Tuesday, March 29, 2011
"#8 Exxon-Mobil paid $15 billion in taxes in 2009, but not a single penny went to the U.S. government."
The following are 10 facts about corporate taxes that will likely make your blood boil....
#1 Once Japan's corporate tax rate goes down in April, the United States will have the the highest corporate tax rate in the developed world.
#2 In the United States, the corporate tax rate is 35 percent. In Ireland, it is only 12.5 percent. Needless to say, hundreds of American companies have been moving at least some of their operations over to Ireland.
#3 As corporations have become experts at gaming the system, their contribution to federal revenue has gone way down. Back in the 1950s, corporate taxes accounted for about 30 percent of all federal revenue, but in 2009 corporate taxes accounted for just 6.6 percent.
#4 Switzerland has become an extremely attractive tax haven for multinational corporations. In fact, some cities in Switzerland do a booming business in setting up sham headquarters for foreign corporations. For example: Zug, Switzerland is home to 26,000 people and 30,000 companies.
#5 Transocean, the owner of the rig involved in the BP oil spill, has approximately 13,000 employees in Houston, Texas and about a dozen or so employees in Zug, Switzerland. But by moving their "headquarters" to Zug for tax purposes, Transocean has saved about 2 billion dollars.
#6 According to the New York Times, General Electric made a total of 14.2 billion dollars in profits last year. So how much did they pay in taxes to the U.S. Treasury? According to the New York Times, not one penny was paid. However, General Electric disputes this.
#7 Even though Boeing receives billions in federal subsidies every year and even though it has a bunch of juicy government contracts it did not pay a single penny in federal corporate income taxes from 2008 to 2010.
#8 Exxon-Mobil paid $15 billion in taxes in 2009, but not a single penny went to the U.S. government. Meanwhile, their CEO brought in over 29 million dollars in total compensation that year.
#9 It is estimated that U.S. companies have approximately 1.2 trillion dollars "trapped" overseas, because they cannot bring that money back into the country without being subjected to the 35 percent corporate tax rate. But that money certainly could go a long way towards stimulating the stagnating U.S. economy.
#10 Sadly, the 1.2 trillion dollars that is "trapped" overseas is just the tip of the iceberg. The largest corporations and the ultra-wealthy have turned tax avoidance into an art form. The truth is that according to an article in Forbes magazine, there is somewhere between 15 and 20 trillion dollars in offshore bank accounts, brokerage accounts and hedge fund portfolios. In fact, it has been estimated that a third of all the wealth in the world is held in "offshore" banks.