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| posted on 1/18/2018 at 08:26 AM|
|Hopefully Apple will just be the first to repatriate foreign held cash, the new tax law makes it more financially feasable.|
Apple, Capitalizing on New Tax Law, Plans to Bring Billions in Cash Back to U.S.
By DAISUKE WAKABAYASHI and BRIAN X. CHENJAN. 17, 2018
SAN FRANCISCO — Apple, which had long deferred paying taxes on its foreign earnings and had become synonymous with hoarding money overseas, unveiled plans on Wednesday that would bring back the vast majority of the $252 billion in cash that it held abroad and said it would make a sizable investment in the United States.
With the moves, Apple took advantage of the new tax code that President Trump signed into law last month. A provision allows for a one-time repatriation of corporate cash held abroad at a lower tax rate than what would have been paid under the previous tax plan. Apple, which has 94 percent of its total cash of $269 billion outside the United States, said it would make a one-time tax payment of $38 billion on the repatriated cash.
For years, Apple had said it would not bring its foreign earnings back to the United States until the corporate tax code changed, because such a move would be too costly. Now Apple’s bet to hold back on paying such taxes is reaping rewards under the Trump administration.
In return, Mr. Trump and other Republicans can point to Apple as having come around because of their legislative action. The $38 billion tax payment from the Silicon Valley giant is set to be among the biggest payouts from the tax bill, and Apple said it would put some of the money it brought back toward 20,000 new jobs, a new domestic campus and other spending.
“I promised that my policies would allow companies like Apple to bring massive amounts of money back to the United States,” Mr. Trump tweeted on Wednesday. “Great to see Apple follow through as a result of TAX CUTS.”
Timothy D. Cook, Apple’s chief executive, said in a statement, “We have a deep sense of responsibility to give back to our country and the people who help make our success possible.”
Apple estimated that its direct impact on the American economy would total more than $350 billion over the next five years, but how much that goes beyond what the company would have spent anyway is unclear. Apple’s current pace of spending in the United States is $55 billion for 2018, so it was already on track to spend $275 billion over the next five years. After the $38 billion tax payment is subtracted, that leaves its new investment at roughly $37 billion over the next five years.
A. M. Sacconaghi, a financial analyst for Sanford C. Bernstein, said Apple had consistently spent tens of billions of dollars on areas like staffing and capital expenditures in recent years. Bringing back the overseas cash, he said, does little to aid its expansion. But it makes the company appear to answer Mr. Trump’s call for more jobs to be created in the United States.
“This is Apple putting its best foot forward consistent with objectives of the administration,” Mr. Sacconaghi said.
Apple is one of several multinational giants that have kept a total of roughly $3 trillion in global profits off their domestic books to sidestep the previous 35 percent federal corporate tax rate. Under the new tax law, companies that make a one-time repatriation of cash will be taxed at a rate of 15.5 percent on cash holdings and 8 percent on nonliquid assets. That is lower than the new 21 percent corporate rate. And under the new tax code, Apple would also have been taxed whether it brought the money back or not.
By shifting the money under the new terms, Apple has saved $43 billion in taxes, more than any other American company, according to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a research group in Washington.
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Other tech giants are set to follow suit in the coming months. Companies like Microsoft, Alphabet and Cisco also shifted their profits into offshore shell companies, avoiding billions of dollars in taxes, and are now in a better position to bring the money back.
Although Republican supporters of the tax law argued that the influx of international profits would create jobs and increase wages, many economists disagreed that a one-time repatriation would have any substantial impact on real investment.
Apple’s announcement, couched as a major investment in the United States instead of a massive financial windfall, followed years of criticism that the company did not do enough for the American economy because it makes most of its products in China and parked its profits abroad.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Apple was a frequent target of Mr. Trump, who pledged that as president he would force the company to start making iPhones and Macs in the United States. While that hasn’t happened and is unlikely to, Apple has since gone on a charm offensive to demonstrate its value to the American economy.
The company has highlighted the number of jobs created by the so-called app economy, an ecosystem of software and services that run on the iPhone and other Apple products. Last year, Apple also said it was creating a $1 billion fund to invest in advanced manufacturing in the United States. On Wednesday, Apple said it was increasing the size of that fund to $5 billion and noted that it was already backing projects from manufacturers in Kentucky and Texas.
