Bank of America Corp (BAC), SPDR Gold Trust (GLD): Will Obama Really Confiscate Your Retirement Savings?

Page 1 of 2

The budget proposal President Obama recently submitted had several provisions designed to increase government tax revenue. But one provision concerning retirement accounts triggered alarm bells for many Americans, raising fears that the government will confiscate your retirement savings.

Why people think confiscation is possible
The provision in the Obama budget calls for tax laws to “prohibit individuals from accumulating over $3 million in tax-preferred retirement accounts.” Specifically, the budget refers to a complicated formula that involves figuring out how much money a person would need in order to buy an annuity contract that would guarantee annual payments to retirees of $205,000 for the rest of their lives. The proposal would raise $9 billion over the next 10 years, according to the budget’s forecast.

Immediately, many analysts jumped to the conclusion that the provision might involve actually taking away money from retirement accounts. CNBC’s Larry Kudlow described the measure in a special editorial in the New York Sun as an “incredible and arbitrary limit or tax on — — IRA-type tax-advantaged savings account [emphasis added].”

Past confiscation fears
Constitutionally, the idea that the government could simply confiscate your retirement savings without compensation goes directly against the due process and takings clauses of the Fifth Amendment. More skeptical analysts will note that retirement accounts make up trillions of dollars in assets that major banks Bank of America Corp  (NYSE:BAC) and Wells Fargo & Co (NYSE:WFC) and many other major financial institutions use to drive profits, giving them a huge incentive to use their political power to ensure that those assets don’t disappear instantaneously.

Yet this isn’t the first time that the issue of confiscation has come up. Even before President Obama was elected, Congress looked at a proposal to replace 401(k) plans with government-managed retirement accounts. Under the plan from Prof. Teresa Ghilarducci of the New School’s Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis, these accounts would have had savers contributing 5% of their pay to a government-run retirement plan that would invest in bonds paying a fixed, guaranteed return over the rate of inflation. Ghilarducci’s plan did not propose confiscation, and as she described in an interview with Seattle talk show host Kirby Wilbur at the time, “Whatever you have in your 401(k) now will keep its tax break.”

Page 1 of 2
blog comments powered by Disqus
Insider Monkey Headlines
Insider Monkey Small Cap Strategy
Insider Monkey Small Cap Strategy

Insider Monkey beat the market by 52 percentage points in 24 months Click to see monthly returns in table format!

Lists

Qihoo 360 Technology Co Ltd (QIHU), Actavis plc (ACT), Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) Among 20 Long Ideas from Sohn Canada

The 10 Laziest Countries in the World

The 10 Most Polluted Countries in the World

The 10 Most Dangerous Cities in America 2014

The Top 10 Gold Producing Countries in the World

The 10 Tallest Buildings in the World

The 10 Richest Stand Up Comedians in the World

The 10 Fattest Countries in the World

The 5 Best Summer Jobs for Teens

The 10 Most Religious Countries in the World Keeping the Faith

The 10 Most Educated Countries in the World

The 10 Most Popular Cell Phones in the World

The 10 Drunkest Countries in the World

The 10 Most Expensive Private Schools in the World

The 10 Smallest Countries in the World

Walking Dead Season 5 Spoilers You’ll Wish You Didn’t Know

The 10 Poorest Countries in the World

The 10 Greenest Countries in the World

The Top 10 Countries with the Highest Population in the World

The 10 Most Visited Countries in the World

The Top 10 Star Wars Characters in the Iconic Series

The 10 Most Expensive Android Phones in the World

5 Reasons Why The Illuminati Is Real and a Threat to Society

The 6 Scariest Halloween Costumes Ever Screamed At

The 4 Biggest Hedge Fund Managers in the World Today

The 15 Most Densely Populated Countries in the World

The 10 Biggest Tea Drinking Countries in the World

Top 6 Ways to Improve Your Checkout Process and Close Sales

The 5 Most Profitable Online Businesses You Can Start Today

The 20 Most Profitable Hospitals in the US

The 5 Most Profitable Home Businesses to Start

The 7 Teams that Will Win the Stanley Cup in 2015

The Top 10 Most Expensive Digital Cameras to Snap Stunning Shots With

The 10 Highest Quality Fast Food Restaurants In America Today

The 8 Best Halloween Decorating Ideas to Spook Up Your House

10 Marvel Women that Should Get a Movie Right Now

The 20 Best Remixes of Popular Songs that Will Make You Forget the Originals

7 Most Expensive Cities in the World

5 Least Expensive Cities in the World

10 Celebrities Who Believe In Scientology

10 High Margin Food Products to Build a Business Around

The 10 Most Expensive Clothing Stores in the United States to Get Decked Out At

The 5 Biggest Kickstarter Scams That Swindled Backers’ Donations

The 10 Most Expensive Boarding Schools In the World

50 Crazy Facts About Japan You Won’t Believe

Top 10 Least Expensive Hybrid Cars to Save the Planet With

The 10 Biggest ‘Gate’ Controversies in History

The 10 States with the Highest Nursing Shortages Leaving Their Hospitals Depleted

The 10 Best Value Investment Blogs that Every Investor Must Read

The 6 Cheapest Boarding Schools in Europe 2015

Subscribe

Enter your email:

Delivered by FeedBurner

X

Thanks! An email with instructions is sent to !

Your email already exists in our database. Click here to go to your subscriptions

Insider Monkey returned 47.6% in its first year! Wondering How?

Download a complete edition of our newsletter for free!