Cost-Benefit Analysis and the Marginal Cost of Public Funds
AbstractThe marginal cost of public funds defined as the ratio between the shadow price of tax revenues and the population average of the social marginal utility of income, is analysed within an explicit cost–benefit context. It is shown that for an optimal tax system the measure is always equal to one. Benefit and cost measures congruent with this definition are derived. Under optimal taxes a positive net social benefit is a necessary and sufficient condition for a project that passes the cost–benefit test. Under non–optimal taxes this is not the case: If taxes are too low a positive net social benefit is a necessary but not sufficient condition and if taxes are too high a sufficient but not necessary condition for an accepted project.
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 Stockholm University, Department of Economics in its series Research Papers in Economics with number 2005:3.
Length: 21 pages
Date of creation: 31 Mar 2005
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, Stockholm, S-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: +46 8 16 20 00
Fax: +46 8 16 14 25
Web page: http://www.ne.su.se/
More information through EDIRC
Cost–benefit; optimal taxation; marginal cost of public funds;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
- H43 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Project Evaluation; Social Discount Rate
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
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.:
- Dahlby, Bev, 1998. "Progressive taxation and the social marginal cost of public funds," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 105-122, January.
- Diamond, P. A., 1975.
"A many-person Ramsey tax rule,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 4(4), pages 335-342, November.
- Wilson, John Douglas, 1991. "Optimal Public Good Provision with Limited Lump-Sum Taxation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 153-66, March.
- Hansson, Ingemar, 1984. " Marginal Cost of Public Funds for Different Tax Instruments and Government Expenditures," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 86(2), pages 115-30.
- Svensson, Lars-Gunnar & Weibull, Jorgen W., 1986. "An upper bound on optimal income taxes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 165-181, July.
- Sheshinski, Eytan, 1972. "The Optimal Linear Income-Tax," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(3), pages 297-302, July.
- Schob, Ronnie, 1994. "On Marginal Cost and Marginal Benefit of Public Funds," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 49(1), pages 87-106.
- Bovenberg, A. L. & van der Ploeg, F., 1994.
"Environmental policy, public finance and the labour market in a second-best world,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 55(3), pages 349-390, November.
- Bovenberg, A.L. & Van Der Ploeg, F., 1992. "Environmental Policy, Public Finance and the Labour Market in a Second- Best World," Papers 9243, Tilburg - Center for Economic Research.
- Bovenberg, A Lans & van der Ploeg, Frederick, 1992. "Environmental Policy, Public Finance and the Labour Market in a Second-best World," CEPR Discussion Papers 745, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Bovenberg, A.L. & Ploeg, F. van der, 1992. "Environmental policy, public finance and the labour market in a second-best world," Discussion Paper 1992-43, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
- Charles L. Ballard & Don Fullerton, 1992.
"Distortionary Taxes and the Provision of Public Goods,"
Journal of Economic Perspectives,
American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 117-131, Summer.
- Charles L. Ballard & Don Fullerton, 1993. "Distortionary Taxes and the Provision of Public Goods," NBER Working Papers 3506, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Dixit, Avinash K & Sandmo, Angar, 1977. " Some Simplified Formulae for Optimal Income Taxation," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 79(4), pages 417-23.
- Hellwig, Martin F., 1986. "The optimal linear income tax revisited," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 163-179, November.
- Sandmo, Agnar, 1998. "Redistribution and the marginal cost of public funds," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 365-382, December.
- Lars Hokonsen, 1998. "An Investigation into Alternative Representations of the Marginal Cost of Public Funds," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 5(3), pages 329-343, July.
- Johansson-Stenman, Olof, 2001. "Should We Use Distributional Weights in CBA When Income Taxes Can Deal with Equity?," Working Papers in Economics 35, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
- Christiansen, Vidar, 1981. "Evaluation of Public Projects under Optimal Taxation," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(3), pages 447-57, July.
- Eliasson, Jonas, 2009. "A cost-benefit analysis of the Stockholm congestion charging system," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 43(4), pages 468-480, May.
- D K Srivastava & C Bhujanga Rao, 2010. "Reforming Indirect Taxes in India : Role of Environmental Taxes," Microeconomics Working Papers 23063, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sten Nyberg).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.