Household Incomes and Redistribution in the European Union: Quantifying the Equalising Properties of Taxes and Benefits
AbstractThe systems of direct taxes and cash benefits in the Member States of the European Union vary considerably in size and structure. We explore their direct impacts on cross-sectional income inequality (termed "redistributive effect" for the purpose of this paper) using EUROMOD, a tax-benefit microsimulation model for the European Union. This relies on harmonised household micro-data representative of each national population together with simulations of entitlements to cash benefits and liabilities for taxes and social contributions. It allows us to draw a more comprehensive – and comparable – picture of the combined effects of transfers and taxes than is usually possible. We decompose the redistributive effect of tax-benefit systems to assess and compare the effectiveness of individual policies at reducing income disparities. The following categories of benefits and taxes are considered both individually and in combination: income taxes, social contributions, cash benefits designed to target the poor or redistribute inter-personally (through means-testing) as well as cash benefits intended to redistribute intra-personally across the lifecycle (through social insurance or contingency-based entitlement). We derive results for the 15 "old" members of the European Union and present them for each country separately as well as for the EU-15 as a whole.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 1824.
Length: 27 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2005
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Papadimitriou, D.B. (ed.), The Distributional Effects of Government Spending and Taxation, Palgrave MacMillan 2006
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Other versions of this item:
- Immervoll, Herwig & Levy, Horacio & Lietz, Christine & Mantovani, Daniela & O'Donoghue, Cathal & Sutherland, Holly & Verbist, Gerlinde, 2006. "Household Incomes and Redistribution in the European Union: Quantifying the Equalising Properties of Taxes and Benefits," Economics Series 184, Institute for Advanced Studies.
- C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access
- D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
- H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence
- H55 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Social Security and Public Pensions
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-11-05 (All new papers)
- NEP-EEC-2005-11-05 (European Economics)
- NEP-PBE-2005-11-05 (Public Economics)
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