Corporate tax avoidance is a hot topic at the moment. There is increasing controversy over the tactics used by firms such as Amazon, Apple and Facebook to avoid taxes in Europe and the USA, where they make billions of pounds' worth of sales. Apple boss Tim Cook was confronted by US senators in a congressional hearing last week over the company's use of Ireland as the centre of its tax arrangements. Almost two-thirds of Apple's $34bn (£22.5bn) profits for 2011 were earned by companies registered in Cork. Read more >>
The cartoon by Pat Bagley from The Salt Lake Tribune shows the English scientist Sir Isaac Newton sitting under an apple tree. Legend has it that Newton was inspired to formulate his theory of gravitation by watching an apple fall from a tree. However, in the cartoon, the apple (representing the company Apple's corporate profits) does not fall straight down onto the ground (and within the U.S. Tax Code), but is diverted to tax havens such as Ireland, the Cayman Islands, and Luxembourg.