02 February 2018

Brexit shmexit

The EU is threatening severe restrictions on consumers’ ability to carry out hedging or investing via spread bets and CFDs.

As is often the case, most corporations and wealthy individuals will experience minimal impact since they will be able to find ways round it. It’ll be the little guy that gets nobbled.

The proposed rules are even more draconian than those suggested by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority. In theory, the measures are to protect people from themselves, but the case illustrates how EU “harmonisation” has become an excuse for unnecessary cross-border paternalism.

As consumers and voters, we are free to question the motives of the bureaucrats behind such interventions. Do we want their paternalism? Should we accept their rationales at face value? Are state employees distinguished by an above-average desire for interventionist power, for its own sake, which only requires an acceptable cover story to be indulged?

Those who wish to express their views on this latest instance of EU meddling can can use this website, and have until Monday to do so.