At least 55 of America’s largest corporations paid no taxes last year -- on billions in profits
As President Joe Biden's administration continues its push to increase tax rates for profitable corporations, a new study is highlighting how some of the largest and most profitable corporations in the United States managed to sidestep paying any federal taxes last year despite earning billions in revenue.
According to The New York Times, the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a Washington-based research group, compiled the analysis which focuses on at least 55 of America's biggest corporations and how they were able to maximize on "a range of legal deductions and exemptions that have become staples of the tax code."
Of the 55 companies named, 26 massive corporations including FedEx, Duke Energy, and Nike have benefited from former President Donald Trump's corporate tax reduction. Since Trump reduced corporate tax rates from 35 percent down to 21 percent, many large corporations have managed to avoid paying any federal taxes for the last three years while collectively earning more than $77 billion during that time span.
While companies' tax returns are typically deemed private, publicly-traded corporations' situations are a bit different. By law, they are required to disclose financial reports that offer an itemized scope of their federal income tax expenses.
Although large companies have benefited from the tax break, Democratic lawmakers have still raised concerns about the tax loopholes. However, Catherine Butler, a spokeswoman for Duke Energy, released an email statement defending the company's finances insisting it "fully complies with federal and state tax laws as part of our efforts to make investments that will benefit our customers and communities."
She also noted that "the bonus depreciation, intended to encourage investment in areas like renewable energy, "caused Duke's cash tax obligations to be deferred to future periods, but it did not eliminate them."
DTE Energy is also listed as a company that did not have to pay federal taxes over the last three years. According to the Detroit-based utility company, it has invested "in modernizing aging infrastructure and new solar and wind technologies were the primary reasons last year."
The company said in a statement, "For utilities, the benefit of these federal tax savings are passed on to utility customers in the form of lower utility bills."
Trump's tax bill also included a provision that gave businesses the ability to immediately include expenses associated with any new equipment and machinery for write-off purposes. Democratic lawmakers are looking to overhaul Trump's tax plan in an attempt to level the playing field.
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