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Economists warn of 50p tax rate 'damage'

Twenty leading economists have urged the government to drop the top 50p tax rate for high earners, which they say is doing "lasting damage" to the UK economy.

In a letter to the Financial Times, they say it is punishing "wealth creators" and making Britain less competitive and less attractive for investment.

Chancellor George Osborne has said the 50p rate on earnings over £150,000 - introduced by Labour - is only a temporary measure.

But any cut to the rate could set the coalition at odds as a senior Liberal Democrat has said reducing the burden on the richest 1% would be immoral.

Hugh Pym reports.

  • 07 Sep 2011
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