Panama papers, calls for Blair enquiry, Britons want tax returns to be made public, and 1D members to take a back seat

Tax

IMF says tax clampdown will take years – The managing director of the IMF, Christine Lagarde, has warned that stamping out “toxic” tax avoidance by multinational companies is likely to take years. Ms Lagarde described tax evasion and avoidance as a “major concern” for the global economy. But, said a comprehensive global agreement on how corporations should be taxed would take a long time to negotiate. She also stressed that it was important to strike a balance between competition and compliance. “[Countries have] to curb avoidance but also be competitive, and that’s where more thinking needs to be done to not limit competition but make sure that it is open,” she said. The IMF will this week launch an initiative with the World Bank, the OECD and United Nations. Which intended to improve information sharing and coordination between organisations in the wake of the Panama Papers leak.

MP calls for Blair inquiry – Conservative MP David Davis says he will write to the Public Accounts Committee calling for an inquiry into whether Tony Blair received “special treatment” from tax officials. It comes after the Times revealed the former PM used a secret trust to manage his multimillion-pound wealth following contact with the head of HMRC.

Half of Britons want tax returns made public
A ComRes poll shows just under half the population think the tax returns of all citizens should be published. Just 31% saying they disagreed with the idea. The survey shows 49% of people think all tax returns should be made public. It also found that 44% of people believe David Cameron’s handling of his financial affairs has been “morally repugnant”. Overall, 52% of people thought Mr Cameron had not been “honest and open” about his finances after he admitted he had profited from his father’s offshore trust. However, 36% of those polled still backed the PM  to handle the UK’s money, compared to 19% for Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Small business and enterprise

HSBC pledges £10bn for small businesses – HSBC says it will commit at least £10bn of loans to smaller businesses this year in order to meet growing demand. The bank is also offering free accounts for 12 months to firms which switch to HSBC, and for 18 months to start-ups.

Dozens desert AIM – Figures from UHY Hacker Young reveal 105 companies quit London’s AIM market in the year to March, an 18% increase on the previous 12 months. At the same time, only 35 floated. The funds raised during listing also fell, by 53% to £624m.

UK economy, finance and markets

EU exit ‘could leave households £4,300 a year worse off’ – A report from the Treasury will this week claim that Britain’s national income could be 6% smaller by 2030 if the UK leaves the European Union. The BBC states that the report says the cut in GDP would be the equivalent of each household being £4,300 a year worse off. The report argues that the major impact of leaving will be because trade barriers will be higher, which will hit exports. Additionally, investment will be lower both within the UK and from abroad, it says.

London’s super-rich turn to renting – An increase in stamp duty on expensive homes has contributed to a rise in the number of London’s “super-rich”. Who are now opting to rent rather than buy property.

Buy-to-let tax fuels surge in house prices – The average price of a home rose to more than £307,000 in April as buy-to-let investors rushed to purchase ahead of tax changes. The Rightmove House Price Index reveals the national average price of property coming on the market rose by 1.3% – £3,843. From March to April, with sellers typically demanding £307,033.

Other

1D members take a back seat – The members of boyband One Direction have resigned as directors of company 1D Media. It comes after the Sun revealed that Louis Tomlinson, Niall Horan, Harry Styles, Liam Payne and former member Zayn Malik could face a probe from HMRC for setting up an elaborate “alphabet” share structure.

Christian Elmes, Partner

Christian Elmes trained at PwC and qualified as a chartered accountant in 1999, before moving to Morgan Stanley (2000-2002) as Associate in the Investment Banking Division (IBD).

He was appointed Director of Finance, Teather & Greenwood Investment Management in 2002 and moved with the Tax Efficient Solutions team to Smith & Williamson in 2004, becoming Deputy head of the department. He left to co-found Enterprise in 2011.

Over the last ten years, Christian has been responsible for developing a number of tax efficient products, particularly Enterprise Investment Schemes. He is able to lead on tax efficient product development from inception through to completion, because of his financial and tax background and commercial experience.

Christian is competent across a broad range of sectors including, leisure and hospitality, media, property and renewable energy.

Christian is a non-executive board member to a number of leisure and hospitality companies, Casper & Cole Ltd, Wright & Bell Ltd, Albion & East Ltd, Camm & Hooper Ltd and Darwin & Wallace Ltd.

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