- Productivity grows slowly in Q3. Third-quarter output per worker grew 1.6%, possibly indicating why wage growth remains stubbornly weak. Labor productivity grew 3.5% in the second quarter.
- Sluggish demand drags on China. New data highlights China’s decelerating economy as imports fall 16% and exports fall 3.6% in October. Trade dropped 9% overall, marking the eighth straight month of decline.
- Manufacturing brakes in October. A measure of factory activity showed that the sector slowed last month to the lowest level since 2013. However, a rise in new orders offers hope for the fourth quarter.
- Construction spending rises in September. Spending on new construction skyrocketed, growing faster than expected. September activity reached the highest level since 2008, suggesting that third-quarter economic growth might be higher than originally estimated.
“If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint’, then by all means paint and that voice will be silenced.” – Vincent Van GoghTAX TIP: Are You Subject to the AMT? The Alternative Minimum Tax is designed to force many affluent taxpayers who qualify for certain exemptions to pay a greater share of taxes. Though Congress permanently indexed the AMT to inflation in 2013, many Americans are still subject to the tax. Here are a few things you should know: You may be subject to the AMT if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) is above the AMT exemption amount for your filing status. The 2015 AMT exemption amounts are: Single and Head of Household = $53,600 Married Filing Joint and Qualifying Widow(er) = $83,400 The rules for calculating the AMT are more complex than for regular income tax, so it’s a good idea to work with a qualified tax professional or use the IRS e-file software. If you want to file a paper tax return, the AMT Assistant tool on IRS.gov can also help. If you find that you owe AMT, you usually must file Form 6251. For more information about the AMT, see Form 6251 instructions on IRS.gov or speak with a tax specialist in your area. Tip courtesy of IRS.gov  Click here to view full newsletter including reference articles, golf tips, our recipe of the week and more! Notes on featured image: All index returns exclude reinvested dividends, and the 5-year and 10-year returns are annualized. Sources: Yahoo! Finance and Treasury.gov. International performance is represented by the MSCI EAFE Index. Corporate bond performance is represented by the DJCBP. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Indices are unmanaged and cannot be invested into directly.