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Why Do Firms Evade Taxes? The Role of Information Sharing and Financial Sector Outreach

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  • Beck, T.H.L.
  • Lin, C.
  • Ma, Y.

    (Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research)

Abstract

Informality is a wide-spread phenomenon across the globe. We show that firms in countries with better information sharing systems and greater financial sector outreach evade taxes to a lesser degree, an effect that is stronger for smaller firms, firms in smaller cities and towns, and firms in industries relying more on external financing, with higher liquidity needs and with greater growth potential. However, it is variation in firm size that dominates firm variation in location and industry variation in explaining cross-firm and cross-country variation in tax evasion. This effect is robust to controlling for an array of other measures of the financial and institutional environment firms face. The effect is also robust to controlling for fixed firm effects in a smaller panel dataset of Central and Eastern European countries many of which introduced credit registries or upgraded them in the early 2000s.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research in its series Discussion Paper with number 2010-93.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:dgr:kubcen:201093

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Web page: http://center.uvt.nl

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Keywords: Formal and informal sector; tax evasion; financial sector development;

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  1. Sarte, Pierre-Daniel G., 2000. "Informality and rent-seeking bureaucracies in a model of long-run growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 173-197, August.
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  3. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson & James A. Robinson, 2001. "The Colonial Origins of Comparative Development: An Empirical Investigation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1369-1401, December.
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  5. Brown, Martin & Jappelli, Tullio & Pagano, Marco, 2007. "Information Sharing and Credit: Firm-Level Evidence from Transition Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 6313, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Thorsten Beck & Asli Demirguc-Kunt & Ross Levine, 2005. "Bank Supervision and Corruption in Lending," NBER Working Papers 11498, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad, 2007. "Reaching out: Access to and use of banking services across countries," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 85(1), pages 234-266, July.
  8. Johnson, Simon & McMillan, John & Woodruff, Christopher, 1999. "Why do Firms Hide? Bribes and Unofficial Activity After Communism," CEPR Discussion Papers 2105, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  12. Thorsten Beck & Asli Demirgüç-Kunt & Ross Levine, 2010. "Financial Institutions and Markets across Countries and over Time: The Updated Financial Development and Structure Database," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 24(1), pages 77-92, January.
  13. William Greene, 2004. "Fixed Effects and Bias Due to the Incidental Parameters Problem in the Tobit Model," Econometric Reviews, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(2), pages 125-147.
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  16. Padilla, A.J. & Pagano, M., 1994. "Endogenous Communication Among Lenders and Entrepreneurial Incentives," Papers 9407, Centro de Estudios Monetarios Y Financieros-.
  17. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2003. "Interaction terms in logit and probit models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 123-129, July.
  18. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli, 2006. "Small and medium-size enterprises: Access to finance as a growth constraint," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 30(11), pages 2931-2943, November.
  19. Stulz, ReneM. & Johnson, Herb, 1985. "An analysis of secured debt," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(4), pages 501-521, December.
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  22. Beck, T.H.L. & Levine, R., 2002. "Industry growth and capital allocation: Does having a market- or bank-based system matter?," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125514, Tilburg University.
  23. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Maksimovic, Vojislav, 2002. "Financial and legal constraints to firm growth - Does size matter?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2784, The World Bank.
  24. Johnson, Simon & Kaufmann, Daniel & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 1998. "Regulatory Discretion and the Unofficial Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 387-92, May.
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  27. Simon Johnson & Daniel Kaufman & Andrei Shleifer, 1997. "The Unofficial Economy in Transition," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 28(2), pages 159-240.
  28. Beck, T.H.L. & Levine, R. & Loayza, N., 2000. "Finance and the sources of growth," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125520, Tilburg University.
  29. Rafael La Porta & Andrei Shleifer, 2008. "The Unofficial Economy and Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 14520, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Capasso, Salvatore & Jappelli, Tullio, 2013. "Financial development and the underground economy," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 101(C), pages 167-178.

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