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FAT or VAT? The Financial Activities Tax as a Substitute to Imposing Value Added Tax on Financial Services

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  • Erbe, Katharina
  • Büttner, Thiess

Abstract

This paper analyzes revenue and welfare effects of implementing a FAT both from a theoretical and a quantitative perspective. The theoretical analysis allows us to derive expressions for the revenue effects and the deadweight loss in a general equilibrium setting, which can be quantified with a minimum of information about the economy and key elasticities. Using data for Germany, the empirical quantification suggests that introducing a modest FAT with a rate of 3% results in a revenue gain of about 1.312 bn. If this revenue gain is used to reduce distorting labor taxes, the results point at a welfare gain of 1.092 bn. Comparing these results with Buettner and Erbe (2012), we find that the introduction of a FAT of 3% would generate similar revenue and welfare effects as a repeal of the financial sector VAT exemption (with a 19% VAT rate). However, taxing financial services through FAT may exert adverse location effects on financial service production. --

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Paper provided by Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association in its series Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order with number 79959.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc13:79959

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Web page: http://www.socialpolitik.org/
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  1. European Commission, 2010. "Financial Sector Taxation," Taxation Papers 25, Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union, European Commission.
  2. Lawrence H. Goulder & Roberton C. Williams III, 2003. "The Substantial Bias from Ignoring General Equilibrium Effects in Estimating Excess Burden, and a Practical Solution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(4), pages 898-927, August.
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