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U.S. Revenue Surprises

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  • Koshy Mathai
  • Andrew Swiston
  • Martin Mühleisen

Abstract

A key question for U.S. policymakers is whether the recent strength in federal revenue is likely to continue. This question is addressed through an econometric analysis of the determinants of tax revenue, using time series that are adjusted for tax policy changes. The results suggest that growth in corporate profits and capital gains each contributed forty percent of the increase in the revenue-to-GDP ratio from 2004-2006, and rising income inequality explains much of the rest. While part of the revenue rise is the result of structural changes taking place in the U.S. economy, some of the recent buoyancy is likely to prove temporary, reflecting the highly cyclical nature of these variables.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 07/143.

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Length: 29
Date of creation: 01 Jun 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:07/143

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Keywords: Revenues; Tax revenues; tax system; tax revenue; tax base; tax elasticity; tax bases; tax changes; tax policy; tax legislation; individual income tax; income taxes; tax rates; corporate income tax; revenue elasticity; tax cuts; individual income taxes; tax returns; total tax revenue; marginal tax rates; tax bill; taxation; employee compensation; consumption taxes; tax structure; tax systems; tax liability; corporate income taxes; tax reform; tax collections; tax administration; tax measures; income tax system; effects of tax policy; taxable income; annual budget; fiscal years; government tax revenue; tax revenue collections; progressive individual income tax; internal revenue; tax journal; tax increase; state tax; determinants of tax revenue; progressive tax; national tax journal; fiscal developments; income tax rates; fiscal studies; tax purposes; payroll tax; tax shelters; tax liabilities; capital gains tax; tax categories;

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  1. Sobel, Russell S. & Holcombe, Randall G., 1996. "Measuring the Growth and Variability of Tax Bases over the Business Cycle," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 49(4), pages 535-52, December.
  2. Donald Bruce & William F. Fox & M.H. Tuttle, 2006. "Tax Base Elasticities: A Multi-State Analysis of Long-Run and Short-Run Dynamics," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, Southern Economic Association, vol. 73(2), pages 315–341, October.
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Cited by:
  1. Teresa Leal & Javier J. Pérez & Mika Tujula & Jean-Pierre Vidal, 2008. "Fiscal Forecasting: Lessons from the Literature and Challenges," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 29(3), pages 347-386, 09.

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