Tag: Benchmark

In transfer pricing, any (financial) indicator, price, interest or royalties based on analysis of comparable companies or comparable transactions.

§ 1.482-6(c)(3)(ii)(B) Comparability.

The first step of the residual profit split relies on market benchmarks of profitability. Thus, the comparability considerations that are relevant for the first step of the residual profit split are those that are relevant for the methods that are used to determine market returns for the routine contributions. The second step of the residual profit split, however, may not rely so directly on market benchmarks. Thus, the reliability of the results under this method is reduced to the extent that the allocation of profits in the second step does not rely on market benchmarks ... Read more
Finland vs A Oy, September 2021, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No. KHO:2021:127

Finland vs A Oy, September 2021, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No. KHO:2021:127

A Oy, the parent company of group A, had not charged a royalty (the so-called concept fee) to all local companies in the group. The tax authorities had determined the level of the local companies’ arm’s length results and thus the amounts of royalties not collected from them on the basis of the results of nine comparable companies. The comparable companies’ performance levels were -0,24 %, 0,60 %, 1,07 %, 2,90 %, 3,70 %, 5,30 %, 8,40 %, 12,30 % and 13,50 %. The interquartile range of the results had been 1.1-8.4% and the median 3.7%. The tax inspectors had set the routine rate of return for all local companies at 4,5 %, which was also used by A Ltd as the basis for the concept fee. A’s taxes had been adjusted accordingly to the detriment of the company. Before the Supreme Administrative Court, A Oy claimed that the adjustment point for taxable income should be the upper limit of ... Read more
Austria vs. "Yogo Food-Distributor", August 2021, Bundesfinanzgericht, Case No RV/3100163/2018

Austria vs. “Yogo Food-Distributor”, August 2021, Bundesfinanzgericht, Case No RV/3100163/2018

“Yogo Food-Distributor” is a subsidiary in the “Yogo Group” and trades in spices and canned meat and vegetables from the territory of the former Yugoslavia. The main sales markets are Austria and Germany (90%), the remainder being distributed among France, Scandinavia, Great Britain and the Benelux countries. Following an audit the tax authorities issued an assessment of additional taxable income determined by way of a benchmark study into comparable businesses. Yogo Food Distributor was of the opinion that the benchmark-study did not comply with the OECD guidelines in regards of comparability factors and filed a complaint with the Court. Judgement of the Court The contested notices (corporate income tax notices for the years 2010, 2011 and 2012, each dated 13 October 2014) and the preliminary appeal decision (dated 22 September 2017) are annulled pursuant to section 278(1) BAO and the matter is referred back to the tax authority. Excerpt “In order to be able to assess the arm’s length nature ... Read more
Finland vs A Oy, June 2021, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No. KHO:2021:73

Finland vs A Oy, June 2021, Supreme Administrative Court, Case No. KHO:2021:73

A Oy was part of the A group, whose parent company was A Corporation, a US corporation. A Oy had acted as the group’s limited risk distribution company in Finland. The transfer prices of the group companies had been determined on a mark-to-market basis using the net transaction margin method and the group companies’ operating profit on a mark-to-market basis had been determined on the basis of US GAAP, the accounting standard commonly applied within the group. The target profit level for the group’s limited risk distribution companies, including A Ltd, was set at 0,5 % in the group’s transfer pricing documentation, based on a comparables analysis. In 2011, the competent authorities of the countries of residence of the A Group’s European manufacturing companies had entered into an Advance Transfer Pricing Agreement (APA) under which transfer pricing is monitored in accordance with the Group’s common accounting standard, US GAAP, and the market-based operating profit level for the limited risk distributors ... Read more
El Salvador vs "E-S. Sales Corp", December 2020, Tax Court, Case No R1705038.TM

