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Darling’s victims

The government's change to the capital gains tax rate was targeted at hedge fund and private equity managers. But smaller groups have been caught in the crossfire

By Harvey Cole   October 2007

Of the tax changes in Alistair Darling’s pre-budget report, it is the one that did not echo those in George Osborne’s Conservative conference speech that is going to cause the biggest problems: the proposal to “simplify” capital gains tax (CGT) by introducing a single rate of 18 per cent—and in the process tackle the problem of the low tax bills currently faced by hedge fund and private equity operators. In the chorus of protest that is beginning to be heard, these victims have been curiously silent.

CGT is currently levied at anything between 5 to 40 per cent, depending on…

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