By Louise Egan and Gernot Heller
IQALUIT, Canada, Feb 6 (Reuters) – The idea of a global tax on banks to recapture bailout costs gained ground over the weekend, boosted by the Obama administration’s latest proposals, but there was no agreement on a specific design.
Finance ministers and central bankers from the Group of Seven rich nations called on Saturday for closer study of a UK proposal for a bank levy to cover the cost of the bailouts of 2008 and 2009 that ran to hundreds of billions of dollars.
The ministers, meeting in a remote town in Canada’s Far North, said any tax that result must be internationally coordinated and avoid choking off world economic recovery. Further details are unlikely to emerge for weeks.
The International Monetary Fund is compiling a report, due in April, on options for requiring banks to “make a fair and substantial contribution” toward bailouts. The IMF report was requested in September by the Group of 20 nations.
The G20, a more broadly based organization that is seen as supplanting the G7, will next meet in June in Toronto.