St. Petersburg Times
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January 12, 2003
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Robert Trigaux
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Helen Huntley
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Today’s headlines
Helen Huntley: 2003 not the year for lower intangibles tax
Investors who are expecting a break on the intangibles tax this year are in for a big disappointment. A reduction in the annual tax on investments takes effect July 1, but the Florida Department of Revenue says it will not reduce anybody's taxes until 2004.

Decoding the new language of ratings
To grasp the ambiguity of some of the new stock-rating systems on Wall Street, consider Brian Smith.

Beware easy answers to debt problems
"Get rid of your debts!" "Get creditors off your back!"

Biz bits
U.S. stocks will surge by more than 25 percent in the first half of 2003, predicts Morgan Stanley's Byron Wien. Watch for the nation's economy to grow by 4 percent this year, as consumers "hold their own and capital spending rebounds," he says. But beware: Wien missed on a few predictions for 2002. He misfired on many of his political prophecies, including the resignations of Alan Greenspan and Japan Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi.

Looking for a lifeline out of debt
Rising credit card debt makes it tough for many Americans to keep their heads above water financially. With planning and discipline, they can save themselves, experts say.

Stock analysts toughen up their terminology
A year ago, Salomon Smith Barney seemed to purr about every stock.

The money panel
E. Robert Kiehl: retired building products executive, 82, of Clearwater

Ten tips: Ice age: How to buy a stand-alone freezer
If you love to do bulk shopping at warehouse clubs or prefer to keep plenty of potential dinner options on hand, you may be in the market for a separate freezer. The following tips can help you make the right purchase for your home.

Common-sense counsel about getting out of debt
When debt problems pile up, many people turn to a credit counseling service for help. One of the counselors who responds with information, advice and a sympathetic ear is Barbara Eisenfeld, 60, of Tampa. She works for the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of the Florida Gulf Coast, which serves Hillsborough, Hernando, Manatee, Sarasota and Lee counties.


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