By Christian Zibreg on Jan 31, 2014
Apple CEO Tim Cook flew to Ireland today to meet with the country’s government officials and tour the company’s corporate office. Although the meeting agenda was shrouded in secrecy, media reported Cook and the head of government discussed tax loopholes and a change in the Irish laws that should prevent firms like Apple and Google to avoid declaring tax residency in either the U.S. or Ireland.
A loophole in Ireland’s corporate tax laws has enabled many of the world’s top corporations to operate as virtually stateless firms, ungoverned by any nation’s taxing authority… Read More
By Cody Lee on Nov 13, 2013
Apple is in hot water over international taxes again, this time it’s in Italy. According to Reuters, the Cupertino company is currently under investigation by Italian authorities for alleged tax fraud.
The Italian government believes Apple may have hidden more than 1 billion euros (or $1.3 billion US) from the country’s tax authority during 2010 and 2011, and Milan prosecutors want answers… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 16, 2013
Ireland’s Finance Minister announced plans to close a loop-hole in the country’s corporate tax laws, eliminating the ability for companies such as Apple to operate as virtually ‘stateless’ firms ungoverned by any nation’s taxing authority. The change in the Irish laws means the iPhone maker cannot avoid declaring tax residency in either the U.S. or Ireland.
Earlier this year, Apple’s ability to funnel payments through a unit in Ireland to avoid paying taxes brought U.S. scrutiny by the Senate and testimony by Apple CEO Tim Cook… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Oct 7, 2013
After spending the summer in the hot seat over its tax strategy, Apple has received the all-clear sign from federal regulators. In a September letter, Securities and Exchange Commission investigators who’d been looking into Apple’s finances gave the iPhone maker some good news, saying the agency plans to take no action at this time.
In May, Apple CEO Tim Cook testified before the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, telling members his company pays all taxes it owes. Like the subcommittee, the SEC apparently found no wrongdoing on Apple’s part… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Jul 31, 2013
Are you a U.S. resident looking for a reason to buy an Apple device, but hate that chunk of change taxes consume? Apple is joining other retailers promoting a “tax-holiday” period aimed at goosing back-to-school sales. Some ten states are now participating in the annual event, usually due August 2-4.
Apple’s website now informs consumers it will remove sales tax from items purchased, the timeframe depending on in which state buyers live… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Jul 9, 2013
It’s a common practice now under fire from Germany’s finance chief: giving corporations tax breaks to locate and develop their patents – and hopefully hire local workers. In a Europe struggling with widespread economic troubles, the tactic known as the ‘patent box’ should stop, Germany asked a gathering of European Union finance ministers.
At the heart of the dispute between Germany and other European countries are reports Apple and others multinationals used local tax laws to save money… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Jul 5, 2013
Apple executives, and other tech titans under fire for their tax avoidance practices, can sigh with relief. An Irish committee voted earlier against asking Apple CEO Tim Cook and others about how they used the Irish tax laws to limit what they owe the IRS. Instead, a finance committee of the parliament will put European finance officials on the hot seat.
An investigation by a U.S. Senate subcommittee found Apple funneled a large portion of its income through an Irish business unit, which charged a very low tax rate. As part of that investigation, Cook was called to answer Senator’s questions… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Jul 1, 2013
Apple’s clever accounting practices are again under scrutiny after the iPhone maker paid no UK corporate taxes in 2012, despite three units of the California firm making more than $100 million, according to a British financial newspaper Monday. According to the Financial Times, Apple used tax-deductible employee share awards (essentially stock dividends) to “wipe out the corporate tax liabilities of the UK subsidiaries” during 2012 up to September… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jun 3, 2013
As if Apple’s recent woes with the United States government over offshore tax havens weren’t enough, the French association SACEM (they control royalties) has now discovered that even though Apple did charge iPad buyers a 1 percent tax for cultural works, it’s failed to pass the money to SACEM.
The inexplicable slip up could cost Apple dearly, especially in light of the recent debate over how U.S. corporations creatively pay little to no taxes on the revenue earned from overseas sales… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on May 28, 2013
European nations must stop offering incentives aimed at attracting companies seeking a haven from the U.S. government’s 35 percent tax on repatriated money. The European Union’s Tax Commissioner Algirdas Semeta Tuesday called on EU member nations to halt “specific incentives” aimed at attracting international corporations such as Apple, Google, Microsoft, Coca Cola and many others.
Semeta’s comments in Brussels follows a week of high-profile discussion of ways Apple and other tech giants filter income through EU nations such as Ireland to avoid paying heftier taxes back home… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 27, 2013
Carl Levin, the chairman of the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, ahead of a high-profile congressional hearing accused Apple of seeking “the Holy Grail of tax avoidance” by creating “offshore entities holding tens of billions of dollars, while claiming to be tax resident nowhere.”
Needless to say, click-hungry media came all guns blazing in support for the government’s stance. But not so fast, cautions former U.S. Senator John E. Sununu (Republican, New Hampshire), who points the finger at the United States government over instituting tax laws that discourage corporations like Apple from repatriating its $40 billion in overseas cash… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on May 24, 2013
Apple finds itself in unfamiliar territory. Accustom to acting behind the scenes and producing gadgets with overwhelming appeal, the iPhone maker and its CEO Tim Cook are front-and-center in a debate over corporate taxes and how some companies navigate loopholes in the laws to keep billions from the IRS.
