
property business to expand by up to 10 per cent this year. (TNA)
Local gold likely to hit
Bt15,500/baht in 3rd quarter
The local price of gold ornaments in Thailand is projected to
reach a new high of Bt15,500 per one baht weight (15.16 grammes) in the third
quarter of this year if the US dollar continues to weaken, according to Gold
Traders Association president Chitti Tangsithipakdi.
He said the gold price surge at present was attributed to rising oil prices on
the world market. The continued weakening of the greenback had also fuelled
speculation in the gold trade, which further pushed up gold prices he said.
Mr. Chitti revealed that total sales of ornamental gold had sharply declined by
as much as 50-60 per cent at present due to the surge in gold prices.
He advised gold traders to reduce their gold imports in tandem with the falling
Scam warning for U.S. Taxpayers
Beware of emails and phone calls using I.R.S. name!
IRS officials in the United States are cautioning
taxpayers to be aware of scams involving proposed advance payment checks.
Although the U.S. government has not yet enacted an economic stimulus
package in which the IRS provides advance payments, known informally as
rebates to many Americans, a scam using the proposed rebates as bait has
started. The goal of the scams is to trick people into revealing personal
and financial information, such as Social Security, bank account or credit
card numbers, which the scammers can use to commit identity theft. Some
examples of scams are listed below.
Rebate phone call
Scam: Consumers receive a phone call from someone identifying himself
as an IRS employee. The caller tells the targeted victim that he or she is
eligible for a sizable rebate for filing his or her taxes early. Fact:
The IRS does not gather the information by telephone.
Scam: The IRS has seen several variations of a refund-related bogus
e-mail, which falsely claims to come from the IRS, telling the recipient
that he or she is eligible for a tax refund for a specific amount. Fact:
The IRS does not send unsolicited e-mail about tax account matters to
individuals or businesses.
Scam: An e-mail notifies a recipient that his or her tax return will
be audited. It may contain a salutation in the body addressed to the
specific recipient by name. Fact: The IRS does not send unsolicited,
tax-account related emails to taxpayers.
Paper check phone call
Scam: In a current telephone scam, a caller claims to be an IRS
employee who is calling because the IRS sent a check to the individual being
called. The caller states that because the check has not been cashed, the
IRS wants to verify the individualís bank account number. Fact: The
IRS does not contact taxpayers to verify bank information.
The only official IRS web site is located at www.irs.gov.
People who have received a questionable e-mail claiming to come from the
IRS may forward it to a mailbox the IRS has established to receive such
emails, phishing @irs.gov. Those who have received a questionable telephone
call that claims to come from the IRS may also use the firstname.lastname@example.org
mailbox to notify the IRS of the scam.
Contributed by Joseph E. Krebs, CPA, a Thailand based U.S. tax
practitioner. For additional information, go to http://www.us-taxpayers.com.
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