More on 2006 Tax Day

By April 15, 2006General

Today’s Wall Street Journal had some fascinating facts about tax-paying America and they bear repeating:

* the United States has the same number of tax preparers as there are people in all of Hawaii (1.2 million);
* US tax receipts comprise 25.6 percent of US GDP. In Sweden, it’s 50.6 percent and in France it is 43.4 percent. Japan’s tax take is at about the same level as here.
* individual income taxes comprise 48.8 percent of IRS collections, payroll taxes 34 percent, corporate income 13.5 percent and estate/gift/excise taxes 3.6 percent;
* see our earlier blog for the # of tax code pages today compared to 1913 when the income tax system was established;
* April 15 is also the anniversary of Leonardo DaVinci’s birth and the day Lincoln died. McDonald’s served its first hamburger on this date;
* Taxes are major cost of doing business for manufacturers. The Manufacturing Institute’s 2003 landmark study of external costs, How Structural Costs Imposed on U.S. Manufacturers Harm Workers and Threaten Competitiveness, discusses the major external costs facing manufacturers. It cites taxes as one of the highest costs. In fact, US corporate tax rates are higher here than in any other major industrial country than Japan. Most of the OECD countries have lowered their corporate tax rates over the past decade. The United States is behind the curve.