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A Primer on Tax Evasion


  • Vito Tanzi

    (International Monetary Fund)

  • Parthasarathi Shome

    (International Monetary Fund)


Tax evasion is universal. It depends on the economic and tax structures, types of income, and social attitudes. The theory of tax evasion has limitations since it rests solely on attitudes toward risk, with full information regarding the tax administration's behavior. Methodologies for estimating tax evasion include estimating the underground economy and comparing declared taxes with potential tax revenue calculated from national accounts. Measures to address tax evasion include use of withholding, presumptive and minimum taxes, selective auditing, penalties, and cross checks between taxes.

Suggested Citation

  • Vito Tanzi & Parthasarathi Shome, 1993. "A Primer on Tax Evasion," IMF Staff Papers, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 40(4), pages 807-828, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:pal:imfstp:v:40:y:1993:i:4:p:807-828

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Michael Faulend & Vedran Sosic, 1999. "Is Unofficial Economy a Source of Corruption?," Occasional paper series 09, Institute of Public Finance.
    2. Craigwell, Roland C & Thomas, Chrystal, 2010. "Revisiting the effect of country size on taxation in developing countries," MPRA Paper 33470, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Genschel, Philipp, 2001. "Globalization, tax competition, and the fiscal viability of the welfare state," MPIfG Working Paper 01/1, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.
    4. Bailey, Clive & Turner, John, 2001. "Strategies to Reduce Contribution Evasion in Social Security Financing," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 385-393, February.
    5. Bogetic, Zeljko & Hassan, Fareed, 1993. "Determinants of value - added tax revenue : a cross section analysis," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1203, The World Bank.
    6. Marcelo Arbex & Enlinson Mattos, 2015. "Optimal sales tax rebates and tax enforcement consumers," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(2), pages 479-493.
    7. Serra, Pablo, 2003. "Measuring the Performance of Chile’s Tax Administration," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 56(2), pages 373-383, June.
    8. repec:dau:papers:123456789/4929 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Pablo Serra, 1998. "El Sistema Impositivo y su Efecto en el Funcionamiento de la Economía: Una Revisión de la Literatura," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 39, Central Bank of Chile.
    10. Lackó, Mária, 1995. "Rejtett gazdaság nemzetközi összehasonlításban
      [Hidden economy by international comparison - A method of estimation based on the bouseholds' energy consumption]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(5), pages 486-510.
    11. Gebhard Kirchgässner, 2011. "Tax Morale, Tax Evasion and the Shadow Economy," Chapters,in: Handbook on the Shadow Economy, chapter 10 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    12. Orviska, Marta & Caplanova, Anetta & Medved, Jozef & Hudson, John, 2006. "A cross-section approach to measuring the shadow economy," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 28(7), pages 713-724, October.
    13. Genschel, Philipp, 2000. "Der Wohlfahrtsstaat im Steuerwettbewerb," MPIfG Working Paper 00/5, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies.
    14. Johnson, Simon & Kaufmann, Daniel & Zoido-Lobaton, Pablo, 1999. "Corruption, public finances, and the unofficial economy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2169, The World Bank.
    15. Bogetic, Zeljko & Hillman, Arye L., 1994. "The tax base in transition : the case of Bulgaria," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1267, The World Bank.
    16. Richard M. Bird & Sally Wallace, 2003. "Is It Really so Hard to Tax the Hard-to-Tax? The Context and Role of Presumptive Taxes," International Tax Program Papers 0307, International Tax Program, Institute for International Business, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto.
    17. Pablo Serra, 1998. "Evaluación del Sistema Tributario Chileno y Propuesta de Reforma," Working Papers Central Bank of Chile 40, Central Bank of Chile.
    18. Gebhard Kirchgässner, 2007. "Direkte Demokratie, Steuermoral und Steuerhinterziehung: Erfahrungen aus der Schweiz," Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 8(1), pages 38-64, January.
    19. Burger, Ronelle & Owens, Trudy, 2010. "Promoting Transparency in the NGO Sector: Examining the Availability and Reliability of Self-Reported Data," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(9), pages 1263-1277, September.
    20. Sally Wallace, 2002. "Imputed an Presumptive Taxes: International Experiences and Lessons for Russia," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper0203, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
    21. Yakovlev, Andrei, 1999. "Black cash tax evasion in Russia : Its forms, incetives and consequences at firm level," BOFIT Discussion Papers 3/1999, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance


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