French Constitutional Court Approves 75% Tax On High Earners

Tyler Durden's picture


Almost a year ago, the French constitutional court ruled against Francois Hollande's triumphal blast into socialist wealth redistribution, with his proposed 75% tax rate on high earners, and so indefinitely delayed the exodus of the bulk of French high earners (even if some, like Obelix, aka Gerard Depardieu, promptly made their way to the country that has become the land of solace for all oppressed people everywhere, Russia) into more tax-hospitable  climes. That delay is now over, when earlier today the same court approved a 75% tax on all those earning over €1 million. The proposal passed after the government modified it to make employers liable for the 75% tax. As BBC reports, the levy will last two years, affecting income earned this year and in 2014.

Bloomberg has the details of the tax hike:

Under Hollande’s proposal, companies will have to pay a 50 percent duty on wages above 1 million euros ($1.4 million). In combination with other taxes and social charges, the rate will amount to 75 percent of salaries above the threshold, the court wrote in a decision published today.


“The companies that pay out remuneration above 1 million euros will, as expected, be called upon for an effort of solidarity on remuneration paid in 2013 and 2014,” the Economy Ministry said in an e-mailed statement.


Hollande, who once said he “didn’t like” the rich, announced the 75 percent tax in February 2012 as part of his presidential campaign to appeal to his Socialist base. It has become a symbol of his government’s record-high taxation rate.

And with the tax passage, the preparations for an exodus by all high earnings begin, first among the local football teams. BBC reports:

Football clubs in France went on strike earlier this year over the issue, saying many of France's clubs are financially fragile and say the plans could spark an exodus of top players who are paid huge salaries.


The Qatari-owned Paris Saint-Germain has more than 10 players whose pay exceeds 1m euros, including the Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic.


There has also been a chorus of protest from businesses and wealthy individuals who have condemned the tax - including film star Gerard Depardieu, who left the country in protest.


Polls suggest a large majority in France back the temporary tax.


Unlike many other countries in Europe, France aims to bring down its huge public deficit by raising taxes as well as some spending cuts. The highest tax rate in the UK is 45% and is applied to individuals.

While the numerous unintended consequences of this shock and awe tax hike will be amusing to watch in real time as this move will almost certainly be the long-awaited catalyst to push France into its long-predicted recession (to the benefit of countries like Belgium where the French uber-rich are already relocating to), one wonders if the drop in the value of French ultra-high end real estate will be offset by the soaring valuations of London's already "beyond housing bubble" home prices, and just what the local response will be now that domestic real estate is even more inaccessible to anyone but the wealthiest global oligarchs and billionaires (aside from the capital gains tax of course, which as we wrote previously, is about to be launched first in London, and then everywhere else).

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Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:04 | 4283230 JustPrintMoreDuh
JustPrintMoreDuh's picture

If you like your earnings, you CANT keep them.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:17 | 4283261 Popo
Popo's picture

Capital controls in 5... 4... 3...

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:24 | 4283277 Beam Me Up Scotty
Beam Me Up Scotty's picture

Just take it all. Then everyone can retire.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:42 | 4283321 remain calm
remain calm's picture

This movie will be coming to tax collector near you soon.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:05 | 4283369 fonestar
fonestar's picture

Tax them all and let God sort them out.  Keep taxing, tax people everywhere 110% of their earnings if that is what it takes to make them realize they need something like Bitcoin, out of reach of government and untaxable.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:30 | 4283408 PR Guy
PR Guy's picture



here's one French man with a problem


Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:09 | 4283498 DIgnified
DIgnified's picture

Here is another:

He' s hilarious. I mess with him at BIN. Absolutely insane. He calls me 'O-bot antichrist'... it's a thing we have.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:37 | 4283689 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Exit Parisian millionaires, stage right.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:46 | 4283576 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

Sorry fone, adoption of bitcoin outside of the nerd circle is going to be very unlikely.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:53 | 4283583 fonestar
fonestar's picture

Well in that case the "nerds" will grow exceedingly rich.  Except that is not the case, Bitcoin is already spreading in use and most users will never have any clue of how it works.  Just like how they had no clue how the Federal Reserve prints money.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:00 | 4283597 logicalman
logicalman's picture

If they can't get your money, they'll come for you instead.

BitCoin will be of little assistance at that point.

Governments have pretty much monolpolized violence or the threat thereof.

By the way, given you seem to be a bit of an evangelist, why not start up the Church of Bitcoin?

Hash tags in the collection plate and all that.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:00 | 4283603 fonestar
fonestar's picture

It's virtually impossible to tie Bitcoin users to Bitcoin addresses.  Unless you want to get into some stupid argument about a secret government quantum computer that is maintaining an exponentially growing database of addresses.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:16 | 4283646 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

Pattern matching your IPs, proxied or not, is very easy.

Mon, 12/30/2013 - 11:02 | 4285019 fonestar
fonestar's picture

What are you talking about?  There's no way to associate users of Bitcoin with new Bitcoin addresses.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:42 | 4283700 logicalman
logicalman's picture

If you are denied access to a computer you are fucked - simple as that

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 22:37 | 4284338 Blame Crash
Blame Crash's picture

Why would the government need your pathetic bitcoins when they can have you by the throat instead?

