Letters to the Editor - 09/04 - Student migrants, Stamp duty, Best of Twitter

Student migrants

[Re: It’s a national scandal that Britain is driving away foreign talent, yesterday]

Lord Bilimoria hits the nail on the head. The government’s ridiculous net migration target has had the perverse effect of forcing the Home Office to tighten up the rules on international students, who are presumably the very migrants we should be most keen to attract. Not only is education a massive export industry for Britain, but these students go on to found companies in the UK and fill crucial skills gaps. And even if they return to their original countries, they have a life-long connection with Britain.

Name withheld

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Stamp duty

[Re: Letters to the editor, yesterday]

Richard Emms suggests that, if sellers paid stamp duty rather than buyers, first-time buyers would be able to use the money towards a deposit. This is not how it would work in reality. Basic economics makes it clear that, in a seller’s market, asking prices would simply increase by the amount of stamp duty, leaving the amount the buyer pays unchanged.

Thomas Ralph

There’s no point tweaking stamp duty (Emms acknowledges the perverse outcome). Scrap it.

Name withheld

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BEST OF TWITTER

By 69 to 13 per cent, Conservative voters tell ComRes that Cameron should have sacked Maria Miller.
@MSmithsonPB

Lots of funky maths in IMF’s latest world outlook report. Doesn’t mean they can forecast though.
@minefornothing

We will not hesitate to use 21st century tools to hold Russia accountable for 19th century behavior.
@JohnKerry

Sanctions will not deter Putin on Ukraine. US should not presume otherwise.
@ianbremmer