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Higher taxes for financial markets: a good idea for most people

Published 2 September 2019 in Surveys

55% of French people think higher taxes on financial markets would fund aid to developing countries.
This question however does not delve into respondents’ understanding of development aid, nor what is meant by "financial markets". This said, it still appears highly relevant (or fair) to a majority of people to tax financial market transactions to contribute to aid to developing countries.
Only 14% of French people disagree with this idea. 10% did not have a view.

It is likely that the level of support for this idea would be higher still if people realised that they would not be personally affected by such a tax, i.e. that their personal, professional, or family financial transactions (such as inheritance) would not be considered as falling into the category of financial market transactions. If offered a short and clear explanation, then, it is possible that a strong coalition could be built of a majority of French people around the idea of innovative financing for development (already in place in France through its national tax on financial transactions) particularly from the generally accepted principle of greater taxation of the rich to support the poor.

Support for this idea rises with age, which can be explained by the fact that those under 25 are three times more likely than those over 50 not to know how to answer the question, and by extension, probably unaware of this particular type of financing mechanism, and its implications either at a personal, national or international level. This would also suggest the usefulness of an appropriate awareness-raising campaign based on accessible, engaging information.

Further reading

Baromètre de la solidarité internationale n°5 - Les français·e·s, le G7 et les inégalités dans le monde