Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney released his tax returns today, and as was expected, Romney is exceptionally wealthy. Romney made $42.7 million over the past two years and paid $6.2 million in taxes, according to the documents released by his campaign. Romney paid an effective tax rate of less than 15%.
CNNMoney evaluates the returns–and the rate Romney pays:
The reason Romney's rate is so low - despite having one of the highest incomes in the country - is because his income was derived almost entirely from capital gains and dividends from his extensive portfolio of investments. And that form of investment income is typically taxed at just 15%, well below the 35% top tax rate for high earners.
Another reason: He had extensive itemized deductions, which lowered his overall tax liability.