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Taxing Capital Income As Pigouvian Correction: The Role Of Discounting The Future

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  • DE BONIS, VALERIA
  • SPATARO, LUCA

Abstract

In this work, we find that the zero capital income tax result might not hold, even at the steady state, when the government discount rate differs from the individual one. As intuitive Pigouvian considerations would suggest, capital income should be taxed (subsidized) when the government is less (more) impatient than individuals are. However, a counterintuitive asymmetry emerges as for the steady state since, in the long run, capital income cannot be taxed because of the explosive distortionary effect of positive taxes. The asymmetry is ruled out with a logarithmic utility function because, in this case, the anticipated policy path does not affect current individual choices and thus the cumulative distortionary effect of taxes disappears.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Cambridge University Press in its journal Macroeconomic Dynamics.

Volume (Year): 9 (2005)
Issue (Month): 04 (September)
Pages: 469-477

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Handle: RePEc:cup:macdyn:v:9:y:2005:i:04:p:469-477_04

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Cited by:
  1. Reis, Catarina, 2012. "Social discounting and incentive compatible fiscal policy," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 147(6), pages 2469-2482.
  2. Garriga, Carlos & Sánchez-Losada, Fernando, 2009. "Indirect taxation and the welfare effects of altruism on the optimal fiscal policy," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 1365-1374, November.
  3. Spataro, Luca & De Bonis, Valeria, 2008. "Accounting for the "disconnectedness" of the economy in OLG models: A case for taxing capital income," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 411-421, May.
  4. Valeria DeBonis & Luca Spataro, 2006. "Social discounting, migration and optimal taxation of savings," CHILD Working Papers wp11_06, CHILD - Centre for Household, Income, Labour and Demographic economics - ITALY.
  5. Luca Spataro & Thomas I. Renstroem, 2010. "Optimal taxation, critical-level utilitarianism and economic growth," Working Papers 2010_06, Durham University Business School.

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