A cadre of multinational corporations have been pushing for the revival of a tax repatriation holiday, which would allow companies to bring money that they have stashed overseas back to the United States at a dramatically lower tax rate (rather than the standard 35 percent corporate tax rate). The idea has been endorsed by many Republicans, including most of the GOP’s presidential candidates.
The corporations — and the Republicans who support them — have been claiming that they would use the cash from this tax break to create jobs in America. However, Congress already tried this exact policy in 2004, and the corporations who took advantage of that break, according to a new report from the Institute for Policy Studies, proceeded to cut and outsource hundreds of thousands of jobs:
Following a tax holiday on repatriated foreign earnings in 2004, 58 corporations that benefitted from the holiday slashed a total of nearly 600,000 jobs. These 58 giant corporations accounted for nearly 70 percent of the total repatriated funds and collectively saved an estimated $64 billion from what they otherwise would have owed in taxes.
It’s a well-known fact that some of the corporations that took advantage of that 2004 repatriation holiday proceeded to cut jobs, but IPS’ report pulls back the veil on just how many of these companies laid off workers or outsourced jobs after pledging up and down that they would do just the opposite. Here are some of the worst offenders:
All of the empirical evidence suggests that reviving this tax break wouldn’t create jobs, but would merely encourage corporations to push even more money overseas (in the hopes that Congress will keep on granting repatriation holidays). Yet many in the GOP keep floating this as a plan that would cure what ails the economy.