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Comment: Why Taxing Wall Street Won't Work

By Bill Harts
August 4, 2015, CNBC

The goal is lofty, audacious and of perfect sound-bite length: Free college tuition for all, paid for exclusively by a "small" tax on "Wall Street speculators." 

The idea of a financial-transaction tax has been kicking around for a while but has gotten more notice since presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Martin O'Malley have been calling for it. Sanders is calling for a 0.5-percent tax on stock trades, a 0.1-percent tax on bond traders and a smaller tax on derivatives (futures and options) trades.

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GFMA, IIF, ISDA Plan Liquidity Lobbying Push

By Duncan Wood
July 10, 2015, Risk

Draft report urges regulators to consider impact of Fundamental review of the trading book and financial transaction taxes on markets. 

Three industry associations are preparing a major new lobbying offensive on the topic of market liquidity, based on research and analysis conducted by consulting firm PwC.

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Derivatives Clearing Diverts Capital from Long-Term Investing – PensionsEurope

By Jonathan Williams
June 24, 2015, IPE

Mandating central clearing of derivatives trades would only serve to increase profits for clearinghouses and could increase risk, PensionsEurope has warned. 

In a discussion paper on the Capital Markets Union (CMU), published to coincide with the industry group’s annual conference in Brussels, the association warned that a more coherent capital market could be undermined by regulatory requirements diverting funds away from investment opportunities.

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E.U. Seeks Transaction Tax as 11 States Meet in Bid to Choose Path

By Rebecca Christie
June 17, 2015, Bloomberg Business

The 11 European nations seeking a financial-transactions tax will meet Thursday in Luxembourg in a bid to decide how to design the measure, according to European Union officials.

Participating states are wrangling over which trades to tax and who should collect revenue, according to planning documents obtained by Bloomberg News. Finance ministers and deputies are next slated to meet in Luxembourg with EU Economic and Tax Commissioner Pierre Moscovici before scheduled meetings of all 19 euro-area finance ministers

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Financial Transaction Tax: a Restless Pursuit?

May 8, 2015, The Trade

Many thought the dreaded European Financial Transaction Tax (FTT) had gone away, but in January, French and Austrian finance ministers wrote a letter to counterparts in the 11 supporting countries (ECP 11)— Austria, Belgium, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia and Spain—suggesting a revival of the tax, with a proposed arrangement date of January 2016.

Following that initial flurry, things have since quietened down, but, across Europe, opinions differ as to whether the tax will ever come in at all.

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Eleven EU Countries Close In On Tax Compromise

By Gabriele Steinhauser
November 7, 2014, The Wall Street Journal

Eleven European Union countries that have pledged to impose a tax on financial transactions have moved closer to finding a compromise on the levy, finance ministers said Friday, although revenues will lie far below initial estimates.

“We have agreed on the scope of taxation, which looks at shares first and then looks at taxation of some derivatives,” said Italian Finance Minister Pier Carlo Padoan, who led Friday’s debate. “On this last point, discussion is still ongoing, but I am confident progress will be made.”

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Central Collection Box Proposed for FTT

By Tim Cave and Anish Puaar
Published August 7, 2014 Financial News

The proposed European financial transaction tax may be collected through a central industry utility, raising the possibility of using existing market infrastructure such as trade repositories to gather the levy.

The creation of a “dedicated tax collection utility” is one of four options listed in a European Commission document on the FTT’s “collection methods and data requirements”.

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Facing Up to the Financial Transaction Tax

By Elliott Holley
Published July 22, 2014 Banking Technology

A European financial transaction tax on equities and derivatives trades could be damaging for European liquidity levels and the City of London, but  it also looks set to impose serious operational challenges for banks, brokers and their buy-side clients following the failure of a UK appeal to the European Court of Justice earlier this year.

“Based on what we know of the FTT so far, there is a strong risk that this will hurt the market,” said Christian Voigt, business solutions architect at Fidessa. “The tax will impact those who trade a lot, such as liquidity providers. Market makers are needed to provide liquidity to the market in times of stress – but the FTT will discourage them from doing so at the very moment when the market needs liquidity the most.”

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Deutsche Boerse Looks Outside Euro Zone as Transaction Tax Looms

By Andres Kroener, Edward Taylor, Jonathan Gould, and Douwe Miedema
Published June 30, 2014 Reuters

Deutsche Boerse plans to expand operations outside the euro area to give non-European clients an opportunity to avoid the bloc's proposed financial transaction tax, four people familiar with the exchange operator's thinking told Reuters.

"The group has to be ready to offer its clients something outside the euro zone if domestic trading is no longer attractive because of the financial transaction tax," one of the sources said.

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EU Should Be Transparent in FTT Talks, Italian Official Says

By Rebecca Christie
Published June 3, 2014 Bloomberg

Proposed European financial-transaction tax shows need to coordinate work on policies that affect nations differently, such as those inside and outside the euro area, says Stefano Sannino, Italy’s representative to the EU. “We need to be transparent in the way we manage these kinds of files,” Sannino says at Brussels event 

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