Robert Peston Robert Peston

The unspoken argument behind a windfall tax

First energy companies were going bust, now they have bumper profits. Is this a market that's working?


The Financial Times story on Rishi Sunak looking at a possible windfall tax on energy firms captures how difficult such a tax is for any government, especially a Tory one. Because it begs questions why, when electricity suppliers suffered unsustainable losses in autumn and winter, when under the price cap they suffered huge and unsustainable losses – what you might call a reverse windfall – they were allowed to go bust.

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