Mr Osborne said it would be useful to study the flat tax idea
BBC Radio 4's Money Box was broadcast on Saturday, 10 September, 2005 at 1204 BST
The programme was repeated on Sunday, 11 September, 2005 at 2102 BST.
Should the UK sweep away its current tax system in favour of a single, flat rate of tax for everyone, regardless of earnings?
Some claim this is a simpler and fairer system. It has already been adopted by other countries within the European Union, including Slovakia and Estonia.
Conservative Shadow Chancellor George Osborne has said a "flat tax" that abolishes exemptions and reliefs should be considered for the future.
But opponents believe it is merely a tax cut for the rich.
Money Box explored how individuals could benefit - or not - from such a system.
We discussed the issues with Dan Mitchell, an economist and fellow of the Heritage Foundation in the US, and John Whiting, a tax partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Fidelity investment fund splits
The Special Situations fund was the most successful in the city
The UK's largest mutual fund company, Fidelity, has decided to split its highly successful £5.41bn "Special Situations" fund in two.
The fund has been run by star fund manager Anthony Bolton, but his involvement will now wind down.
While the move should help protect the fund's performance, critics say it is neither what they expected, nor what they wanted.
We spoke to Fidelity UK's Managing Director of Investments, Richard Wastcoat, and Darius McDermott, Managing Director of Chelsea Financial Services, about the decision.
Tax Credit system 'a nightmare'
Families must renew their Tax Credit claims each year
The government's controversial Tax Credit system which was designed to help people on average or lower incomes has been criticised again.
The influential group of MPs has called the current system "a nightmare" in a Public Accounts Committee report.
Meanwhile, the programme has heard that people who should benefit from Tax Credits are now so disillusioned that some are not bothering to renew their claim.
But they may not realise the consequences, as Louise Greenwood reported.
Beginning of the end for cheques?
Shell said it expects little inconvenience to its customers
It is now no longer possible to buy fuel using cheques at one of the UK's largest filling station chains.
Shell will only accept payments by debit or credit card from now on, and other firms may soon follow suit.
Meanwhile, some banks are telling customers retailers will soon insist people buy using their PIN. We asked Sandra Quinn of the Association of Payment Clearing Systems for her thoughts on both issues.
DWP launches public opinion site
The Department for Work and Pensions is launching an interactive website where people will be able to register their opinions on pension reform issues.
Users will also be able to register to find out more information about the pensions debate and to find out what level of provision they are entitled to.
Revenue hands back stamp duty interest
The Revenue is to hand back £3m it has wrongly charged 30,000 tax payers who have sold property.
Affected people were charged up to 3% interest after paying their stamp duty late.
All cases took place after 1 December, 2003, when stamp duty was paid more than 30 days after buying or selling a property.
The Revenue now says it should not have taken the money and will return it.
Accountants have advised anyone who thinks they were affected to check their records.
Presenter: Paul Lewis
Producer: Chris A'Court
Reporter: Louise Greenwood