What Drives Gasoline Prices?
AbstractGasoline taxes are the most important tax on car use. The question naturally arises as to what tax would be adopted by a government that responds to the preferences of the public. To address that issue, we begin with the standard Downsian model, where policy is determined by the median voter. This model predicts that as long as the median voter is not a car user, he wants high taxes on road use and a road capacity that maximizes net tax revenues. When he becomes a driver himself, he wants road user taxes that are lower and only increase to control congestion, as well as more road capacity. We then use panel data for 28 countries and find support for our theory. When the median voter becomes a driver, the gasoline tax drops on average by 20%.
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 University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 091005.
Length: 31 pages
Date of creation: Jan 2010
Date of revision:
Gasoline taxes; Median voter theory; Political economy;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
- R48 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Government Pricing and Policy
- Q48 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Energy - - - Government Policy
- L98 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Government Policy
- Q52 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Pollution Control Costs; Distributional Effects; Employment Effects
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2010-04-17 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENE-2010-04-17 (Energy Economics)
- NEP-URE-2010-04-17 (Urban & Real Estate Economics)
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.:
- Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1999.
"The Size and Scope of Government: Comparative Politics With Rational Politicians,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
2051, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1999. "The size and scope of government:: Comparative politics with rational politicians," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(4-6), pages 699-735, April.
- Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1998. "The size and scope of government: Comparative politics with rational politicians," Seminar Papers 658, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
- Persson, T. & Tabellini, G., 1998. "The Size and Scope of Government: Comparative Politics with Rational Politicians," Papers 658, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
- Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 1998. "The Size and Scope of Government: Comparative Politics with Rational Politicians," NBER Working Papers 6848, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Amihai Glazer & Stef Proost, 2007. "The Preferences of Voters Over Road Tolls and Road Capacity," Working Papers 060712, University of California-Irvine, Department of Economics.
- Tim Besley & Harvey S. Rosen, 1997.
"Vertical externalities in tax settings: evidence from gasoline and cigarettes,"
IFS Working Papers
W97/23, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
- Besley, Timothy J. & Rosen, Harvey S., 1998. "Vertical externalities in tax setting: evidence from gasoline and cigarettes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 383-398, December.
- Timothy J. Besley & Harvey S. Rosen, 1999. "Vertical Externalities in Tax Setting: Evidence from Gasoline and Cigarettes," NBER Working Papers 6517, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Giovanni S.F. Bruno, 2004.
"Approximating the Bias of the LSDV Estimator for Dynamic Unbalanced Panel Data Models,"
KITeS Working Papers
159, KITeS, Centre for Knowledge, Internationalization and Technology Studies, Universita' Bocconi, Milano, Italy, revised Jul 2004.
- Bruno, Giovanni S.F., 2005. "Approximating the bias of the LSDV estimator for dynamic unbalanced panel data models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 87(3), pages 361-366, June.
- Christopher Decker & Mark Wohar, 2007. "Determinants of state diesel fuel excise tax rates: the political economy of fuel taxation in the United States," The Annals of Regional Science, Springer, vol. 41(1), pages 171-188, March.
- Andrews, Donald W. K. & Lu, Biao, 2001. "Consistent model and moment selection procedures for GMM estimation with application to dynamic panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 101(1), pages 123-164, March.
- Stefan de Wachter & Elias Tzavalis, 2004. "Detection of Structural Breaks in Linear Dynamic Panel Data Models," Working Papers 505, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
- Jochimsen, Beate & Nuscheler, Robert, 2007.
"The political economy of the German Länder deficits,"
Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Market Processes and Governance
SP II 2007-06, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
- Jochimsen, Beate & Nuscheler, Robert, 2005. "The Political Economy of the German Länder Deficits," Discussion Papers 2005/6, Free University Berlin, School of Business & Economics.
- Perron, P. & Bai, J., 1995.
"Estimating and Testing Linear Models with Multiple Structural Changes,"
Cahiers de recherche
9552, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.
- Jushan Bai & Pierre Perron, 1998. "Estimating and Testing Linear Models with Multiple Structural Changes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 66(1), pages 47-78, January.
- Perron, P. & Bai, J., 1995. "Estimating and Testing Linear Models with Multiple Structural Changes," Cahiers de recherche 9552, Centre interuniversitaire de recherche en économie quantitative, CIREQ.
- Luca De Benedictis & Rodolfo Helg, 2002. "Globalization," LIUC Papers in Economics 112, Cattaneo University (LIUC).
- Phillips, Peter C.B. & Sul, Donggyu, 2007.
"Bias in dynamic panel estimation with fixed effects, incidental trends and cross section dependence,"
Journal of Econometrics,
Elsevier, vol. 137(1), pages 162-188, March.
- Peter C.B. Phillips & Donggyu Sul, 2004. "Bias in Dynamic Panel Estimation with Fixed Effects, Incidental Trends and Cross Section Dependence," Yale School of Management Working Papers ysm428, Yale School of Management.
- Peter C.B. Phillips & Donggyu Sul, 2003. "Bias in Dynamic Panel Estimation with Fixed Effects, Incidental Trends and Cross Section Dependence," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1438, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised Jun 2004.
- Bun, Maurice J.G. & Carree, Martin A., 2006. "Bias-corrected estimation in dynamic panel data models with heteroscedasticity," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 92(2), pages 220-227, August.
- Gevers, Louis & Proost, Stefaan, 1978. "Some effects of taxation and collective goods in postwar America : A tentative appraisal," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 115-137, April.
- Tim Besley & Stephen Coate, .
""An Economic Model of Representative Democracy'',"
CARESS Working Papres
95-02, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
- Romer, Thomas & Rosenthal, Howard, 1979. "The elusive median voter," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 143-170, October.
- Maurice J.G. Bun & Jan F. Kiviet, 2002.
"The Effects of Dynamic Feedbacks on LS and MM Estimator Accuracy in Panel Data Models,"
Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers
02-101/4, Tinbergen Institute, revised 19 Feb 2004.
- Bun, Maurice J.G. & Kiviet, Jan F., 2006. "The effects of dynamic feedbacks on LS and MM estimator accuracy in panel data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 132(2), pages 409-444, June.
- Mohn, Klaus & Misund, Bård, 2009. "Investment and uncertainty in the international oil and gas industry," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(2), pages 240-248, March.
- Judson, Ruth A. & Owen, Ann L., 1999. "Estimating dynamic panel data models: a guide for macroeconomists," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 9-15, October.
- Fredriksson, Per G. & Millimet, D.L.Daniel L., 2004. "Comparative politics and environmental taxation," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 705-722, July.
- Andrews, Donald W K, 1993.
"Tests for Parameter Instability and Structural Change with Unknown Change Point,"
Econometric Society, vol. 61(4), pages 821-56, July.
- Donald W.K. Andrews, 1990. "Tests for Parameter Instability and Structural Change with Unknown Change Point," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 943, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Rietveld, Piet & van Woudenberg, Stefan, 2005. "Why fuel prices differ," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 79-92, January.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jennifer dos Santos).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.