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Bankers prepare to open Christmas boxes at Easter to avoid windfall tax

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The Chancellor was accused last night of going soft on the City by producing a tax on bonuses that would be easy to avoid and which exempts, among others, former Lehman Brothers staff blamed for the financial crisis. Tax experts said that Alistair Darling had set out to appease voters by promising to crack down on excess, but he had couched the tax so loosely and made it so open to avoidance that bankers could hardly regard it as a full frontal attack. The Chancellor said that a 50 per cent tax would be imposed on bonuses of more than £25,000 paid before April 5. The banks, rather than the employee, would have to pay the tax and hedge fund managers, insurers and anyone entitled to a guaranteed bonus would be exempt. That means that former Lehman financiers will escape the tax because they are on guaranteed deals. Nomura, the Japanese bank, gave two-year guaranteed bonuses to about 100 star Lehman bankers it hired, with the final payout due this year.

 

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Bankers prepare to open Christmas boxes at Easter to avoid windfall tax - Times Online


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