Tech’s Winners and Losers Under Tax Changes

Contrary to the popular media narrative, the tech companies that are the clearest winners of upcoming tax changes are not the giants like Apple and Microsoft that have stockpiled profits overseas. The tech firms that will benefit the most are companies that make most of their sales in the United States, like Etsy and Grubhub.

That’s because companies with a lot of U.S. revenue would see the biggest benefit from the proposed reduction in the U.S. corporate tax rate to 21% from 35%. In fact, many have seen their share prices rise in recent weeks. Meanwhile, big tech companies hoarding overseas profits will be able to return those profits to the U.S. at a lower tax rate—but they may also see their overseas tax rates rise.

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Priceline likely won’t see much of a domestic tax cut, because only 16% of its revenues are generated in the U.S. It also faces a lot of risk from potential tax changes in Europe, as 72% of its revenue is booked in Europe. Under one worst-case scenario outlined by Barclays, pressure to book revenue locally in Europe would more than offset a smaller tax cut in the U.S., dropping earnings by 6% annually.

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