President Donald Trump avoided paying federal income taxes for 10 of the last 15 years and paid just $US750 in 2016 and 2017, respectively, according to an investigation by The New York Times.
Trump avoided paying the income taxes “largely because he reported losing much more money than he made,” the Times reported.
The Times obtained a variety of tax-return data from Trump and the hundreds of companies that comprise his business empire after the president refused to reveal them publicly, sparking an ongoing legal battle over the documents.
The tax-return documents obtained by the Times covers more than two decades and includes “detailed information from his first two years in office,” according to the report.
Alan Garten, a lawyer for the Trump Organization, denied the Times’ reporting, telling the outlet that “most, if not all, of the facts appear to be inaccurate”
The report attributes Trump’s longtime tax avoidance to factors like relying on a massive tax refund of $US72.9 million and writing up his spending for the family businesses and personal expenses.
The tax refund is the subject of an audit by the Internal Revenue Service, the Times noted, and at least $US100 million is on the line in the audit battle.
The data also details huge losses among Trump’s business entities, including $US315.6 million of reported losses from his golf courses and $US55.5 million lost in his Washington, DC hotel since it opened in 2016.
One moneymaker identified by the Times is Trump’s personal brand, which the outlet calculated made him a combined $US427.4 million between 2004, when “The Apprentice” debuted on NBC, and 2018.
The Times promised “additional articles will be published in the coming weeks.”