In a sign of how concerned Apple is about changing the U.S. tax landscape, it in 2013 may spend nearly $4 million on lobbying Congress – double the amount of just a year ago. Meanwhile, European leaders are asking tech giants to play by the rules… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 23, 2013
Earlier this week, Apple’s CEO Tim Cook came to Washington and escaped unscathed. The focus of media coverage has now seemingly moved away from Apple to the greater tactics some of the well-known corporations use to funnel their money using the world’s tax havens – and perfectly legally, too.
But the hot topic isn’t going away as the nearly bankrupt government seeks ways to tax hundreds of billions of dollars kept overseas. And per usual, the American political satirist and the Daily Show host Jon Stewart has jumped on the opportunity to exploit the controversy.
I don’t want to spoil the fun for you, but he’s asserting U.S. senators are Apple fanboys. The clip is right after the break… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on May 22, 2013
More than $1 trillion leaked from the tax coffers of EU member states each year, an amount large enough to prompt European leaders Wednesday to hold a summit on reforming corporate taxes. The move follows high-profile investigations showing Apple and other tech giants used European countries to avoid paying taxes in their home countries.
Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook testified before a Senate subcommittee investigating how the iPhone maker used a hole in Ireland’s tax laws to lower its U.S. tax burden on $74 billion held overseas… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 21, 2013
Apple CEO Tim Cook, along with the company’s finance boss Peter Oppenheimer and Tax Operations head Phillip Bullock, earlier this morning took the witness table at a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill to face U.S. senators who grilled the three men on Apple’s offshore tax practices.
This also means today was the day many Apple bloggers got to become experts on tax reform. We live-blogged the whole thing, but if you had better things to do than sift through the back and forth between Apple execs and senators John McCain and Carl Levin, Apple’s got you covered.
Right on cure, the Cupertino firm has published Cook and Oppenheimer’s opening statements that detail its now widely reported stance on a comprehensive U.S. corporate tax code reform… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 21, 2013
Apple CEO Tim Cook, who has been summoned to testify in a Senate hearing on offshore tax practices, now has to do something no other Apple CEO did before him: take the witness table at a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill.
Apple ahead of the hearing published a 17-page written testimony which details its push for a fair tax reform: it should be revenue neutral, Apple writes, eliminate all corporate tax expenditures, lower corporate income tax rates and implement a reasonable tax on foreign earnings that allows free movement of capital back to the U.S.
It’s not clear why the U.S. Senators singled out Apple as many other companies don’t repatriate the money earned overseas due to the steep 35 percent tax. It’s important to note that what Apple and others are doing isn’t illegal. Moreover, Apple is compelled to do what is in both their and their shareholders’ best interest.
Anyway, you’ve hopefully grabbed your popcorn because things are about to get quite interesting if not downright messy. Go past the fold for a blow by blow… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 20, 2013
Tomorrow will be a pretty big day for Apple CEO Tim Cook, finance boss Peter Oppenheimer and Tax Operations head Phillip Bullock as the three men are scheduled to appear in front of the United States Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigation and give testimony regarding the company’s creative approach to tax avoidance.
Apple ahead of the hearing published a lengthy document on its web site which pushes for tax reform on argument that America’s tax system undermines the nation’s competitiveness in the “digital economy” because the current tax code was written for the “industrial era.” As expected, some U.S. senators beg to differ and think Apple is just being creative in its tax avoidance strategy.
This is bound to get more complicated when Tim Cook & Co. find themselves in hot water explaining to U.S. Senators how the company sidesteps U.S. taxes. Get your popcorn out… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 20, 2013
Ahead of Tim Cook’s appearance in front of the US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigation tomorrow, Apple has released a lengthy statement regarding its company tax practices and other items that will be used in its testimony.
Remember, last week we told you that Cook was expected to testify at a senate hearing this Tuesday on “offshore profit shifting,” following Apple’s move to take on domestic debt, rather than use its offshore cash, to avoid $9 billion in taxes…
By Cody Lee on May 16, 2013
Yesterday, word got out that Tim Cook would be testifying at a senate hearing next week over Apple’s tax practices. The hearing was called after the iPad-maker took on billions in debt to fund its shareholder return plan, rather than paying taxes on its offshore cash.
The move reportedly saved the Cupertino company around $9 billion in various tax charges, bringing it to the forefront of an ongoing debate about the legality of offshore tax evasion. But in a recent interview, Tim Cook says that Apple isn’t doing anything wrong… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 15, 2013
In a recent bond offering, Apple took on billions of dollars in debt in order to finance an initiative to return some of its cash to shareholders. Its plan is to give $100 billion back to investors, by way of dividends and stock buybacks, by 2015.
Since most of its cash is offshore, Apple’s decision to take on debt instead of tapping its own $150 billion cash pile helped it sidestep an estimated $9 billion in taxes. Unfortunately, it’s also caught the attention of the US government… Read More