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According to a new study by the Economic Policy Institute and Americans for Tax Fairness, corporate tax dodging is at record levels while corporate profits have reached record highs. U.S. corporations have stashed $2.4 trillion offshore. It is estimated corporations could owe as much as $700 billion on those profits, much of which are earned in the United States. Some of the findings are below. I should like to point out that a recent report in the Guardian stated that US corporations were the best at avoiding taxes.

hall-of-shame

1. Corporate profits are way up, and corporate taxes are way down. In 1952, corporate profits were 5.5 percent of the economy, and corporate taxes were 5.9 percent. Today, corporate profits are 8.5 percent of the economy, and corporate taxes are just 1.9 percent of GDP.

2, Corporations used to contribute $1 out of every $3 in federal revenue. Today, despite very high corporate profitability, it is $1 out of every $9.

3. Many corporations pay an effective tax rate that is one-half (or less) of the official 35 percent tax rate.

4. One thing not mentioned by the study is that many US corporations pay no taxes and sometimes receive tax rebates on taxes they never paid, Verizon, for instance, paid no Federal taxes in 2009, 2010 and 2013, and received tax rebates in each of those years.

5. As of 2015, U.S. corporations had $2.4 trillion in untaxed profits offshore. This is roughly a five-fold increase from $434 billion in 2005. It stems largely from anticipation of a tax holiday.
Just two industries—high-tech and pharmaceutical/health care—hold half the untaxed offshore profits.

6. Just 50 companies hold over 75 percent of untaxed offshore profits. Ten companies hold 39 percent of these profits. Just four companies—Apple, Pfizer, Microsoft, and General Electric—hold one-quarter of all untaxed offshore profits.

7. About 55 percent of U.S. corporate offshore profits are in tax-haven countries. Corporations pay an average tax rate of between just 3.0 percent and 6.6 percent on profits in tax havens.

8. U.S. corporations pay very low tax rates—6 percent to 10 percent, mainly to foreign governments—on all their offshore profits. A tax break known as “deferral” allows them to delay paying U.S. taxes until the profits are repatriated to the parent corporation in the United States.

9. The U.S. Treasury will lose $1.3 trillion over 10 years—about $126 billion a year—due to the deferral of taxes on offshore profits.

10. Income shifting—which are making profits earned in the United States look as if they were earned offshore—erodes our corporate tax base by over $100 billion a year. U.S. corporations increasingly manipulate transfer pricing and bilateral tax agreements to make their U.S. profits appear to be earned in tax havens. Think Panama Free Trade Agreement and the looming Trans-Pacific Partnership.

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When corporations pay no taxes, the result is a redistribution of income from the 99 to the 1 percent. When corporations do not pay taxes, the money from those taxes that should have gone to schools, roads, infrastructure maintenance, fire, police and more, are instead diverted to the 1 percent via higher corporate profits, surging share prices and dividends.

Furthermore, most of these major corporations have engaged in scams to overcharge the 99 percent, such as Bank of America and Citigroup in the LIBOR scandal conspiring with other banks to overcharge consumers on interest rates for loans, such as credit cards and auto. The money from that scandal went into the pockets of the 1 percent and came out of the pockets of the 99 percent.

While some corporations do not pay any taxes, many others wind up receiving tax rebates on taxes they never paid (such as Verizon), another redistribution of income from the tax revenues of the 99 percent to the pockets of the 1 percent.

Many of these corporations are stealing record profits, holding down the pay of their 99 percent employees, and shipping jobs overseas. That’s precisely why the economy is legislatively rigged in favor of the one percent, and that shows how corrupt to the core the US government has become over the last thirty years.

So here’s a list of 10 tax-dodging corporations excerpted from the Americans for Tax Fairness report.

