## US Budget proposal – 2018

US Budget proposal – 2018.

It’s been a little over a month ago since the U.S. Office of Management and Budget released a proposed blueprint for the 2018 budget . Comparing to the 2017 budget , largest cuts (in terms of the funding amount) would affect Health and Human Services, Agency for International Development (USAID), Education, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) *, and Agriculture departments. Departments of Defense, Veteran Affairs, and Homeland Security will be the largest beneficiaries of the new plan, all receiving a substantial boost in funding. To make this plan a reality, the Congress will have to approve this proposal next month, something that would be quite a hard sell based on the current reception of the budget.

## Differentiating between Excel Formulas and Functions – Auto Loan Calculator

Excel Formulas vs. Functions – Auto Loan Calculator (PMT)

If you are like me, you are using terms Excel Formulas and Functions interchangeably. However, these expressions represent distinctly different concepts. We can think of a formula as a statement that returns results of a certain user-defined calculation. Formulas can contain values (numeric, date, text,) cell references, ranges of cells, named ranges; they can perform any mathematical operation (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, exponentiation,) as well as evaluate results of Excel’s built-in functions…A function is a predetermined formula that helps us simplify complex procedures and operations. For example, great folks at Microsoft programmed different functions that allow us to sum a group of numbers, search for a specific word within a text string, determine current date and time, or even figure out amount of our loan payment. Ability to construct complex Excel formulas , using multiple Excel functions is one of the prerequisites for becoming an Excel expert. Formulas always start with the equal sign ( = ), and we always enclose functional arguments (if any) inside parentheses.

Let’s suppose that you need to calculate auto loan payment for your dream car – 2015 Ford Mustang GT. According to TrueCarPrice , for the base V8 model, you should expect to shell out \$ 32,864 of your hard-earned dollars for this car; if you reside in the state that Ford Motor Company calls home. This price is comprised of \$ 29,612 true value estimate, \$ 567 market premium, \$ 825 delivery charge, and state sales tax. According, to Bank Rate, you can realistically finance this purchase with a 3% interest rate loan. Since you just received your Holiday bonus, you want to put it towards a \$5,000 down payment on your new car. Let’s calculate your monthly car payment using both: formula method without utilizing Excel functions: =P*i*(1+i)^n/((1+i)^n-1) , as well as through a formula incorporating Excel’s PMT function. Both of these methods rely on formulas to perform the necessary calculations, but only the second method makes use of an Excel function.

## 2014 Maximum Income Tax Rates by State

State Income Tax Rate Inequality in America.

Let’s face it, as Americans we are not all created equal. This fact is especially pronounced when it comes to paying taxes. Most of us have to pay income taxes, yet the exact amount varies by our income level. Having each individual state impose its own income tax laws does not help this matter either.

The IRS already makes the task of figuring out your income tax liability rather cumbersome: you have to determine your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI), subtract the amount of your deductions (standard or itemized), reduce this number by any personal and dependent exemptions you qualify for; and then hopefully arrive at your Taxable Income amount. After ignoring all of the other possible credits, exceptions and unique tax situations that might or might not apply to you, you can have a lot of fun playing with up to seven tax brackets that correspond to your earnings amount.

I used the Tax Foundation website to retrieve pertinent state income tax information for 2014 tax year to see exactly how individual states add complexity in calculating our tax liability. I specifically wanted to retrieve maximum possible marginal tax rate by state in 2014. Below are my findings.