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:15 | 4283262 Mae Kadoodie
Mae Kadoodie's picture

If we like your 75% then we can keep your 75%.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:26 | 4283282 silvermail
silvermail's picture

Thus, France is shooting itself in the foot? No, in the head!

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:37 | 4283418 zerozulu
zerozulu's picture

Take 100% and hang them all.


French revolution II

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:13 | 4283507 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

In fairness you should only hang 75%.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:25 | 4283284 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

What does the Frenchman say?


Le Moo! Le baa! Le belement!

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:57 | 4283350 mvsjcl
mvsjcl's picture

"If you like your earnings, you CANT keep them."

But if you like your capital gains, YOU CAN!

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:21 | 4283384 TheLoveArtist
TheLoveArtist's picture

The Rich never pay taxes anyways LOL, this is just for the media and middle class who is next to get their tax rates jacked up.  Unlike the uber rich who reside primarily in Monacco etc and use shell companies, the middle class rabbit is stuck in the cage and has to pay with flesh and blood.  Expect to see their rates go up too and the govt to say well we raised them on the rich now everyone also has to bite the bullet.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:39 | 4283415 Leopold B. Scotch
Leopold B. Scotch's picture

If you're counting in dollars, already we all pay the inflation tax.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:08 | 4283488 garypaul
garypaul's picture

BS. The rich are more often recipients of the benefits of inflation.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:21 | 4283521 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

I'm sure the meme behind taxing 75% of their income, was to Tax the 1%.  And so it goes until socialists go bust and then blame the free market, or capitalism.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:44 | 4283564 jonytk
jonytk's picture

France will be the next PIIGS in line, mark my words.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 19:32 | 4284005 Promethus
Promethus's picture





Sun, 12/29/2013 - 23:24 | 4284426 Rory_Breaker
Rory_Breaker's picture

Once UK and Netherlands join along with France we'll have FUKINPIGS

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:02 | 4283601 logicalman
logicalman's picture

Free market?????

Let me know if you can find one.

Capitalism - as common as rocking horse shit.


Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:10 | 4283621 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

You know that.  But it won't stop them from blaming anything but themselves.  There's always a new Straw man to serve as cover.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:07 | 4283485 garypaul
garypaul's picture

Exactly. That's the playbook 101. And to prove that I know what I'm talking about, watch this "two year" tax period get extended, and then extended again, etc.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:08 | 4283496 malikai
malikai's picture

It's a crisis. We must all pitch in and do our part!

For solidarity.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 16:05 | 4283611 silvermail
silvermail's picture

"It's a crisis. We must all pitch in and do our part! For solidarity".

When you say the word "we" who exactly do you mean - we are slaves or we - the owners of slaves?

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:43 | 4283435 mrdenis
mrdenis's picture

You didn't earn that money you worked  for ........your government  did.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:53 | 4283582 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

Wonder how Johnny Depp feels about that.    How's that socialism working out for ya champ?   

(Disagree with his politics but he had the balls to act on his 'threats') 

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:02 | 4283232 Timmay
Timmay's picture

And when this "Fails"?, global bank account confiscation.....

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:26 | 4283281 agent default
agent default's picture

Blame it on Switzerland.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:11 | 4283503 Headbanger
Headbanger's picture

Non!   Blame Canada!    Blame Canada!

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:40 | 4283319 Long-John-Silver
Long-John-Silver's picture

Anyone with money in a Bank deserves to get what's going to happen to them.

Mon, 12/30/2013 - 08:55 | 4284806 j0nx
j0nx's picture

Says the guy who lives in his mom's basement and doesn't have any money to keep in the bank anyway. Get the fuck outa here. Where else are you supposed to keep large amounts of cash? In your house where it will burn down or get stolen? Same with gold. Unless you have your own personal vault then good luck with that.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:05 | 4283233 Unpopular Truth
Unpopular Truth's picture

2 wolves and 1 sheep voting what's for dinner.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 14:36 | 4283421 Leopold B. Scotch
Leopold B. Scotch's picture

18 morons and 1 farmer voting on who gets to run the farm.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:01 | 4283473 TheGardener
TheGardener's picture

Would hate to admit to be assimilated : that one farmer on subsistence is me.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 15:33 | 4283530 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Every time they try letting morons run the farm they all starve.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:04 | 4283234 The Merovingian
The Merovingian's picture

I love cursing in French, it's like wiping my ass with silk ...

Fuck You ObernYellen!


Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:14 | 4283260 Tinky
Tinky's picture

Poor choice of metaphor, as cotton is much more absorbent. 

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:28 | 4283291 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

Perhaps French shit is like that of rabbits and deer; hard and pebbly?

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 13:28 | 4283293 Pure Evil
Pure Evil's picture

That's just a smear on both fabrics.

Sun, 12/29/2013 - 18:58 | 4283956 Calmyourself
Calmyourself's picture

Merovingian, your wife's hot... 

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