Securing Jobs Or The New Protectionism?: Taxing The Overseas Activities Of Multinational Firms

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Executive Summary

Tax policy toward American multinational firms would appear to be approaching a crossroads. The presumed linkages between domestic employment conditions and the growth of foreign operations by American firms have led to calls for increased taxation on foreign operations - the so-called "End to tax breaks for companies that ship the jobs overseas." This paper address the questions by analyzing the available evidence on two related claims - i) that the current U.S. policy of deferring taxation of foreign profits represents a subsidy to American firms and ii) that activity abroad by multinational firms represents the displacement of activity that would have otherwise been undertaken at home.

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