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Federal Personal Income Tax Policy in the 1920s

Author

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  • Smiley, Gene
  • Keehn, Richard H.

Abstract

During the 1920s, federal personal income tax rates, which had been dramatically increased during World War I, were sharply reduced. These tax rate cuts have often been cited as an example of a successful supply-side policy, but they have also been criticized as policies designed primarily to benefit the wealthy. We argue that a primary motive for the tax cuts of the 1920s was the desire to reduce the tax avoidance by wealthier individuals that occurred as a result of the previous tax rate increases and that the tax cuts enacted did reduce tax avoidance.

Suggested Citation

  • Smiley, Gene & Keehn, Richard H., 1995. "Federal Personal Income Tax Policy in the 1920s," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 55(2), pages 285-303, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:cup:jechis:v:55:y:1995:i:02:p:285-303_04
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    Cited by:

    1. Matthew Fisher-Post, 2020. "Examining the Great Leveling: New Evidence on Midcentury American Inequality," PSE Working Papers hal-02876981, HAL.
    2. Matthew Fisher-Post, 2020. "Examining the Great Leveling: New Evidence on Midcentury American Inequality," World Inequality Lab Working Papers hal-02876981, HAL.
    3. Matthew Fisher-Post, 2020. "Examining the Great Leveling: New Evidence on Midcentury American Inequality," Working Papers hal-02876981, HAL.
    4. O'Sullivan, Mary, 2019. "Past meets present in policymaking: The Federal Reserve and the U.S. money market, 1913-1929," Working Papers unige:121790, University of Geneva, Paul Bairoch Institute of Economic History.
    5. Christina D. Romer & David H. Romer, 2014. "The Incentive Effects of Marginal Tax Rates: Evidence from the Interwar Era," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 6(3), pages 242-281, August.
    6. Farquet, Christophe & Leimgruber, Matthieu, 2016. "Explaining the failure of international tax regulations throughout the 20th century. Offshore Markets, Swiss Tax Haven's Diplomacy and Fiscal Debates in International Organizations, From the League of," Working Papers unige:88348, University of Geneva, Paul Bairoch Institute of Economic History.

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