Connections for Success


Manufacturing and Distribution


FASB Expands VIE Exception for Private Companies
Joel A. Herman

Private manufacturers often set up separate legal entities to hold real estate or operate new but separate business ventures. Under current accounting rules, these entities are typically considered variable interest entities that must be consolidated on to the controlling entity’s financial statements under current GAAP.


Critical Questions to Ask About Internal Controls
Kenneth Tornheim

When fraud strikes manufacturers, the effects can be devastating. The median fraud loss in the manufacturing sector was $240,000, according to the 2018 Report to the Nations published by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. Internal controls are a company’s first line of defense in preventing and detecting fraudulent activity.


Moving Your Business to the Cloud
Mark A. Thomson

Many manufacturers and distributors have already jumped aboard the cloud computing bandwagon, but is it right for your business?


Entity Choice: Is It Time for a Switch?
Joel A. Herman

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act lowers the federal income tax rate for C corporations to a flat 21%. This fundamental change has caused some manufacturers to ask whether it still makes sense to continue to operate as a pass-through entity.


Deducting Travel and Entertainment Expenses with Confidence
Brandon W. Vahl

When owners, managers and salespeople attend trade shows, call on customers and evaluate suppliers, they may incur travel and entertainment expenses. Here are the rules for deducting these costs, including how they have changed under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.


Employee or Independent Contractor? Worker Classification Matters
Seamus M. Donoghue

There’s a fine line between employee and independent contractor. The distinction may take on even greater importance under the new tax law as some employees try to shift ordinary income into business income to be eligible for the new qualified business income deduction. Here’s an overview of this issue and the characteristics that distinguish employees from contractors.


Is it Time to Switch Accounting Methods?
Mark A. Thomson

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) liberalizes the eligibility requirements for certain accounting methods that are generally easier to use and more flexible. As a result, more small and midsize manufacturers may be eligible for tax reporting shortcuts that may warrant accounting method changes.


How to Put Financial Statements to Work for Your Business
Kenneth Tornheim

Spring is the time of year that calendar-year-end businesses receive financial statements that conform to U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). This year, take your financial statements beyond compliance and use it to develop a comprehensive business plan.


Production Costs – Are the Prices Too High, Too Low, or Just Right?
Anna M. Coldwell

Manufacturers tend to base product prices on direct production costs. They occasionally adjust prices for inflation or when the costs of raw materials spike. Here’s why this simplified pricing model may compromise market share over the long run and how market leaders factor market-based considerations into their pricing strategies.


Smart Factories and Blockchain: Stay on the Cutting Edge of Technology
Kenneth Tornheim

Most manufacturers have already applied classic business management concepts, such as just-in-time production and continuous improvement initiatives, in order to enhance cash flow and efficiency. However, these efforts might not be enough to stay competitive in a technology-driven marketplace. Smart factories and blockchain technologies are expected to revolutionize the manufacturing industry in the 21st century. […]

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