Whether we like it or not, the stock market is important to the average American, maybe moreso than ever in our nation’s history. All Americans are de facto participants and beneficiaries of healthy markets whether directly or indirectly, as investors or corporate employees, and Senator Charles Schumer gets it.
I applaud the Senator’s opposition to the so-called “Trader Tax“, which I feel would act as a drag on our markets and economy, just as things seem to be ameliorating. Below is Schumer’s response to my (and many others) show of disdain for the recently-introduced bill:
Dear Mr. Brown:
Thank you for contacting me to express your opposition to H.R. 1068, the Let Wall Street Pay for Wall Street’s Bailout Act. I share your concerns about the timing of this legislation and the disproportionate impact it would have on New York’s economy.
As you know, the Let Wall Street Pay for Wall Street’s Bailout Act, recently introduced in the House by Representative Peter DeFazio (D-OR), would improve a 0.25 percent transaction tax on the sale and purchase of stocks, options, and futures, and would use this revenue to offset the cost of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). While I share the frustrations many Americans have with some on Wall Street, I fear that this legislation has the potential to harm economic recovery efforts by deterring capital investment. I am particularly concerned about the burden a transaction tax would put on pension plans, which are already struggling to meet funding requirements, as well as other retirement investment vehicles such as 401(k)s and IRAs. According to the most recent Retirement Confidence Survey, the number of workers who believe they have enough money to retire comfortably is the lowest in over a decade. Moreover, when the economy recovers, taxpayers should be able to recoup some –if not all—of the cost of TARP because the federal government received warrants in exchange for the loans, by which taxpayers should earn a return on the investments in firms needing assistance. The federal government has already witnessed signs of economic recovery this past summer with the repayment of nearly $70 billion in taxpayer money from ten of the largest TARP recipients in the form of returned borrowed funds.
Again, thank you for contacting me on this important issue. Please do not hesitate to contact me in the future if I can ever be of assistance to you on this, or any other, matter.
Charles E. Schumer
United States Senator
Whether you were for or against the bailout is not the question, it happened and we now have to hope for a swift recovery and disentaglement. Raising the cost of doing business in America is not the answer.