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Overseas stashes complicate tax reform
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of San Francisco Chronicle (SF's leading newspaper)

San Francisco Chronicle (SF's leading newspaper), March 28, 2013
Posted: April 2nd, 2013

According to a new report, most of the 30 companies listed on the Dow Jones industrial average are paying a far lower proportion of their profits in federal taxes - at a time when the Dow is reaching new highs - than they have in past decades. The main reason: not so much those yawning tax loopholes, but the multinationals' ability to stash more of their money overseas, where it's taxed at a lower rate and the feds can't touch it. Hewlett-Packard, according to the analysis, experienced the steepest percentage reduction in federal taxes - 47 percent since 1969. Intel's share of income paid in taxes has fallen by 29.6 percent since 1973, and Cisco Systems by 24.7 percent since 1989. U.S. multinationals ... often pay far less than the standard 35 percent corporate tax rate - a rate many of these companies are pushing to have significantly lowered. In its year-end report, Intel recorded $13 billion in profit - a record - and said its tax rate was approximately 29 percent. In 2010 HP paid $1.75 billion in income taxes on $9.4 billion of pretax income, a tax rate of 18.6 percent. As a share of the nation's GDP, U.S. corporate income tax has fallen by more than half, from 5.5 percent in 1946 to 2.6 percent in 2011.

Note: The statement about corporate income tax falling from 5.5 percent of GDP in 1946 to 2.6 percent in 2011 is quite misleading, making it appear that corporate taxes are a small percentage of total income. It is much more accurate to compare the total annual amount of corporate taxes to individuals' taxes. As this historical tax chart clearly shows, in 1946 corporate income tax receipts were 74% of the amount received from individual income taxes. By 2011, corporate taxes dropped to less than 17% of the amount paid in individual income taxes. That is a huge percentage drop in corporate taxes.

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