Comparing UK Tax Returns of Foreign Multinationals to Matched Domestic Firms
Katarzyna Anna Bilicka
- American Economic Review (Forthcoming)
In this paper, I use confidential UK corporate tax returns data to explore whether there are systematic differences in the amount of taxable profits that multinational and domestic companies report. I find that the ratio of taxable profits to total assets reported by foreign multinational subsidiaries is half that of comparable domestic standalones. The majority of the difference is attributable to the fact that a higher proportion of foreign multinational subsidiaries report zero taxable profits. I document how the estimated difference is related to profit shifting and show that using accounting data leads to much smaller estimates of the difference.
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