Inequality and the narrowing tax base: Too reliant on the few http://t.co/ik4nlmoneO – In US: 40% pay no income tax – 1% pay 46% of all tax
— U.S. Citizen Abroad (@USCitizenAbroad) September 23, 2014
The above tweet references an article in The Economist magazine (which is British).
This is a great article. I strongly recommend you add some comments.
The article begins with:
“I LIKE to pay taxes,” said Oliver Wendell Holmes. “With them I buy civilisation.” Most people recognise that taxes pay for public services, but few are as keen to stump up for them as Justice Holmes was. High income taxes tend to discourage effort and entrepreneurship, while encouraging all manner of activity to avoid them. That is why a basic principle of good tax policy has long been to charge a low rate over a broad base.
It is a target which many countries miss, and the gap is growing. Income taxes—one of the main sources of tax revenue across the rich world—are increasingly paid by a small minority of the most affluent. In Britain, employment has risen by 1.3m in the past five years, but the number of taxpayers has fallen by 2.2m. More than 40% of American households pay no income tax. In contrast, the most highly paid 1% of workers in Britain pay 28% of all income tax, while in America it is 46%. In 1979 those shares were 11% and 18% respectively. Corporate income taxes show the same concentration. In Britain just 830 firms pay almost half of all corporation tax. Five American industries account for 81% of the country’s corporate tax revenue, but just a third of its companies.