Reuters - Video

EDITION: U.S. | U.K. | IN

Business

UK tax avoidance row spreads to banks

Monday, Jan 14, 2013 - 02:21

Jan. 14 - Investment bank, Goldman Sachs, is said to be putting off paying bonuses to UK staff until the country's tax comes down from 50% to 45% in April, while aggressive tax avoidance is 2013's hot topic for governments. Joanne Nicholson reports

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

Wealthy celebrities - like Gerard Depardieu - are emigrating to avoid it Multinationals have been dodging it And now the banks are back in the frame for their version of tax avoidance. Investment bank, Goldman Sachs, is said to be delaying paying out bonusses to UK staff until the country's top rate of tax drops from 50 percent to 45 percent in April. Chris Hughes is from Reuters Breaking Views SOUNDBITE English CHRIS HUGHES, BREAKING VIEWS SAYING "The problem with this is it's so out of tune with the current mood of "look everyone ought to pay the appropriate rate - it looks like gaming the system....there is clearly a reputational cost to it. I wouldn't be surprised if you were able to quantify these things, was probably higher than if you just paid all the staff a bit more to compensate them." Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland are also reportedly paying the bulk of their bonuses in June - despite the UK tax payer owning a stake in them. It's thought to be a way of maximising staff pay outs at a time when some banks have costly bills to pay. Several have been fined for poor anti-money laundering controls, fixing the interbank lending rate, and mis-selling payment protection insurance. Jeremy Stretch, from CIBC, says the likes of Goldman Sachs can ill afford a negative backlash. (SOUNDBITE) (English): JEREMY STRETCH, HEAD OF FX STRATEGY, CIBC, SAYING: "The financial sector has performed very poorly as far as reputational risk over the course of last couple of years during the financial crisis and anything that's seen to add to that reputational risk would be seen as a rather retrograde step and I think there are plenty of reasons for all the media and the political classes to want to bash the banks and delay bonus payments until lower tax regimes come in I think will just be another sign there'll be further public clamour against the banking sector which I think will be bad for all of those in financial services." Britain's finance minister says he supports public opinion on the tax issue and has vowed to go after anyone or any company trying to avoid paying it. But some multinationals argue governments create tax structures to attract investment. And there's concern that tackling avoidance could trigger a tax rate battle between countries desperate for corporate currency. Governments and businesses are looking to reform. And it'll be high on the agenda at next month's G20 meeting when the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development presents its tax report.

UK tax avoidance row spreads to banks

Monday, Jan 14, 2013 - 02:21

Top News »

Money »

S&P falls back from record high S&P falls back from record high

Fri, Aug 22, 2014 - (1:35)

S&P 500 closes at new high S&P 500 closes at new high

Thu, Aug 21, 2014 - (1:24)

S&P 500 just shy of record S&P 500 just shy of record

Wed, Aug 20, 2014 - (2:23)

Apple hits $100 a share Apple hits $100 a share

Tue, Aug 19, 2014 - (2:06)

Nasdaq closes at 14-year high Nasdaq closes at 14-year high

Mon, Aug 18, 2014 - (2:23)

Putin puts Wall Street in buying mood Putin puts Wall Street in buying mood

Thu, Aug 14, 2014 - (2:10)

We've become a promotional culture-RetailMeNot's Bodge We've become a promotional...

Thu, Aug 14, 2014 - (4:39)

Dow back to positive territory for year Dow back to positive territory for year

Wed, Aug 13, 2014 - (2:18)

Markets cheer Russia's Ukraine exit Markets cheer Russia's Ukraine exit

Fri, Aug 08, 2014 - (1:50)

Russia, Iraq push Dow to three-month low Russia, Iraq push Dow to three-month low

Thu, Aug 07, 2014 - (2:27)

Wall Street gains but telecom disconnected Wall Street gains but telecom disconnected

Wed, Aug 06, 2014 - (2:28)

The Exchange »

The Exchange: Hot commodity The Exchange: Hot commodity

Wed, Jul 16, 2014 - (9:25)

The Exchange: Constitutional crusade The Exchange: Constitutional crusade

Wed, Jun 25, 2014 - (11:35)

The Exchange: The value of money The Exchange: The value of money

Mon, Jun 02, 2014 - (9:53)

The Exchange: China’s Second Continent The Exchange: China’s Second Continent

Tue, May 27, 2014 - (9:35)

The Exchange: A master of business arts The Exchange: A master of business arts

Thu, May 08, 2014 - (8:24)

The Exchange: America's bankrupt cities The Exchange: America's bankrupt cities

Mon, May 05, 2014 - (8:52)

The Exchange: Let the rocking commence The Exchange: Let the rocking commence

Tue, Apr 08, 2014 - (8:13)

The Exchange: The Moneyball fallacies The Exchange: The Moneyball fallacies

Mon, Mar 24, 2014 - (9:54)

Is doing good a good business? Is doing good a good business?

Mon, Mar 17, 2014 - (7:38)

Reuters Investigates »

Re-homing victim: "I could have been dead" Re-homing victim: "I could have been dead"

Wed, Feb 19, 2014 - (8:24)

Cops and loggers in the Amazon rainforest Cops and loggers in the Amazon rainforest

Fri, Jan 10, 2014 - (4:01)

"Passed around like a dog" "Passed around like a dog"

Thu, Aug 29, 2013 - (6:32)

Adopted, then abandoned online Adopted, then abandoned online

Thu, Aug 29, 2013 - (13:21)

How the DEA keeps its secrets secret How the DEA keeps its secrets secret

Mon, Aug 05, 2013 - (1:36)

How education lost its role as the great equalizer - Reuters Investigates How education lost its role as the great...

Mon, Dec 17, 2012 - (7:52)

Jihad Jane: From abused child to American jihadist - Reuters Investigates Jihad Jane: From abused child to American...

Sat, Dec 08, 2012 - (10:01)

Jihad Jane: The order to kill - Reuters Investigates Jihad Jane: The order to kill - Reuters...

Sun, Dec 09, 2012 - (10:39)

Moving Pictures »

"Old timers" sail the Chesapeake Bay "Old timers" sail the Chesapeake Bay

Mon, Aug 11, 2014 - (2:27)

Burned memories Burned memories

Fri, Aug 08, 2014 - (3:02)

Images of July Images of July

Thu, Jul 31, 2014 - (1:20)

World Cup: passion on the pitch World Cup: passion on the pitch

Fri, Jul 11, 2014 - (1:00)

A refugee in America gives back A refugee in America gives back

Wed, Jul 02, 2014 - (3:25)

A long search for refuge A long search for refuge

Fri, Jun 20, 2014 - (3:04)

World Cup: Around the globe in 50 goals World Cup: Around the globe in 50 goals

Fri, Jun 06, 2014 - (1:08)

VIVID – Sydney’s spectacle of light VIVID – Sydney’s spectacle of light

Fri, May 30, 2014 - (1:37)

The week that changed Boston The week that changed Boston

Mon, Apr 14, 2014 - (3:28)