A poll conducted by the Forsa opinion research company shows that the majority of Germans do not feel that the 2004 tax cuts of €15 billion ($18.3 billion) are having much effect on their disposable income. They attribute this to the rise in the cost of German health care and a general increase in expenses. The poll, which was published in the
Financial Times Deutschland, said three fifths of those polled said they had not noticed an increase in their income compared to the same time last year, and almost half said they had been expecting their new income to be higher than it is. The new tax rates have reduced the highest bracket by 3.5 percent to 45 percent, and cut the lowest rate from 19.9 to 16 percent.