Microsoft and HP deny wrongdoing after US tax minimisation accusations

Microsoft and HP have denied any wrongdoing after the US Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations accused the companies of using offshore tax havens to minimise their tax bills.

According to Reuters, the subcommittee accused Microsoft of shifting $US21 billion offshore between 2009 and 2011, representing almost half its US retail sales revenue, saving up to $4.5 billion in taxes on goods sold in the United States.

The committee also accused HP of using a complicated continuous series of short-term loans from its overseas subsidiaries in order to avoid paying taxes on repatriated offshore profits.

The companies claimed tax officials had not objected to the structures and there were valid reasons for tax planning.

In May, it was revealed Apple’s tax strategies led to the company paying an effective tax rate of 9.8%.


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