Exxon Pays More Taxes Than 50% Of U.S.

We already know that U.S. companies are burdened with one of the highest tax rates in the world. (Don’t hear much about that on the campaign trail.) Now comes word that Exxon’s shareholders in 2007 had a tax bill of $30 billion — more than the combined payments of 65,000,000 taxpayers.

UPDATE: I just saw that my link on tax rates was from 2002. Here’s an updated version from 2006. It’s worse.


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14 responses to “Exxon Pays More Taxes Than 50% Of U.S.”

  1. Topham says:

    Exxon’s effective rate was 41%, which is undoubtedly stiff. And those profits get taxed again when shareholders pay tax on dividends. So Exxon certainly deserves appreciation for its contributions to our country, when it usually gets raspberries.

    But having acknowledged all that, isn’t it appropriate that those who are most able to pay, pay the most? If you’re left still with $39.5 billion, that’s a pretty big pile that’s escaped the gubment’s clutches.

  2. Trey Garrison says:

    “But having acknowledged all that, isn’t it appropriate that those who are most able to pay, pay the most?”

    So punish the productive and successful? That’s smart.

  3. Parker says:

    And round and round we go! You comment, I comment, and we convince each other to fundamentally alter our stances on taxation! Wee!

  4. Peterk says:

    “If you’re left still with $39.5 billion, that’s a pretty big pile that’s escaped the gubment’s clutches.”

    thank goodness then ExxonMobil can use that money to reinvest in their operations, research&development. Imagine how much more they could do if their tax bill was cut in half?

  5. Robb says:

    I think the government should give some of that $30 billion back to their employees. If they gave every employee of the IRS $1,000, they’d probably still have $25 billion. Just a little way for them to give a little something back.

  6. So Exxon “pays all those taxes.” Do you really think they’re paying it – or just passing it on to us as part of the cost to fill up our tank? Wonder how much cheaper their gas would be if their tax bill was lowered?

  7. Robb says:

    Jonathan – does your company provide a service or product that is priced to be less than a customer would pay (so, less than what it is worth)?

    I’m pretty sure Exxon will charge as much as we will pay, regardless of their tax rate.

  8. Bildo says:


    It’s a tax on profits. If the tax rate were zero, we would still be paying the exact same amount at the pump. The difference would be that Exxon would have more money to pay shareholders or invest in exploration, research, and development work.

  9. Daniel says:


    I’m fairly certain funds spent on R&D are tax exempt. As are funds spent on paper clips, etc.

  10. ARCO retiree says:

    And why are they called ExxonMobil??? They used to be two companies. No one seems to remember that the profits were spread around among twice as many oil companies before hard times required mergers and layoffs.

    I became a conservative when my first job was to calculate the insane Windfall Profits Tax and that was just the beginning of learning how our government over reaches.

  11. Julie says:

    “So punish the productive and successful?”

    Taxes are not punishment. Taxes are your membership fee for living and doing business in civilized society. Exxon’s taxes pay for all the time using courtrooms trying to skip out of their Valdez penalty. Exxon’s taxes pay for the roads that their employees need in order to get to work every day. Exxon’s taxes pay for the schools that educated their employees to become skilled workers. Exxon’s taxes pay for the banking and legal regulations that have been developed to protect their own contracts. Go read Warren Buffet’s view on taxes, and how glad he is to have been born here in the US with taxes–versus in an impoverished third world country where lack of schools and infrastructure make doing business extremely difficult, if not impossible.

    Hasn’t George Bush already shown the US that lowering taxes on those in the upper-income range does NOTHING to support the American economy? That lesson has been learned by every person in the US–witness the crushing turnouts at the Democratic primaries. Thank god for Democracy.

    Conservatives won’t be happy until only the working poor are “PUNISHED” (their word) with taxes.

  12. Topham says:

    Another reason taxes aren’t “punishment” is because they’re not just imposed on a helpless, voiceless victim. Companies like Exxon have a substantial say in Congress over the laws–including the tax laws–that apply to them.

  13. Daniel says:

    Onerous taxes on small-to-medium-size business and individual income is one thing. It’s risible that anyone would bemoan the taxes levied on an entity like ExxonMobil. They more or less own the world.

  14. Mike says:

    “So punish the productive and successful? That’s smart.”

    It’s great that you have to be in the highest tax bracket to be considered productive and successful. We couldn’t all be born with silver spoons in our mouths and have our first job out of college be starting our own magazine. I guess its a lot easier to be productive and successful when you have someone else’s money to fall back on.