Bank of America logo Bank of America runs its business through more than 300 offshore tax-haven subsidiaries. It reported $17.2 billion in accumulated offshore profits in 2012. It would owe $4.3 billion in US taxes if these funds were brought back to the US.
Citi logo Citigroup had $42.6 billion in foreign profits parked offshore in 2012 on which it paid no US taxes. It reported that it would owe $11.5 billion if it brings these funds back to the US. A significant chunk is being held in tax-haven countries.
ExxonMobil had a three-year federal income tax rate of just 15 percent. This gave the company a tax subsidy worth $6.2 billion from 2010-2012. It had $43 billion in offshore profits at the end of 2012, on which it paid no US taxes.
Fedex logo FedEx made $6 billion over the last three years and didn’t pay a dime in federal income taxes, in part because the tax code subsidized its purchase of new planes. This gave FedEx a huge tax subsidy worth $2.1 billion.
GE Logo General Electric received a tax subsidy of nearly $29 billion over the last 11 years. While dodging paying its fair share of federal income taxes, GE pocketed $21.8 billion in taxpayer-funded contracts from Uncle Sam between 2006 and 2012.
Honeywell logo Honeywell had profits of $5 billion from 2009 to 2012. Yet it paid only $50 million in federal income taxes for the period. Its tax rate was just 1 percent over the last four years. This gave it a huge tax subsidy worth $1.7 billion.
Merck logo Merck had profits of $13.6 billion and paid $2.5 billion in federal income taxes from 2009 to 2012. While dodging its fair share of federal income taxes, it pocketed $8.7 billion in taxpayer-funded contracts from Uncle Sam between 2006 and 2012.
Microsoft logo Microsoft saved $4.5 billion in federal income taxes from 2009 to 2011 by transferring profits to a subsidiary in the tax haven of Puerto Rico. It had $60.8 billion in profits stashed offshore in 2012 on which it paid no US taxes.
Pfizer logo Pfizer paid no US income taxes from 2010 to 2012 while earning $43 billion worldwide. It did this in part by performing accounting acrobatics to shift its US profits offshore. It received $2.2 billion in federal tax refunds.
Verizon logo Verizon made $19.3 billion in US pretax profits from 2008 to 2012, yet didn’t pay any federal income taxes during the period. Instead, it got $535 million in tax rebates. Verizon’s effective federal income tax rate was negative 2.8 percent from 2008 to 2012.

rate Tax Dodgers You Should Know About

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The golden rule is precisely why the 99 percent are fighting a rigged political and economic game. The golden rule is simple. He who has the gold makes the rules. The golden rule accounts for most of what goes on in government. Government isn’t really corrupt, instead, it’s an institution that has been corrupted by greed and money.

Myths capture our imagination. The 1 percent produce myths to advance their self-interest, and this is particularly at the expense of the 99 percent. These myths are used to deceive us. We read and hear the drum beat about government misuse of tax money, incompetent bureaucrats and politicians, and threats of big government. We’ve also heard about how cigarettes and GMO foods are safe, except when studies not funded by the corporations that produce the stuff are doing the studying. The US corporate media serves as a mouth piece for corporate propaganda, so the lies are grounded into our conciousness, over and over again.

Common sense should tell us that what is said about big government is also true of large corporations, for which there is a lack of transparency. Corporations hide their dastardly deeds while screeching against the supposed evils of big government, while also calling for less government interference, such as environmental, workplace, financial and other regulations that protect the 99 percent against the predations of the 1 percent and their corporations. Only fools and fascists will put more faith in supposed market forces than in a democratically controlled, transparent government. Unfortunately, the 1 percent have corrupted that government with their money, and to our detriment.

Wall Street, JP Morgan, Citibank, Goldman Sachs, General Electric, Apple Inc., the Koch Brothers, British Petroleum, Monsanto and many more do more harm to our environment, our health, our economic opportunities, and our overall quality of life every day, than any democratically elected, transparent government could do in a year. And much, but not all, of the damage done to us by corporations is through their money, and its corrupting influence on our government.

For example, where did our huge federal deficit come from? Taxes from corporations made up a third of federal tax revenue in 1950. Today, it’s less than 10 percent. Free trade treaties have shipped our jobs and tax base away with the difference between the old higher wages and the new lower wages going straight into the pockets of the 1 percent. The NSA illegal spying in violation of the US Constitution has corporate money behind it because corporations help with the spying and profit from it.

Don’t let the myths of the master’s of profits fool you. Their lies are working. They continue to tell us lies and more lies, over and over again, through their representatives and through their biased think tanks. Where did this formula for lies come from? You’ll be surprised at who their originator was. President Franklin Roosevelt knew where the lies originated. Click on the video below to find out.

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Many US corporations pay little or no federal taxes. Here’s what some people don’t know. Many corporations receive rebates on taxes they’ve never paid. In other words, they get more money back from the federal government than they paid in taxes. They get something for nothing because they’ve corrupted our democratic government, and they get it at our expense. That tax money then goes to incompetent CEOs and to rich shareholders. It’s a nifty way to redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent.

