John McDonnell (Hayes and Harlington) (Lab): Whatever one’s view of the past, there are worrying signs that the bonus culture is returning to the City, with large payouts, share distributions and high dividend payments disguising what were formerly bonuses.
Will the Chancellor of the Exchequer make it clear that the Government stand ready to introduce further measures to control the bonus culture? I believe that they would have the support of the whole House in doing so.
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Mr Osborne: I find myself in agreement with the hon. Gentleman. He put his question in a very measured way. We do not want to see a return to the uncontrolled bonus culture. We now have a much tougher regime in respect of the transparency of bonuses and clawback, which means that if things go wrong in trades or for a bank, they can get the money back that they have paid people in bonuses. We will take measures to tackle things such as dual contracts, as I mentioned briefly in my statement and as is set out in the document. People who work in the financial industry often split their contract so that they can claim that they are only working for part of the time in the UK to avoid tax. Where there is egregious tax avoidance, we will take steps. I agree with him that the banking system as a whole must be cognisant of the times in which it lives.