Wednesday, 03 October 2018 18:35

Trump family’s alleged tax evasion would be triple the typical evasion among the superwealthy

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If this week’s bombshell report about the Trump family’s tax evasion is accurate, then the level of avoidance looks remarkable even for a superwealthy clan with adept advisers.

Tuesday’s New York Times exposé alleged that President Donald Trump’s parents transferred well over $1 billion in wealth to their children. That should have produced a tax bill of at least $550 million under the 55% tax rate then imposed on gifts and inheritances, but Fred and Mary Trump paid $52.2 million, or 5%, according to the Times report[1].

So the Trumps allegedly paid only 9.5% of what they should have paid in taxes, avoiding 90.5% of their bill.

Read more: Trump rips Times tax-schemes story as ‘boring’ hit job[2]

And see: New York launches tax investigation into Trump after Times report[3]

Rich households typically don’t evade taxes at that high a level, according to a recent study[4] by Annette Alstadsaeter of the Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Niels Johannesen of the University of Copenhagen and Gabriel Zucman of the University of California, Berkeley.

“The 0.01% richest households evade about 25% of their taxes,” the researchers wrote.

Skipping out on 90.5% rather than just 25% amounts to more than tripling the level of avoidance that would be considered typical.

Don’t miss: Here’s who stashes their riches in offshore havens[5] ...

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