IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/sae/pubfin/v42y2014i3p346-367.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The Effects of Brazil’s Taxation and Social Spending on the Distribution of Household Income

Author

Listed:
  • Sean Higgins
  • Claudiney Pereira

Abstract

Relative to other countries in Latin America, Brazil has high rates of taxation and large social spending. We estimate the redistributive effect of fiscal policy on income distribution and poverty in Brazil using household survey data that contain detailed information about many labor and nonlabor income sources, direct taxes paid, contributions to the pension system, transfers received, use of public education and health services, and consumption. On the spending side, we find that although Brazil has some well-targeted antipoverty programs, these transfers have relatively low per capita amounts and a large portion of direct transfer beneficiaries are nonpoor. As a result, inequality and poverty reduction are low relative to Brazil’s spending. On the tax side, indirect taxes paid by the poor often surpass the direct transfer and indirect subsidy benefits they receive.

Suggested Citation

  • Sean Higgins & Claudiney Pereira, 2014. "The Effects of Brazil’s Taxation and Social Spending on the Distribution of Household Income," Public Finance Review, , vol. 42(3), pages 346-367, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:pubfin:v:42:y:2014:i:3:p:346-367
    DOI: 10.1177/1091142113501714
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/1091142113501714
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1177/1091142113501714?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Lustig, Nora & Lopez-Calva, Luis F. & Ortiz-Juarez, Eduardo, 2013. "Declining Inequality in Latin America in the 2000s: The Cases of Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 129-141.
    2. Nora Lustig & Carola Pessino & John Scott, 2014. "The Impact of Taxes and Social Spending on Inequality and Poverty in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay: Introduction to the Special Issue," Public Finance Review, , vol. 42(3), pages 287-303, May.
    3. Ana Corbacho & Vicente Fretes Cibils & Eduardo Lora (ed.), 2013. "More than Revenue," Palgrave Macmillan Books, Palgrave Macmillan, number 978-1-137-31597-7, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Branko Milanovic & Sean Higgins & Nora Lustig & Whitney Ruble & Timothy M. Smeeding, 2016. "Comparing the Incidence of Taxes and Social Spending in Brazil and the United States," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 62, pages 22-46, August.
    2. Sean Higgins & Claudiney Pereira, 2013. "The effects of Brazil's high taxation and social spending on the distribution of household income," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 1307, Tulane University, Department of Economics, revised May 2013.
    3. Cabrera, Maynor & Lustig, Nora & Morán, Hilcías E., 2015. "Fiscal Policy, Inequality, and the Ethnic Divide in Guatemala," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 263-279.
    4. Christian Daude & Nora Lustig & Angel Melguizo & Jose Ramon Perea, 2017. "On the middle 70%. The impact of fiscal policy on the emerging middle class in Latin America using Commitment to Equity," Working Papers 1716, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
    5. Santiago Levy & Norbert Schady, 2013. "Latin America's Social Policy Challenge: Education, Social Insurance, Redistribution," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 27(2), pages 193-218, Spring.
    6. Higgins, Sean & Lustig, Nora, 2016. "Can a poverty-reducing and progressive tax and transfer system hurt the poor?," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 122(C), pages 63-75.
    7. Nora Lustig & Florencia Amábile & Marisa Bucheli & George Gray Molina & Sean Higgins & Miguel Jaramillo & Wilson Jiménez Pozo & Veronica Paz Arauco & Claudiney Pereira & Carola Pessino & Máximo Rossi , 2013. "The impact of taxes and social spending on inequality and poverty in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 1313, Tulane University, Department of Economics, revised Aug 2013.
    8. Nora Lustig, 2015. "Fiscal Policy and Ethno-Racial Inequality in Bolivia, Brazil, Guatemala and Uruguay," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 22, Tulane University, Department of Economics.
    9. Marisa Bucheli, 2014. "Public Transfers and Poverty Reduction: an Evaluation of Program Contribution to the Exit Rate from Poverty of Children and the Elderly," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0914, Department of Economics - dECON.
    10. Nora Lustig & Florencia Amábile & Marisa Bucheli & George Gray Molina & Sean Higgins & Miguel Jaramillo & Wilson Jiménez Pozo & Veronica Paz Arauco & Claudiney Pereira & Carola Pessino & Máximo Rossi , 2013. "The impact of taxes and social spending on inequality and poverty in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay," Commitment to Equity (CEQ) Working Paper Series 13, Tulane University, Department of Economics, revised Aug 2013.
    11. Pessino, Carola & Izquierdo, Alejandro & Vuletin, Guillermo, 2018. "Better Spending for Better Lives: How Latin America and the Caribbean Can Do More with Less," IDB Publications (Books), Inter-American Development Bank, number 9152, August.
    12. Sean Higgins, Nora Lustig, Whitney Ruble, and Timothy Smeeding, 2014. "Comparing the Incidence of Taxes and Social Spending in Brazil and the United States - Working Paper 360," Working Papers 360, Center for Global Development.
    13. Mehic, Adrian, 2018. "Industrial employment and income inequality: Evidence from panel data," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 84-93.
    14. Angel Melguizo, 2015. "Pensions, informality, and the emerging middle class," IZA World of Labor, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), pages 169-169, July.
    15. Guido Neidhöfer, 2019. "Intergenerational mobility and the rise and fall of inequality: Lessons from Latin America," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 17(4), pages 499-520, December.
    16. Ofori, Isaac K. & Osei, Dennis B. & Alagidede, Imhotep P., 2022. "Inclusive growth in Sub-Saharan Africa: Exploring the interaction between ICT diffusion and financial development," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    17. Marisa Bucheli & Nora Lustig & Máximo Rossi & Florencia Amábile, 2014. "Social Spending, Taxes, and Income Redistribution in Uruguay," Public Finance Review, , vol. 42(3), pages 413-433, May.
    18. Isaac K. Ofori & Mark K. Armah & Emmanuel E. Asmah, 2021. "Towards the Reversal of Poverty and Income Inequality Setbacks Due to COVID-19: The Role of Globalisation and Resource Allocation," Working Papers 21/043, European Xtramile Centre of African Studies (EXCAS).
    19. Wilman J. Iglesias & Alexandre B. Coelho, 2020. "Poverty and inequality within Brazilian households: an application of a collective consumption model," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 58(4), pages 1923-1952, April.
    20. Margitic, Juan & Ravallion, Martin, 2019. "Lifting the floor? Economic development, social protection and the developing World's poorest," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 139(C), pages 97-108.

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:sae:pubfin:v:42:y:2014:i:3:p:346-367. 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: . General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: SAGE Publications (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.