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On the optimality of joint taxation for noncooperative couples

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  • Meier, Volker
  • Rainer, Helmut

Abstract

We present a noncooperative model of a family's time allocation between work and a home-produced public good, and examine whether the income tax should apply to couples or individuals. While tax-induced labor supply distortions lead to overprovision of the public good, spouses' failure to internalize the collective effect of their choices points towards underprovision. A large parameter range exists for which a move from individual to joint taxation improves the welfare of both spouses. The source of Pareto-improvement consists in moving the level of the public good closer to its first-best, while an adjustment of intra-family transfers compensates the secondary earner for the increased tax load.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Labour Economics.

Volume (Year): 19 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 633-641

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Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:19:y:2012:i:4:p:633-641

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/labeco

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Keywords: Individual taxation; Joint taxation; Household production; Public goods;

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References

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  8. Rainer, Helmut, 2007. "Should we write prenuptial contracts?," Munich Reprints in Economics 19819, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  9. Meier, Volker & Wrede, Matthias, 2013. "Reducing the excess burden of subsidizing the stork: Joint taxation, individual taxation, and family tax splitting," Munich Reprints in Economics 19213, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
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  17. Patricia F. Apps & Ray Rees, 1999. "Individual versus Joint Taxation in Models with Household Production," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 107(2), pages 393-403, April.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Michael Funke & Yu-Fu Chen, 2010. "Global warming and extreme events: Rethinking the timing and intensity of environment policy," Quantitative Macroeconomics Working Papers 21007b, Hamburg University, Department of Economics.
  2. Paula GOBBI, 2013. "Childcare and Commitment within Households," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2013019, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
  3. Volker Meier & Helmut Rainer, 2012. "Beyond Ramsey: Gender-Based Taxation with Non-Cooperative Couples," CESifo Working Paper Series 3966, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. Volker Meier & Matthias Wrede, 2008. "Reducing the Excess Burden of Subsidizing the Stork: Joint Taxation, Individual Taxation, and Family Tax Splitting," CESifo Working Paper Series 2470, CESifo Group Munich.
  5. Meier, Volker, 2013. "One-sided private provision of public goods with implicit Lindahl pricing," Munich Reprints in Economics 19181, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  6. Volker Meier & Helmut Rainer, 2014. "Pigou Meets Ramsey: Gender-Based Taxation with Non-Cooperative Couples," Ifo Working Paper Series Ifo Working Paper No. 179, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich.
  7. Hans Fehr & Manuel Kallweit & Fabian Kindermann, 2013. "Reforming Family Taxation in Germany: Labor Supply vs. Insurance Effects," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 613, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).

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