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Corporate Taxes?

Many conservatives want to lower corporate taxes, claiming that our corporate tax rate is too high. But that’s just the statutory rate, before companies take advantage of various tax breaks.

In fact, a new study of 280 corporations in the Fortune 500 shows that the average tax rate they paid was 18.5%, just over half the statutory rate and more than the average middle class tax rate. 78 of those companies paid no taxes at all in at least one of the last three years. And 30 of them had a negative tax rate — the government gave them money — even though they had pre-tax profits of $160 billion.



  1. Jeff wrote:

    Huffington Post also covered this story, as well as writing a piece about how the Republicans still want to cut the top tax rate from 35% to 25%. To me, that means they want to give tax dollars away to more companies by making it easier for businesses to get to that negative tax rate.

    The thing that bothers me most about this is that Republicans and their talking heads don’t mention this. They glaze over the fact that these businesses are tax cheats, and say that the businesses are hurting. They say that high taxes harm job growth. If that’s the case, those businesses paying zero in taxes or getting money back from the government ought to be hiring like crazy. Since they’re not, it’s pretty clear that line of thinking is flawed. As if we needed more evidence of that.

    Thursday, November 3, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Permalink
  2. TJ wrote:

    Jeff, the Republicans also claim that lowering personal income tax rates will somehow stimulate the “Job Creators”, so you know how reliable a source they are. That “job creators” bs is one giant piece of spin and I’m ashamed at all the rest of us for letting them get away with it.

    People by themselves, no matter how much money they have, do not “create jobs”. Aside from the occasional assistant, maid, or butler businesses create jobs. Personal income tax rates have nothing to do with how much money businesses have. How did we get to a point where conservatives could equate personal income tax rates with “taxing job creators?” Where are all the people that should have called them on that?

    Thursday, November 3, 2011 at 1:28 pm | Permalink
  3. Scott wrote:

    Only fair — gotta protect the Job Creators, ya know? Creating deck hand jobs for their newest “mine’s longer than yours” yacht, lawn care jobs for their new getaway estates (never mind that those frequently go to ‘illegals’), and most important, extra jobs on K Street, to help crank out the lubrication that keeps our elected job-avoiders from changing any of the Creators’ special privileges.

    Thursday, November 3, 2011 at 2:59 pm | Permalink
  4. Arthanyel wrote:

    Actually, cutting the tax rate on corporaitons to 25% wouldn’t be a bad idea – IF you also eliminated all the deductions and loopholes. As stated in this report, the average is already far lower, so a “real?” 25% would generate 1/3 more revenue – and is in line with what other first world countries charge. Our actual tax rate is the second highest in the world, so bringing it down AND eliminating deducations and giveaways is the way to go.

    Thursday, November 3, 2011 at 11:01 pm | Permalink