Apple, which is based in Cupertino, Calif., also took a page out of Amazon’s public relations strategy on Wednesday by saying it will open a new domestic campus in a location where it currently has no operations. Amazon garnered good will throughout the country last year when it announced plans to open a second corporate headquarters outside its home base of Seattle.
Apple currently has about 84,000 employees in the United States, so 20,000 new jobs would be a 24 percent increase. The company added that it would invest more than $30 billion in capital expenditures, or spending on parts and the equipment required to produce them, over the next five years in the United States.
For a comparison, Apple spent $14.9 billion in capital expenditures in the last fiscal year, though it did not specify how much it spends in the United States alone.
For Apple, repatriating the cash creates opportunities that could include acquisitions and higher dividends for shareholders. The company had previously chosen to borrow money to fund its stock buybacks and dividends, instead of bringing its cash back from abroad. Over the last five years, Apple has returned $233 billion in cash to shareholders through buybacks and dividends.
Paying $38 billion in taxes now is unlikely to strain Apple’s checkbook because the company had already earmarked $36.4 billion in anticipation that it would eventually have to pay taxes on its foreign earnings.
“From a financial statement perspective, it’s going to be a nonevent,” said J. Richard Harvey, a Villanova University law professor and former Internal Revenue Service official. Other companies are not as prepared, he said, and would likely have to take a significant loss should they make a one-time cash repatriation.
Apple employees will see benefits as well. Mr. Cook said in an email to staff on Wednesday that Apple was increasing investment in its employees by rewarding them with bonuses of $2,500 in restricted stock units, according to people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified because the plans were not public. Apple joins other companies, such as AT&T, that have issued employee bonuses since the tax law was signed.
[Edited on 1/18/2018 by nebish]
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| posted on 1/18/2018 at 07:50 PM|
|Great news is worth repeating!|
President Trump and The Republican’s Tax Cut and Jobs Act continues to greatly help The U.S. and American Workers:
Apple is building a new campus and will hire 20,000 new employees
• Apple on Wednesday announced plans to open a new campus in the United States and said it would hire 20,000 new employees over the next five years.
• It also says it plans to pay $38 billion in repatriation tax. CNBC estimated that with the new repatriation tax rate of 15.5%, the company would bring nearly all its overseas cash, or about $245 billion, back to the United States.
Apple on Wednesday announced plans to open a new campus this year as part of an effort to hire 20,000 new workers over the next five years.
The company said in a statement that it would "establish an Apple campus in a new location," to be announced "later in the year," that would "initially house technical support for customers."
Apple declined to give more information on the location of the new campus, though it says it's building a separate new facility in Reno, Nevada.
Apple also says it will make a "direct contribution" of more than $350 billion to the US economy over the next five years through making new investments and purchasing materials from American companies. Apple estimates it will spend $55 billion this year with its more than 9,000 American suppliers and manufacturers.
Apple to bring a lot of money home
Apple said in the announcement that it expected a repatriation tax bill of about $38 billion because of changes from the new tax law.
With the new repatriation tax rate of 15.5%, that means Apple would repatriate $245 billion, or nearly all of its overseas cash, CNBC estimated. Apple declined to comment on CNBC's math.
Apple invests in and purchases parts from American companies like Finisar, a laser company, and Corning, which makes the hardened glass that iPhones use, through its Advanced Manufacturing Fund, which Apple on Wednesday said had increased to $5 billion from $1 billion.
The Trump effect
President Donald Trump has prioritized striking deals with American companies to save or create jobs, one of his campaign promises.
Because Apple manufactures most of its products in Asia, it has become a target for Trump, who has blamed the company for contributing to the long trend of US companies moving their manufacturing overseas and encouraged it to build factories in the US.
That's why Apple makes such a big deal about its supporting American manufacturing and the fact that many of the companies that supply parts for the iPhone and other Apple products have factories in the US.
In late 2016, Apple reportedly asked its Asian manufacturing partners, including Foxconn, to look into building its products in the US.
