Links Feb 12

Tackling tax evasion: Follow the money The Economist
“As countries share more information, opportunities to squirrel away cash abroad will continue to narrow”. Cites TJN on the Common Reporting Standard (CRS).

Private banks must be more than laundries Financial Times (paywall)
See also: Private banking: laundromats for the rich Tax Research UK, and earlier blog Quote of the day – Swiss whitewash

European Parliament special committee into tax dumping must ensure meaningful investigation with proper follow-up Sven Giegold

HSBC debacle highlights the need for deep financial reform Ekklesia

Australian tax office has not prosecuted any HSBC Swiss account holders The Guardian

Belgium may use arrest warrants against HSBC directors The Irish Times
“Prosecutors may step up part in global inquiry if request for information fails to yield results”

UK government should have known about HSBC tax issues, says Falciani The Guardian

UK: Pressure mounts for formal investigation into HSBC unit Financial Times (paywall)
“The US, France, Belgium and Argentina are all doing it. So why do UK authorities seem reluctant to formally investigate HSBC’s Swiss private bank over allegations that it proactively helped thousands of clients to dodge the taxman?… One key to understanding why the UK seems to be going easy on HSBC dates back to a multibillion pound deal over tax evasion Switzerland signed with the UK in 2011.” See recent blogs UK-Swiss tax deal: TJN letter to UK Chief Treasury secretary, and UK government on Swiss tax deal: TJN was right

HMRC investigates second list of HSBC offshore accounts Channel 4

HSBC tax leaks: Hundreds of customers with Jersey based HSBC accounts told to pay up to £20m by the tax man The Independent

Argentina says UK asks for cooperation in HSBC tax probe Reuters

HSBC tax row: Le Monde owners attack newspaper’s coverage The Guardian
“Owners hit out at decision to name wealthy Swiss account holders, sparking row over paper’s independence”

Cayman firms try to prevent disclosure of ‘commercially sensitive’ information Offshore Alert

Wall Street Whistleblowers: After The Largest Leak In Banking History, Are They Safe? International Business Times
The answer is “no”. See also recent blog: Tax haven whistleblowers: where are the human rights organisations?

Is there a problem with lobbying? L4BB
On Transparency International’s new report: Lifting the Lid on Lobbying: The Hidden Exercise of Power and Influence in the UK’



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