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Taxation and Leverage in International Banking

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Author Info

  • Grace Weishi Gu
  • Ruud A. de Mooij
  • Tigran Poghosyan

Abstract

This paper explores how corporate taxes affect the financial structure of multinational banks. Guided by a simple theory of optimal capital structure it tests (i) whether corporate taxes induce subsidiary banks to raise their debt-asset ratio in light of the traditional debt bias; and (ii) whether international corporate tax differentials vis-a-vis foreign subsidiary banks affect the intra-bank capital structure through international debt shifting. Using a novel subsidiary-level dataset for 558 commercial bank subsidiaries of the 86 largest multinational banks in the world, we find that taxes matter significantly, through both the traditional debt bias channel and the international debt shifting that is due to the international tax differentials. The latter channel is more robust and tends to be quantitatively more important. Our results imply that taxation causes significant international debt spillovers through multinational banks, which has potentially important implications for tax policy.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 12/281.

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Length: 35
Date of creation: 30 Nov 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:12/281

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Related research

Keywords: International banking; Capital; Taxation; Corporate taxes; Commercial banks; Economic models; Bank taxation; debt bias; leverage.; international tax; subsidiaries; capital requirement; capital structure; tax differences; minimum capital requirement; foreign tax; local tax rate; tax changes; tax countries; tax profits; tax competition; equity returns; tax elasticity; tax benefits; foreign tax rates; high-tax countries; corporate income tax; capital ratio; foreign tax credit; average foreign tax rate; high-tax jurisdictions; local � taxation; average tax rate; equity finance; tax return; higher tax rates; tax journal; corporate tax base; effective tax rates; high- tax countries; taxable profits; domestic credit; national tax journal; local taxation; tax payment; tax coordination; low-tax countries; foreign taxes; effects of taxation; equity ratio; moral hazard; equity investment;

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References

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  1. Feld, Lars P. & Heckemeyer, Jost H. & Overesch, Michael, 2013. "Capital structure choice and company taxation: A meta-study," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 37(8), pages 2850-2866.
  2. Altshuler, Rosanne & Grubert, Harry, 2003. "Repatriation taxes, repatriation strategies and multinational financial policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 73-107, January.
  3. Gropp, R. & Vesala, J., 2001. "Deposit Insurance and Moral Hazard: Does the Counterfactual Matter?," Papers 47, Quebec a Montreal - Recherche en gestion.
  4. Buettner, Thiess & Wamser, Georg, 2013. "Internal Debt And Multinational Profit Shifting: Empirical Evidence From Firm-Level Panel Data," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 66(1), pages 63-95, March.
  5. John C. Driscoll & Aart C. Kraay, 1998. "Consistent Covariance Matrix Estimation With Spatially Dependent Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(4), pages 549-560, November.
  6. John R. Graham, 2003. "Taxes and Corporate Finance: A Review," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 16(4), pages 1075-1129.
  7. Murray Z. Frank & Vidhan K. Goyal, 2009. "Capital Structure Decisions: Which Factors Are Reliably Important?," Financial Management, Financial Management Association International, vol. 38(1), pages 1-37, 03.
  8. Ugo Albertazzi & Leonardo Gambacorta, 2007. "Bank profitability and taxation," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 649, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  9. Jacob de Haan & Tigran Poghosyan, 2011. "Bank Size, Market Concentration, and Bank Earnings Volatility in the US," DNB Working Papers 282, Netherlands Central Bank, Research Department.
  10. Grubert, Harry, 1998. "Taxes and the division of foreign operating income among royalties, interest, dividends and retained earnings," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 269-290, May.
  11. Egger, Peter & Eggert, Wolfgang & Keuschnigg, Christian & Winner, Hannes, 2010. "Corporate taxation, debt financing and foreign-plant ownership," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 96-107, January.
  12. DeAngelo, Harry & Masulis, Ronald W., 1980. "Optimal capital structure under corporate and personal taxation," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(1), pages 3-29, March.
  13. Mintz, Jack M. & Weichenrieder, Alfons J., 2010. "The Indirect Side of Direct Investment: Multinational Company Finance and Taxation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262014491, December.
  14. Myers, Stewart C. & Majluf, Nicolás S., 1945-, 1984. "Corporate financing and investment decisions when firms have information that investors do not have," Working papers 1523-84., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  15. Stewart C. Myers & Nicholas S. Majluf, 1984. "Corporate Financing and Investment Decisions When Firms Have InformationThat Investors Do Not Have," NBER Working Papers 1396, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Cerutti, Eugenio & Dell'Ariccia, Giovanni & Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad, 2005. "How banks go abroad : branches or subsidiaries ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3753, The World Bank.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Gropp, Reint, 2013. "Taxes, banks and financial stability," SAFE White Paper Series 6, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
  2. Horvath, B.L., 2013. "The impact of Taxation on Bank Leverage and Asset Risk," Discussion Paper 2013-076, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.

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