The lowest payers

The lowest payers

NVIDIA
Revenue (Latest Year): $3.4 billion
Average Tax Rate: 2.2%

Semiconductor maker NVIDIA (NVDA) conducts research aimed at developing integrated circuits, employing thousands of engineers and racking up over $200 million in R&D costs for each new launch. Their continuous R&D is mostly done in the U.S. and qualifies for the research tax credit under U.S. tax law, says spokesman Robert Sherbin. The company, based in Santa Clara, Calif., operates in 17 countries, with much of its income coming from outside the U.S., where tax rates are significantly lower. Its stock-based compensation granted to U.S. employees also slices a chunk out of its tax obligations.