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Taxation and Internal Migration: Evidence from the Swiss Census Using Community-Level Variation in Income Tax Rates

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Author Info

  • Liebig, Thomas

    ()
    (OECD)

  • Puhani, Patrick A.

    ()
    (Leibniz University of Hannover)

  • Sousa-Poza, Alfonso

    ()
    (University of Hohenheim)

Abstract

We investigate the relationship between income tax rate variation and internal migration for the unique case of Switzerland, whose system of determining tax rates primarily at the community level results in enough variation to permit analysis of their influence on migration. Specifically, using Swiss census data, we analyze migratory responses to tax rate variations for various groups defined by age, education, and nationality/residence permit. The results suggest that young Swiss college graduates are most sensitive to tax rate differences, but the estimated effects are not large enough to offset the revenue-increasing effect of a rise in tax rate. The migratory responses of foreigners and other age-education groups are even smaller, and reverse causation seems negligible.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2374.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2006
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Regional Science, 2007, 47 (4), 807-836
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2374

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Keywords: Switzerland; mobility; taxation; immigration; residence permit; visa status; foreigners;

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Cited by:
  1. Kleven, Henrik & Landais, Camille & Saez, Emmanuel & Schultz, Esben, 2013. "Migration and Wage Effects of Taxing Top Earners: Evidence from the Foreigners' Tax Scheme in Denmark," CEPR Discussion Papers 9410, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  2. Laurent Simula, 2013. "Tax Competition and Migration," 2013 Meeting Papers 1126, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. Young, Cristobal & Varner, Charles, 2011. "Millionaire Migration And State Taxation Of Top Incomes: Evidence From A Natural Experiment," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 64(2), pages 255-83, June.
  4. Hansjörg Blöchliger & José Maria Pinero Campos, 2011. "Tax Competition Between Sub-Central Governments," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 872, OECD Publishing.
  5. Etienne Lehmann & Laurent Simula & Alain Trannoy, 2014. "Tax Me if You Can! Optimal Nonlinear Income Tax between Competing Governments," AMSE Working Papers 1415, Aix-Marseille School of Economics, Marseille, France, revised 14 May 2014.
  6. Mario Morger, 2013. "What Do Immigrants Value Most About Switzerland? Evidence of the Relative Importance of Income Taxes," CESifo Working Paper Series 4134, CESifo Group Munich.
  7. Lars P. Feld & Emmanuelle Reulier, 2009. "Strategic Tax Competition in Switzerland: Evidence from a Panel of the Swiss Cantons," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 10, pages 91-114, 02.
  8. Giertz, Seth H. & Tosun, Mehmet S., 2012. "Migration Elasticities, Fiscal Federalism and the Ability of States to Redistribute Income," IZA Discussion Papers 6798, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Timm Bönke & Beate Jochimsen & Carsten Schröder, 2013. "Fiscal Federalism and Tax Administration: Evidence from Germany," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 1307, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  10. Feld Lars P. & Baskaran Thushyanthan, 2010. "Federalism, Budget Deficits and Public Debt: On the Reform of Germany's Fiscal Constitution," Review of Law & Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 6(3), pages 365-393, December.

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