Halloween Massacre


“Halloween Massacre” is the term associated with the major reorganization of United States president Gerald Ford’s cabinet on November 4, 1975, which was an attempt to address multiple high-level personality and policy clashes within the administration. The overhaul came at a time when the president’s leadership abilities were being broadly questioned, and he was being heavily criticized by California governor Ronald Reagan and others from the conservative wing of the Republican Party The shake-up had its roots at the beginning of Ford’s presidency in August 1974. As was the case when Lyndon Johnson and Harry S. Truman succeeded to the presidency intra-term, in 1963 and in 1945 respectively, under similarly strained sets of circumstances, Ford inherited President Richard Nixon’s cabinet and staff of presidential advisers. Over the course of several months, Ford slowly replaced several Nixon holdovers with his own appointees.

Halloween Massacre

What is ‘Halloween Massacre’

Canada’s decision to tax all income trusts domiciled in Canada. In October 2006, Canada’s minister of finance, Jim Flaherty, announced that all income trusts would be taxed in a similar manner as corporations at a rate over 30% on taxable income, causing unit holders’ values to decrease dramatically virtually overnight.

Explaining ‘Halloween Massacre’

Income trusts, which were permitted to make distributions to unit holders on a pretax basis under old Canadian income tax laws, were a popular investment vehicle in the early 2000s, especially in Canada. The Canadian energy sector was hardest hit by the change, and suffered an estimated loss of about $35 billion to investors, giving rise to the term “massacre”.

This change in the Canadian tax law, which was largely debated after the fact, was made to remedy a perceived loss of tax revenue.

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