With the price of oil below $50 a barrel, president elect Obama announced he’s not planning to implement the much ballyhooed windfall profits tax on oil companies. What he didn’t say was the whole idea was a farce to begin with. Oil company profits as a percentage of sales have been roughly the same as the profits from Microsoft and Coke for decades–regardless of the price of oil. And every university endowment and public employee retirement fund and many 401K plans are heavily invested in petroleum stocks. So extra taxes on the oil companies would hurt just about everybody.
Windfall tax on oil companies