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On Taxation Pass-Through for a Monopoly Firm

  • Rabah AMIR
  • Isabelle MARET
  • Michael TROEGE

This paper investigates the pass-through of an excise tax imposed on a monopoly firm with constant marginal cost. The optimal price increases as tax increases for any demand function. Tax pass-through is globally under or in excess of 100% according as the direct demand function is log-concave or log-convex. The analysis relies on supermodular optimization and delivers conclusions based on minimal sufficient assumptions in a simple, broadly accessible and self-contained framework. Further results allow for mixed conditions that provide precise and local determination of pass-through. Several illustrative examples are given. Policy conclusions relating to the relative wisdom of taxing high versus low cost monopoly firms are drawn from the results.

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Article provided by ENSAE in its journal Annals of Economics and Statistics.

Volume (Year): (2004)
Issue (Month): 75-76 ()
Pages: 155-172

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Handle: RePEc:adr:anecst:y:2004:i:75-76:p:08
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  1. Edlin, Aaron S. & Shannon, Chris, 1998. "Strict Monotonicity in Comparative Statics," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 81(1), pages 201-219, July.
  2. Anderson, Simon P. & de Palma, Andre & Kreider, Brent, 2001. "Tax incidence in differentiated product oligopoly," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(2), pages 173-192, August.
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  7. Amir, Rabah, 1996. "Cournot Oligopoly and the Theory of Supermodular Games," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 132-148, August.
  8. Amir, R., 1991. "Sensitivity analysis of multi-sector optimal economic dynamics," CORE Discussion Papers 1991006, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  9. Hamilton, Stephen F., 1999. "Tax incidence under oligopoly: a comparison of policy approaches," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(2), pages 233-245, February.
  10. Susan Athey, 2002. "Monotone Comparative Statics Under Uncertainty," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 117(1), pages 187-223, February.
  11. Xavier Vives, 2001. "Oligopoly Pricing: Old Ideas and New Tools," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026272040x, June.
  12. Milgrom, Paul & Roberts, John, 1990. "Rationalizability, Learning, and Equilibrium in Games with Strategic Complementarities," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 58(6), pages 1255-77, November.
  13. Novshek, William, 1985. "On the Existence of Cournot Equilibrium," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(1), pages 85-98, January.
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