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Optimal redistributive tax and education policies in general equilibrium

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Abstract

This paper studies optimal linear and non-linear income taxes and education subsidies in two-type models with endogenous human capital formation, endogenous labor supply, and endogenous wage rates. Assuming constant human capital elasticities, human capital investment should be efficient under optimal linear policies, whether general equilibrium effects are present or not. Hence, education subsidies should not be used for distributional reasons. Due to general equilibrium effects, optimal linear income taxes may even become negative. Optimal non-linear policies exploit general equilibrium effects for redistribution. The high-skilled type optimally has a negative marginal income tax rate and a positive marginal education subsidy. The low-skilled type optimally faces a positive marginal income tax rate and a marginal tax on education. Simulations demonstrate that general equilibrium effects have only a modest effect on optimal non-linear policies. Copyright The Author(s) 2013

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  • Bas Jacobs, 2013. "Optimal redistributive tax and education policies in general equilibrium," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 20(2), pages 312-337, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:itaxpf:v:20:y:2013:i:2:p:312-337
    DOI: 10.1007/s10797-012-9229-9
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    1. Bas Jacobs & A. Lans Bovenberg, 2011. "Optimal Taxation of Human Capital and the Earnings Function," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 13(6), pages 957-971, December.
    2. Concetta Mendolicchio & Dimitri Paolini & Tito Pietra, 2014. "Income Taxes, Subsidies to Education, and Investments in Human Capital," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 16(1), pages 24-47, February.
    3. Marie-Hélène Cloutier & John Cockburn & Bernard Decaluwé, 2008. "Education and Poverty in Vietnam: a Computable General Equilibrium Analysis," Cahiers de recherche 0804, CIRPEE.
    4. OBARA, Takuya, 2018. "Optimal human capital policies under the endogenous choice of educational types," CCES Discussion Paper Series 66_v2, Center for Research on Contemporary Economic Systems, Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University.
    5. OBARA, Takuya, 2017. "Optimal human capital policies under the endogenous choice of educational types," CCES Discussion Paper Series 66, Center for Research on Contemporary Economic Systems, Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Human capital; General equilibrium; Optimal taxation; Education subsidies; H2; H5; I2; J2;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
    • H5 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies
    • I2 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor

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