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I’m not trading – or am I?

By Lee Sharpe, September 2020

Lee Sharpe looks at how the perennial issue of trading status stacks up today. 

Recently, the issue of whether somebody is trading has conjured to mind images of toilet paper, and lots of it (i.e. due to a well-known and long-established case on whether a trade existed; see below).  

While loo roll is not perhaps the most totemic of images representing earnest toil, footage from earlier this year, of people doggedly engaged in hand-to-hand combat in the aisles of their local Sainsbury’s is hard to shake. Toilet paper acquired celebrity status as the must-have accessory to surviving COVID lockdown. No amount was too much, and ‘TP’ was being rationed before eggs and flour – even chocolate! 

Why do we care? 

Attaching trading status to a transaction or activity can make a big difference to an

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