Tax Analysts Blog

Monday, December 9, 2013
“The Ways and Means Committee will write, act on and pass comprehensive tax reform legislation in 2013 . . . Let me repeat that: We intend to move a comprehensive tax reform bill in 2013 — no matter what.” - Chair Dave Camp, Nov. 15, 2012 "We're running out of time, and I have no plan to introd...
Monday, November 18, 2013
The prospects for any near-term meaningful progress on tax reform are fading fast. Some people say the Republican leaders have put tax reform on ice because they don't want any distractions to divert public attention from President Obama's health insurance debacle. In public, Ways and Means Committ...
Monday, November 4, 2013
It would be hard to overstate the importance of reputation in international tax. Cross-border tax planning involves extremely arcane and technical rules that only brainy experts can understand. But the opinion of regular people matters, too. If, as in the United Kingdom, the general public perceive...
Monday, October 28, 2013
In a 2012 book from Yale University Press (Innovation Economics: The Race for Global Advantage), Robert Atkinson and Stephen Ezell explore the fascinating topic of innovation in the increasingly globalized modern economy and the government policies that can promote it. The authors got my attention...
Monday, October 21, 2013
We need a new economics. Until the tech revolution of the 1990s, economists' conceptualization of production portrayed reality reasonably well. Businesses hired labor and purchased capital to make the things that improved consumers' well-being. To promote employment, productivity, and economic gro...
Monday, October 7, 2013
It just isn't paranoia. Small business has the right to feel persecuted. First, there has been a big push from all quarters over the last few years for corporate tax reform that would pay for lower rates by getting rid of business tax breaks. The problem is that businesses not subject to corporate...
Monday, September 23, 2013
Civilians not enlisted in the armies of lawyers, accountants, and economists who battle over multinational taxes for a living must wonder, "Why is it so difficult for governments of advanced economies to prevent profit shifting to tax havens?" Part of the answer lies in the fact that long ago, gov...
Monday, September 16, 2013
The United States is the only nation of any significant size without a VAT. The United States also has the world's highest corporate tax rate. Those two facts are not unrelated. Despite ever-tightening budgets, governments around the world over the last two decades have steadily reduced their corpo...
Monday, September 9, 2013
In the gritty, grimy sausage factory of tax policymaking, it is rare to find a legislator who puts principle ahead of political gain. But if you were paying attention to the evolution of North Carolina's tax reform over the first six months of 2013 you would have been very pleasantly surprised. Se...
Monday, August 26, 2013
New Hampshire has no income tax and no sales tax. So it should come as no surprise that the Granite State relies heavily on alternative sources of revenue. Two of those are the state's Business Profits Tax and Business Enterprise Tax. The Business Profits Tax is an 8.5-percent tax on the profits o...
Monday, August 19, 2013
House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Michigan) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Montana) are in San Francisco on Monday and Santa Clara on Tuesday to promote tax reform. On July 1 the pair was in Minnesota and on July 29 they visited small businesses in New Jersey...
Monday, August 12, 2013
Perhaps it still goes on: silk-suited, Gucci-clad lobbyists buttonhole legislators outside hearing rooms to remind them that their big business clients are funding their re-election campaigns. This is the image that tax reformers like to stir into the heads of the public when they are cheerleading...
Monday, August 5, 2013
“Get rid of the deductions that don't affect me.” -small business owner speaking to Camp and Baucus It borders on the unbelievable that both Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D) have vowed (here and here) to hold a markup of major t...
Monday, July 22, 2013
"This action plan, which we will roll out over the coming two years, marks a turning point in the history of international tax co-operation. It will allow countries to draw up the co-ordinated, comprehensive and transparent standards they need." --OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurria “They know the...
Monday, July 15, 2013
On July 1, Virginia's 17.5 cent per gallon gas tax was repealed. It was replaced with a 3.5 percent sales tax on the wholesale price of gasoline. The new sales tax on gas works out to be a levy of 11.1 cents per gallon. The net effect is a 6.4 cent tax cut. Unluckily for politicians in Virginia the...
Monday, July 8, 2013
There are as many ways to calculate an effective tax rate as there are ways to order coffee at Starbucks. So when you hear reports about an effective tax rate, it can mean a lot of different things. Small changes in what may seem to be obscure details make a big difference. And because effective ta...
Monday, July 1, 2013
Newspapers and other media outlets have a built-in bias to exaggerate. They know that no matter how true it may be, if a headline reads “Nothing Really Important Happened Today” their hit count and their ratings will drop. And so would their already fast-dwindling revenue. So editors and writers...
Monday, June 24, 2013
Over the last five years American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer earned on average over $10 billion of annual worldwide pre-tax profits. How much of this profit was attributable to its U.S. operations? Answer: none. In fact, according to annual reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission...
Monday, June 17, 2013
There is a new corporate tax coalition in town. Such a statement would normally be as newsworthy as any other commonplace and irrelevant Washington phenomena such as "Congress is in session" or "President releases budget." But the newly-formed Alliance for Competitive Taxation has several features...
Monday, June 10, 2013
Two weeks ago the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigation (PSI) had a hearing on Apple's ability to put a large portion of its worldwide profits outside the United States and in Ireland. Last week the OECD and a bunch of business groups held two-day conference in Washington DC on the OECD's...