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Apple paid only 1.9 percent tax on $36.8bn profits

Giving little back to society
Mon Nov 05 2012, 12:19
An Apple logo

GADGET FLOGGER Apple paid just 1.9 per cent corporate tax on its foreign profits, according to its most recent 10-K filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Apple's 10-K filing with the SEC shows that the firm paid just $713m in corporate taxes in its fiscal year that ended on 29 September 2012 on foreign profits of $36.8bn, a rate of 1.9 percent.

Apple's tax avoidance is not illegal, but it might add to growing dissatisfaction with Apple for price gouging and not giving enough back.

Apple is well known to funnel funds through its subsidiary in Ireland where corporation tax is considerably lower than in Britain, but even Ireland's discounted corporation tax rate is 12.5 percent, not the two percent Apple is paying.

The firm sits on a vast cash pile of around $100bn and has gross margins that most firms would die for, yet Apple has been mired in recent years over supplier controversies such as Foxconn's terrible working conditions. The company has also come under pressure to bring some of its manufacturing back to the US, even if it means a decline in gross margins, in order to stimulate the economy.

Apple is likely to join Google and Facebook, both of which have received criticism for paying very low levels of corporate tax. While consumers might complain, Apple and other large companies are merely taking advantage of their legal rights to get away with paying extremely low taxes, a situation that surely will continue until politicians do their jobs. µ


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