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The purpose of the National Bank of Commerce in New York in preparing this book is to provide for its friends and customers, in as usable a form as possible, an authoritative text of the Federal Revenue laws which most vitally concern the business and banking world. These laws are contained in the War Revenue Act, approved October 3, 1917, and in the newly amended Income Tax Law of September 8, 1916. The bank has therefore combined the two laws in this book, in a form which will enable the reader readily to determine his taxable status from an authoritative source.
PART I of the book contains the War Revenue Act, as approved by the President on October 3, 1917. The importance of this Act to the commercial and financial world can hardly be over-emphasized. Drawn for the purpose of providing funds for the prosecution of the War, it is calculated to raise for 1917, in addition to ordinary revenues, about $2,600,000,000.
Consideration of the Act by Congress has been long. As it now stands, the measure is a compromise of the views of numerous factions and interests-between those who advocate the "pay as you go" policy and those who favor reliance on bond issues as a policy of war finances -between those who demand the "conscription of wealth" and those who are alarmed at the danger of "frightening capital."
Of the taxes imposed by the War Revenue Act, by far the most important are the War Income Tax and the War Profits Tax, which are calculated to raise, respectively, about $842,000,000 and $1,060,000,000.
The War Income Tax is an addition to the existing Income Tax. Its rates do not supersede, but supplement, the existing income tax rates. The taxable person therefore must take account both of the war income tax rates and of the regular rates of the Income Tax Law of September 8, 1916, as amended. To do this conveniently, readers are referred to Part II of this book, where the provisions of both Acts are presented together.
The War Profits Tax, on the other hand, supersedes completely the Excess Profits Tax approved March 3, 1917; and to determine his liability to the War Profits Tax, the taxable person need consider only the provisions of Title II of the War Revenue Act.
The Stamp Taxes imposed by Title VIII of the War Revenue Act demand the careful attention of business men and bankers generally. Important transactions such as the issue of bonds and capital stock and the sale of stock and of produce on exchange are subject to these taxes. Also, important commercial instruments such as promissory notes, time drafts, conveyances, powers of attorney and proxies are included in the Stamp Tax Schedule. The Stamp Tax is effective December 1,
Title XII of the War Revenue Act is important because it contains some very comprehensive amendments to the existing Income Tax Law. The precise effect of the new amendment is pointed out in the marginal notes printed in connection with the text of the amendments.
PART II of the book is devoted to the Income Tax Law. The Act of September 8, 1916, is brought down to date by the proper insertion of all amendments, and is supplemented by the pertinent sections of other Acts which relate to the Income Tax.
As has already been pointed out, the War Revenue Act affects the existing Income Tax Law in a number
of particulars. Title I of the War Revenue Act imposes for the duration of the War a War Income Tax which is supplementary or additional to the existing tax.
Title X of the War Revenue Act, which contains administrative provisions, contains several paragraphs which modify the way and the form in which payments of taxes may be made.
Finally, Title XII of the War Revenue Act amends the old law in many exceedingly important particulars. Therefore, the Income Tax Law of September 8, 1916, has been printed with all amendments inserted in their proper places. An authoritative text of the law as it now stands is thus provided.
The National Bank of Commerce in New York will gladly render those interested all possible assistance in connection with the interpretation of these laws.
Part I. War Revenue Act of October 3, 1917
V. War Tax on Facilities Furnished by
VI. War Excise Taxes
VII. War Tax on Admissions and Dues..
VIII. War Stamp Taxes
IX. War Estate Tax
War Revenue Act
Approved October 3, 1917
The War Revenue Act levies taxes which seriously affect every individual or corporation which is engaged in manufacturing, commercial or financial activities. The National Bank of Commerce in New York presents for the use of its friends and customers the complete text of the Act as approved by the President October 3, 1917.