Optimal Income Taxation and the Ability Distribution: Implications for Migration Equilibria
As recently argued by Diamond (1998), one of the key factors explaining the progressivity of an optimal non-linear income tax is the distribution of productivity among workers. Migration is one source of changes in the productivity distribution. How changes in the population’s ability distribution affect optimal income tax schedules has received little attention. Changing the distribution generally affects both the objective function and the government budget constraint. We first consider the comparative statics of the fraction of highly-skilled workers with maximin and maximax welfare functions (so that only the second effect is present) and a quasi-linear utility function. We also present some results for a utilitarian social welfare function. We then study the interaction between mobility and redistributive taxation. We consider mobility by either the skilled or unskilled population under majority voting where governments take the population as fixed. If individuals choose to relocate independently, having identical ability distributions is always a stable equilibrium when the unskilled are the mobile group. However, this is not always the case when the skilled are mobile. If groups of individuals can choose where to locate, having identical ability distributions across regions is only an equilibrium when the mobile type has an overall majority. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Hindriks, J., 1999.
"Mobility and Redistributive Politics,"
9915, Exeter University, Department of Economics.
- Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre, 1998.
"Social insurance, majority voting and labor mobility,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 397-420, June.
- CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "Social insurance, majority voting and labor mobility," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1328, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- Weymark, John A, 1987. "Comparative Static Properties of Optimal Nonlinear Income Taxes," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(5), pages 1165-85, September.
- Wilson, John Douglas, 1992. "Optimal Income Taxation and International Personal Mobility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 191-96, May.
- Epple, Dennis & Filimon, Radu & Romer, Thomas, 1984. "Equilibrium among local jurisdictions: toward an integrated treatment of voting and residential choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 281-308, August.
- LEITE MONTEIRO , Manuel, 1994.
"Redistributive Policy with Labour Mobility across Countries,"
CORE Discussion Papers
1994070, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- Leite-Monteiro, Manuel, 1997. "Redistributive policy with labour mobility across countries," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 65(2), pages 229-244, August.
- Brueckner, Jan K. & Zenou, Yves, 1999. "Harris-Todaro models with a land market," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 317-339, May.
- Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1982.
"Self-selection and Pareto efficient taxation,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 213-240, March.
- Flatters, Frank & Henderson, Vernon & Mieszkowski, Peter, 1974. "Public goods, efficiency, and regional fiscal equalization," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 99-112, May.
- Jan K. Brueckner, 1999. "Welfare Reform and the Race to the Bottom: Theory and Evidence," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 66(2), pages 505-525, January.
- David E. Wildasin, 1994.
"Income Redistribution and Migration,"
Canadian Journal of Economics,
Canadian Economics Association, vol. 27(3), pages 637-56, August.
- repec:ebl:ecbull:v:8:y:2002:i:2:p:1-6 is not listed on IDEAS
- Wilson, J.D., 1990.
"Tax Competition With Interregional Differences In Factor Endowments,"
4, John Deutsch Institute for the Study of Economic Policy.
- Wilson, John Douglas, 1991. "Tax competition with interregional differences in factor endowments," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 423-451, November.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:kap:itaxpf:v:12:y:2005:i:1:p:29-45. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Guenther Eichhorn)or (Christopher F. Baum)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.