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Heterogeneous Firms, "Profit Shifting" FDI and International Tax Competition

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Abstract

Larger firms are more likely to use tax haven operations to exploit international tax differences. We study a tax game between a large country and a tax haven modeling heterogenous monopolistic firms, which can shift profits abroad. We shows that a higher degree of firm heterogeneity (a mean-preserving spread of the cost distribution) increases the degree of tax competition, i.e. it decreases the equilibrium tax rate of the large country, leads to higher outflows of its tax base and thus decreases its equilibrium tax revenue. Similar effects hold for a higher substitutability across varieties. We find that models with homogeneous firms understate the strenght of tax competition.

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Paper provided by Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne in its series Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne with number 09073.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:09073

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Keywords: Heterogenous firms; tax competition; profit shifting; tax havens.;

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