Dave Gonigam

The number of Americans expatriating in the first quarter of 2013 has set a record.

“More than 670 U.S. passport holders gave up their citizenship — and with it, their U.S. tax bills — in the first three months of this year,” reports Fortune, poring over a list of names released yesterday by the IRS. “That is the most in any quarter since the IRS began publishing figures in 1998.”

Among the big names: Mahmood Karzai, one of Afghan president Hamid Karzai’s brothers… and Isabel Getty, heiress of the Getty oil fortune. The total — 679 to be exact — “is nearly three-quarters of the total number for all of 2012,” Fortune says breathlessly.

Not so fast, says international tax attorney Andrew Mitchel. “It appears that the government forgot to include some of the names in the Q4 2012 list,” he says, “and that they have now included those names in the Q1 2013 list.” The chart Mitchel maintains based on IRS data bears out his thesis…

5min_BuggingOut_050913

And even that’s not the whole story. “We’re looking at a tiny data set that’s bound to fluctuate wildly,” we said earlier this year in Apogee Advisory. “Assume that everyone who gave up their citizenship in the last five years is in the top 1% of income earners. That’s fewer than 0.4% of 1.35 million people.”

Regards.
Dave Gonigam

You May Also Like:


U.S. Senate to Retroactively Punish Runaway Tax Slaves

Simon Black

Years ago, it was virtually unheard-of for someone to give up his/her U.S. citizenship. Then, one by one, a handful of famous cases surfaced… like Sir John Templeton, who renounced his U.S. citizenship in 1964 and moved to the Bahamas.

Dave Gonigam

Dave Gonigam has been managing editor of The 5 Min. Forecast since September 2010. Before joining the research and writing team at Agora Financial in 2007, he worked for 20 years as an Emmy award-winning television news producer.

Recent Articles

Why Malpractice from the Fed Will Undermine Growth

Steve Forbes

The latest friend of ours to weigh in on the topic of the value of your money is Steve Forbes. As you’ve been reading this week, we paid a visit to Mr. Forbes recently, to discuss his latest book, Money. In this essay, you’ll find his thoughts on currency devaluation… it’s impact of economic growth and your investments…


Laissez Faire
Why Democracy Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be

Chris Campbell

Is Democracy really all it's cracked up to be? And, more importantly, does Hong Kong really need it? China's wayward island already enjoys many of the freedoms of most democratic countries including free business, free trade and even low taxes. Chris Campbell ponders this idea today as he observes the protests from afar.


Video
The Two-Pronged Approach To Safe, Consistent Gains

Steve Forbes

What causes individual investors to underperform the market year after year? Volatility? The Fed? In today’s video, Steve Forbes reveals what’s sabotaging your investment strategy – and the simple steps you can take to see consistent gains.


The Real Reason the Global Economy is Such a Mess – and How to Fix It

Steve Forbes

Why is the global economy such a mess? Why can't the world's foremost economists and financial thinkers seem to get it right? Simple... They don't understand the most basic element that makes up an economy: money. And as Steve Forbes explains, it all stems from the incorrect assumptions of a general theory of money. Read on...


Your Chance to Profit Alongside America’s Wealthiest Investors

Wayne Mulligan

For years the world's wealthiest investors have had the most profitable sector of the market all to themselves. But thanks to Title III of the JOBS Act, that's all about to change... What does Title III actually say? And, more importantly, how will you be able to use it to make a fortune? Wayne Mulligan explains...