El Salvador vs “E-S. Sales Corp”, December 2020, Tax Court, Case No R1705038.TM

Following an audit the tax authorities issued an assessment regarding various intra group costs of sales deducted for tax purposes by “E-S. Sales Corp”. An appeal was filed by the company. Judgement of the Tax Court The court partially upheld the assessment, but in regards of application of the OECD Transfer Pricing Guidelines, the assessment was set aside. For the years in question the OECD guidelines had not yet been implemented by El Salvador. Excerpt “In this regard, it should be noted that the seventh paragraph of the aforementioned article provides that “””If, for any reason, the market price cannot be determined, the Tax Administration shall establish it by adopting the price or the amount of the consideration that the taxpayer under audit has received from purchasers of goods or providers of unrelated services other than those to whom it transferred goods or provided services at a price lower or higher than the market price”””. Therefore, if it had been ... Read more
India vs ST Microelectronics Pvt. Ltd., September 2020, Income Tax Tribunal, ITA No.6169/Del./2012

India vs ST Microelectronics Pvt. Ltd., September 2020, Income Tax Tribunal, ITA No.6169/Del./2012

ST Microelectronics Pvt. Ltd. is a subsidiary of ST Microelectronics Pte. Ltd. which in turn is a wholly owned subsidiary of ST Microelectronics NV, Netherlands. ST Microelectronics Pvt. Ltd. is into the business of Integrated Circuit Design, CAD Tools and software development for its overseas group concerns. It also provides marketing support services to a group company and software development services related to design implementation and maintenance with respect to Integrated Circuits as required by guidelines/instructions. During the year under assessment, the taxpayer entered into various transactions with its Associated Enterprises. In order to benchmark its international transactions qua provision of software development services and qua provision of marketing support services ST Microelectronics used Transactional Net Margin Method (TNMM) with Operating Profit/Operating Cost as the Profit Level Indicator (PLI) being the Most Appropriate Method (MAM), computed its own margin at 11.11% as against weighted average arithmetic mean margin of 19 comparables at 11.31% and found its international transactions at arm’s ... Read more
India vs Gulbrandsen Chemicals Ltd., February 2020, High Court, Case No 751 of 2019

India vs Gulbrandsen Chemicals Ltd., February 2020, High Court, Case No 751 of 2019

Gulbrandsen Chemicals manufactures chemicals for industrial customers in the petrochemical and pharmaceutical industry. The Indian Subsidiary, Gulbrandsen India also sold these products to its affiliated enterprises, namely Gulbrandsen Chemicals Inc, USA, and Gulbrandsen EU Limited. In regards of the controlled transactions, the tax authorities noticed that Gulbrandsen India had shifted from use of the internal CUP method to pricing based on the Transactional Net Margin Method (TNMM). The tax authorities were of the view that, given the facts of the case, the internal CUP was the most appropriate method. It was noted that Gulbrandsen India had sold 40% of its products to the associated enterprises, and earned a margin of PBIT/Cost at 2.07%, as against the sale of 70% of its products in the prior year and earning margin of PBIT/Cost at 3.26%. Following a decision of the Tax Tribunal, where the assessment of the tax authorities was set aside, the tax authorities filed an appeal with the High Court, ... Read more
Hungary vs "APA Ktf", October 2019, Court of Appeals, Case No. Kfv.I.35.504/2018/6

Hungary vs “APA Ktf”, October 2019, Court of Appeals, Case No. Kfv.I.35.504/2018/6

The tax authority had set the price range for “APA Ktf’s” request for an advance pricing arrangement (APA) at 12.50 to 22.50 basis points. According to the tax authorities, it follows from points 3.61 and 3.62 of the Guidelines that it is only appropriate to adjust the arm’s length price for such transactions to a level close to the mid-point of the range if there is a comparability gap. In the present case, however, it had not been established that there are any shortcomings in comparability, so the first turn of paragraph 3.62 applies: any point in the range, including the mid-point, is in accordance with the arm’s length principle. Judgement of the Court of Appeal. The Court of Appeal pointed out that the applicant had applied for the determination of the normal market price under Article 132/B of the Art. “[37]Defendant [tax authorities] argued in its application for review that, under paragraphs 3.61 and 3.62 of the Guidelines, it ... Read more
EU JTPF, March 2017, Report on the Use of Comparables in the EU

EU JTPF, March 2017, Report on the Use of Comparables in the EU

In March 2017 the JTPF agreed the Report on the Use of Comparables in the EU. The report establishes best practices and pragmatic solutions by issuing various recommendations for both taxpayers and tax administrations in the EU and aims at increasing in practice the objectivity and transparency of comparable searches for transfer pricing. JTPF-comparables-October-2016 ... Read more
Portugal vs "Cork Portugal SA", May 2016, Collective Arbitration Tribunal, Case No 609/2015-T

