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TN Companies Listed in ‘Corporate Tax Dodging’ Report

News release from Tennesseans for Fair Taxation:
Knoxville, Tennessee – A comprehensive new study that profiles 265 consistently profitable Fortune 500 companies finds that International Paper, with global headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee, paid -1% overall in state corporate income taxes in 2008-10. The company reported $1.6 billion in gross earnings in its 2010 Annual Report, with $25.3 billion in assets.
These are among the findings in “Corporate Tax Dodging in the Fifty States, 2008-2010” released today by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) and Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ) in conjunction with Tennesseans for Fair Taxation. The report finds a total of 68 companies that paid no state corporate income tax in at least one of the last three years and 20 of them, including International Paper, averaged a tax rate of zero or less during the 2008-2010 period. The corporate income tax rate in Tennessee is 6 percent.
Tennessee-based companies Eastman Chemical, Community Health Systems, AutoZone, FedEx, and Dollar General were also named in the report for having corporate tax rates of less than 3% overall from 2008-10. By contrast, because of Tennessee’s reliance on the sales tax and tax on food, low-income Tennesseans pay almost 12% of their income in taxes. Tax avoidance practices by multi-state, multinational corporations also shift tax responsibilities onto locally owned and operated companies that manage to pay their taxes and create jobs for Tennesseans, and distort the way companies operate through the use of tax avoidance schemes.

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