Yet another tax advantage for Romney

at 10:17 AM ET, 01/18/2012

(Brennan Linsley - AP)
There’s still an unanswered question about Mitt Romney’s tax returns: Why haven’t we seen them yet? After all, if he’s already admitted he only pays an effective tax rate of 15 percent, why not just release them? One possibility is that the tax rate might not be the only politically troublesome revelation in Romney’s returns. Over at Reuters, Sam Youngman suggests that his work with Bain Capital might have led Romney to shelter income offshore:

His vast fortune is invested in dozens of funds linked to Bain Capital LLC, the powerhouse private equity firm he co-founded and led for 15 years. Several Bain funds have offshore connections and take advantage of tax breaks used only by the U.S. financial elite.
His tax returns could shed light on how Romney and Bain use offshore strategies to avoid taxes, said Daniel Berman, a former U.S. Treasury deputy international tax counsel and now director of tax at Boston University’s graduate tax program.
Bain funds in which Romney is invested are scattered from Delaware to the Cayman Islands and Bermuda, Ireland and Hong Kong, according to a Reuters analysis of securities filings. “Certain interests in foreign investment structures would have to be reported on attachments to his return,” Berman said.

Just one of these offshore-linked funds — Bain Capital Fund VIII, based in the Cayman Islands — generated $1 million for the Romneys in 2010.

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