POLITICS 07/31/2018 02:11 pm ET Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said the Trump administration may go around Congress to cut capital gains taxes. By Arthur Delaney The Trump administration might go around Congress to cut taxes on investors, a proposal that looks a lot like a giveaway to the rich. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told The New York Times this month that his agency might unilaterally change the tax treatment of capital gains, an idea that conservative policy wonks have long supported. But during the debate over the tax bill that became law last year, Republicans insisted they weren’t out to benefit the elites that President Donald Trump trashed during his 2016 campaign. “The rich will not be gaining at all with this plan,” Trump said in September as congressional Republicans started drafting their tax cut legislation. The plan ultimately benefited the richest 5 percent of taxpayers more than any other group, according … [Read more...] about Republicans Look To Go All-In On Tax Cuts For The Rich
The French government added a staggering €17.9 billion to its public coffers in 2017 thanks to measures aimed at stamping out tax fraud and evasion. France continues to claw back billions of euros owed by French tax fraudsters. According to an annual report by the country’s General Directorate of Public Finance (DGFIP), adjustments to the tax system resulted in €17.9 billion in tax money recovered in 2017. That represents a decrease of € 1.6 billion compared to 2016, when € 19.5 billion was retrieved, and €3.3 billion less than 2015, when a record €21.2 billion was recuperated. But these figures still showcase the success of the Ministry of Finance’s so-called 'drunk tank', a scheme that allows people with hidden bank accounts overseas to legalise their tax situation and only face light penalties. Many French citizens with offshore accounts and other tax-evading schemes have chosen this option over facing more severe penalties … [Read more...] about France pulls in €18 billion through fighting tax fraudsters
British expats have been urged to ensure that their tax affairs are in order as HM Revenue & Customs escalates efforts to target those who live abroad. The taxman has massively stepped up the use of EU laws designed to increase co‑operation between tax authorities. Experts say this is accelerating after the amount of tax HMRC collected from people living overseas trebled in just a year. This is part of a wider push on tax avoidance by the Government, which has reduced the estimated amount lost from £4bn in 2011-12 to just £1.7bn in 2016-17. Now the tax office is casting its gaze across the Channel. In 2017 it made 1,006 requests to foreign authorities, resulting in the recovery of £5.7m in tax.... To continue reading this article Start your free trial of Premium Access all Premium articles Subscriber-only events Cancel any time Free for 30 days then only £2 per week Try Premium Access one Premium article per week … [Read more...] about HMRC cracks down on British expats as tax haul trebles: are you at risk?
POLITICS 07/06/2018 12:38 pm ET Weak wage growth belies the notion of a labor scarcity. By Arthur Delaney Business groups have been complaining about a shortage of workers, but economic data released Friday offered more evidence to the contrary. Even as the economy keeps adding jobs, wages in June increased only 2.7 percent, according to the U.S. Labor Department. Wage growth hasn’t topped 3 percent since before the Great Recession ended in 2009. If there were a shortage of workers, basic economic theory says that the value of workers would increase. Weak wage growth suggests that’s not happening. It’s possible that there is a shortage of workers willing to take jobs at prevailing wages in some areas or industries and that businesses, in general, are stressed out by the prospect of having to pay more for labor. Businesses and liberal economists agree that declining unemployment will increase wages at some point. But the freakout over a worker … [Read more...] about There’s Not Much Evidence Of A Worker Shortage
POLITICS 06/08/2018 12:40 am ET Donald Trump gave away the store at the wrong time, warns ex-Fed chairman. By Mary Papenfuss Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned that the Trump administration’s massive, unfunded $1.5 trillion tax cut and about $300 billion in new spending pose serious problems for the future. “What you are getting is a stimulus at the very wrong moment,” Bernanke said at the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington think tank, Bloomberg reported Thursday. “The economy is already at full employment.” Stimulus packages are used when the economy is flagging. When the economy does slump in the future, there may be few reserves to spend to get it going again. Bernanke predicted a “Wile E. Coyote” moment when the fallout hits, referring to the endlessly failing character in the “Road Runner” cartoons. The stimulus “is going to hit the economy in a big way this year … [Read more...] about Ben Bernanke: ‘Wile E. Coyote’ Economy Will Go Off A Cliff In 2020