Tobin Tax

The European Union has already spent more than Four Trillion dollars bailing out its banks and trying to resuscitate the economy. Now its legislators want financial institutions to return some of that love by taxing stock trades and related transactions, a fee called the Tobin Tax or the Robin Hood Tax. Today we head to a parallel Sherwood Forest looking for answers to that idea.

Part Two of The Current

Tobin Tax - David Boublil

We started this segment with a clip from the European Commission President, Jose Barroso, arguing for a plan to get the European Union back in the black. At the centre of it is a proposal to tax financial transactions ... stock trades, bond purchases, derivative swaps. Mr. Barroso says it would help balance the scales after Europeans spent about 6.5 Trillion dollars in bank bailouts and stimulus spending. European financial institutions are not happy with the idea.

And critics say it will make a dismal economic situation even worse. The idea of a Financial Transaction Tax has been around for forty years ... commonly known as the Tobin Tax. Nobel Prize winning economist James Tobin first proposed a tax on currency trading in the early 1970s. A handful of countries have experimented with Tobin taxes. This plan is much more ambitious.

David Boublil speaks for the spokesperson for the European Commission for Taxation, Customs Union, Audit and Anti-Fraud. He was in Brussels, Belgium.

Tobin Tax - Doug Shaw

While France and Germany have expressed support for a financial transaction tax, not everyone is supportive. Doug Shaw is a Managing Director of BlackRock Investment Management in the UK. He was in London.

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