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The French government offered tax breaks to property owners on Friday in its second set of measures in three months to reverse a homebuilding slump that is holding back growth in the euro zone's second-biggest economy. Braving steady criticism from the left that he is too pro-business, Prime Minister Manuel Valls said the government would also limit plans for rent caps, which builders and property developers say has scared off investors.

Swiss banks have suffered from a massive outflow of funds since 2008, a survey said on Friday, squeezed by an international crackdown on tax evasion. The survey by auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers attributed much of the outflow - totalling almost 350 billion Swiss francs (290 billion euros, $380 billion) - to customers paying fines for undeclared assets held in Swiss accounts. The report said that foreign clients withdrew about 100 billion Swiss francs to pay fines abroad, and 250 billion Swiss francs were transferred to other countries.
Sweden's main centre-left opposition party, leading in opinion polls, will reverse eight years of tax cuts by raising the burden by 1 percentage point of GDP if it wins next month's election, the likely new finance minister said. Magdalena Andersson, the party's economics spokeswoman and widely tipped for the finance post after the September 14 vote, said taxes - including a new levy on banks and the top rate of income tax reaching around 60 percent - would be raised over two years to pay for more welfare spending.
Austria''s finance minister resigned on Tuesday after eight months in the role, the casualty of a bitter dispute over tax reform in a country seen as a model of EU fiscal reform. "Those who say that we need tax reform now can only do that with new debt," said Michael Spindelegger, who has also stepped down as the country''s vice chancellor and head of the center-right OeVP party.
Indonesia's president-elect, Joko Widodo, and his transition team are considering setting up an autonomous tax office in a drive to boost state income in Southeast Asia's largest economy, a senior adviser to Widodo told Reuters. The plan would separate the taxation and customs department from the Finance Ministry and place it under the control of the president's office, similar to the US Internal Revenue Service, said Luhut Panjaitan, a key adviser to Widodo's transition team and contender to be chief economics minister.
Tax evasion is eating away at the heart of Romania and holding back the country, among the poorest in the European Union, in its efforts to catch up, analysts warn. The estimates for the costs of the so-called black or undeclared economy are huge: about one quarter of economic activity and one quarter of people in work are believed to be beyond the reach of tax inspectors.
Atlantic City's tax base, facing the loss of a third of its casinos including the shining new Revel Casino Hotel, is likely to shrink next year to half of what it was in 2010, the city's finance chief said. The erosion of the property tax base, in the most well-known US gambling city after Las Vegas, has been steep and fast. It is expected to fall to an anticipated $10 billion or less in 2015 from $20.5 billion in 2010, Atlantic City's Revenue and Finance Director Michael Stinson told Reuters in a phone interview.


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Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
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WeeklyAugust 28, 2014
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