O Dilema do Imposto sobre Sociedades

BERKELEY – Os Estados Unidos apresentam hoje a mais alta taxa de imposto sobre sociedades entre países desenvolvidos. Mesmo depois de várias deduções, créditos, e outros benefícios fiscais, a taxa marginal efectiva – a taxa paga pelas sociedades por novos investimentos nos EUA – permanece uma das mais altas do mundo.

Num mundo de capital móvel, as taxas de imposto sobre sociedades têm importância, e as decisões empresariais sobre como e onde investir são cada vez mais sensíveis às diferenças nacionais. A taxa relativamente alta da América encoraja as empresas dos EUA a localizar o seu investimento, produção, e emprego em países estrangeiros, e desencoraja as companhias estrangeiras de se localizarem nos EUA, o que significa crescimento mais lento, menos empregos, menores ganhos de produtividade, e salários reais mais baixos.

De acordo com a sabedoria convencional, o fardo do imposto sobre sociedades é suportado principalmente pelos detentores do capital, na forma de menores rendimentos. Mas, à medida que o capital se torna mais móvel, os trabalhadores relativamente imóveis suportam uma maior parte do fardo na forma de salários mais baixos e menos oportunidades de emprego. É por isso que vários países à volta do mundo têm cortado as suas taxas de imposto sobre sociedades. A “corrida para o fundo” resultante reflecte uma intensificada competição global por capital e por competência tecnológica para apoiar empregos e salários locais.

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