July 12 (Reuters) - Rupert Murdoch may not garner as much
attention for his financial savvy as he does for his journalistic escapades, which last week led to the shuttering of Britain's oldest tabloid. But that doesn't make his money management any less impressive.
Indeed, when it comes to taxes, instead of rendering unto Caesar, Murdoch has Caesar rendering unto him. See graphic: r.reuters.com/haf62s
Over the past four years Murdoch's U.S.-based News Corp. has made money on income taxes. Having earned $10.4 billion in profits, News Corp. would have been expected to pay $3.6
billion at the 35 percent corporate tax rate. Instead, it actually collected $4.8 billion in income tax refunds, all or nearly all from the U.S. government.
The relevant figure is the cash paid tax rate. This is the net amount of corporate income taxes actually paid after refunds. For those four years, it was minus 46 percent, disclosure statements show.
Even on an accounting basis, which measures taxes incurred but often not actually paid for years, News Corp. had a tax rate of under 20 percent, little more than half the 35 percent statutory rate, company disclosures examined by Reuters show. News Corp. had no comment.
Much more by David Cay Johnston, author of Free Lunch, here.