Apple's offshore tax protections cleared by SEC

They are saving billions of dollars per year in taxes, something that seems like it would be (should be) illegal in some way, but the SEC has cleared Apple’s accounting practices and said they can continue to pay “less than their fair share”.

Four months after opening its review of Apple’s finances, the Securities and Exchange Commission has closed it, having found nothing untoward about the company’s handling of its overseas cash and related tax policies.

In a September letter to Apple, released late last week, the SEC said it had completed its review of the company’s fiscal 2012 annual report, and would take no action against it at this time. Evidently, there’s no need to, as the agency has found Apple’s disclosures to be sufficient, particularly now that it has agreed to provide investors with more information about its foreign cash, tax policies, and plans for reinvestment of foreign earnings. In the SEC’s eyes, Apple accounts for taxes in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles.

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