According to the study from Deutsche Bank, called “What We Must Do to Rebuild,” employees who work from home quickly collect financial benefits, such as reduced costs for travel, food, and clothing. The report advises that the employer would pay the tax if it doesn’t supply the employee with a permanent desk; otherwise, the employee would be responsible for the tax.
“Our calculations suggest the amounts raised could fund material income subsidies for low-income earners who are unable to work remotely and thus assume more ‘old economy’ and health risks,” Jim Reid, global head of fundamental credit strategy and thematic research at Deutsche Bank, said in the study.
With an average salary of $55,000 and a tax rate of five percent, the Deutsche Bank approximates that a person would pay over $10 per day for the tax, which would create an extra $48 billion a year. That money would then be used to issue $1,500 grants to citizens who need financial help.
The report says that the tax should only be put into use when the government doesn’t suggest that people work from home, like during the pandemic. The tax should also not apply to low-income and self-employed workers.
As the COVID-19 health crisis has endured in the U.S., many employers asked their employees to work remotely to curb transmission. Now, as some businesses have returned to their offices, more employers are still allowing their staff to work remotely.
Before the pandemic, about 5.4 percent of the American workforce worked from home, a number that later surged to 56 percent during the health crisis.
“The sudden shift to WFH means that, for the first time in history, a big chunk of people have disconnected themselves from the face-to-face world yet are still leading a full economic life,” researcher Luke Templeman explained. “That means remote workers are contributing less to the infrastructure of the economy whilst still receiving its benefits.”
As one might expect, people had a lot to say about the proposed tax.
Deutsche Bank Yesterday: Tax people working from home!
Deutsche Bank Today: Everyone work from home! It's not safe! pic.twitter.com/eGZuSFaUOk
— Stephen Punwasi (@StephenPunwasi) November 12, 2020
On the other hand, those of us who work from home aren’t spewing carbon from our cars, tearing up highways or overcrowding the subways. We’re not going to pay a tax for NOT commuting. https://t.co/CNMQve2wr0
— John Sevigny (@John_Sevigny) November 12, 2020
Step 1: force people to work from home. Step 2: tax them for working from home. https://t.co/QcBMdEFTAb
— BeNeDicT ArNoLd (@Benedict_ARNY) November 12, 2020
Deustche Bank proposes a work-from-home tax, then sends its own employees home. https://t.co/rzdBCCnKEp
— Ivan the K-elect™ (@IvanTheK) November 12, 2020
So some people who work from home and earn above £19.5k should pay more....
But billionaires and multinational corporations can continue to avoid paying their taxes 💁♂️ https://t.co/Zj8eInVWxZ
— Freddie (@FreddieBailey96) November 12, 2020
Well, this idea can fuck off, and it can keep on fucking off until it falls off a cliff.https://t.co/0nPOkrGbDn
— Jonathan Pie (@JonathanPieNews) November 12, 2020
Gee if the owners of a corporation want to tax workers who work from home why don’t they start (and end) with themselves? pic.twitter.com/KrWq1oQBSi
— ZeBigDragon Shits on Trump ✝️🏳️🌈🏴🐉 (@ZeBigDragon) November 12, 2020
I'm so confused. Why would we tax people who work from home assuming they are higher earners when we could just, you know...tax higher earners??? https://t.co/zgSNgLukqy
— Dr Sally Le Page (@sallylepage) November 12, 2020
Sign up for the Complex Newsletter for breaking news, events, and unique stories.