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Tax Policy Under Keeping Up with the Joneses and Imperfect Competition

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  • Jang-Ting Guo

    () (Department of Economics, University of California)

Abstract

This paper examines the optimal (first-best) fiscal policy in a stochastic, infinite-horizon representative agent model that exhibits a ¡°keeping up with the Joneses¡± utility function and imperfectly competitive product markets. We find that the optimal labor tax is a constant, whose sign is determined by the relative strength of consumption externality and monopoly power. Moreover, the optimal capital tax is unambiguously negative and affects the economy countercyclically. Our analysis shows that models with capital accumulation, imperfect competition, and ¡°keeping up with the Joneses¡± preferences call for traditional Keynesian demand-management policies that are designed to mitigate business cycle fluctuations.

Suggested Citation

  • Jang-Ting Guo, 2005. "Tax Policy Under Keeping Up with the Joneses and Imperfect Competition," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, vol. 6(1), pages 25-36, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:cuf:journl:y:2005:v:6:i:1:p:25-36
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Aiyagari, S Rao, 1995. "Optimal Capital Income Taxation with Incomplete Markets, Borrowing Constraints, and Constant Discounting," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, pages 1158-1175.
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    5. Benhabib, Jess & Rustichini, Aldo, 1997. "Optimal Taxes without Commitment," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 231-259, December.
    6. Bill Dupor & Wen-Fang Liu, 2003. "Jealousy and Equilibrium Overconsumption," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 423-428.
    7. Kenneth L. Judd, 1997. "The Optimal Tax Rate for Capital Income is Negative," NBER Working Papers 6004, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Jaime Alonso-Carrera & Jordi Caball?Author-Email: jordi.caballe@uab.es & Xavier Raurich, 2001. "Income Taxation with Habit Formation and Consumption Externalities," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 496.01, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
    9. Dixit, Avinash K & Stiglitz, Joseph E, 1977. "Monopolistic Competition and Optimum Product Diversity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 297-308.
    10. Lahiri, Amartya & Puhakka, Mikko, 1998. "Habit Persistence in Overlapping Generations Economies under Pure Exchange," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 176-186, January.
    11. Rogerson, Richard, 1988. "Indivisible labor, lotteries and equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 3-16, January.
    12. Gali, Jordi, 1994. "Keeping Up with the Joneses: Consumption Externalities, Portfolio Choice, and Asset Prices," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 26(1), pages 1-8, February.
    13. Correia, Isabel H., 1996. "Should capital income be taxed in the steady state?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, pages 147-151.
    14. Guo, Jang-Ting & Lansing, Kevin J., 1999. "Optimal taxation of capital income with imperfectly competitive product markets," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 23(7), pages 967-995, June.
    15. Harald Uhlig & Lars Ljungqvist, 2000. "Tax Policy and Aggregate Demand Management under Catching Up with the Joneses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, pages 356-366.
    16. Abel, Andrew B., 1999. "Risk premia and term premia in general equilibrium," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 3-33, February.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Liu, Chia-ying & Chang, Juin-jen, 2011. "Keeping up with the Joneses, consumer ethnocentrism, and optimal taxation," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 1519-1525, July.
    2. Goerke, Laszlo & Neugart, Michael, 2017. "Social comparisons in oligopsony," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, pages 196-209.
    3. Jang-Ting Guo & Juin-Jen Chang, 2008. "Social Status and Optimal Income Taxation," Working Papers 200814, University of California at Riverside, Department of Economics, revised Dec 2008.
    4. Tervala, Juha, 2008. "Jealousy and monetary policy," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 1797-1802, October.
    5. Shu-Hua Chen, 2012. "On the Growth and Stability Effects of Habit Formation and Durability in Consumption," Annals of Economics and Finance, Society for AEF, pages 283-298.
    6. Laszlo Goerke & Michael Neugart, 2017. "Social comparisons in Oligopsony," IAAEG Discussion Papers until 2011 201704, Institute of Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the European Union (IAAEU).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Fiscal Policy; Keeping Up with the Joneses; Imperfect Competition;

    JEL classification:

    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • E63 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Comparative or Joint Analysis of Fiscal and Monetary Policy; Stabilization; Treasury Policy
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation

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