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An examination of the IFS corporation tax forecasting record


Author Info

  • Suman Basu
  • Carl Emmerson

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies)

  • Christine Frayne

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and European Commission (formerly IFS staff))


This paper examines the corporation tax forecasting techniques used by the Institute for Fiscal Studies. For current year forecasts a judgemental forecast is found to have performed better than relying solely on a simple model or information on the receipts available so far in the current financial year. For longer time horizons the judgemental forecast has performed slightly less well than the modelled forecast. While forecasts made later in the financial year have led to more accurate estimates of receipts in the current year no evidence is found that this has improved the accuracy of longer run forecasts. In the short term inaccuracies in the modelling process are found to be more important than errors in forecasting growth in corporate profits. However the latter is still an important component of errors and one that grows substantially in relative importance as the forecast horizon increases.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for Fiscal Studies in its series IFS Working Papers with number W03/21.

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Length: 36 pp
Date of creation: Nov 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ifs:ifsewp:03/21

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Postal: The Institute for Fiscal Studies 7 Ridgmount Street LONDON WC1E 7AE
Phone: (+44) 020 7291 4800
Fax: (+44) 020 7323 4780
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Postal: The Institute for Fiscal Studies 7 Ridgmount Street LONDON WC1E 7AE

Related research

Keywords: Corporate Tax; Forecasting; government revenue;

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  1. Chris Giles & John Hall, 1998. "Forecasting the PSBR outside government: the IFS perspective," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 19(1), pages 83-100, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Creedy, John & Gemmell, Norman, 2008. "Corporation tax buoyancy and revenue elasticity in the UK," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 24-37, January.
  2. Martin Keene & Peter Thomson, 2007. "An Analysis of Tax Revenue Forecast Errors," Treasury Working Paper Series 07/02, New Zealand Treasury.
  3. Carl Emmerson & Christine Frayne & Sarah Love, 2004. "Updating the UK's code for fiscal stability," IFS Working Papers W04/29, Institute for Fiscal Studies.


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