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Indeterminacy, underground activities and tax evasion

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  • Busato, Francesco
  • Chiarini, Bruno
  • Marchetti, Enrico

Abstract

This paper introduces underground activities and tax evasion into a one-sector dynamic general equilibrium model with aggregate external effects. The model presents a novel mechanism driving the self-fulfilling prophecies, which is characterized by well behaved (downward sloping) labor demand schedules. This mechanism differs from the customary one, and it is complementary to it. Compared to traditional labor market income, the income derived from underground labor activity is subject to a lower expected tax rate when considering both the probability of detection and the evasion penalty. During a belief-driven expansion, the household allocates more time to both traditional and underground labor supply. In equilibrium, this action serves to lower the effective labor tax rate faced by the household, thus providing stimulus to aggregate labor supply so as to make the initial expansion self-fulfilling. The mechanism here is akin to a "regressive tax"; the household's effective tax rate depends negatively on the level of total labor income. We argue that an underground sector, and the associated tax evasion, offer a good economic rationale for a regressive tax rate.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Economic Modelling.

Volume (Year): 28 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 831-844

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:28:y:2011:i:3:p:831-844

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/30411

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Keywords: Indeterminacy and sunspots Tax evasion and underground activities;

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Cited by:
  1. Maurizio Bovi & Peter Claeys, 2008. "Treasury V Dodgers. A Tale of Fiscal Consolidation and Tax Evasion," ISAE Working Papers 93 Classification-JEL E62, ISTAT - Italian National Institute of Statistics - (Rome, ITALY).
  2. Francesco Busato & Bruno Chiarini, 2009. "Steady state Laffer curve with the underground economy," Discussion Papers 2_2009, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
  3. Giuseppe Ciccarone & Francesco Giuli & Enrico Marchetti, 2012. "Underground labor, search frictions and macroeconomic fluctuations," Departmental Working Papers of Economics - University 'Roma Tre' 0159, Department of Economics - University Roma Tre.

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