Thursday, September 6, 2007

When is $600 Million in Salary Not Enough?

September 6, 2007

Testimony Counters Private-Equity Tax Claims

WASHINGTON, Sept. 6 — Pension fund and tax specialists told Congress today that a proposal to more than double the tax rate of executives at private equity firms and hedge funds, which invest money from pension funds, would have a negligible effect on the returns provided to pensioners.

The specialists said that although the pension funds had invested billions of dollars in hedge funds and equity funds, those investments are a small part of their overall assets, less than 10 percent, according to recent studies. As a result, they said, any increase in taxes on the managers of the hedge funds and equity funds would do little damage to pension funds.

Today’s testimony was significant because critics of the proposals have maintained that fund managers would pass on any tax increase to investors, thus reducing the returns of pension funds that millions of middle-income Americans rely upon for their retirement.

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It's a tragic consequence of greed that pension fund managers making hundreds of millions of dollars annually are unwilling to pay taxes at similar rates to those who struggle on burger-flipping wages.

What the hell does anyone do with 600 million?


* For more in-depth articles by Jim on Taxes, check out Opinion-Columns.com