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Why is capital so immobile internationally? Possible explanation and implications for capital income taxation

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  • Bovenberg, A.L.

    (Tilburg University)

  • Gordon, R.H.

Abstract

The evidence on international capital immobility is extensive, including the lack of international portfolio diversification, real interest differentials across countries, and the high correlation between domestic savings and investment. The authors develop a model with asymmetric information between countries that helps rationalize all the above observations and then examine the implications of this model for optimal domestic tax policy. Without asymmetric information, past work showed that small open economies should not impose corporate income taxes. With asymmetric information, the optimal policy instead involves government subsidies to capital imports. Some omitted factors that argue against subsidizing capital imports are explored briefly. Copyright 1996 by American Economic Association.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Tilburg University in its series Open Access publications from Tilburg University with number urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-73564.

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Date of creation: 1996
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Publication status: Published in American Economic Review (1996) v.86, p.1057-1075
Handle: RePEc:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-73564

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Web page: http://www.tilburguniversity.edu/

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  1. Razin, Assaf & Sadka, Efraim, 1991. "International tax competition and gains from tax harmonization," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 69-76, September.
  2. Tesar, Linda L., 1991. "Savings, investment and international capital flows," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(1-2), pages 55-78, August.
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  8. French, Kenneth R & Poterba, James M, 1991. "Investor Diversification and International Equity Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(2), pages 222-26, May.
  9. Lawrence H. Summers, 1988. "Tax Policy and International Competitiveness," NBER Chapters, in: International Aspects of Fiscal Policies, pages 349-386 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Goodspeed, T-J & White, A-D, 1996. "International taxation," Papers 96-11, Wellesley College - Department of Economics.
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  15. Cumby, Robert E. & Mishkin, Frederic S., 1986. "The international linkage of real interest rates: The European-US connection," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 5-23, March.
  16. Tamim Bayoumi, 1990. "Saving-Investment Correlations: Immobile Capital, Government Policy, or Endogenous Behavior?," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 37(2), pages 360-387, June.
  17. Linda L. Tesar & Ingrid M. Werner, 1994. "International Equity Transactions and U.S. Portfolio Choice," NBER Chapters, in: The Internationalization of Equity Markets, pages 185-227 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  19. Roger H. Gordon & Hal R. Varian, 1986. "Taxation of Asset Income in the Presence of a World Securites Market," NBER Working Papers 1994, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  25. Akerlof, George A, 1970. "The Market for 'Lemons': Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500, August.
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