Susan Luzzaro 8:14 a.m., May 23
Qualcomm puts big bucks in offshore havens to avoid U.S. taxes
Added $2.9 billion to stash last year -- 22nd among U.S. companies
Qualcomm in the past year added $2.9 billion to its stash of profits shifted to foreign tax havens, according to Citizens for Tax Justice, which points out that in most cases, companies earn the money in the United States but place it offshore to avoid U.S. corporate income taxes. Qualcomm came in 22nd among large U.S. multinationals in shifting profits to foreign havens. The company that shifted the most profits offshore in the last year was Apple, stashing $28.3 billion.
Under current law, corporate profits are not subject to U.S. tax unless and until the profits are repatriated into the U.S., points out Citizens for Tax Justice. "According to the congressional Joint Committee on Taxation, this indefinite deferral of taxes on profits ostensibly earned or shifted overseas will cost the federal government about $600 billion over the coming decade," says the tax watchdog group. But lobbyists for multinationals want to PERMANENTLY exempt from U.S. corporate income taxes all profits that U.S. corporations manage to have treated as "foreign" through use of such tricks as utilization of tax and secrecy havens. These practices are legal, but Michigan Senator Carl Levin points out, correctly, that they shouldn't be.
Over the last four years, Qualcomm's offshore profit stashes grew by $7.8 billion -- 20th among American multinational corporations.