International Transfer Pricing and Tax Avoidance: Evidence from the Linked Tax-Trade Statistics in the UK
38 Pages Posted: 31 Jul 2017
Date Written: July 27, 2017
This paper employs unique data on export transactions and corporate tax returns of UK multinational firms and finds that firms manipulate their transfer prices to shift profits to lower-taxed destinations. It uncovers three new findings on tax-motivated transfer mispricing in real goods. First, transfer mispricing increases substantially when taxation of foreign profits changes from a worldwide to a territorial approach in the UK, with multinationals shifting more profits into low-tax jurisdictions. Second, transfer mispricing increases with a firm’s R&D intensity. Third, tax-motivated transfer mispricing is concentrated in countries that are not tax havens and have low-to-medium-level corporate tax rates.
Keywords: transfer pricing, corporate taxation avoidance, multinational firms
JEL Classification: F23, H25, H32
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