November 17th, 2009
04:23 PM ET

Financial Dispatch: 15 million may owe IRS

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/22/art.capitol.dome.cnn.jpg caption="More than 15 million taxpayers may owe the IRS, according to a report released by the Treasury Dept. on Monday."]
Andrew Torgan
CNN Financial News Producer

More than 15 million taxpayers may be getting paid more of the Making Work Pay credit than they should, according to a report from a Treasury Dept. inspector general that was released Monday. That means they either will get less of a refund than they expected, or will actually owe money to the IRS on their 2009 taxes.

The taxpayers most vulnerable are those in two-earner couples; those who have dependents who earn wages; single or married filers who have more than one job at the same time; and filers who get pension payments or have a job and receive Social Security benefits.

Also late yesterday, the U.S. Postal Service reported a $3.8 billion loss in the 2009 fiscal year and said it plans to propose to Congress in 2010 that it drop Saturday delivery.

The agency already reduced expenses by $6 billion during the year ended Sept. 30.

Those measures included eliminating 40,000 jobs. However the cash-strapped agency still employs over 712,000 people. The Postal Service also reduced overtime hours and lowered transportation-related costs.

Additionally, the USPS lowered the payments it made for retiree health benefits by $4 billion in fiscal 2009.

A new report says federal regulators, in rushing to rescue AIG last year, failed to use their clout to negotiate concessions from business partners of the troubled insurer.

As a result, $62.1 billion of taxpayer and AIG funds were essentially funneled to 16 banks, which were counterparties to AIG insurance contracts, according to a report by Neil Barofsky, Special Inspector General for the $700 billion bailout.

The amount paid to the 16 banks represented the full-dollar amount of the underlying assets that the counterparties had insured through AIG. The news that the Fed paid 100 cents on the dollar for the assets caused a big stir among lawmakers and taxpayers.

The number of Americans that have trouble putting food on the table shot up last year in an unprecedented spike to a record 17 million households. That’s 1 in 6 Americans.

The Department of Agriculture report, which has been released annually since 1995, said the number of Americans that were hungry rose to 14.6%. In 2007, 13 million households or 11.1% of Americans had trouble getting enough food.

The one-year jump is all the more significant, given the number of hungry Americans had never been higher than 11.9% since these surveys began.

Finally, when most people think of “Black Friday” shopping, they think of things like flat screen TVs, toys and sweaters.

Well now you can add cars and trucks.

“Black Friday,” the day after Thanksgiving, is the best day to buy a car, according to car pricing researchers at Truecar.com.

Analysts looked at day-by-day car pricing for the last several years. That data revealed that discounts on “Black Friday” are, on average, the biggest of the year.

Follow the money… on Twitter: @AndrewTorganCNN

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