From the TUC

UNCTAD latest to back a Robin Hood Tax

06 Jun 2011, by in Economics, International

Over the past eighteen months, the number of people and organisations supporting a Robin Hood Tax has snowballed: a clear sign that it has secured political traction (although it may still take time to agree it and implement it). Another sign is that people start realising that this is the answer to whatever problem they are addressing. And so it is with UNCTAD, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, which, according to the Guardian this morning, has said that:

a transaction tax on commodity trading, which could raise billions for investment in developing countries, would slow the pace of financial markets, limiting the scope for misinformation.

And the UNCTAD report quoted also challenged one of the criticisms of a financial transactions tax – that an FTT would make the verdict of the markets on particular products less easy to read and therefore disrupt the efficient operation of a free market – by arguing that speculation was already disrupting it:

“If the efficient market hypothesis were to apply, commodity price developments would reflect nothing but information on fundamentals. However, this study shows that the hypothesis does not apply to the present commodity futures markets,” the report says.