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Tax‐induced Dissimilarities Between Domestic and Foreign Mutual Funds in Italy


  • Roberto Savona


Using data from Italy over the period 1998–2002, this study investigates whether tax effects can account for differences in return patterns between domestic and foreign mutual funds, and if this dissimilarity translates into performance. The paper presents evidence that much of the difference between domestic and foreign funds is explained by the different tax systems. The asymmetry between the two groups, due to the fact that domestic funds are obliged to pay taxes on a daily basis while foreign funds are taxed when capital gains are collected, also affects performance. We prove that comparing pre‐tax returns, Italian funds are virtually indistinguishable from their foreign counterparts in terms of risk‐adjusted returns, while when comparing after‐tax returns, foreign funds outperform.

Suggested Citation

  • Roberto Savona, 2006. "Tax‐induced Dissimilarities Between Domestic and Foreign Mutual Funds in Italy," Economic Notes, Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, vol. 35(2), pages 173-202, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ecnote:v:35:y:2006:i:2:p:173-202
    DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-0300.2006.00164.x

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Elton, Edwin J & Gruber, Martin J, 1970. "Marginal Stockholder Tax Rates and the Clientele Effect," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 52(1), pages 68-74, February.
    2. William Vickrey, 1939. "Averaging of Income for Income-Tax Purposes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 47, pages 379-379.
    3. Cesari, Riccardo & Panetta, Fabio, 2002. "The performance of Italian equity funds," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 99-126, January.
    4. Auerbach, Alan J, 1991. "Retrospective Capital Gains Taxation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 167-178, March.
    5. Khorana, Ajay & Servaes, Henri & Tufano, Peter, 2005. "Explaining the size of the mutual fund industry around the world," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 145-185, October.
    6. Brown, Stephen J. & Goetzmann, William N., 1997. "Mutual fund styles," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 373-399, March.
    7. Ferson, Wayne E & Schadt, Rudi W, 1996. "Measuring Fund Strategy and Performance in Changing Economic Conditions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 51(2), pages 425-461, June.
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    Cited by:

    1. Grose, Chris & Dasilas, Apostolos & Alexakis, Christos, 2014. "Performance persistence in fixed interest funds: With an eye on the post-debt crisis period," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 155-182.
    2. Kee‐Hong Bae & Junesuh Yi, 2008. "The Impact of the Short‐Short Rule Repeal on the Timing Ability of Mutual Funds," Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(7‐8), pages 969-997, September.
    3. Benoît Dewaele & Iliya Markov & Hugues Pirotte & N. Tuchschmid, 2011. "Does manager offshore experience count in the alternative UCITS universe?," Working Papers CEB 11-060, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    4. Giuseppe Cappelletti & Giovanni Guazzarotti & Pietro Tommasino, 2019. "Tax Deferral and Mutual Fund Inflows: Evidence from a Quasi‐Natural Experiment," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 40(2), pages 211-237, June.
    5. Kee-Hong Bae & Junesuh Yi, 2008. "The Impact of the Short-Short Rule Repeal on the Timing Ability of Mutual Funds," Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 35(7-8), pages 969-997.

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