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Tax Effects on the Allocation of Capital Among Sectors and Among Individuals: A Portfolio Approach

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  • Joel Slemrod

Abstract

This paper deals with the allocational effects and implications for efficiency of a tax system in which the rate of tax on capital income differs depending on the recipient of the income and on the type of capital producing the income. It suggests that, in their attempts to measure the distortionary effect of the U.S. capital income tax system, economists may have been looking in the wrong places. In the presence of uncertainty, the intersectoral distortion may be much less than had previously been imagined. However, the tax system distorts at two other margins which have not received much attention. It distorts the inter-household allocation of the housing stock, since the after-tax rate of interest is one component of the opportunity cost of owner-occupied housing. It also distorts the inter-household allocation of risk-bearing. Calculations using a simple commutable general equilibrium model suggest that the excess burden from these latter two distortions are significant components of the total distortionary impact of the tax system.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 0951.

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Date of creation: Aug 1982
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Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:0951

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  1. Shoven, John B, 1976. "The Incidence and Efficiency Effects of Taxes on Income from Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 84(6), pages 1261-83, December.
  2. Arnold C. Harberger, 1962. "The Incidence of the Corporation Income Tax," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 70, pages 215.
  3. Alan J. Auerbach, 1981. "Evaluating the Taxation of Risky Assets," NBER Working Papers 0806, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1970. "Taxation, Risk-Taking, and the Allocation of Investment," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 305, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
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Cited by:
  1. James Berkovec & Don Fullerton, 1989. "The General Equilibrium Effects of Inflation on Housing Consumption and Investment," NBER Working Papers 2826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. James Berkovec & Don Fullerton, 1993. "A General Equilibrium Model of Housing, Taxes, and Portfolio Choice," NBER Working Papers 3505, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Fullerton, Don & Karayannis, Marios, 1994. "Tax evasion and the allocation of capital," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 257-278, October.

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