France passes contentious budget

PARIS — France’s parliament has passed a contentious budget for next year that includes a raft of new taxes aimed at slashing the country’s deficit and putting it on the path to economic recovery.

Socialist President Francois Hollande’s budget aims to cut $40 billion, with two-thirds of that coming in tax increases, including a 75 percent levy on incomes that are close to or over $1 million. But it was the increase in taxes on profits from investments that raised the most hackles in France, touching off a Twitter revolution of entrepreneurs who accused the government of punishing those who take risks.

The bill, which the conservative opposition complained doesn’t make enough spending cuts, has struggled to get through parliament. The lower house eventually passed it Thursday in a show of hands vote.

Associated Press