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The Role of Tax Bases and Collections Costs in the Determination of Income Tax Rates, Seigniorage and Inflation


  • Kenny, Lawrence W
  • Toma, Mark


A growing theoretical literature on optimal taxation predicts that governments will set the tax rates on money holdings and on more traditional tax bases to minimize the deadweight losses of collecting government revenue. Under the presumption that relative collection costs and tax bases have not changed significantly over time, the empirical time-series seigniorage literature has focused on the theory's tax smoothing implication, finding only weak support. The authors show that changes in collections costs and tax bases played an important role in the determination of tax composition and find stronger support for tax smoothing when this is taken into account. Copyright 1997 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

Suggested Citation

  • Kenny, Lawrence W & Toma, Mark, 1997. "The Role of Tax Bases and Collections Costs in the Determination of Income Tax Rates, Seigniorage and Inflation," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 92(1-2), pages 75-90, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:pubcho:v:92:y:1997:i:1-2:p:75-90

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Potters, Jan & Sloof, Randolph & van Winden, Frans, 1997. "Campaign expenditures, contributions and direct endorsements: The strategic use of information and money to influence voter behavior," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 1-31, February.
    2. Timothy Besley & Stephen Coate, 1997. "An Economic Model of Representative Democracy," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(1), pages 85-114.
    3. Peter C. Coyte & Stuart Landon, 1989. "The Impact of Competition on Advertising: The Case of Political Campaign Expenditures," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 22(4), pages 795-818, November.
    4. Prat, Andrea, 2002. "Campaign Spending with Office-Seeking Politicians, Rational Voters, and Multiple Lobbies," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 162-189, March.
    5. Bender, Bruce & Lott, John R, Jr, 1996. "Legislator Voting and Shirking: A Critical Review of the Literature," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 87(1-2), pages 67-100, April.
    6. K. Palda & Kristian Palda, 1985. "Ceilings on campaign spending: Hypothesis and partial test with Canadian data," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 45(3), pages 313-331, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Michael E. S. Hoffman, 2005. "Political and Public Finance Motives for Tariffs," International Trade 0510016, EconWPA.
    2. Radhika Lahiri, 2003. "Tax Distortions in a Neoclassical Monetary Economy in the Presence of Administration Costs," School of Economics and Finance Discussion Papers and Working Papers Series 151, School of Economics and Finance, Queensland University of Technology.
    3. Click, Reid W., 2000. "Seigniorage and conventional taxation with multiple exogenous shocks," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 24(10), pages 1447-1479, September.
    4. Lawrence Kenny & Stanley Winer, 2006. "Tax Systems in the World: An Empirical Investigation into the Importance of Tax Bases, Administration Costs, Scale and Political Regime," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 13(2), pages 181-215, May.
    5. Stanley L. Winer & J Stephen Ferris, 2003. "Searching for Keynes: An Essay on the Political Economy of Fiscal Policy, with Application to Canada, 1870-2000 - revised version," CESifo Working Paper Series 1016, CESifo Group Munich.

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