Grundsätzliches zur Besteuerung von Grundstücksgewinnen
Machtgegensätze in einer Währungsunion. Ein historisches Fallbeispiel
Swedish Central Bank Policy in the Post-War Period: Some Comments
Von der Kreditkarte und dem Scheck zur Geldkarte. Drei amerikanische Pläne für den Übergang zum elektronischen Zahlungsverkehr
Büschgen, Hans E.
Bankbetriebslehre (Manfred Hein)
"Fundamental Observations on the Taxation of Profits from Land"
In connection with the current debate on taxation of profits from increased land values, the question is examined of in what sense additional ability to pay taxes occurs in the case of a landowner in consequence of non realized value increments, and how that additional ability to pay can be taken into account in an appropriate manner for taxation purposes. In the course of the study, which unfolds the whole set of problems relating to "scarcity profits" and their treatment for tax purposes, the principle of the net wealth increment in its usual broad interpretation is called into question. The problem is also discussed of when the profit should be subject to income tax in the case of a value increment being realized by sales. The main results of the study are as follows.
From the standpoint of an owner's increased ability to pay taxes deriving from non-realized value increments in the case of developed real estate, it would be advisable to include the increased returns from such real estate (in the case of owner-occupancy a regular adjustment of the "owner's rent" to the latest market level of rents should be made) in the assessment basis for income tax and, in addition, to tax property on the basis of current market values which fully reflect the value increment. In this way, on the one hand the effectively realized income increase would be taken into account and on the other hand the increased "security potential" provided by the more highly valued property. Taxation of such value increments as an element of income or as income-like wealth increments would give an incentive in the first place for "pseudo-realization" by way of credits, which would have an inflationary effect, and in the second place it would give rise to double taxation if the additional returns from the more highly valued property were included for taxation purposes. Realized value increments from sales of developed land should be treated as supplementary income when assessing taxes, if the proceeds are not used to acquire other property. In the case of "conversion", increased ability to pay is to be found only in the higher returns and the increased "security potential". If no property is acquired, the ability to pay is increased by an income increment in the full amount of the increase in value.
If the object is to siphon off the benefits accruing from the value increment on the grounds that such benefits arise without an effort or output by the owner, methods which may be considered are obligatory participation of the government in the shape of a debt to the government in the amount of the value increment with appropriate mandatory payment of interest, or the levy of the full additional returns deriving from the value increment. Using these methods, it would also be possible to skim off part of the benefits by laying down a rate of less than 100 %. Their application would involve neither "pseudo-realization" by the taking up of credit nor double taxation. The levy would have nothing to do with taxation geared to an increased ability to pay, but would aim at socialization of "automatically" accruing additional profit opportunities. Whether skimming off the full increment is compatible with the principles of a market economy system is doubtful.
In the case of undeveloped real estate, the treatment of unrealized value increments as supplementary income components which increase the ability to pay taxes appears justifiable: double taxation cannot occur owing to the lack of regular returns and the danger of "pseudo-realization" with an inflationary effect is relatively small. From the viewpoint of the land policy objective of exerting pressure on owners to sell and thus increasing the supply of such land, the taxation of unrealized profits from value increments of undeveloped land is to be recommended, though certain exceptions should be made. Similarly, in principle there are no objections to the imposition of a "planning profits levy" (planning value adjustment) with the object of skimming off the value increment caused by authorization of (increased) utilization by building.
"Power Conflicts in a Monetary Union - An historical example"
The Vienna Coinage Convention was concluded in 1857 by Austria, Prussia and most of the other German states. They formed a monetary union with a common currency unit, the "Vereinsthaler" (union thaler). In addition to this unit, however, the coins of the individual states remained in circulation. The parity of these various currencies was governed by the common silver standard. The conclusion of this agreement must be considered in close relationship with the rivalry for political power between Prussia and Austria, and constitutes an integral part of the straggle for predominance in Germany. It must therefore be understood as the expression of a short-term, highly unstable balance of power in which the struggle for the German states standing between the two rivals was still undecided. However, the Vienna agreement embodied the elements of a renewed dynamification. The thaler, the currency of Prussia and other central and north German states, enjoyed a special status among the other currencies. This practically had to result in its over-valuation as compared with the south German florin and, of necessity, in persistent silver losses for that florin's area of circulation. Sooner or later, the affected states had no choice but to join the thaler area and thus make at least a partial decision in favour of Prussia. The agreed monetary system was therefore by no means neutral in economic and political respects, but constituted in fact an instrument of power politics. As a further conclusion of this case study the following must be emphasized. The system of the Vienna Convention, which by means of the silver standard subjected interstate monetary relations to automatic regulative mechanisms to a great extent, did not fulfil one expectation which is nowadays associated with the closely related control by formula. That is, it was by no means capable of forcing all member states to practice monetary discipline; on the contrary, the breaking out of one partner put it in a presumably hopeless situation.
