Mickelson backs off tax talk
The golfer apologizes for his statement about higher rates. Tax experts say that wasn't his only miscalculation.
The Hall of Fame golfer has taken home $66 million in winnings during his career and ranks seventh on Forbes' 2012 list of the world’s highest-paid athletes. Last year alone, he took in $4.8 million in earnings and another $43 million in endorsements.
On Sunday, after his final round of the Humana Challenge in California, he said the federal tax rate combined with California passing Proposition 30 -- the first tax increase in the state since 2004 -- would force him to make "drastic changes" and prevent him from owning a stake in his hometown San Diego Padres.
"If you add up all the federal and you look at the disability and the unemployment and the Social Security and the state, my tax rate is 62, 63%," Mickelson said. "So I've got to make some decisions on what I'm going to do."
Wednesday, he backed off of those statements during a press conference and equated them to a shot he shanked into sponsors' tents during the 2006 U.S. Open to cost him the title.
As he was making those statements, researchers at the Tax Foundation were telling CNN that Mickelson's tax rate is likely closer to 51%, but that he may pay as little as 26%.
Mickelson didn't rule out leaving San Diego and California altogether and wouldn't clarify whether or not he thought he was paying his fair share. ("I don't know what that is right now," he told reporters Wednesday, according to ESPN.) However, he apologized profusely for complaining publicly about taxes on his millions in a state where unemployment is just under 10%.
"I think that it was insensitive to talk about it publicly to those people who are not able to find a job, that are struggling paycheck to paycheck," Mickelson said. "I think that was insensitive to discuss it in that forum."
Fudging the math didn't help his case, either. According to the Tax Foundation, Mickelson would be subject to the 39.6% top federal tax rate passed under the fiscal cliff deal, the top 12.3% state tax rate, the 1% California mental health surcharge and a 3.8% medicare tax rate. With state taxes deductible from federal taxes, that puts Mickelson's rate at roughly 51%. Deductions tend to add up, as the Tax Foundation also notes that millionaires tend to pay only 26% in federal income tax on average.
More on moneyNOW
It`s crazy what sports stars make.We`re the crazy ones for supporting that crap.Golf
isn`t even a sport.You have to wear a jock strap for it to be a sport.
Stop it already with the hand wringing self inflicted guilt trip most of the wealthy succumb to, just like ole Phil here. You made it, you earned it, MOST of it should be yours. "insensitive", "unfair", BS. Your remuneration in life is based on your natural abilities combined with some drive and ambition and an overriding desire to avoid being poor.
Copyright © 2013 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Quotes are real-time for NASDAQ, NYSE and AMEX. See delay times for other exchanges.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Thomson Reuters (click for restrictions). Real-time quotes provided by BATS Exchange. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Interactive Data Real-Time Services. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by SIX Financial Information.
More than 8,000 households got hit with the one-time levy as Socialist President Francois Hollande continues to target the nation's wealthiest.
- Farmers cultivate drones as new high-tech tool
- Apple's overseas hoard unfair to taxpayers
- Why hugely profitable ESPN is laying off workers
- Tornado shelters become a vital business
- Victoria's Secret won't sell cancer 'survivor' bras
- DC is doing nothing to fix the economy
- Models have it easier getting into US than engineers
- Bernie Madoff earns sweatshop wages in prison
- Motor home sales rise in hopeful economic sign
[BRIEFING.COM] Stocks ended modestly higher as the S&P 500 climbed 0.2%, and the Dow added 0.4% to register its 19th consecutive Tuesday of gains.
The major averages saw little change during morning action, but afternoon buying interest helped lift the indices to session highs. Most cyclical sectors (with the exception of materials and technology) finished among the leaders, but the defensively-geared health care sector settled atop the leaderboard as biotechnology outperformed. ... More
More Market News
In this installment of Investor Beat: Best Buy and HHGregg fight to stay alive. And shares of Dow component Home Depot hit an all-time high.