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Yet Another Reason to Tax Goods

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  • Carlos E. da Costa

    ()
    (Graduate School of Economics Getulio Vargas Foundation)

Abstract

An important finding of the new dynamic public finance literature is the validity of Atkinson and Stiglitz' uniform commodity tax prescription in a dynamic Mirrleesian setting. However, this need not apply to the taxation of goods across time, i.e., the taxation of savings. We model an overlapping generations economy where, following the new dynamic public finance literature, we assume that information regarding agents' productivities is private and changes through time, but depart from the rest of the literature in assuming that the government does not have full control of agents' savings. Optimal commodity taxes are shown to depend on off-equilibrium savings, thus overturning Atkinson and Stiglitz' result. With regards to the taxation of savings, the inverse Euler equation found in the literature becomes here a positive marginal tax rate prescription

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2006 Meeting Papers with number 188.

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Date of creation: 03 Dec 2006
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Handle: RePEc:red:sed006:188

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Keywords: Optimal Taxation; Non-observable savings; Multi-period agency;

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References

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  1. Mikhail Golosov, 2007. "Optimal Taxation With Endogenous Insurance Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 487-534, 05.
  2. Atkinson, A. B. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1976. "The design of tax structure: Direct versus indirect taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 55-75.
  3. Rogerson, William P, 1985. "Repeated Moral Hazard," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(1), pages 69-76, January.
  4. Deaton, Angus, 1979. "Optimally uniform commodity taxes," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 357-361.
  5. Cremer, Helmuth & Gahvari, Firouz, 1999. " Uncertainty, Commitment, and Optimal Taxation," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 1(1), pages 51-70.
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  7. Mikhail Golosov & Narayana Kocherlakota & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2002. "Optimal Indirect and Capital Taxation," Levine's Working Paper Archive 391749000000000449, David K. Levine.
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  9. Besley, Timothy & Jewitt, Ian, 1995. "Uniform taxation and consumer preferences," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 73-84, September.
  10. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre & Rochet, Jean-Charles, 2003. "Capital income taxation when inherited wealth is not observable," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(11), pages 2475-2490, October.
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  17. Ana Fernandes & Christopher Phelan, 1999. "A recursive formulation for repeated agency with history dependence," Staff Report 259, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
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  20. Chiappori, P.A. & Macho, I. & Rey, p. & Salanie, B., 1994. "Repeated Moral Hazard: The Role of Memory, Commitment, and the Acces to Credit Markets," Papers 06, Laval - Laboratoire Econometrie.
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  22. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre & Rochet, Jean-Charles, 2001. "Direct versus Indirect Taxation: The Design of the Tax Structure Revisted," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 42(3), pages 781-99, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Mikhail Golosov, 2007. "Optimal Taxation With Endogenous Insurance Markets," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 487-534, 05.
  2. Costa, Carlos Eugênio da & Maestri, Lucas Jóver, 2004. "The risk-properties of human capital and the design of government policies," Economics Working Papers (Ensaios Economicos da EPGE) 554, FGV/EPGE Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil).

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