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CEO Guest List For State of the Union Hints at Tax Reform

President Barack Obama
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President Barack Obama

Among those sitting in the box with First Lady, Michelle Obama, for the President’s State of the Union speech tonight will be Wendell Weeks, chief executive of glass maker Corning , an iconic American exporter that garners nearly three-fourths of its sales overseas. A mention by the President of a temporary holiday on the 35 percent repatriation tax for multinationals surely would get Weeks on his feet.

It might also add give reason for Ursula Burns, CEO of another classic American company, Xerox , to cheer because her company gets nearly half of its profits from overseas. GE CEO Jeff Immelt, who was just named chair of the President’s council on jobs, runs a company which has 54 percent in foreign sales, according to data gathered by Strategas Research.

While the President certainly won’t lead his speech with a corporate tax break proposal, investors and pundits ready to read between the lines tonight believe Obama may hint at some sort of corporate tax “reform.” An obvious first step in that direction would be a relaxation of this repatriation tax because the President could spin it as a way to bring more cash home for companies to build plants and hire workers. » Read more on Behind The Money