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The World's Most Secretive Tax Havens

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World's Most Secretive Tax Havens

Recently, the (TJN), an independent organization dealing with the analysis of tax and regulation, released their "Financial Secrecy Index," which ranks the world's most secretive tax havens.The level of financial secrecy provided by tax havens, which TJN argues is a key component of jurisdictions competing to attract financial flows, is ranked by 12 qualitative measures (opacity score) such as laws, regulations and international treaties as well as quantitative measures (weighted score) which ta
Source: Tax Justice Network

Recently, the Tax Justice Network(TJN), an independent organization dealing with the analysis of tax and regulation, released their "Financial Secrecy Index," which ranks the world's most secretive tax havens.

The level of financial secrecy provided by tax havens, which TJN argues is a key component of jurisdictions competing to attract financial flows, is ranked by 12 qualitative measures (opacity score) such as laws, regulations and international treaties as well as quantitative measures (weighted score) which takes into account the amount of cross-border financial services activity of a jurisdiction, or its role in the global financial services to foreigners.

In the report, the opacity score and the weighted score are combined to calculate the Financial Secrecy Index Value, from which countries are ranked. For a full methodology and explanation of what the numbers mean, click here. For larger countries like the US and UK, individual states or municipalities were singled out for comparison; which are the areas within the country to offer the most secretive tax environments for individuals and corporations.

So, what are the world's most secretive tax havens? Click ahead to find out!

By Paul Toscano
Posted 2 Nov 2009

15. Netherlands

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 23.18Opacity Score: 58Weighted Score: 0.00689
Photo: Archibald Ballantine

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 23.18
Opacity Score: 58
Weighted Score: 0.00689

14. Bahrain

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 23.53Opacity Score: 92Weighted Score: 0.00278
Photo: Walter Bibikow | Image Bank | Getty Images

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 23.53
Opacity Score: 92
Weighted Score: 0.00278

13. Guernsey

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 36.20Opacity Score: 79Weighted Score: 0.00580
Photo: Rob Cousins/Robert Harding | Getty Images

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 36.20
Opacity Score: 79
Weighted Score: 0.00580

12. Austria

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 42.32Opacity Score: 91Weighted Score: 0.00511
Photo: DAJ RM | Getty Image

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 42.32
Opacity Score: 91
Weighted Score: 0.00511

11. Jersey

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 76.22Opacity Score: 87Weighted Score: 0.01007
Photo: ch-info.ch

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 76.22
Opacity Score: 87
Weighted Score: 0.01007

10. Hong Kong

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 76.34Opacity Score: 62Weighted Score: 0.01986
Photo: AP

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 76.34
Opacity Score: 62
Weighted Score: 0.01986

9. Belgium

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 53.3Opacity Score: 73Weighted Score: 0.01475
Photo: Paul Hermans

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 53.3
Opacity Score: 73
Weighted Score: 0.01475

8. Singapore

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 62.4Opacity Score: 79Weighted Score: 0.01752
Photo: AP

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 62.4
Opacity Score: 79
Weighted Score: 0.01752

7. Bermuda

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 122.30Opacity Score: 92Weighted Score: 0.01445
Photo: Stuart Gregory | Photodisc | Getty Images

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 122.30
Opacity Score: 92
Weighted Score: 0.01445

6. Ireland

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 143.73Opacity Score: 62Weighted Score: 0.03739
Photo: Hans-Peter Boc

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 143.73
Opacity Score: 62
Weighted Score: 0.03739

5. United Kingdom (London)

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 347.79*Opacity Score: 42Weighted Score: 0.19716*
Photo: AP

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 347.79*
Opacity Score: 42
Weighted Score: 0.19716

*Figures were calculated for the city of London, as this area represents the most secretive financial environment in the country.

4. Cayman Islands

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 403.48Opacity Score: 92Weighted Score: 0.04767
Photo: AP

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 403.48
Opacity Score: 92
Weighted Score: 0.04767

3. Switzerland

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 513.40Opacity Score: 100Weighted Score: 0.05134
Photo: AP

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 513.40
Opacity Score: 100
Weighted Score: 0.05134

2. Luxembourg

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 1127.02Opacity Score: 87Weighted Score: 0.14890
Photo: Phyllis Buchanan

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 1127.02
Opacity Score: 87
Weighted Score: 0.14890

1. USA (Delaware)

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 1503.80*Opacity Score: 92Weighted Score: 0.17767*
Photo: Getty Images

Financial Secrecy Index Value: 1503.80*
Opacity Score: 92
Weighted Score: 0.17767

*Figures were calculated for the state of Delaware, as this area represents the most secretive financial environment in the country.