You may know the Financial Transactions Tax as the Robin Hood Tax, or – if your memory goes back a long way – as the Tobin Tax, named after the economist who first proposed it. It won’t make the world a fairer place overnight, but the fact that the current British government has been implacably opposed to it (as has the City of London) makes it fairly clear to me that it is a step in the right direction. Certainly the international trade unions back in 2010 endorsed a FTT as a way of helping find the money to finance economic recovery, job creation and climate change costs. The excellent radical French organisation ATTAC even took its name from the tax (ATTAC stands for Association pour la Taxation des Transactions financière et l’Aide aux Citoyens).
Ten Eurozone countries took the decision this May to progress with a (limited, cut down) FTT, to be introduced by 2016. Not ideal, but still probably better than nothing.
But what’s this? A press release from the European Association of Co-operative Banks coming out against the tax. It’s a short document of five sentences which hardly gives much opportunity to understand its reasoning though the EACB does among other things claim that small investors will suffer, a line of argument which I find particularly suspect.
I’m also baffled by the reason that the EACB have press released this. I can’t imagine that the FT tomorrow will clear its news pages to report the news. So it will be left to cooperatively minded journalists like me to shake our heads sadly and post our blogs.