Lifetime versus Annual Tax Progressivity: Sweden, 1968–2009
AbstractThis paper analyzes the evolution of tax progressivity in Sweden from both annual and lifetime perspectives.Using a rich micro panel with administrative records of incomes, taxes and benefits over the period 1968–2009, we calculate tax rates across the income distribution accounting for different tax bases as well as the role of transfers. The uniquely long time span also allows us to compute tax progressivity as realized over a cohort’s entire life cycle. Our main finding is that taxes are considerably less progressive over the lifetime than in any single year. In fact, life cycle taxes are close to proportional, bearing a redistributive effect of only a few percent. Intragenerational income mobility seems to be driving this result, although the Swedish economic crisis of the 1990s and the tax reforms of 1971 and 1991 are also important. Labor income taxes contribute less to progressivity in recent years,whereas transfers to unemployed and old-age pensioners have become increasingly important. These findings are robust to the use of different tax rates, tax bases, sample populations, rates of discounting and controls for reranking.
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 Uppsala University, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies with number 2012:8.
Length: 58 pages
Date of creation: 13 Jun 2012
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, Uppsala University, P. O. Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: + 46 18 471 25 00
Fax: + 46 18 471 14 78
Web page: http://www.nek.uu.se/
More information through EDIRC
Tax progressivity; Income distribution; Lifetime income; Redistributive effect; Kakwani index; Transfers.;
Other versions of this item:
- Bengtsson, Niklas & Holmlund, Bertil & Waldenström, Daniel, 2012. "Lifetime versus Annual Tax Progressivity: Sweden, 1968–2009," Working Paper Series, Center for Labor Studies 2012:13, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- Bengtsson, Niklas & Holmlund, Bertil & Waldenström, Daniel, 2012. "Lifetime versus Annual Tax Progressivity: Sweden, 1968–2009," IZA Discussion Papers 6641, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Niklas Bengtsson & Bertil Holmlund & Daniel Waldenström, 2012. "Lifetime versus Annual Tax Progressivity: Sweden, 1968-2009," CESifo Working Paper Series 3856, CESifo Group Munich.
- Bengtsson, Niklas & Holmlund, Bertil & Waldenström, Daniel, 2012. "Lifetime versus Annual Tax Progressivity: Sweden, 1968–2009," Working Paper Series 2012:11, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
- H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
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.:
- Andreas Peichl & Philippe van Kerm, 2007. "PROGRES: Stata module to measure distributive effects of an income tax," Statistical Software Components S456867, Boston College Department of Economics.
- Ivica Urban & Peter J. Lambert, 2005. "Redistribution, horizontal inequity and reranking: how to measure them properly," University of Oregon Economics Department Working Papers 2005-12, University of Oregon Economics Department.
- Caspersen, Erik & Metcalf, Gilbert E., 1994.
"Is a Value Added Tax Regressive? Annual Versus Lifetime Incidence Measures,"
National Tax Journal,
National Tax Association, vol. 47(4), pages 731-46, December.
- Erik Caspersen & Gilbert Metcalf, 1993. "Is A Value Added Tax Progressive? Annual Versus Lifetime Incidence Measures," NBER Working Papers 4387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Blomquist, N S, 1981. "A Comparison of Distributions of Annual and Lifetime Income: Sweden around 1970," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 27(3), pages 243-64, September.
- Björklund, Anders & Palme, Mårten, 1997. "Income Redistribution within the Life Cycle versus between Individuals: Empirical Evidence Using Swedish Panel Data," Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 197, Stockholm School of Economics.
- Anthony B. Atkinson & Andrea Brandolini, 2011. "On the identification of the “middle class”," Working Papers 217, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
- Sara Torregrosa Hetland, 2014. "A fiscal revolution? Progressivity in the Spanish tax system, 1960-1990," Working Papers 2014/8, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
- Sina Önder, Ali & Terviö, Marko, 2013. "Is Economics a House Divided? Analysis of Citation Networks," Working Paper Series 2013:5, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
- Mike Brewer & Monica Costa Dias & Jonathan Shaw, 2012. "Lifetime inequality and redistribution," IFS Working Papers W12/23, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- Augustin Vicard & Fabrice Langumier & Alexis Eidelman, 2013. "Prélèvements et transferts aux ménages : des canaux redistributifs différents en 1990 et 2010," Économie et Statistique, Programme National Persée, vol. 459(1), pages 5-26.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Katarina Grönvall).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.