Tax Director and Vice President – Taxes at GE Energy Financial Services
GUESS WHICH COMPANY PAID $0 IN TAXES (ON $14.2 BILLION IN PROFITS)? HINT: ITS CEO WORKS FOR OBAMA
Half of all Americans don’t pay federal taxes on their income. And neither, apparently, does General Electric, the multi-national company that reaped $14.2 billion in profits last year. Though G.E. is the largest corporation in the U.S., it did not have to pay a dime in U.S. taxes, according to the New York Times. In fact, the company claimed $3.2 billion in tax benefits.
“That may be hard to fathom for the millions of American business owners and households now preparing their own returns, but low taxes are nothing new for G.E. The company has been cutting the percentage of its American profits paid to the Internal Revenue Service for years, resulting in a far lower rate than at most multinational companies.Continued below.
Its extraordinary success is based on an aggressive strategy that mixes fierce lobbying for tax breaks and innovative accounting that enables it to concentrate its profits offshore. G.E.’s giant tax department, led by a bow-tied former Treasury official named John Samuels, is often referred to as the world’s best tax law firm. Indeed, the company’s slogan “Imagination at Work” fits this department well. The team includes former officials not just from the Treasury, but also from the I.R.S. and virtually all the tax-writing committees in Congress.”
According to the Times, “one of the most striking advantages of General Electric is its ability to lobby for, win and take advantage of tax breaks.”
These tax breaks are incredibly important to G.E.–so important that G.E.’s head tax man got down on his knees and begged Rep. Charles Rangel to let a particularly lucrative one extend past its expiration date in 2008:
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