The Business Roundtable is using the college basketball competition to encourage Washington to reduce business tax rates. The group created an interactive, 16-nation bracket to compare the countries' corporate tax policies.
Despite being seeded No. 1 because of the size of its economy, the U.S. gets upset by No. 16 Norway.
Norway's combined corporate tax rate is 28 percent compared to 39.1 percent in the U.S., according to the international Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
And in this competition, the lower tax rate wins: The overall champion is Britain.
"It's time we reclaim America's home-court advantage by modernizing tax policy in a fiscally responsible way so all U.S. businesses can create jobs, innovate, grow, compete - and win," said John Engler, president of the Business Roundtable, an association of chief executives of top U.S. companies.
The group, one of the leading business lobbying forces in Washington, is trying to drive home its message as Congress tackles tax reform this year.
Democrats and Republicans agree the U.S. should lower its combined corporate tax rate, which is now the highest among developed nations.
But exactly how low remains a sticking point, as well as whether the savings from eliminating some tax breaks should all go toward reducing the corporate tax rate or should be partly diverted to lower the budget deficit.
The tax bracket challenge is part of a campaign being launched by the Business Roundtable to lower the statutory U.S. corporate rate to 25 percent.
"America's economy has great advantages, from world-class workers and productivity to unparalleled institutions of higher education and abundant domestic energy supplies," said Robert A. McDonald, chief executive of Procter & Gamble Co., and chairman of the group's committee on taxes and fiscal policy.