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Flattening the Effective Marginal Tax Rate Structure in Australia: Policy Simulations Using the Melbourne Institute Tax and Transfer Simulator

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  • John Creedy
  • Guyonne Kalb
  • Hsein Kew

Abstract

This article uses the Melbourne Institute Tax and Transfer Simulator to examine the effects of a reduction in the means-tested benefit taper, or withdrawal, rates in Australia to 30 per cent. That is, all taper rates of 50 per cent and 70 per cent in the March 1998 benefit system are reduced to 30 per cent, while leaving all basic benefit levels unchanged. This change is therefore expected to 'flatten' the tax structure by reducing the high marginal tax rates applying to those with relatively low incomes and increasing the marginal tax rates of medium incomes. Simulations in which all individuals are assumed to remain at their pre-reform labour supply levels are compared with behavioural simulations in which the majority of individuals are free to adjust the number of hours worked. The results reflect only the supply side of the labour market. The database used is the 1997-98 Survey of Income and Housing Costs, so that weekly incomes are based on the financial year 1997-98. The comparison shows that, for sole parents, accounting for behavioural effects of the reform results in a lower estimated expenditure for government, whereas for couples, accounting for behavioural effects results in a higher estimated expenditure. Copyright 2003 The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research.

Suggested Citation

  • John Creedy & Guyonne Kalb & Hsein Kew, 2003. "Flattening the Effective Marginal Tax Rate Structure in Australia: Policy Simulations Using the Melbourne Institute Tax and Transfer Simulator," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 36(2), pages 156-172.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ausecr:v:36:y:2003:i:2:p:156-172
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Lixin Cai & Guyonne Kalb & Yi-Ping Tseng & Ha Vu, 2008. "The Effect of Financial Incentives on Labour Supply: Evidence for Lone Parents from Microsimulation and Quasi-Experimental Evaluation," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 29(2), pages 285-325, June.
    2. John Creedy & Guyonne Kalb, 2005. "Behavioural Microsimulation Modelling for Tax Policy Analysis in Australia: Experience and Prospects," Australian Journal of Labour Economics (AJLE), Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre (BCEC), Curtin Business School, vol. 8(1), pages 73-110, March.
    3. José Labeaga & Xisco Oliver & Amedeo Spadaro, 2008. "Discrete choice models of labour supply, behavioural microsimulation and the Spanish tax reforms," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 6(3), pages 247-273, September.
    4. John Creedy & Guyonne Kalb, 2005. "Discrete Hours Labour Supply Modelling: Specification, Estimation and Simulation," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(5), pages 697-734, December.
    5. repec:eme:ceapzz:s0573-855520140000293006 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Robert Breunig & Deborah A. Cobb-Clark & Xiaodong Gong, 2008. "Improving the Modelling of Couples' Labour Supply," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 84(267), pages 466-485, December.
    7. Guyonne Kalb, 2010. "Modelling Labour Supply Responses in Australia and New Zealand," Chapters,in: Tax Reform in Open Economies, chapter 8 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    8. Rolf Aaberge & Ugo Colombino, 2014. "Labour Supply Models," Contributions to Economic Analysis,in: Handbook of Microsimulation Modelling, volume 127, pages 167-221 Emerald Publishing Ltd.
    9. John Creedy & Guyonne Kalb, 2005. "Behavioural Microsimulation Modelling With the Melbourne Institute Tax and Transfer Simulator(MITTS) : Uses and Extensions," Department of Economics - Working Papers Series 932, The University of Melbourne.
    10. John Creedy & Guyonne Kalb & Hsein Kew, 2007. "Confidence Intervals For Policy Reforms In Behavioural Tax Microsimulation Modelling," Bulletin of Economic Research, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 59(1), pages 37-65, January.
    11. Guyonne Kalb & Rosanna Scutella, 2003. "New Zealand Labour Supply from 1991-2001: An Analysis Based on a Discrete Choice Structural Utility Model," Treasury Working Paper Series 03/23, New Zealand Treasury.
    12. Guyonne Kalb, 2002. "Estimation of Labour Supply Models for Four Separate Groups in the Australian Population," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2002n24, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.

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