View original document

The full text on this page is automatically extracted from the file linked above and may contain errors and inconsistencies.



H. M O R T E N S E N







April 12, 1945

Mr. Marriner S. Eccles
Chairman of the Board of Governors
Federal Reserve System
Washington, D. C #
Dear Mr. Eccles:
My office has had a number of inquiries regarding the implications of your recent statement about
the capital gains tax* People are principally interested
in the question of the manner in which any change in the
capital gains tax law would apply to gains being made at
this • time •
I knovr that you will not be writing the
law, and that you cannot foretell the vagaries of Congress,
but I am wondering whether, in your opinion, the new law
(if there is to be one) would be likely to apply to all
capital gains taken during the calendar year of 1945«
Or would it more probably apply to transactions taking place after the date on which the measure
goes into effect«
Inasmuch as this is a financial community,
we have a widespread interest in this question, and I shall
appreciate any light that your office might be able to give
us on "the matter»
Thank you for whatever courtesy you can
extend us.









April 19,1945•

Honorable William H. Mortensen,
Mayor of the City of Hartford,
Dear Mayor Mortensen:
This is to acknowledge your letter of April 12 in regard
to my suggestion for a special wartime capital gains tax.
while I proposed that such a tax be retroactive to the
first of this year in line with the usual practice of having tax
laws cover the calendar year, in my judgment the Congress would
not be likely to have it apply earlier than the date of introduction of the measure, if one were to be enacted. At the present
moment, 1 am extremely doubtful that anything will be done,
notwithstanding the fact that the proposal has been strongly
endorsed by the leading agricultural and labor groups, among
others, including public officials concerned with the stabilization program. As was to be expected such a proposal met with
violent objection in the brokerage community, which thrives on
volume and instability in the stock market.
It occurred to me that you might care to* see a copy of
an explanatory statement I gave out after I was unexpectedly
questioned on this matter when I testified before the Senate
Banking and ^rrency Committee on an entirely different subject.
1 wish to add that I appreciate the spirit in which
you write and the interest you have in this question.
Sincerely yours,

M. S. Eccles,