Income taxes and the probability to become self-employed: The case of Sweden
AbstractIt is widely recognized that entrepreneurial activity plays an important role in promoting new product innovation, discovering new markets, and replacing inefficient incumbents in a process called “creative destruction”, all of which enhance economic growth. Given the importance of entrepreneurship and small business enterprises it is not surprising that policy makers worldwide (and especially in Europe) try to stimulate entrepreneurial activity. One public policy, frequently discussed, is how to design tax policies that stimulate start-ups and entrepreneurship. Existing knowledge about taxes’ effect on entrepreneurial activity and start-ups is relatively limited, however. Existing empirical studies are primarily based on US data and have until recently used aggregated tax measures (e.g., average national tax rates) or hypothetical marginal tax rates and time-series or cross-section data. This study, however, uses a particular rich longitudinal micro-level dataset based on Swedish tax-return information, which makes it possible to track a cohort of individuals over time periods during which tax rate changes took place, and thereby isolate whether real-life individual decisions about self-employment are affected by changes in the tax rates they actually face. In addition, as the tax structure in Sweden is neutral as opposed to the US that encourages risk taking and tax-driven self-employment, studying the effect of income taxes on the probability to become self-employed based on Swedish data provides information about how taxes on self-employment affect self-employment. Contrary to earlier studies based on US data, I find both average and marginal tax rates to negatively impact the probability to become self-employed.
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.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by The Ratio Institute in its series Ratio Working Papers with number 122.
Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: 04 Jun 2008
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: The Ratio Institute, P.O. Box 5095, SE-102 42 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: 08-441 59 00
Fax: 08-441 59 29
Web page: http://www.ratio.se/
More information through EDIRC
Self-employment; entrepreneurship; small business; taxation; wealth;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
- H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion
- J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2008-06-07 (All new papers)
- NEP-EEC-2008-06-07 (European Economics)
- NEP-ENT-2008-06-07 (Entrepreneurship)
- NEP-PBE-2008-06-07 (Public Economics)
- NEP-PUB-2008-06-07 (Public Finance)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Bruce, Donald, 2002. "Taxes and Entrepreneurial Endurance: Evidence from the Self-Employed," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 55(N. 1), pages 5-24, March Cit.
- Kevin M. Murphy & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1990.
"The Allocation of Talent: Implicationsfor Growth,"
University of Chicago - George G. Stigler Center for Study of Economy and State
65, Chicago - Center for Study of Economy and State.
- Robert Carroll & Douglas Holtz-Eakin & Mark Rider & Harvey S. Rosen, 2001.
"Personal Income Taxes and the Growth of Small Firms,"
in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 15, pages 121-148
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Robert Carroll & Douglas Holtz-Eakin & Mark Rider & Harvey S. Rosen, 2000. "Personal Income Taxes and the Growth of Small Firms," NBER Working Papers 7980, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Blau, David M, 1987. "A Time-Series Analysis of Self-employment in the United State," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(3), pages 445-67, June.
- Cullen, Julie Berry & Gordon, Roger H., 2007. "Taxes and entrepreneurial risk-taking: Theory and evidence for the U.S," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(7-8), pages 1479-1505, August.
- Per Engström & Bertil Holmlund, 2006.
"Tax Evasion and Self-Employment in a High-Tax Country: Evidence from Sweden,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
1736, CESifo Group Munich.
- Per Engstrom & Bertil Holmlund, 2009. "Tax evasion and self-employment in a high-tax country: evidence from Sweden," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 41(19), pages 2419-2430.
- Engström, Per & Holmlund, Bertil, 2006. "Tax Evasion and Self-Employment in a High-Tax Country: Evidence from Sweden," Working Paper Series 2006:12, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- Blanchflower, David G. & Shadforth, Chris, 2007.
"Entrepreneurship in the UK,"
Foundations and Trends(R) in Entrepreneurship,
now publishers, vol. 3(4), pages 257-364, July.
- Edin, Per-Anders & Fredriksson, Peter, 2000.
"LINDA - Longitudinal INdividual DAta for Sweden,"
Working Paper Series
2000:19, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- Evans, David S & Leighton, Linda S, 1989. "Some Empirical Aspects of Entrepreneurship," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(3), pages 519-35, June.
- Evans, David S & Jovanovic, Boyan, 1989. "An Estimated Model of Entrepreneurial Choice under Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(4), pages 808-27, August.
- Roger H. Gordon & Julie Berry Cullen, 2002. "Taxes and Entrepreneurial Activity: Theory and Evidence for the U.S," NBER Working Papers 9015, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ashenfelter, Orley C, 1978. "Estimating the Effect of Training Programs on Earnings," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(1), pages 47-57, February.
- Douglas Holtz-Eakin & David Joulfaian & Harvey S. Rosen, 1993.
"Sticking it Out: Entrepreneurial Survival and Liquidity Constraints,"
NBER Working Papers
4494, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Holtz-Eakin, Douglas & Joulfaian, David & Rosen, Harvey S, 1994. "Sticking It Out: Entrepreneurial Survival and Liquidity Constraints," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(1), pages 53-75, February.
- Jason G. Cummins & Kevin A. Hassett & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1994. "A Reconsideration of Investment Behavior Using Tax Reforms as Natural Experiments," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 25(2), pages 1-74.
- David Audretsch, 2004. "Sustaining Innovation and Growth: Public Policy Support for Entrepreneurship," Industry & Innovation, Taylor and Francis Journals, vol. 11(3), pages 167-191.
- Johansson, Edvard, 2000. " Self-Employment and Liquidity Constraints: Evidence from Finland," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 102(1), pages 123-34, March.
- R. Glenn Hubbard & William M. Gentry, 2000. "Tax Policy and Entrepreneurial Entry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 283-287, May.
- Nykvist, Jenny, 2005. "Entrepreneurship and Liquidity Constraints: Evidence from Sweden," Working Paper Series 2005:21, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- Bruce D. Meyer, 1990. "Why Are There So Few Black Entrepreneurs?," NBER Working Papers 3537, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Robert Carroll & Douglas Holtz-Eakin & Mark Rider & Harvey S. Rosen, 2000. "Income Taxes and Entrepreneurs' Use of Labor," NBER Working Papers 6578, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Bruce, Donald, 2000. "Effects of the United States tax system on transitions into self-employment," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 7(5), pages 545-574, September.
- Simon C. Parker & Martin T. Robson, 2004. "Explaining International Variations in Self-Employment: Evidence from a Panel of OECD Countries," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 71(2), pages 287-301, October.
Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Where most of tax avoidance happens: small business owners
by Economic Logician in Economic Logic on 2009-06-17 08:24:00
- Stenkula, Mikael, 2009.
"Taxation and Entrepreneurship in a Welfare State,"
Working Paper Series
800, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
- Hansson, Åsa, 2009. "Are small business owners more successful in avoiding taxes: Evidence from Sweden," Working Papers 2009:6, Lund University, Department of Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Martin Korpi).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.