Taxation and Inequality: A Time-Exposure Perspective
In: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 6
AbstractConclusions about inequality based on cross-sectional snapshots of annual income can give a misleading picture of the inequality of a more permanent notion of income, due to the mobility of individuals across annual income classes. This paper reassesses some of the issues about taxation and inequality using two longitudinal tax return data bases. Replacing annual income with "time-exposure" income, defined as average real income over the period, does not significantly reduce the measured degree of inequality in the 1979-1985 period, although the fraction of income received by the lowest increase substantially. The procedure does, though, reduce the contribution to inequality of certain sources of income such as capital gains and increase the contribution of other sources such as interest and dividends. There is no systematic evidence that the comparison of snapshots between the 1967-1973 and 1979-1985 periods overstates the growth in inequality of a more permanent notion of income. The inequality of pre-tax income has been increasing steadily in the past two decades. Changes in income taxation have neither stemmed nor contributed significantly to this trend; since 1980 the contribution of the income tax to decreasing inequality has declined slightly.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
This chapter was published in:
This item is provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Chapters with number 10841.
Contact details of provider:
Postal: National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.
Web page: http://www.nber.org
More information through EDIRC
Other versions of this item:
- Joel Slemrod, 1992. "Taxation and Inequality: A Time-Exposure Perspective," NBER Working Papers 3999, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Sara LaLumia & James M. Sallee, 2011.
"The Value of Honesty: Empirical Estimates from the Case of the Missing Children,"
NBER Working Papers
17247, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Sara LaLumia & James Sallee, 2013. "The value of honesty: empirical estimates from the case of the missing children," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 192-224, April.
- Sara LaLumia & James Sallee, 2011. "The Value of Honesty: Empirical Estimates from the Case of the Missing Children," Department of Economics Working Papers 2011-05, Department of Economics, Williams College.
- Bargain, Olivier & Dolls, Mathias & Immervoll, Herwig & Neumann, Dirk & Peichl, Andreas & Pestel, Nico & Siegloch, Sebastian, 2011.
"Tax Policy and Income Inequality in the U.S., 1978-2009: A Decomposition Approach,"
IZA Discussion Papers
5910, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Olivier Bargain & Mathias Dolls & Herwig Immervoll & Dirk Neumann & Andreas Peichl & Nico Pestel & Sebastian Siegloch, 2011. "Tax policy and income inequality in the U.S., 1978—2009: A decomposition approach," Working Papers 215, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
- Joel Slemrod, 1996.
"High-Income Families and the Tax Changes of the 1980s: The Anatomy of Behavioral Response,"
in: Empirical Foundations of Household Taxation, pages 169-192
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Joel Slemrod, 1995. "High-Income Families and the Tax Changes of the 1980s: The Anatomy of Behavioral Response," NBER Working Papers 5218, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Saez, Emmanuel, 2003.
"The effect of marginal tax rates on income: a panel study of 'bracket creep',"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 87(5-6), pages 1231-1258, May.
- Emmanuel Saez, 1999. "The Effect of Marginal Tax Rates on Income: A Panel Study of 'Bracket Creep'," NBER Working Papers 7367, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Georgia Kaplanoglou, 2004. "Household Consumption Patterns, Indirect Tax Structures and Implications for Indirect Tax Harmonisation - A Three Country Perspective," The Economic and Social Review, Economic and Social Studies, vol. 35(1), pages 83-107.
- Gary Fields, 2010. "Does income mobility equalize longer-term incomes? New measures of an old concept," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 8(4), pages 409-427, December.
- John Bishop & K. Chow & John Formby & Chih-Chin Ho, 1997. "Did Tax Reform Reduce Actual US Progressivity? Evidence from the Taxpayer Compliance Measurement Program," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 4(2), pages 177-197, May.
- Joseph H. Haslag & Lori L. Taylor, 1993. "A look at long-term developments in the distribution of income," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Jan, pages 19-30.
- Daniel R. Feenberg & Andrew W. Mitrusi & James M. Poterba, 1997.
"Distributional Effects of Adopting a National Retail Sales Tax,"
in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 11, pages 49-90
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Daniel R. Feenberg & Andrew W. Mitrusi & James M. Poterba, 1997. "Distributional Effects of Adopting a National Retail Sales Tax," NBER Working Papers 5885, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- James B. Davies, 1995. "Distributional Effects of the Lifetime Capital Gains Exemption: Single vs. Multi-Year Analysis," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 21(s1), pages 159-173, November.
- Gilbert E. Metcalf, 2006.
Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University
0607, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- Don Fullerton & Gilbert E. Metcalf, 2001. "Tax Incidence," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0106, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- Don Fullerton & Gilbert E. Metcalf, 2002. "Tax Incidence," NBER Working Papers 8829, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Thomas Otter, 2009. "Does Inequality Harm Income Mobility and Growth? An Assessment of the Growth Impact of Income and Education Inequality in Paraguay 1992-2002," Ibero America Institute for Econ. Research (IAI) Discussion Papers 188, Ibero-America Institute for Economic Research.
- Otter, Thomas, 2007. "Does Inequality Harm Income Mobility and Growth? An Assessment of the Growth Impact of Income and Education Inequality in Paraguay 1992: 2002," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, GÃ¶ttingen 2007 25, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
- Michael Haliassos & Andrew B. Lyon, 1993. "Progressivity of Capital Gains Taxation with Optimal Portfolio Selection," NBER Working Papers 4253, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Joel Slemrod, 1998. "The Economics of Taxing the Rich," NBER Working Papers 6584, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.