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The Effects of Tax Shocks on Output: Not So Large, but Not Small Either

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  • Roberto Perotti

Abstract

I argue that, on theoretical grounds, the discretionary component of taxation should be allowed to have different effects than the automatic response of tax revenues to macroeconomic variables. Based on a novel dataset, I show two results. First, responses to a tax shock that allow for a distinction between the discretionary and the endogenous components of tax changes are about halfway between the large effects estimated by Romer and Romer (2010) and the smaller effects estimated, for instance, by Favero and Giavazzi (2012) or Blanchard and Perotti (2002). Second, there is almost no statistically significant evidence of anticipation effects. (JEL E23, E62, H22, H24, H25, K34)

Suggested Citation

  • Roberto Perotti, 2012. "The Effects of Tax Shocks on Output: Not So Large, but Not Small Either," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 214-237, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejpol:v:4:y:2012:i:2:p:214-37
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/pol.4.2.214
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Karel Mertens & Morten O. Ravn, 2013. "The Dynamic Effects of Personal and Corporate Income Tax Changes in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1212-1247, June.
    2. repec:nbr:nberch:13348 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Karel Mertens & Morten O. Ravn, 2012. "Empirical Evidence on the Aggregate Effects of Anticipated and Unanticipated US Tax Policy Shocks," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 4(2), pages 145-181, May.
    4. Cochrane, John H., 1998. "What do the VARs mean? Measuring the output effects of monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 277-300, April.
    5. Karel Mertens & Morten Overgaard Ravn, 2011. "Understanding the Aggregate Effects of Anticipated and Unanticipated Tax Policy Shocks," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), pages 27-54, January.
    6. Olivier Blanchard & Roberto Perotti, 2002. "An Empirical Characterization of the Dynamic Effects of Changes in Government Spending and Taxes on Output," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 117(4), pages 1329-1368.
    7. Karel Mertens & Morten Overgaard Ravn, 2011. "Understanding the Aggregate Effects of Anticipated and Unanticipated Tax Policy Shocks," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 14(1), pages 27-54, January.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. David B. Cashin & Jamie Lenney & Byron F. Lutz & William B. Peterman, 2017. "Fiscal Policy and Aggregate Demand in the U.S. Before, During and Following the Great Recession," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2017-061, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    2. Alessandro Petretto, 2015. "Le specificità dei processi di revisione della spesa pubblica locale," ECONOMIA PUBBLICA, FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2015(1), pages 157-175.
    3. Shafik Hebous & Tom Zimmermann, 2014. "Revisiting the Narrative Approach of Estimating Tax Multipliers," CESifo Working Paper Series 5040, CESifo Group Munich.
    4. Mencinger, Jernej & Aristovnik, Aleksander & Verbič, Miroslav, 2017. "Asymmetric effects of fiscal policy in EU and OECD countries," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 448-461.
    5. Landon, Stuart & Smith, Constance, 2017. "Does the design of a fiscal rule matter for welfare?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 226-237.
    6. repec:bla:coecpo:v:35:y:2017:i:1:p:165-192 is not listed on IDEAS
    7. Riera-Crichton, Daniel & Vegh, Carlos A. & Vuletin, Guillermo, 2016. "Tax multipliers: Pitfalls in measurement and identification," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 30-48.
    8. Andrew Hughes Hallett, 2012. "Alberto Alesina: The Science of Using Political Economy Concepts to Explain the Macroeconomic Landscape," Atlantic Economic Journal, Springer;International Atlantic Economic Society, vol. 40(4), pages 351-365, December.
    9. Sebastian Gechert & Ansgar Rannenberg, 2014. "Are Fiscal Multipliers Regime-Dependent? A Meta Regression Analysis," IMK Working Paper 139-2014, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
    10. Winter, Christoph & Kraus, Beatrice, 2016. "Do Tax Changes Affect Credit Markets and Financial Frictions? Evidence from Credit Spreads," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145636, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    11. Virkola, Tuomo, 2014. "Exchange Rate Regime, Fiscal Foresight and the Effectiveness of Fiscal Policy in a Small Open Economy," ETLA Reports 20, The Research Institute of the Finnish Economy.
    12. Mertens, Karel & Ravn, Morten O., 2014. "A reconciliation of SVAR and narrative estimates of tax multipliers," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(S), pages 1-19.
    13. Hondroyiannis, George & Papaoikonomou, Dimitrios, 2015. "When does it pay to tax? Evidence from state-dependent fiscal multipliers in the euro area," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 116-128.
    14. Manuel Coutinho Pereira & Lara Wemans, 2015. "Output Effects of a Measure of Tax Shocks Based on Changes in Legislation for Portugal," Hacienda Pública Española, IEF, vol. 215(4), pages 27-62, December.
    15. Florin O. Bilbiie & Tommaso Monacelli & Roberto Perotti, 2013. "Public Debt and Redistribution with Borrowing Constraints," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 0, pages 64-98, February.
    16. Hebous, Shafik & Zimmermann, Tom, 2014. "Revisiting the Narrative Approach of Estimating Fiscal Multipliers," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100408, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    17. repec:bla:scandj:v:120:y:2018:i:2:p:428-439 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Robert S. Chirinko & Daniel J. Wilson, 2016. "Job Creation Tax Credits, Fiscal Foresight, and Job Growth: Evidence from U.S. States," CESifo Working Paper Series 5771, CESifo Group Munich.
    19. Felix Reichling & Charles Whalen, 2012. "Assessing the Short-Term Effects on Output of Changes in Federal Fiscal Policies: Working Paper 2012-08," Working Papers 43278, Congressional Budget Office.
    20. Sebastian Gechert & Christoph Paetz & Paloma Villanueva, 2016. "Top-Down vs. Bottom-Up? Reconcilling the Effects of Tax and Transfer Shocks on Output," IMK Working Paper 169-2016, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
    21. Vivek Prasad, 2015. "Balanced Budget Tax Cuts in a Liquidity-Constrained Economy," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 83, pages 87-119, September.
    22. repec:clp:wpaper:wp1 is not listed on IDEAS
    23. Jones, Paul M. & Olson, Eric & Wohar, Mark E., 2015. "Asymmetric tax multipliers," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 38-48.
    24. Joao Sousa Andrade & Irina Syssoyeva-Masson, 2016. "Investigating the presence of long memory in debt series and its relation with growth," EcoMod2016 9627, EcoMod.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E23 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Production
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence
    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • K34 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Tax Law

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