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Bernie Sanders’ List of America’s Top 10 Corporate Tax Avoiders

Bernie Sanders List of America’s Top 10 Corporate Tax Avoiders

1. General Electric

From 2008 to 2013, while GE made over $33.9 billion in United States profits, it received a total tax refund of more than $2.9 billion from the Internal Revenue Service.

G.E.’s effective U.S. corporate income tax rate over this six year period was -9 percent.

In 2012, GE stashed $108 billion in offshore tax havens to avoid paying income taxes. If this practice were outlawed, GE would have paid $37.8 billion in federal income taxes that year.

During the financial crisis, the Federal Reserve provided GE with $16 billion in financial assistance, at a time when its CEO Jeffrey Immelt was a director of the New York Federal Reserve.

GE has been a leader in outsourcing decent paying jobs to China, Mexico and other low-wage countries.

Mr. Immelt has a retirement account at General Electric worth an estimated $59 million and made $19 million intotal compensation last year.

He is a member of the Business Roundtable, a group that wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70, cut Social Security and veterans’ benefits, increase taxes on working families, and cut corporate taxes even further.

On December 6, 2002, Jeffrey Immelt said at an investors’ meeting, “When I am talking to GE managers, I talk China, China, China, China, China. You need to be there. You need to change the way people talk about it and how they get there. I am a nut on China. Outsourcing from China is going to grow to $5 billion. We are building a tech center in China. Every discussion today has to center on China. The cost basis is extremely attractive. You can take an 18 cubic foot refrigerator, make it in China, land it in the United States, and land it for less than we can make an 18 cubic foot refrigerator today, ourselves.”

2. Boeing

From 2008 to 2013, while Boeing made over $26.4 billion in U.S. profits, it received a total tax refund of $401 million from the IRS. Boeing’s effective U.S. corporate income tax rate over this six-year period was -2 percent.

Boeing is one of the top recipients of corporate welfare in the United States and has outsourced tens of thousands of decent paying jobs to China and other low-wage countries.

Boeing even has its own taxpayer-funded bank known as the Export-Import Bank of the United States. Boeing has received so much corporate welfare from this bank that it has been dubbed “the Bank of Boeing.”

Boeing CEO W. James McNerney, Jr. made $23.3 million in total compensation last year. Mr. McNerney, as a memberof the Business Roundtable, wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70 and make significant cuts to Social Security.

3. Verizon

From 2008 to 2013, while Verizon made over $42.4 billion in U.S. profits, it received a total tax refund of $732 million from the IRS.

Verizon’s effective U.S. corporate income tax rate over this six-year period was -2 percent.

In 2012, Verizon stashed $1.8 billion in offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes. Verizon would owe an estimated $630 million in federal income taxes if its use of offshore tax avoidance was eliminated.

In 2013, Lowell McAdam, the CEO of Verizon made $15.8 million in total compensation. He wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70, and make significant cuts to Social Security as a member of the Business Roundtable.

4. Bank of America

Bank of America received a $1.9 billion tax refund from the IRS in 2010, even though it made $4.4 billion in profits and received a bailout from the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department of more than $1.3 trillion.

In 2012, Bank of America operated more than 300 subsidiaries incorporated in offshore tax havens like the Cayman Islands, which has no corporate taxes.

In 2012, Bank of America stashed $17.2 billion in offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes. Bank of America would owe an estimated $4.3 billion in federal income taxes if its use of offshore tax avoidance strategies were eliminated.

Last year, Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan made $13.1 million in total compensation, but he wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70, and make significant cuts to Social Security as a member of the Business Roundtable.

5. Citigroup

Citigroup made more than $4 billion in profits in 2010, but paid no federal income taxes. Citigroup received a $2.5 trillion bailout from the Federal Reserve and U.S. Treasury during the financial crisis.

Citigroup has established 427 subsidiaries incorporated in offshore tax havens.

In 2012, it stashed $42.6 billion in offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes. Citigroup would owe an estimated $11.5 billion in federal income taxes if its use of offshore tax avoidance strategies were eliminated.

Michael Corbat, the CEO of Citigroup, made more than $17.6 million in total compensation last year.

6. Pfizer

Pfizer, one of the largest prescription drug companies in America, not only paid no federal income taxes from 2010 to 2012, it received $2.2 billion in tax refunds from the IRS at the same time it made $43 billion in profits worldwide.

In 2012, Pfizer stashed $73 billion in profits offshore and has used aggressive offshore tax strategies to avoid paying U.S. income taxes.

Ian Read, the CEO of Pfizer, made $17.7 million in total compensation last year.

Hank McKinnell, Jr., who was Pfizer’s CEO from 2001 to 2006, received a golden parachute from Pfizer worth anestimated $188 million.