Cook was one of several elite technology CEOs who met with Trump in December 2016.
The full announcement is below and on Apple's website:
Apple accelerates US investment and job creation
$350 Billion Contribution to US Economy Over Next Five Years
Cupertino, California — Apple today announced a new set of investments to build on its commitment to support the American economy and its workforce, concentrated in three areas where Apple has had the greatest impact on job creation: direct employment by Apple, spending and investment with Apple's domestic suppliers and manufacturers, and fueling the fast-growing app economy which Apple created with iPhone and the App Store. Apple is already responsible for creating and supporting over 2 million jobs across the United States and expects to generate even more jobs as a result of the initiatives being announced today.
Combining new investments and Apple's current pace of spending with domestic suppliers and manufacturers — an estimated $55 billion for 2018 — Apple's direct contribution to the US economy will be more than $350 billion over the next five years, not including Apple's ongoing tax payments, the tax revenues generated from employees' wages and the sale of Apple products.
Planned capital expenditures in the US, investments in American manufacturing over five years and a record tax payment upon repatriation of overseas profits will account for approximately $75 billion of Apple's direct contribution.
"Apple is a success story that could only have happened in America, and we are proud to build on our long history of support for the US economy," said Tim Cook, Apple's CEO. "We believe deeply in the power of American ingenuity, and we are focusing our investments in areas where we can have a direct impact on job creation and job preparedness. We have a deep sense of responsibility to give back to our country and the people who help make our success possible."
Apple, already the largest US taxpayer, anticipates repatriation tax payments of approximately $38 billion as required by recent changes to the tax law. A payment of that size would likely be the largest of its kind ever made.
Growing Apple's US Operations
Apple expects to invest over $30 billion in capital expenditures in the US over the next five years and create over 20,000 new jobs through hiring at existing campuses and opening a new one. Apple already employs 84,000 people in all 50 states.
The company plans to establish an Apple campus in a new location, which will initially house technical support for customers. The location of this new facility will be announced later in the year.
Over $10 billion of Apple's expanded capital expenditures will be investments in data centers across the US. Over the last decade, Apple has invested billions of dollars in data centers and co-located facilities in seven US states, including North Carolina, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona and a recently announced project in Iowa.
Today, Apple is breaking ground on a new facility in downtown Reno, which will support its existing Nevada facilities.
All of Apple's US facilities, including offices, retail stores and data centers, are powered by 100 percent renewable energy sources like solar, wind and micro-hydro power, which Apple generates or purchases from local projects. The new campus announced today will also be powered entirely by green energy.
Investing in Apple's Domestic Suppliers and Manufacturing Partners
Building on the initial success of the Advanced Manufacturing Fund announced last spring, Apple is increasing the size of the fund from $1 billion to $5 billion. The fund was established to support innovation among American manufacturers and help others establish a presence in the US. It is already backing projects with leading manufacturers in Kentucky and rural Texas.
Apple works with over 9,000 American suppliers — large and small businesses in all 50 states — and each of Apple's core products relies on parts or materials made in the US or provided by US-based suppliers.
Preparing Students for the App Economy
Apple, which has a 40-year history in education, also plans to accelerate its efforts across the US in support of coding education as well as programs focused on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM).
The iOS app economy has created more than 1.6 million jobs in the US and generated $5 billion in revenue for American app developers in 2017. With demand for coding skills stronger than ever, today there are more than 500,000 unfilled programming-related positions across the country, and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that by 2020 there will be 1.4 million more software development jobs than applicants qualified to fill them.
To address the coding skills gap and help prepare more people for jobs in software development, Apple created a powerful yet easy-to-learn coding language called Swift, the free Swift Playgrounds app and a free curriculum, App Development with Swift, which are available to anyone and are already being used by millions of students at K-12 schools, summer camps and leading community colleges across the country. Over 100,000 students and teachers have also attended coding classes at Apple retail stores.
Apple will expand these initiatives and add new programs to support teachers and teacher training. The company is also increasing funding for its ConnectED program, so students in historically underserved communities have a chance to learn app coding skills and enjoy other benefits of technology in the classroom.
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