"I'm relieved because we had rumours before that this year's bonus would be cut by 85 percent," said one Merrill stock trader in London. "We don't know whether the bonus will be in cash or shares, but even if it's all in shares it's OK because we were joking we might get our bonus in the Turkish lira, or even the Italian lira, which you can't use any more."
...turns out that huge mega kinkamayamaya corporations have been dodging tax laws in Britain (at least), by paying their executives bonuses in Turkish Lira and other devalued currencies.
Say you have a bonus of £1 million squid. Usually your company will give you the £1, and the taxman will take a slice for himself.
This is the trick though: Your company will give you £2m in Lira, you cash the cheque, and through some intensely complex economical proceedure, the taxman shaves £1m off because the currency is worth fuck all, and as if by magic, you get your £1m bonus more or less intact. Genius, no?
I'm just waiting for the day every company can take advantage of this brilliant scheme... only they won't, because if the EU has it's way Turkey'll become one of us sometime in the near future and these companies are going to have to find some other currency to hand out bonuses in.
Maybe the Peruvian Nuevo Soles? Or the Venezuelan Bolivares...
Comics related to this news item:-
- It'll Happen. - 16th December 2002