Saturday, February 20, 2016

A Looming Global Tax War?

Report of comments by former Treasurer Wayne Swan that more should be done to combat multinational tax avoidance  Wayne Swan speaks out on tax avoidance
    Bloomberg, Putin's New Internet Czar Wants Apple and Google to Pay More Taxes

    “Paying tax is part of civilised life”: Social norms and social influence in tax communications
    Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Available online 17 December 2015. consequences. Overall, this study is the first in-depth empirical investigation of social influence processes in taxpayer communication. We discuss how the results inform research into social norms and tax compliance, tax communication in social networks, and persuasive messaging in tax compliance campaigns

    John Gapper, chief business commentator at the Financial Times, recently suggested that the controversies over multinationals' tax payments -- including Google's settlement with HMRC, investigations into Google's tax positions in France and Italy, and the EU's state aid investigations -- could well lead to a "global tax war."  Alphabet and Apple spell global tax war

    U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper, October 23, 2015. Has a small reference to the ATO’s use of “nudge letters” including examples.   Quantifying Phoenix Activity: Incidence, Cost, Enforcement

    Tax Commissioner Chris Jordan has called time on the "delay and obstruction" tactics of a group of international companies who are trying to avoid paying their taxes, saying they could now face court action ATO turns screw on dodgy multinationals
     Tindhólmur itself was a surreal place 

    *Police arrest five after raid at China bank ICBC's Madrid office  

    Offshore Tax Havens Are Strangling Local Government  

    HMRC redundancies may spark strike action, PCS threatens 

    Digital transformation is high on the agenda for public services. Led by the Government Digital Service, they have gradually been making changes to support the initiative such as providing online council tax services, digital voting and hospital appointment updates by text message.
    How the power of voice biometrics could transform public services 

    Robert Wood, Kanye West’s Tax Free $1 Billion From Mark Zuckerberg

    “Anyone with a Preparer Tax Identification Number (PTIN) can prepare a tax return for a client. However, tax return preparers have differing levels of skills, education and expertise. This searchable directory is intended to help you with your choice by providing a listing of preparers in your area who currently hold professional credentials recognized by the IRS or who hold an Annual Filing Season Program Record of Completion.

    Two economists are walking down the street. One sees a $20 bill lying on the sidewalk and says, “Look at that $20 bill!” The second economist responds, “Nah, that’s not a $20 bill. If it was, someone would have picked it up already.” From flu shots to home energy audits to government assistance, there are arguably plenty of “$20 bills” out there for the taking. Why aren’t people stopping to “pick up” this free cash? 
    Why Don’t People Take Free Cash?
    Mentions: Psychological Frictions and the Incomplete Take-Up of Social Benefits: Evidence from an IRS Field Experiment, American Economic Review 2015, 105(11): 1–42 

    New analysis revealed today by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) shows that men win the battle of the taxes as they are more likely than women to complete their tax return on time. Men come out on top in battle of the taxes

    The move to real-time business often demands that decisions are made automatically. For an online transaction, when the company must calculate a price within milliseconds, this job can only be done algorithmically. How real-time analytics will reshape the workplace

    TaxGrrrl, How Former President Washington Dealt With The First Real Tax Crisis In America
    Kay Bell, How taxes have — and haven’t — changed since JFK became the first president to visit IRS headquarters

    20150921-1The Wild West of Unregulated Tax Practice. Well, not entirely: Federal Court Shuts Down Nationwide Tax Preparation Business (Department of Justice):
    A federal court in Chicago has ordered Servicios Latinos Inc. to close its nationwide tax preparation business, the Justice Department announced today.  The order comes after the Justice Department filed a civil lawsuit against the business and its owners, Georgina Lopez, Pamela Miranda and Jorge A. Miranda, alleging that the defendants falsely understated their customers’ tax liabilities or overstated their customers’ entitlement to a tax refund.  The injunction also prohibits Lopez, Pamela Miranda and Jorge Miranda from acting as federal tax preparers, owning or operating tax preparation businesses and employing tax preparers.  The defendants agreed to entry of the injunction, but did not admit the allegations in the complaint.

    Keith Fogg, Why is the IRS Collecting Taxes for Denmark? 

    Jack Townsend, The Revenue Rule: Is It Relevant Any More? Should It Be? “Historically, the ‘Revenue Rule’ has been a barrier to one country seeking to collect taxes in another country.”

    News from the Profession. Would an Accountant Ever Fall for a Phony IRS Call? “And if a CPA did get duped, it’s not like he or she could tell anyone about it. If they did, they’d literally die from the embarrassment.”

    Many organizations — including the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and RSA Security — have been looking at technologies that offer microsecond viewing and auditing intelligence outside of utility function of today's IT processes. These new approaches are more focused on what is happening in workflow security policies rather than how the utility system processes happen Cybersecurity 2016: Out with the Old, in with the New

    Warning on HMRC’s 'gamekeeper-turned-poacher' tax experts
    CCH Daily, 11/2/16. Management changes and organisational restructuring at HMRC has seen spate of tax officials moving to the private sector with a glut of 'gamekeeper-turned-poacher' tax experts that could undermine the function of the tax authority.
    *Research - How hybrid managers act as “canny customers” to accelerate policy reform: A case study of regulator-regulatee relationships in the UK’s tax agency. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, Vol. 28 Iss: 8, pp.1291 – 1309

    Criminals’ ‘currency of choice’ for chopFinancial Times. ECB using crooks as the excuse for eliminating the €500 note when terrorists and money launderers are hardly a new thing. This is PR for a negative rates measure

    Last Year, British-born writer Aminatta Forna delivered a speech in Boston in which she asserted that writers from Turkey, Bosnia, China, and Russia addressed the politics and current events in their countries “because it mattered.” It was impossible to live in these places, she argued, and not realize that the destiny of individuals was shaped by history. By contrast, she said, “a Western readership tends to be far more interested in the interior worlds of writing and reading. Writing is perceived as a private battle with the individual consciousness.” American novelists, in her view, set the aesthetic in opposition to the political, afraid to let the big, messy world invade their walled gardens Politics and fiction

    Alliance for Competitive Taxation, Busting the Top 6 Corporate Tax Myths of 2015

    Megan Brackney (Kostelanetz & Fink, New York), Firm and Partner Liability for Other Professionals' Noncompliance

    Wray Bradley (Tulsa), Transfer Pricing: Increasing Tension between Multinational Firms and Tax Authorities

    Julie Cassidy (Deakin), 'To GAAR or Not to GAAR — That Is the Question:' Canadian and Australian Attempts to Combat Tax Avoidance

    A while back, Congress voted to curb soaring compensation for corporate officers by limiting tax deductions. Here’s how it went wrong.
    Wealth, jobs and pay inequality are big political issues this presidential primary season, and they’re bound to become bigger once the parties pick their nominees. In the plethora of plans candidates tout for tackling these problems, one favored tool stands out: the federal tax code.
    But trying to legislate corporate behavior and economic fairness — however you define fairness — through the tax system is a lot trickier than it sounds. 

    The Internal Revenue Service targets individual taxpayers and corporations for audits at higher rates when Democrats are in control of the White House, according to a study highlighted by Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics and Public Policy.

    ·        Immigrant Investor Program: Additional Actions Needed to Better Assess Fraud Risks and Report Economic Benefits, GAO-16-431T: Published: Feb 11, 2016. Publicly Released: Feb 11, 2016.

    ·        Biosurveillance: Ongoing Challenges and Future Considerations for DHS Biosurveillance Efforts, GAO-16-413T: Published: Feb 11, 2016. Publicly Released: Feb 11, 2016.