Update on the Tax Dodgers

Last week I posted about the Senate investigating offshore banks like UBS in an effort to thwart wealthy US citizens from evading their tax obligations to the tune of $100 billion.  Well, according to this article that Fec linked to UBS is discontinuing its offshore banking operations for US clients.  From the article:

UBS, the world’s largest private banking group, stunned the
financial world yesterday when it shelved all its offshore banking
services for US residents and appeared to rip up the traditional Swiss
franchise of secrecy, saying it was co-operating with the US’s tax
authorities to expose tax cheats…

"I am here today to make it absolutely clear that UBS genuinely
regrets any compliance failures that may have occurred," said Mark
Branson, UBS’s Zurich-based chief financial officer of global wealth
services.

"We have decided to exit entirely the business in question," he said
of questionable banking services for US residents. "That means UBS will
no longer provide offshore banking or security services to US residents
through our bank branches."

But he also announced that UBS was now working with the US
Government to "identify the names of US clients who may have engaged in
tax fraud".

He said while Swiss banking laws prevented client disclosure, "such
privacy protections do not apply when disclosure of client names is
requested in connection with an investigation of tax fraud". Mr Branson
said the 80,000 worldwide employees of UBS — the investment bank has a
substantial presence in Australia — were alarmed by reports of
misconduct.

I’m feeling suddenly heartened, at least a little bit.

1 thought on “Update on the Tax Dodgers

  1. Fec

    Thanks for the link. This one’s weird. Why aren’t people celebrating in the streets? This, to my mind, has huge implications for the uber-wealthy scofflaws that rule the universe. This thing smells so bad that even the grey bankers of Switzerland are putting out the trash. If arch-villains like Ming the Merciless can’t find tax havens, the wheels of Neoliberal Imperialism may run off the tracks. At least the prisons will be full.

    Reply

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