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Demographics and the politics of capital taxation in a life-cycle economy

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  • Mateos-Planas, Xavier

Abstract

This article studies the effects of demographics on the mix of tax rates on labour and capital. It uses a quantitative general-equilibrium overlapping-generations model where tax rates are voted without past commitments in every period and characterized as a Markov equilibrium. In the U.S., the younger voting-age population in 1990 compared to 1965 accounts for the observed decline in the relative capital tax rate between those two years. A younger population rises the net return to capital, leads voters to increase their savings, and results in a preference for lower taxes on capital Conversely, ageing might increase capital taxation. Keywords; markov policies, demographic change, capital and labor taxation

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton in its series Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics with number 0909.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 2009
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Handle: RePEc:stn:sotoec:0909

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  1. John Hassler & José V. Rodríguez Mora & Kjetil Storesletten & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2003. "The Survival of the Welfare State," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 87-112, March.
  2. Assaf Razin & Efraim Sadka & Phillip Swagel, 2001. "The Aging Population and the Size of the Welfare State," NBER Working Papers 8405, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Persson, T. & Tabellini, G., 1993. "Is Inequality Harmful for Growth," Papers 537, Stockholm - International Economic Studies.
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  5. Jose-Victor Rios-Rull & Per Krusell, 1999. "On the Size of U.S. Government: Political Economy in the Neoclassical Growth Model," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(5), pages 1156-1181, December.
  6. Huffman, Gregory W., 1996. "Endogenous tax determination and the distribution of wealth," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 207-242, December.
  7. Jonathan Heathcote & Kjetil Storesletten & Giovanni L. Violante, 2008. "The Macroeconomic Implications of Rising Wage Inequality in the United States," NBER Working Papers 14052, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Alberto Alesina & Dani Rodrik, 1991. "Distributive Politics and Economic Growth," NBER Working Papers 3668, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Elisabeth R. Gerber & Jeffrey B. Lewis, 2004. "Beyond the Median: Voter Preferences, District Heterogeneity, and Political Representation," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(6), pages 1364-1383, December.
  10. Phillip Swagel & Efraim Sadka & Assaf Razin, 2002. "The Aging of the Population and the Size of the Welfare State," IMF Working Papers 02/68, International Monetary Fund.
  11. Mateos-Planas, Xavier, 2008. "A quantitative theory of social security without commitment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3-4), pages 652-671, April.
  12. Enrique G. Mendoza & Assaf Razin & Linda L. Tesar, 1994. "Effective Tax Rates in Macroeconomics: Cross-Country Estimates of Tax Rates on Factor Incomes and Consumption," NBER Working Papers 4864, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Assaf Razin & Efraim Sadka & Phillip Swagel, 2004. "Capital income taxation under majority voting with aging population," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 140(3), pages 476-495, September.
  14. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1994. "Representative democracy and capital taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 53-70, September.
  15. Krusell, Per & Quadrini, Vincenzo & Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor, 1997. "Politico-economic equilibrium and economic growth," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 243-272, January.
  16. Kenneth R. Beauchemin, 1998. "Intergenerational Politics, Fiscal Policy and Productivity," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 1(4), pages 835-858, October.
  17. John D. Griffin, 2008. "Measuring Legislator Ideology," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 89(2), pages 337-350.
  18. David Carey & Harry Tchilinguirian, 2000. "Average Effective Tax Rates on Capital, Labour and Consumption," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 258, OECD Publishing.
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Cited by:
  1. Jorge Soares, Marina Azzimonti, Pierre-Daniel Sarte & Pierre-Daniel Sarte & Jorge Soares, 2006. "Optimal Policy and (the Lack of) Time Inconsistency: Insights from Simple Models," Working Papers 06-08, University of Delaware, Department of Economics.
  2. Assaf Razin, 2013. "Migration into the Welfare State: Tax and Migration Competition," NBER Working Papers 19346, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Mateos-Planas, Xavier, 2008. "A quantitative theory of social security without commitment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(3-4), pages 652-671, April.

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