After a four month long review of Apple’s finances, the Securities and Exchange Commission has closed their investigation, concluding there is nothing untoward about the company’s overseas cash and tax policies. Translation: “We’ve milked this publicity cow as much as we can, let’s move onto the next witch hunt.”
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.
This brings to a close the summer-long tax scrutiny of Apple, kicked-off by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations claim that the company was using current tax laws in order to pay little or no corporate taxes on $74 billion in profits over the last four years.
The investigation led to an episode of “Mr. Cook Goes to Washington,” as Apple CEO Tim Cook testified before the subcommittee that the company is, in fact, a good corporate citizen.
“We pay all the taxes we owe. Every single dollar,” Cook said during a May hearing. “We not only comply with the laws, but we comply with the spirit of the laws. We don’t depend on tax gimmicks.”
Apparently, the SEC agrees with Mr. Cook, and Apple can now go about its business unmolested by the SEC or the Senate subcommittee. Well, at least until someone in the federal government decides they need to demonize Apple again for a little free publicity.