Allergan, Pfizer call off proposed $160B mergerUPDATE: America loses a large amount of taxes because of inversions -
LINDA A. JOHNSON
April 6, 2016
Top U.S. drugmaker Pfizer and Irish rival Allergan are charting independent futures after scrapping a record $160 billion deal torpedoed by new Treasury Department rules meant to block American companies from moving their corporate addresses overseas — on paper — to avoid U.S. taxes.
The rules issued Monday, aimed at stopping the companies' "tax inversion" deal, wiped out its financial incentives and rationale for Pfizer Inc., though they had no impact on Allergan PLC.
It was Pfizer's third, and most expensive, failed attempt at an inversion, leaving analysts to speculate Pfizer will drop the strategy for good.
As of 2012, U.S. corporations had shifted as much as $111 billion overseas through inversions and other tax-saving strategies, according to economist Kimberly Clausing of Reed College in Portland, Oregon. “I estimate that multinational firms shifting profits away from the U.S. tax base likely costs the U.S. government in excess of $100 billion each year,” Clausing told Fortune this year.