Stimulus package provides relief for businesses buying equipment

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The economic stimulus package passed last week by the U.S. House and Senate and signed by President Bush provides enhanced expensing and depreciation relief for businesses buying equipment and placing it into service this year.

A trade or business can depreciate an additional 50 percent of the cost of an asset acquired and placed into service in 2008. Eligible properties for bonus depreciation include (1) tangible property that had a recovery period not exceeding 20 years, (2) purchased computer software and (3) qualified leasehold improvement property.

Bush signed the two-year $168 billion economic stimulus package on Wednesday, Feb. 13, hoping it would deliver “a booster shot” to an ailing American economy. Bush said the world’s largest economy had overcome shocks in the past and expressed confidence that the giant economic aid plan would help the economy through a “rough patch.”

The economic stimulus package, which also includes tax rebates to individual taxpayers, is effective for calendar year 2008.