Tax Freedom Day has finally arrived

Tax Freedom Day falls on 30th May in 2013

Tax Freedom day is pushed back again as coalition fails to cut burden of government on UK taxpayers.

Cost of government day 13th July, two days earlier than in 2012, due to effects of austerity programme

UK residents can rejoice as the Adam Smith Institute reveals that they have finally stopped paying the taxman and started to put their earnings in their own pockets. Tax Freedom Day—the day when the average Briton finishes their stint working for George Osborne and begins to work for themselves, falls on 30th May.

For 150 days of the year, every penny the average person earns is sent to the Treasury, according to Adam Smith Institute calculations. This means that no less of a worker’s year is going to the government than last year, when extra taxes pushed TFD from 28th May to 29th May (including an extra day from the leap year).

Though UK taxpayers can thank policymakers that they will not have to wait until July, like France, to start earning for themselves, they will remain jealous of American and Australian earners, who switch from paying into their chancellors’ bank accounts to their own by mid-April.

Since the government is spending hundreds of billion more pounds than it takes in through the tax system, the cost of government day is not for another month and a half. That is, if we imagined the government did all its spending before households, charities and firms, every pound of expenditure in the economy would come from the state until 13th July.

The ASI calculates Tax Freedom Day by measuring local taxes, direct and indirect national taxes, and national insurance contributions as a proportion of the UK’s net national income—this year that came to 41.5 per cent—before mapping the proportion onto the days of the year.

The ASI's Director, Dr Eamonn Butler, says “Tax Freedom Day, which the Adam Smith Institute has been calculating for 25 years, is the plainest way to show what the tax burden really is. That is why the Treasury hates it. They of course want to conceal how much tax we pay, which is why they are so keen on stealth taxes.”

“But we put in every tax, including stealth taxes – income tax, national insurance, council tax, excise duties, air passenger taxes, fuel and vehicle taxes and all the rest – and show just how long the average person has to work to pay their share of them all. The stark truth is that this burden costs us all 150 days of hard labour every year. That's not how long a rich person has to work – it is the time the average person must labour for the tax collectors.”

“In the Middle Ages a serf only had to work four months of the year for the feudal landlord, whereas in modern Britain people have to toil five months for Osborne’s tax gatherers.”

“An increasing number of economists believe that Britain's taxes are too high and are choking off recovery. Some politicians say they need to keep taxes high in order to balance the government's books. But the trouble with governments is that they always spend everything they raise in tax – and then as much more as they can get away with through borrowing. Just as the rest of us have had to cut back, so should the government. The UK economy would be a lot healthier for it.”

Steve Baker, Conservative MP and member of the executive of the 1922 committee, adds: “Many congratulations to the Adam Smith Institute for once again revealing the shocking truth about taxes and overspending. This doomsday machine of deficit spending, debt and currency debasement will eventually blow up and there is no kindness in pretending otherwise. Politicians who are serious about the prosperity of our country and the wellbeing of the poorest within it should take note.”


Contact: Ben Southwood or Geoffrey Taunton-Collins                                                                                                                                                                                                 no: 0207 222 4995