Wednesday, November 14, 2012

France makes a transaction tax to tax speculators, fails miserably.

Yeah, this is what happens when you think you are smarter than everyone else as a government official
As France begins collecting its financial-transactions tax this month, it is becoming evident that President Francois Hollande’s levy is hitting all but the people it was aimed at: speculators.

Hollande, who called finance his “main adversary” during his election campaign, pushed through in August a 0.2 percent transaction tax on share purchases, making France the first and only country so far in Europe to have such a levy. Many investors have been escaping the tax using so-called contracts for difference, or CFDs, offered by prime brokers that let them bet on a stock’s gain or loss without owning the shares.

“The target was supposed to be finance with a capital F, which is sort of a black box,” said Jacques Porta, who helps manage $627 million at Ofi Patrimoine in Paris. “Instead, we are punishing small investors who aren’t to blame and already are frightened off by losses in the market.”

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