April 15 2010|07.57 AM UTC

Jonathan Rivers

Your Taxes Vs America’s Top 25 Companies

Category: Personal FinanceTags: , , ,



The tax code in the US is a constantly changing source of frustration for many Americans. Since the first income tax was imposed in 1861, Americans have been paying the government a portion of their income. Tax laws are now so complex, many people seek help from professional accountants in preparing their tax returns, as no one wants to pay too much or make an error that could trigger an audit.

Businesses are also taxed on their income, but at a different rate than individuals. While individuals fall into higher tax brackets the more they earn and can owe the IRS up to 35 percent of their income, corporations often earn far more in profits, yet pay the government a smaller percentage of that income. Here is a graphic comparison of what you pay the government verses how little some of the largest corporations in America pay.

[Editor's note: Do'h. History fail. Declaration of Independence in 1776, Constitution draft started in 1786 and adopted in 1787. Will fix ASAP.]

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Your Taxes Vs America's Top 25 Companies

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{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Gary Arndt April 15, 2010 at 10:48 am

The one small fact you totally failed to mention is that corporate profits are taxed twice. Once on the corporate level and once again once those profits are distributed to shareholders on an individual basis.

Until there is a taxable event (distribution of profits or sale of stock) no money has gone into anyone’s hands.

The actual amount collected from $1,000 of profit is the corporate tax PLUS the individual tax once that profit is distributed.

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kevin April 15, 2010 at 2:29 pm

Not a very good info graphic… you probably have good information, but present it a little better. And Dictionary entries at the bottom don’t make it more appealing.. Its like taking up space for the sake of making a bigger graphic. Should probably space the “graphics” out a little more, and integrate this information into appropriate areas rather than list them off at the bottom.

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Tim April 15, 2010 at 2:32 pm

The Constitution was written in 1787, not 1776. Otherwise, eye opening stuff.

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Carla April 15, 2010 at 2:38 pm

I know someone in the GOP will be happy with this result. I am not. Large corporations get tax breaks at every turn. What did your city, county, state,offer the last company looking at land? Then they move the good jobs overseas. Move the corporate offices offshore, more savings.

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huxley April 15, 2010 at 2:46 pm

OK, I get the purpose of this graph, but it is failing to realize that this capital does get taxed when it is paid out.

For this “corporate income” to get dispersed to anyone it would have to be in the form of a salary, which is in turn then taxed.

This is a poorly thought out, uneducated graphic that only serves as a means of propaganda to fuel hatred of corporate America.

What I take from it is that corporate employees are having their incomes taxed twice. That my friends, isn’t fair…

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tom April 15, 2010 at 2:46 pm

The Constitution was created in 1787, not 1776.

Prior to that, the US was defined by the Articles of Confederation which was ratified in 1781 (still not 1776).

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Mike April 15, 2010 at 3:07 pm

I see no mention of the fact that some of these companies, such as Exxon, do pay taxes, but all to foreign governments. They manage to pay none to the US

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gingoro April 15, 2010 at 3:39 pm

The corporate tax shows their actual tax dollars paid, the individual tax shows the tax rate and the percentage of the total income paid by individuals by those in different tax brackets. What is the percentage of tax paid by all corporations vrs that paid by the sum of all individuals?

Corporations can income average over a number of years just like individuals can so their tax in a given year may not fairly represent what they actually pay in terms of fair share over the long term. Forgetting about foreign ownership the after tax profits of corporations is partially paid to the share owners who then pay tax on at a fraction of their dividend income. So dividend receivers of the big corporations are in effect taxed twice at least for some dividends.

It also looks like some of the deductible “expenses” allowed are too generous or the minimum tax rules/rates are too lenient.

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James April 15, 2010 at 4:26 pm

This is the just propaganda to undermine corporate America and capitalism, the same system our country was founded on, this country was built on taxing a business and making it bigger and more successful, why is everyone so against big business, whats so wrong with them, the people who own and run them are living the American dream, what would taxing them more do, put the money into the hands of people with now jobs and sit and collect wellfare, come on common sense and that chart sucks anyway

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wuwei26 April 15, 2010 at 5:21 pm

What Huxley seems to fail to realize is that employee salary is a business expense and deducted before income taxes are calculated. And for Gary Arndt, the corporate profit is taxed once, it is the individuals dividends that are potentially taxed. The individual receiving the dividend may actually pay no tax when everything is said and done. I appreciate the argument against double (or triple or quadruple or…) taxation, but do not believe anyone has made a credible argument in that regard here.

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Scott April 15, 2010 at 6:03 pm

Only individuals pay taxes. Corporate taxes are passed on to the eventual consumer. Corporate taxes are a shell game played by politicians to take your money without your notice.

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diego April 15, 2010 at 6:56 pm

The graphic I want to see is how the total tax income for the US government breaks down. What percentage comes from income tax, what percentage from business taxes, capital gains tax etc. It would be really interesting to see which types of tax bring in the most revenue.

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Kirru April 16, 2010 at 3:57 am

Certainly the taxes are high but you have to also figure in that they never pay a medical bill, they don’t pay $600+ a month for family medical insurance, they get free college(no student loan payments) and many other free programs.

Granted they have less choice as to where there money goes but overall they live about the same it’s just a different way to get the roughly the same result.

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