Could Higher Taxes Increase the Long-Run Demand for Capital?: Theory and Evidences for Chile
AbstractIs a tax increase always detrimental for capital formation? This paper estimates a long-run demand for capital in Chile, and studies the responsiveness of firms’ desired capital stock to variations in tax rates. We combine the neoclassical model with a cointegration argument to obtain a long-run demand for capital that is valid for a general adjustment-cost structure. On theoretical grounds alone, there is no a priori reason why higher taxes should reduce the desired capital stock. Higher taxes reduce returns but simultaneously increase depreciation and interest payment allowances. When the sum of increased allowances is large enough, a higher corporate tax rate may reduce the cost of capital. We show that this result continues holding when the corporate veil is lifted and firms consider the income tax paid by its stockholders. The model is estimated with a panel of Chilean corporations with annual data between 1985 and 1995. The results we obtain suggest that changes in the corporate tax rate have almost no effect on the long run demand for capital: in 10 of the 11 years in our sample an increase in the corporate tax rate leads to a negligible increase in the desired capital stock. We also find that firms ignore the marginal rates their stockholders pay when they make investment decisions,i.e. there is a corporate veil.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile in its series Documentos de Trabajo with number 145.
Date of creation: 2002
Date of revision:
Other versions of this item:
- Bustos, Alvaro & Engel, Eduardo M. R. A. & Galetovic, Alexander, 2004. "Could higher taxes increase the long-run demand for capital? Theory and evidence for Chile," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 675-697, April.
- Alvaro Bustos & Eduardo Engel & Alexander Galetovic, 2003. "Could Higher Taxes Increase the Long-Run Demand for Capital? Theory and Evidence for Chile"," Working Papers 858, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
- Eduardo M. Engel & Alvaro Bustos & Alexander Galetovic, 2004. "Could Higher Taxes Increase the Long-Run Demand for Capital?: Theory and Evidence for Chile," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm408, Yale School of Management.
- H32 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Firm
- D21 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Firm Behavior: Theory
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