Gordon Brown suggests a global bank tax is edging closer to acceptance

THE world's economic powers appear to be moving closer to a global bank tax in response to last year's crisis, Prime Minister Gordon Brown suggested yesterday.

Mr Brown has been a strong advocate of some form of co-ordinated levy on the banks, which could bring in tens of billions of pounds a year from the financial services sector worldwide to help stabilise the global economy and contribute towards development.

He is understood to be hoping that the IMF will throw its weight behind a global levy at its April meeting in Washington, and that a deal can be concluded at the G20 summit in Canada in June.

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The PM indicated he believes opinion has shifted in favour of co-ordinated action as a result of US president Barack Obama's move last month to impose a $90 billion levy on Wall Street banks.

Last November, Mr Brown floated proposals for a form of "Tobin tax" on financial transactions, in order to create "a better economic and social contract between financial institutions and the public based on trust and a just distribution of risks and rewards".