Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Foreign Windfall

In one of my posts on Sunday, I discussed the one time windfall from the temporary reduction in taxes repatriated from foreign sources. A comment posted in response argued that:
The reason billions and billions are being repatriated is because those earnings were left offshore (with a very low effective tax rate attached) and, absent an amnesty like this or a dire need at the US level, would never have come back onshore to be taxed. Taking 5.25% of something is better than 35% of nothing.
Well, no actually.

According to the Congressional Budget Office analysis of the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004 (here), the particular provision in question, "increas[es] receipts in 2005 by about $2.8 billion and reduc[es] receipts thereafter." In other words, the net effect of the provision, over time, is to decrease revenues, since offshore profits do ultimately get repatriated.

The analysis does not break out the precise amount by which receipts are decreased by this one particular provision. However, this provision of the Act, together with the three other provisions in the international tax area, were expected to "increase revenues by about $1.3 billion in 2005, and reduce revenues by about $12.1 billion over the 2005-2009 period and $42.6 billion over the 2005-2014 period."


Anonymous said...

Federal Reserve Chairman designate Beranke believes that the Earned Run Average unfairly favors relief pitchers.

Runs are attributed to the pitcher who allows the runner despite a relief pitcher's performance or culpability in allowing the run. If a pitcher allows a runner on first and is pulled for a relief pitcher, he is charged with that runner even if a subsequent pitcher walks in the run with three staight walks. Beranke wants the statistic to be weighted to reflect the subsequent pitcher's performance.

Now doesn't this raise an obvious question about inheritance taxes. Let's aay an octagenerian zillionaire dies today. His heirs and lawyers are devout readers and followers of this blog and immediately cough up the maximum death tax allowed. It would be credited to Bush, no? Why? It's highly probable that a previous administration created the policies that allowed such longevity or promoted the growth of obscene wealth. Probably Reagan. So give it to the Gipper. Let history judge his deficit smaller that W's. Keep the books open to give credit where credit is due.

But what would tax law be without exceptions? When Paris Hilton or Anna Nicole Smith hump that last hump, credit it to Bill Clinton. It only seems fitting.

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