Portugal vs “Cork Portugal SA”, May 2016, Collective Arbitration Tribunal, Case No 609/2015-T

“Cork Portugal SA” is engaged in the production and marketing of natural wine corks and is part of a Multinational group operating in the sector of closures for the wine industry. The Portuguese tax administration issued an adjustment of EUR 337,493.97 to the taxable income for 2010 on the basis that, its sales of cork to a related company in the US – via an Irish trading company B within the group – had not been at arm’s length. Portuguese provisions of Article 63(1) of the CIRC, provides “In commercial transactions […] carried out between a taxable person and any other entity, whether or not subject to IRC, with which he is in a situation of special relations, terms or conditions substantially identical to those that would normally be contracted, accepted and practised between independent entities in comparable transactions must be contracted, accepted and practised”. The adjustment was based on a benchmark study provided by the company. Net cost plus ... Read more
Italy vs. ILPEA SPA, July 2015, Supreme Court 15298

Italy vs. ILPEA SPA, July 2015, Supreme Court 15298

This case is about an Italian company, ILPEA S.p.A, transactions with its US subsidiary. The company stated that there were substantial difference between the products sold to its subsidiary in the United States and the benchmark transactions considered by the Tax Administration – quality of the products, volumes of sales, terms of sale. These differences affected the pricing, so that these transactions could not be compared with other transactions with independent parties. The Court found that the transactions carried out with controlled companies must be evaluated according to the “normal value”, defined as the average price charged for similar goods or services with independent parties and at the same marketing stage. Therefore, “normal value” is considered to be the ordinary prices of goods and services charged at arm’s length conditions, referring in the extend possible to “pricelists” and “rates”. The Court also stated that the tax administration does not have to prove existence of tax minimization, but only the existence ... Read more
Austria vs. Wx-Distributor, July 2012, Unabhängiger Finanzsenat, Case No RV/2516-W/09

Austria vs. Wx-Distributor, July 2012, Unabhängiger Finanzsenat, Case No RV/2516-W/09

Wx-Distributor (a subsidiary of the Wx-group i.d.F. Bw.) is responsible for the distribution of Household appliances in Austria. It is wholly owned by Z. Deliveries to Wx-Distributor are made by production companies of the Group located in Germany, Italy, France, Slovakia, Poland and Sweden with which it has concluded distribution agreements to determine transfer prices. On average Wx-Distributor had been loss-making in FY 2001-2005. Following an tax audit, the intra-group transfer prices were re-determined for the years 2001 to 2004 by the tax authorities. It was determined that the transfer prices in two years were not within the arm’s length range. The review of the tax authorities had revealed a median EBIT margin of 1.53% and on that basis the operating margin for 2001 were set at 1.5%. For the following years the margin was set at 0.9% due to changed functions (outsourcing of accounts receivable, closure of half the IT department). The resulting adjustments were treated as hidden distribution ... Read more
UK vs. DSG Retail (Dixon case), Tax Tribunal, Case No. UKFT 31

UK vs. DSG Retail (Dixon case), Tax Tribunal, Case No. UKFT 31

This case concerns the sale of extended warranties to third-party customers of Dixons, a large retail chain in the UK selling white goods and home electrical products. The DSG group captive (re)insurer in the Isle of Man (DISL) insured these extended warranties for DSG’s UK customers. Until 1997 this was structured via a third-party insurer (Cornhill) that reinsured 95% on to DISL. From 1997 onwards the warranties were offered as service contracts that were 100% insured by DISL. The dispute concerned the level of sales commissions and profit commissions received by DSG. The Tax Tribunal rejected the taxpayer’s contentions that the transfer pricing legislation did not apply to the particular series of transactions (under ICTA 88 Section 770 and Schedule 28AA) – essentially the phrases ‘facility’ (Section 770) and ‘provision’ (Schedule 28AA) were interpreted broadly so that there was something to price between DSG and DISL, despite the insertion of a third party and the absence of a recognised transaction ... Read more