This all depends on your specific needs and I use different data sources for different requirements but a good alternative is Quotetracker with IQ feed. A couple of my friends who trade the Dax use this and are very happy with it. IQ feed is particularly good into Excel as well.
Are there any US data-providers out there that still don't charge VAT? I was using MyTrack at the time and they were certainly on the ball.
I was over in the US a few weeks ago, and none of my friends, who all either come from the UK/Europe or lived here at some point, had heard of this move by the EU. Their reaction to this, typically perhaps, was 'why the hell do we have to do this, how can they make us do it' etc. It will be interesting to see what happens if any online providers/retailers do defy this.
Let's face it there is no way that the EU can impose VAT to businesses based in the US unless they have EU subsidiaries. All US businesses would just see that as extra paperwork and then have to make payments to non US tax departments. It just isnt going to happen and cannot be enforced. EU tax departments have enough trouble getting VAT out of thier own EU based businesses without resorting to claiming it off US based ones as well.
The way I understood it was that it only applied to US companies that had EU based subsidiaries. Anything outside of this would be impossible to achieve.
Well, the VAT arrangement certainly isn't unique to e-signal. FutureSource, MyTrack and E-Signal all charge it. I have only used one vendor that doesn't and that was IRD (unfortunately their data was crap.... ). Don't know about Q-Charts since it's years since I used 'em. But, Lycos being Lycos, I'll wager they were amongst the first to whack the 17.5 percent on top.
There's also trade agreement problems in this, in that if it suits the US to enforce this you're sunk... it's not just data services, I've been charged VAT on online purchases for a while now, and more and more US sites take address info and swap you to Euro sites where the price increases. In one case a US company site swapped me to a German site where the price increased 50% or so (CD dupe software, since you asked), and I told them to place the sale where the sun doth not shine. (For Biologists ths is an astronomical reference that loosely equates to 'where the monkey keeps his nuts').
I don't know about electronic services but for many online purchases I prefer to go to the Far East.
They don't appear to give a monkeys about EU regulations and are always most cooperative over invoicing & etc.
The problem for any reputable business in ignoring this is that if HMCE give the knock, they'll get a big bill for the back VAT payments which they didn't collect from their EU customers and now wished they had.
I still dont see how that applies to any business that has not got a subsidiary in the EU ? Do you really expect the UK VAT office to go knocking on the doors of a business in Texas demanding backdated VAT ? and the only way they could determine that is if they did an audit of that business and the accounts.
Also for anyone who is getting charged VAT from US based businesses just make sure you ask them for their VAT number as I would suspect that it is being used by some to hike prices without passing on the supposed tax being collected.
Paul - there are already legal procedures in place between the EU and US for recovering monies owed. It's long winded, but importantly fully supported by the US courts.
Of course they can't police everyone, but my point was that for reputable businesses, over a certain size perhaps, the risk isn't worth it. I expect they'll either cave in and charge the VAT, or maybe refuse business for EU customers - like some US brokers already do. I think any broker/data provider is likely to come into this category.