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A Tale of Tax Policies in Open Economies

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  • Stéphane Auray

    ()
    (CREST (Ensai), Université du Littoral Côte d’Opale (EQUIPPE), Université de Shebrooke (GREDI) and CIRPEE)

  • Aurélien Eyquem

    ()
    (Université de Lyon, Lyon, F-69007, France ; Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Lyon, F-69007, France ; CNRS, GATE Lyon St Etienne, Ecully, F-69130, France ; and GREDI, Canada)

  • Paul Gomme

    ()
    (Concordia University and CIREQ)

Abstract

Recent financial crises in Europe as well as the periodic battles in the U.S. over the debt ceiling point to the importance of fiscal discipline among developed countries. This paper develops an open economy model, calibrated to the U.S. and a subset of the EMU, to evaluate the impact of various permanent tax changes. The first set of experiments considers a targeted one percentage point reduction in the government deficit-to-GDP ratio through raising one of : the consumption tax, the labor income tax, or the capital income tax. In terms of welfare, the consumption tax is found to be the least costly of the tax increases. A second set of experiments looks at deficit-neutral tax changes : partially replacing the capital income tax with either a higher labor income tax or higher consumption tax ; and partially replacing the labor income tax with an increased consumption tax. Reducing reliance on capital income taxation is welfare-enhancing, although it leads to short term losses. Reducing labor income taxation improves international competitiveness and is welfare-improving.

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Paper provided by Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure in its series Working Papers with number 1138.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:gat:wpaper:1138

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Keywords: Fiscal policies; open economies; public deficits; tax reforms;

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  1. Gianluca Benigno & Bianca De Paoli, 2009. "On the international dimension of fiscal policy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 28515, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  2. Mankiw, N. Gregory & Weinzierl, Matthew, 2006. "Dynamic scoring: A back-of-the-envelope guide," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(8-9), pages 1415-1433, September.
  3. Lucas, Robert Jr. & Stokey, Nancy L., 1983. "Optimal fiscal and monetary policy in an economy without capital," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 55-93.
  4. Stéphane Auray & Beatriz de Blas & Aurélien Eyquem, 2011. "Ramsey Policies in a Small Open Economy with Sticky Prices and Capital," Working Papers 1115, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique (GATE), Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS), Université Lyon 2, Ecole Normale Supérieure.
  5. Pierpaolo Benigno, 2008. "Price stability with imperfect financial integration," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. David K. Backus & Patrick J. Kehoe & Finn E. Kydland, 1991. "International real business cycles," Staff Report 146, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  7. Paul Gomme & Peter Rupert, 2005. "Theory, measurement, and calibration of macroeconomic models," Working Paper 0505, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  8. Kenneth L. Judd, 1982. "Redistributive Taxation in a Simple Perfect Foresight Model," Discussion Papers 572, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
  9. Mendoza, Enrique G, 1991. "Real Business Cycles in a Small Open Economy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 797-818, September.
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