7. FedEx

In 2011, Federal Express received a $135 million tax refund from the IRS even though it made more than $2.7 billion in U.S. profits that year.

FedEx receives more than $1 billion a year from the U.S. Postal Service to provide air service for all express mail and priority mail shipments.

Frederick Smith, the CEO of FedEx, made more than $12.6 million in total compensation last year.

8. Honeywell

From 2009 to 2010, not only did Honeywell pay no federal income taxes, it received a $510 million tax refund from the IRS even though it made a combined profit in the U.S. of almost $3 billion.

In 2012, Honeywell stashed $11.6 billion in offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes. Honeywell would owe an estimated $4.06 billion in federal income taxes if its use of offshore tax avoidance were eliminated.

David Cote, the CEO of Honeywell, made more than $25.4 million in total compensation last year.

Mr. Cote wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70 and make significant cuts to Social Security as a member of the Business Roundtable.

9. Merck

In 2009, not only did Merck pay no federal income taxes, it received a $55 million tax refund from the IRS, even though it earned more than $5.7 billion in U.S. profits.

In 2012, Merck stashed $53.4 billion in offshore tax haven countries to avoid paying income taxes. If this practice was outlawed, it would have paid $18.69 billion in federal income taxes.

Fred Hassan, the CEO of Merck from 2003 to 2009, received a golden parachute worth an estimated $189 million.

Merck’s current CEO, Kenneth Frazier, has a retirement account worth an estimated $14.4 million.  He wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70 and make significant cuts to Social Security as a member of the Business Roundtable.

10. Corning

From 2008 to 2012, not only did Corning pay no federal income taxes, it received a $10 million tax refund from the IRS, even though it earned more than $3.4 billion in U.S. profits during those years.

Corning has stashed $11.9 billion in offshore tax havens to avoid paying U.S. income taxes. Corning would owe an estimated $4.165 billion in federal income taxes if its use of offshore tax avoidance were eliminated.

Wendell Weeks, the CEO of Corning, has a retirement account worth an estimated $22.8 million.   Mr. Weeks wants to raise the eligibility age for Medicare and Social Security to 70 and make significant cuts to Social Security as a member of the Business Roundtable.

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11 Comments

  1. I FEEL WE ARE BEING ROBED OF DEMOCRACY ! VERY UN- AMERICAN !!!!

  2. Susan Dorris

    One good thing about living on Social Security alone ($14,000 per year) is that I am not contributing to the wealth of the above tax dodgers!

  3. it looks like these corporate tax dodgers and their oligopolistic industries are Hillary supporters.

  4. KETTLE

    THAT IS NOT AVOIDERS………………….THAT IS THEFT

  5. Donna H

    This has happened because of complacency. We have an obligation to stop these practices NOW. Bernie Sanders is the man most likely to make it happen.
    We’ve trusted our elected officials for much too long. I must ask even Senator Sanders if he knew about this, why did he wait until now to get the word out?

  6. The Million Mask March started off as a single protest in Washington D.C. in 2013. It has since grown in to what has been dubbed the largest mass protest in human history with over 500 simultaneous protest around the world. Also with countless nation and world wide street actions on a weekly and monthly basis including such things as clothing drives, street protests, feeding the homeless and in some cases traveling to help those in times of need. To remind the world that fairness, Justice, and freedom are more than just words.

  7. Mark'sfriendMike

    How about ExxonMobil and other petro-giants. I used to deal with Exxon’s A/R and I know they have over 300 tax lawyers assuring they pay zero taxes. Now I’m retired, disabled and living on peanut butter and cereal while they try to starve me farther.

  8. Carrie Preston

    Well there are 10 more companies on my do not buy or use anything from list…The list just keep getting longer and longer…we need more Made in America more Union Made and our money stays in America kind of companies and individuals. After you make so much money it is all a game for these companies and individuals…They do not need these absorb profits and incomes with out paying there fair share.

  9. Renee

    I hate hearing the truth. They make millions/billions and get a way from paying their taxes. I made nothing near these companies and yet the IRS manages to audit me twice for my 2010 taxes and now I owe more then I can afford in interest, ( that never stops accruing ) ..I will be paying this forever. I have bad words to say these companies.

  10. Kriss Erickson

    I’m a Montana woman supporting Bernie Sanders because he is not beholden to the media ownership, billionaires or large corporations. Yes, I said large corporations. These corporations are hiding their profits overseas, there goes our tax income. The CEOs are making more and more, while the American worker gets wage, insurance and retirement cuts. Thank you Republicans for your shady politics and the Supreme Court and Citizens United. I won’t get stared on Wall Street, but, people need to go to prison!

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