Pro-Savings Tax Reform


by Chris Edwards

Canada and Britain have recently liberalized their universal savings accounts. These accounts provide excellent models for pro-savings tax reform here in the United States.

Canadians can now plough $10,000 a year into Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs), and Britain recently increased the annual contribution limit on Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) to the equivalent of $23,000 a year. Savings in these accounts grow completely tax-free, and funds can be withdrawn tax-free at anytime for any reason.

As I note in these new articles, this is the type of pro-growth, pro-family, pro-freedom reform that should have broad political appeal.

The Federalist

Looking ahead to 2016, one reform idea that should appeal to all types of Republicans—and even some Democrats—is universal savings accounts (USAs). Such accounts would be like Roth Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), but for all types of savings, not just retirement savings. People would contribute after-tax income to USAs, and then all earnings and withdrawals would be completely tax-free…Read More

CATO – Universal Savings Accounts

In Canada, the government’s new budget increased the annual contribution limit on Tax-Free Savings Accounts (TFSAs) from $5,500 to $10,000. In Britain, the annual contribution limit on Individual Savings Accounts (ISAs) was recently increased to 15,240 pounds (about $23,000). TFSAs and ISAs are impressive reforms—they are pro-growth, pro-family, and pro-freedom.

America should create a version of these accounts, which Christian and I dubbed Universal Savings Accounts (USAs). As with Roth IRAs, individuals would contribute to USAs with after-tax income, and then earnings and withdrawals would be tax-free. With USAs, withdrawals could be made at any time for any reason…Read More