Congress Shouldn’t Discriminate Against the Intangibles in Tax Reform

ALAN BARATZ | MAY 21, 2015

For the United States to remain a global economic leader, we must have a tax code that enables American businesses to flourish and compete in global markets. Tax reform is essential for U.S. companies that transact business in other countries. But reforms cannot target any industry or type of income for discrimination–including income derived from intangible property.

Intangible property refers to the ideas that spearhead the creation of new products or processes. Although they cannot be touched or seen, intangibles wield tremendous value. They include: manufacturing processes, copyrights and patents, and the intellectual property behind products and services that are sold throughout the world. From software and devices, to biologic medicines, the most essential and widely used inventions derive from valuable investments in intangible property.

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