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Equality and Taxes in Germany

This text was also published in German in ZEIT ONLINE on May 26 as part of the op-ed column “Fratzschers Verteilungsfragen“

Going by what political parties say, it would seem that the tax system in Germany is unjust. In the federal election campaign, each is trumping the next: promising tax relief to voters or demanding higher taxes on the wealthy. Last year’s high fiscal surplus of almost 24 billion euros has whetted appetites. In the upcoming months the election campaign … [continue reading]

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Investment, not the surplus, is Germany’s big problem

This article was first published on FT.com on 18th November 2013.

Germany is under attack from the US government, the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission for its huge current account surplus. The criticism is right, but for the wrong reasons. The surplus is excessive, but the accusation that it hurts Europe is nonsense. Worse, it distracts German policy makers from tackling the true cause of the national surplus and the country’s economic Achilles heel: its huge private investment … [continue reading]

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