Can’t believe what you read[QQ] I trust that you will allow me to correct the inaccuracies about me in Taking Stock (2 November) on the deal by my company – Transaction Technology – with Lloyds TSB.

– I had always planned to take time off last week as my children were on half-term holiday from school. Talk of ‘exhaustion’ and ‘tough negotiations’ is utter nonsense, as anyone who has ever dealt with those awfully nice gentlemen from the banking community will confirm.

– It did not take me long to count my very modest windfall from the transaction. In truth, I did not count it at all, preferring my teenage son to work it out for me on a spreadsheet. Numbers never having been my strong point. Thank goodness that Iris works out my tax liabilities!

– The only stressful part of the deal was paying all of the lawyers involved. All of this could have been avoided if your reporter had returned my voice mail, but he was exhausted at the pub. Allegedly!

Ray Douglas, Transaction Technology


We can only thank the other directors of Transaction Technology for mischievously suggesting why a finance director might be absent from such a significant announcement

Branching into quality

Various accountancy bodies are planning or have in place a kite mark of quality assurance.

This kite mark will be valid for five years in the case of one body.

Is this not adding another layer of bureaucracy? Or is it a marvellous idea that will encourage accountants to aspire to have a kite mark?

In my humble opinion, monitoring practices and/or monitoring quality assurance is one and the same thing. Why not extend monitoring to quality assurance?

Has Accountancy Age done any readers’ survey on this? I would welcome views from interested parties. Why not leave quality assurance to ISO 9000 and BSI?

Nagin Khajuria, FCCA, London

The government makes a feast out of tax simplification

Peter Wyman’s article (Why should we tear up the tax rule book, page 16, 26 October) arguing for tax simplification raises my hopes. Mr Wyman performs a service for all broaching the possibility of bold tax reforms.

Unifying PAYE and NI, abolishing corporation tax and abolishing capital gains tax.

His examples have long been the subject of after-dinner conversations, e.g. why can’t Britain be the Hong Kong of Europe? It is refreshing to see Wyman open a wider debate, particularly as he has tried to work from within for so many years.

While supporting his three examples of radical measures, I would like to put forward two more. First, a move from income tax to expenditure tax, long mooted by The Economist, would simplify personal and corporation tax.

Secondly, should we move to personal hypothecation of taxes? We spend enough time filling in what we owe perhaps a few moments should be spent to gather our views on where taxes should go. This would make spending departments more open and accountable to the taxpayer.

It will take an honest politician to make a radical tax rebate to the country. The more byzantine the tax structure, the more it obscures the tax take from the populace.

Government has succeeded in persuading general taxpayers that corporation tax is not paid by them. Perhaps more support from professionals for Mr Wyman’s debate will encourage a politician to step forward and show leadership.

Michael Mainelli, Z/Yen Ltd

Related reading