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(TORSTEN SILZ/THE ASSOCIATED PRESS)

BREAKINGVIEWS

Google hairsplitting on U.K. tax obligations

Reuters Breakingviews delivers agenda-setting financial insight. Its global correspondents react to stories as they develop, delivering sharp and provocative commentary on big financial news as it breaks. Click here to read more international insights.

Google looks too clever on British tax. Quizzed by parliamentarians last year, the tech giant defended its low tax U.K. bills, saying deals are actually struck in lower-tax Ireland. Yet a Reuters investigation suggests London is actually a sales hub. Google distinguishes between U.K. staff who encourage sales and Irish employees who execute deals. That hairsplitting won’t impress politicians or newspapers. Rightly so.