Monday, January 30, 2012

Links Jan 30

Petition of 84,000 signatures presented to the German Finance Minister protesting against the Swiss/German tax deal Tax Justice Network Germany blog:
Jan 26 - On the petition protesting the Swiss/German tax deal, organised by a civil society alliance including Tax Justice Network, . See here for a rough Google translation, and here for blog post for reporting on the petition in the Financial Times Germany.

Swiss min: Must tackle problem of tax dodgers-paper Reuters

Jan 28 - Swiss Economy Minister Johann Schneider-Amman is reported as saying: "The problem of untaxed wealth in Switzerland is a serious problem that we need to resolve. Not only with the USA but also with the Europeans - Banking secrecy wasn't invented to create an opportunity for doing business with untaxed money ... We must find a way of dealing with legacy wealth."

U.S.: Top Dem Offshoring Expert Smells Something Fishy In Romney’s Tax Code TPM
Jan 26 - Sen. Carl Levin observes: "There is no such thing as an ordinary Swiss bank account."

Secrecy key to offshore accounts linked to Hot Lotto case The Gazette

Jan 29 - A story with with bizarre twists - "The trust that held the ticket for a jackpot worth $7.5 million after taxes abandoned its claim this week after the Iowa Lottery refused to pay out without knowing who bought the ticket and who was behind the trust. Lottery officials said the would-be winner was a corporation in Belize ... 'known as one of those countries that won’t give information to the United States about its account holders.' "

U.S.: Senate Dems should force GOP to hold vote on Buffett Rule Washington Post

Jan 27 - "Picture this scenario. The Senate holds a high-profile vote on a proposal focused directly on implementing the Buffett Rule, one that would bring the current tax rate for millionaires paying lower rates on investments up to 30 percent. This, at at exactly the moment when the GOP is picking a nominee who is worth $250 million and is personally benefitting to an enormous degree from the current rate — one that’s lower than many middle class taxpayers pay ..."

See also:
CTJ Calculates Buffett Rule Would Raise $50 Billion in One Year and Affect Only the Richest 0.08 Percent of Taxpayers Citizens for Tax Justice

Jan 27 - "Citizens for Tax Justice has calculated that President Obama's "Buffett Rule" would, if in effect this year, raise $50 billion in a single year and affect only the richest 0.08 percent of taxpayers -- that's just eight percent of the richest one percent of taxpayers... "

See also:
But The Top 0.1 Percent Isn’t Diverse The New York Times

Jan 15 - "Basically, the top 0.1 percent is the corporate suits, with a few token sports and film stars thrown in."

Knowledge lies at the heart of western capitalism Financial Times
Jan 29 - Herbando de Soto notes a lot of useful points, including: "To regain its vitality, western capitalism must bring under the rule of law and public memory hundreds of trillions of dollars now swirling mindlessly out of control in the obscure world of financial innovation." - but he makes no mention at all of offshore!

Canadians for Tax Fairness: Tax Justice Newsletter
Jan 2012 edition:

Included in this issue:

World Bank Reports, Hat tip: Bruno Gurtner:

Coordinating Tax Reforms in the Poorest Countries: Can Lost Tariffs Be Recouped? by Swarnim Wagle

"A revenue-neutral switch from trade taxes to domestic consumption taxes is fraught with implementation challenges in countries with a large informal sector."

Tax Morale and Compliance: Review of Evidence and Case Studies for Europe by Benno Torgler

"The overall findings show the importance of accountability, democratic governance, efficient, and transparent legal structures and therefore trust within the society to enforce tax compliance and tax morale."

Tax Morale, Eastern Europe and European Enlargement by Benno Torgler

This study tries to remedy the current lack of tax compliance research analyzing tax morale in 10 Eastern European countries that joined the European Union in 2004 or 2007. ... The author observes that events and processes at the country level are crucial to understanding tax morale. Factors such as perceived government quality and trust in the justice system and the government are positively correlated with tax morale in 2008."


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