Apparently, when you suddenly jack up taxes on your wealthiest citizens (a proposed 75 percent rate on every Euro earned over 1 million, and an increase in the highest tax bracket from 41 percent to 45 percent), your wealthiest citizens look for friendlier countries to park and earn their money. Reports The Telegraph (UK): "Looming tax hikes by France's new socialist government have triggered an exodus of the Gallic super-rich to 'wealth-friendly' nations like Britain and Switzerland." Details:
Alexander Kraft, head of Sotheby's Realty, France, said: "The result of the presidential election has had a real impact on our sales. "Now a large number of wealthy French families are leaving the country as a direct result of the proposals of the new government." [...]
Gilles Martin, a Swiss tax consultant, reported the same trend. "Since the socialists came to power in France, I have been deluged with inquiries from rich French people who would rather pay their tax in Switzerland," he told Switzerland's 20 Minutes newspaper.
This squares with my anecdotal experience in France a couple of weeks back, when notary publics were reportedly swamped with French changing their wills and other financial contracts. Meanwhile, les rosbif are all, bienvenue!
Prime minister David Cameron angered the French last month when he said he would "roll out the red carpet" to wealthy French citizens and firms who wanted move out and pay their taxes in Britain.
He told the B20 business summit in Mexico in June: "I think it's wrong to have a completely uncompetitive top rate of tax.
"If the French go ahead with a 75 per cent top rate of tax we will roll out the red carpet and welcome more French businesses to Britain and they can pay tax in Britain and pay for our health service and schools and everything else."
Link via the Twitter feed of "Old Whig."