"Swedish Central Bank Policy in the Post-War Period: Some Comments"
This article discusses the nature of the actions taken by the Swedish central bank - the Riksbank - in the post-war period and examines some of the consequences of these measures. In this context the views of the critics of the Riksbank are presented. Further, a review of the Riksbank's measures is given
A distinction between monetary policy and credit policy underlies the discussion. Monetary policy refers to traditional central bank actions designed to affect various monetary aggregates (the monetary base, commercial banks' reserves and the money supply). Credit policy, on the other hand, signifies measures taken to influence the level of interest rates and the allocation of credit among different sectors of the economy. Generally, credit policy is associated with the use of administrative procedures aimed at controlling flows of credit. The main contention of this article is that the Riksbank's policy can be characterized as credit policy rather than monetary policy, as the Riksbank has chosen to direct its actions primarily towards influencing the allocation of credit and towards regulating the composition of the assets of commercial banks. Further, the private sector has had to carry the major burden of adjustment to the Riksbank's policy.
Factors which may explain why the Riksbank has relied on credit controls are discussed. Specifically, the implications of the attempts to maintain a "low" level of interest rates are emphasized. Further, the influence on the Riksbank from Keynesian views on central banking, the theory of credit availability and from Swedish monetary doctrine are stressed.
A review of the credit controls used is given. These encompass liquidity ratios, lending ceilings, quantitative limits on commercial bank borrowing from the Riksbank, moral suasion, bond queue, foreign exchange control. Further, some statistics on the development of credit and monetary aggregates is presented. After this, the criticism of the Riksbank's policy is presented. The equity and the efficiency of the Riksbank's measures have been questioned. It has been pointed out that the credit policy will in the long run be less efficient as new channels of credit distribution will develop.
Finally, it is suggested that a shift from the present credit policy to a traditional monetary policy would improve the Riksbank's ability to carry out a successful stabilization policy.
"From Credit Card and Cheque to the Money Card"
Electronic data processing has created favourable General conditions for a cashless payments system in which payment data are transmitted by electronic instruments instead of by paper instruments as hitherto. In the past few years, American banks have prepared the way for the electronic payment system, since it appears to be superior, not only from the technical organization standpoint, but also to an ever increasing degree in respect of costs, to the labour-intensive, traditional system of payment. To ensure that, despite the heterogeneity of the American banking system, uniform electronic forms of payment are achieved which permit full benefit to be extracted from the rationalization advantages also in interbank business, particularly the Federal Reserve Board and the American Bankers Association concerned themselves on the national level with the conversion process at an early stage. The outcome of their efforts was primarily the MAPS/SCOPE project, the Atlanta Payments Project and the programme of the Federal Reserve Board - three overlapping plans for the transition to electronic payments in the United States. They are described and discussed together with the steps taken to put them into effect and the resistance to them. Four basic lines of development become clear. First, traditional cheque payments will disappear first of all in the sphere of recurring mass payments; electronic forms of remittance will oust cheque and credit card payments in shops. While this process is just beginning, it will take a few more years before other types of payment are included to any great extent in the electronic payment system. Secondly, credit card and cheque payments in shops will be replaced by a single form of guaranteed electronic transfer on a credit card account or demand deposit basis. Furthermore, electronic payment in the form of data inputs into terminals that are activated by plastic cards with magnetic stripes will be considerably quicker even than cash payment, which will strengthen the trend towards non-cash payment, especially where rapid serving of customers is important. Lastly, on-line connections between banks and their customers will result in the banks expanding their business, partly by offering new services, but partly also geographically.