The best hiding places are always the elevated ones. You know it's true. When you're playing hide and seek, it's just a natural tendency to search low to the ground instead of wonder how someone got up a tree or worked contortionist magic to duck into the kitchen cupboard.

So now we have skilled player Intuit (NASDAQ:INTU) telling a blindfolded market that it needs to look higher if it wants to find it. The tax and business software specialist is alerting analysts that their fiscal third-quarter projections for the company are $40 million too low.

If you're wondering why a company that is still weeks away from wrapping up its fiscal first quarter is going out of its way to steer the market's guidance for a period that is a couple of quarters away, it's because -- like H&R Block (NYSE:HRB) and Jackson Hewitt (NYSE:JTX) -- this is a company where tax season is king. Without fail, Intuit has lost money in its July and October quarters and more than made up for the shortcomings with healthy profits for its January and April periods.

Intuit is looking to earn between $1.93 and $2.01 a share on roughly $2 billion in revenues in fiscal 2005. Selling at just over 20 times that multiple may not make Intuit feel like much of a bargain. That's unfortunate, because sometimes when you have companies with such consistent seasonality, you may be able to scoop them up during their down periods at great prices as forgotten entities.

The same can probably be said of checking out our Tax Center now while you still have plenty of time to map out a suitable tax planning strategy for this year and beyond. So it's refreshing to think about taxes all year long. Don't be a sucker for seasonality. Planning doesn't have to be a taxing last-minute concept.

Is it too early to plan for the 2005 tax season? What are some great last-minute moves you can do before 2004 is over? All this and more in the Tax Strategies discussion board. Only on

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is a happy filer with Block's TaxCut program over Intuit's TurboTax. However, he does not own shares in any company mentioned in this story.