The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform held a hearing on hedge funds and the financial market on November 13, 2008. Among those testifying was Professor Joseph Bankman, the Ralph M. Parsons Professor of Law and Business at Stanford Law School: Testimony of Joseph Bankman.
Professor Bankman points out that the carried interest of a private equity fund sponsor is typically taxed as capital gains (assuming the underlying assets are held long enough). professor Bankman points out his dislike of the tax advantages and proposes a legislative change:
The Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2008 contained a provision that would have taxed carry at ordinary income rates. That Act passed the House of Representatives in June, 2008, but died in the Senate. Thus, carry remains tax-favored. I recommend that Congress eliminate the tax advantage given to carry by again passing a measure similar to that contained in the Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2008. I recommend, though, that such a measure be amended to address the concerns expressed in the New York State Bar Association Report on Proposed Carried Interest and Deferred Fee Legislation.
Thanks to the Hedge Fund Law Blog for pointing out this resource: Hedge Fund Taxation – Law School Professor Perspective.