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Bank profitability and taxation

  • Albertazzi, Ugo
  • Gambacorta, Leonardo

This paper investigates how banks' activity is affected by the corporate income tax. For this purpose it uses aggregate data on all main components of the profit and loss account and on the interest rate applied on loans and on deposits for the banking sector of the main industrialized countries during the period 1981-2003. With such information we are able to disentangle the extent to which a bank is able to shift its tax-burden forward to its borrowers, depositors, and purchasers of fee-generating services. The main result is that the taxation of banks' profit is equivalent to a taxation on loans and as such it exerts a substantial impact on the composition of banking sector revenues. However credit intermediaries have the ability to shift a substantial part of their corporate income tax burden and therefore differences in the level of taxation cannot explain the dispersion observed in banks' net profitability across industrialized countries.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Banking & Finance.

Volume (Year): 34 (2010)
Issue (Month): 11 (November)
Pages: 2801-2810

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jbfina:v:34:y:2010:i:11:p:2801-2810
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