Taxing speculation in financial markets : a comparison between United Kingdom and Australian common law and tax rulings

This article examines the recent tax ruling issued by the Australian Tax Office (ATO) involving contracts for differences. The law on gaming and wagering, and on future markets in both the United Kingdom and in Australia is reviewed. A survey of the law is presented in the context of assessing whether contracts for financial derivatives and other similar operations amount to gaming transactions, which are largely exempt from Australian and UK income tax laws.