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Now is the Time for a Financial Transaction Tax

European Progress and Prospects for the United States





Five years since the start of the Great Recession, policymakers around the world are still struggling to ensure that the undertaxed financial sector makes a fair and substantial contribution to the fiscal costs of the crisis, while promoting more stable and productive financial markets. One option with great promise is the financial transaction tax, or FTT—a miniscule tax applied to an ocean of trading in stocks, bonds, and other financial instruments.

This year, the European Union will implement the world’s first regional financial transaction tax among 11 or more of its member countries. Leading this effort is European Commissioner for Taxation and Customs Union Algirdas Šemeta, who will address Europe’s progress with the financial transaction tax and join a conversation on the implications of Europe’s FTT and prospects for similar, coordinated FTTs in the United States and England.