General Electric earned $5.1 billion in US profits in 2010, out of $14.2 billion worldwide. “Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.” This is not atypical.

Click the link below for the complete story.

G.E.’s Strategies Let It Avoid Taxes

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Our tax systems has been broken by the corrupt US government, which is currently owned by the 1 percent.

“Conservatives like to point out that the richest Americans’ federal tax payments make up a large portion of total receipts. This is true, as well it should be in any tax system that is progressive — that is, a system that taxes the affluent at higher rates than those of modest means. It’s also true that as the wealthiest Americans’ incomes have skyrocketed in recent years, their total tax payments have grown. This would be so even if we had a single flat income-tax rate across the board.”

What should shock and outrage us is that as the top 1 percent has grown extremely rich, via redistributing income from the 99 percent, the effective tax rates they pay have markedly decreased. Our tax system is much less progressive than it was for much of the 20th century. The top marginal income tax rate peaked at 94 percent during World War II and remained at 70 percent through the 1960s and 1970s; it is now 39.6 percent. Tax fairness has gotten much worse in the 30 years since Ronald Reagan lead the revolution of the 1 percent of the 1980s.

Here’s what conservatives and Corporate Democrats don’t want you to know. Citizens for Tax Justice, an organization that advocates for a more progressive tax system, has estimated that, when federal, state and local taxes are taken into account, the top 1 percent paid only slightly more than 20 percent of all American taxes in 2010.

The United States has among the lowest top marginal income tax rates for developed nations. These low rates are not essential for growth. In fact, they destroy growth and jobs. Consider Germany, for instance, which has managed to maintain its status as a center of advanced manufacturing, even though its top income-tax rate exceeds America’s by a considerable margin. And in general, our top tax rate kicks in at much higher incomes. Denmark, for example, has a top tax rate of more than 60 percent, but that applies to anyone making more than $54,900. The top rate in the United States, 39.6 percent, doesn’t kick in until individual income reaches $400,000 (or $450,000 for a couple).

The same is true of US based corporations. General Electric, for instance, has become the symbol for multinational corporations that have their headquarters in the United States but pay almost no taxes — its effective corporate-tax rate averaged less than 2 percent from 2002 to 2012. Many US corporations don’t pay any taxes, yet get rebates and refunds from the government, meaning they have negative tax rates.

One reason for the poor US economic performance is the large distortion caused by the tax system. The one thing economists agree on is that incentives matter — if you lower taxes on speculation, say, you will get more speculation. We’ve drawn our most talented young people into financial shenanigans, rather than into creating real businesses, making real discoveries, providing real services to others. More efforts go into “rent-seeking” — getting a larger slice of the country’s economic pie — than into enlarging the size of the pie. But the rich also use their money to push legislators to enact laws that redistribute income from the 99 to the 1 percent. That’s precisely why the US economy is performing so badly.

Because this legislatively enacted income redistribution scam is a continuous process, incomes for the middle class have stagnated and declined for the last thirty-three years. Their incomes and wealth are being redistributed to the 1 percent.

The consequences of our broken tax system are not just economic. Our tax system relies heavily on voluntary compliance. But if citizens believe that the tax system is unfair, this voluntary compliance will not be forthcoming. More broadly, government plays an important role not just in social protection, but in making investments in infrastructure, technology, education and health. Without such investments, our economy will be weaker, and our economic growth slower.

Society can’t function well without a minimal sense of national solidarity and cohesion, and that sense of shared purpose also rests on a fair tax system. If Americans believe that government is unfair — that ours is a government of the 1 percent, for the 1 percent, and by the 1 percent — then faith in our democracy will surely perish.

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To encourage corporations to return jobs to the United States, the Obama administration wants to scrap tax deductions for shipping jobs overseas, and offer new incentives for returning them to the United States. The administration also wants a $2 billion per year tax credit to encourage manufacturers to invest in struggling communities, among other measures.

This is all very nice, but anti-American Republicans and Corporate Democrats will likely oppose such legislation. However, it is good for the US economy and the American people that the number of manufacturing jobs has been growing during the last few years despite tax deductions for shipping jobs overseas.

Click here for the rest of the story

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