10 Popular Companies Paying the Lowest Tax Rates

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

Our nation’s tax code is a complicated mess of controversy and loopholes that tend to spill out in political rhetoric each election cycle. Some argue that large corporations need to pay more taxes in order to satisfy its fair share, while others contend that the current corporate tax rate is already one of the highest in the world. Either way, the tax code currently generates a wide range of tax rates for the world’s largest companies and provides incentive to keep profits abroad.

The overall tax rate for the S&P 100 totaled 28.3 percent last year, up 5.3 percent from 2012, according to a new report from WalletHub. This includes tax payments at the state, federal, and international levels. S&P 100 companies pay roughly 22 percent lower rates on international taxes than U.S. taxes. In fact, technology companies such as Apple, eBay, and Facebook paid up to 70 percent lower rates overseas.

Ford was the only company in the study to post a negative overall tax rate, meaning the auto giant was actually due a tax refund. However, several S&P 100 members had tax rates in the single-digits or mid-teens last year. Let’s take a look at the 10 companies in the S&P 100 with the lowest tax rates.

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10. Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM)

  • Overall tax rate: 16.5 percent
  • State tax rate: .60 percent
  • Federal tax rate: 7.7 percent
  • International tax rate: 23.6 percent

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9. Metlife (NYSE:MET)

  • Overall tax rate: 16.3 percent
  • State tax rate: -.80 percent
  • Federal tax rate: -13.9 percent
  • International tax rate: 29.1 percent

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8. Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL)

  • Overall tax rate: 15.7 percent
  • State tax rate: 2.1 percent
  • Federal tax rate: 24.3 percent
  • International tax rate: 8.6 percent

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7. International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM)

  • Overall tax rate: 15.6 percent
  • State tax rate: -2.1 percent
  • Federal tax rate: 11 percent
  • International tax rate: 19.2 percent

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6. Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO)

  • Overall tax rate: 11.1 percent
  • State tax rate: 3.5 percent
  • Federal tax rate: 20.3 percent
  • International tax rate: 4.8 percent

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5. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)

  • Overall tax rate: 10.6 percent
  • State tax rate: N/A
  • Federal tax rate: N/A
  • International tax rate: 11.6 percent

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4. Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT)

  • Overall tax rate: 5.5 percent
  • State tax rate: N/A
  • Federal tax rate: N/A
  • International tax rate: 21.6 percent

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3. General Electric (NYSE:GE)

  • Overall tax rate: 4.2 percent
  • State tax rate: 4.7 percent
  • Federal tax rate: -36.6 percent
  • International tax rate: 26.1 percent

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2. AIG (NYSE:AIG)

  • Overall tax rate: 3.8 percent
  • State tax rate: N/A
  • Federal tax rate: N/A
  • International tax rate: 8.1 percent

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1. Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN)

  • Overall tax rate: 3.5 percent
  • State tax rate: 2.9 percent
  • Federal tax rate: -2 percent
  • International tax rate: 4.6 percent

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