Drug makers are promising to create tens of thousands of American jobs if President Donald Trump follows through on his promise to give them a big tax break if they “repatriate” cash they’ve stashed overseas.

But that’s not what happened last time pharma got a tax holiday.

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  • Really, this is the one industry that doesn’t need an incentive to create jobs unless they drastically reduce their pricing model. they do create jobs, good jobs, but it is on the backs of our nation that they do that. So tax break should be tied as Trump has long suggested to significant price reductions. I mean the rest of the industrialized world and even non-industrialized world: Latin America, Britain, Australia, Canada — they all pay markedly less for the same drugs that we do in US. Is that fair? I don’t think so and it is killing us, literally. I mean we all know pharma spend lavishly on non-clinical expenses like marketing and luxury offices and lavish offsites and meetings. Time to call it quits on that.

  • Liars, the one industry that doesn’t need an incentive to create jobs unless they drastically reduce their pricing model. they do create jobs, good jobs, but it is on the backs of our nation that they do that. So tax break should be tied as Trump has long suggested price reductions. I mean the rest of the industrialized world and on-industrialized world: Latin America, Britain, Australia, Canada — they all pay markedly less for the same drugs that we do in US. Is that fair?

  • I don’t find the article unbalanced by its time frame at all. It examines the impact over a 3 year time frame from the repatriation, ending 2 years before the financial meltdown. Frankly if a company is not going to invest that money in new jobs within 3 years, but instead fritters it away on laying employees off and hiking executive compensation – what makes anyone think they would would have spent it again in 2009 ? Bias or no bias, the historical precedent here is clear and disappointing.

    Bringing the cash back was a windfall for shareholders and executives. It didn’t create jobs then. It won’t create jobs now, without some rather carefully crafted legislative requirement.

    • Who cares if executives got paid more as long as shareholders through their board of directors approved it. Those (alleged) payments were taxed at top marginal tax rates and what was leftover was spent or invested. That generated economic activity. Meanwhile, shareholders benefited from dividend payments and share buybacks, which in turn were taxed and reinvested somewhere or spent. One needs to look further downstream than the sensationalistic headlines.

    • Yes, one would think that the 2004 tax holiday would have been a lesson learnt. But no, this Administration’s proposals demonstrate that it is in the business of enriching the few, widening the gulf, and then dissembling and creating alternate facts – which any sane person would recognise as lies – to befuddle and divide.

      By the way, the people below who are adamant that this article is unbalanced have vested interests – they are representatives of pharma. At least, this is what Dr Google told me.

  • Pfizer execs received $13 Billion in higher payouts over a three year period? J&J increased exec pay by $32 Billion, and Merck by $20 Billion? They would be the highest paid executives in history by a massive margin. Pfizer CEO’s actual total compensation was just under $13 million in 2005, below his 2004 compensation of about $17M.

    Intentional or not, this is sloppy.

  • Cash repatriated, if paid out to shareholders via dividends or share buybacks, can be redeployed by investors into other activities. That creates the economic growth and related extra tax revenue. The Pharma companies and any other repatriating companies don’t need to be the direct generators of this growth.

  • I find this article to be poorly balanced. A repatriation in 2004 connected to events in 2009 -2011, with no references to other significant market and financial influencers of that period, including the global financial crisis. Over simplification is convenient, but in our current political climate, is it wise?