Apple paid just 2% tax overseas on its profits last year, most US firms pay little to no foreign tax too
Apple end-of-fiscal-year filing revealed that it paid 1.9% tax on its overseas profits, which are a pretty significant amount. It gave to governments $712 million on $36.8 billion in overseas profits.
This is done via fairly straightforward and legal accounting maneuvers which almost every US corporation with significant business abroad is utilizing as an obligation to its shareholders not to pay more taxes than the legal minimum.
A survey of how much are lead US companies paying in UK taxes recently found out that Google, Amazon, Starbucks and Facebook paid about 30 million pound sterling to the government coffers on combined sales of 3.1 billion there.
Apple, Google and a lot of other large companies are lobbying the US government to declare amnesty on bringing their overseas profits home, with a minimal punitive tax charge, or their funds will keep sloshing overseas, but there is no positive development for them yet.
Apple is actually one of the few US companies in the table below that disclose the likely tax rate of repatriated profits it would incur, but most US multinationals pay little to no taxes overseas as well, and the law allows them to.