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Estimating the income reporting function for the self-employed

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  • Lindsay Tedds

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Abstract

There is considerable interest in measuring the underground economy using microeconomic data. One such method estimates income under-reporting by households by assuming a known, parametric form of the Engel curve and making the further parametric assumption that households under-report their income by a constant fraction, independent of income. This paper proposes a nonparametric approach which avoids functional form restrictions and enables the reporting function to vary across income levels and household characteristics. I illustrate by estimating the effect of the Canadian Goods and Services Tax on income under-reporting.
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Suggested Citation

  • Lindsay Tedds, 2010. "Estimating the income reporting function for the self-employed," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 669-687, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:empeco:v:38:y:2010:i:3:p:669-687
    DOI: 10.1007/s00181-009-0284-8
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Panayiota Lyssiotou & Panos Pashardes & Thanasis Stengos, 2004. "Estimates of the black economy based on consumer demand approaches," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 622-640, July.
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    11. Tedds, Lindsay, 2005. "The Underground Economy in Canada," MPRA Paper 4229, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Richard Blundell & Alan Duncan & Krishna Pendakur, 1998. "Semiparametric estimation and consumer demand," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(5), pages 435-461.
    13. Li, Q. & Wang, Suojin, 1998. "A simple consistent bootstrap test for a parametric regression function," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 145-165, August.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Odd E Nygård & Joel Slemrod & Thor O Thoresen, 2019. "Distributional Implications of Joint Tax Evasion," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 129(620), pages 1894-1923.
    2. Lyudmila Nivorozhkina & Sergey Arzhenovskiy & Svetlana Galazova, 2020. "Estimation of Undisclosed Household Earnings Based on the Pissarides-Weber Model Modification," International Journal of Economics & Business Administration (IJEBA), International Journal of Economics & Business Administration (IJEBA), vol. 0(4), pages 635-646.
    3. Åstebro, Thomas & Chen, Jing, 2014. "The entrepreneurial earnings puzzle: Mismeasurement or real?," Journal of Business Venturing, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 88-105.
    4. Diego Martinez-Lopez, 2013. "The underreporting of income by self-employed workers in Spain," SERIEs: Journal of the Spanish Economic Association, Springer;Spanish Economic Association, vol. 4(4), pages 353-371, November.
    5. Tomas Lichard & Jan Hanousek & Randall K. Filer, 2012. "Measuring the Shadow Economy: Endogenous Switching Regression with Unobserved Separation," Economics Working Paper Archive at Hunter College 438, Hunter College Department of Economics.
    6. Christian Traxler, 2009. "Voting over taxes: the case of tax evasion," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 140(1), pages 43-58, July.
    7. Randall K. Filer & Jan Hanousek & Tomáš Lichard & Karine Torosyan, 2019. "‘Flattening’ tax evasion? : Evidence from the post‐communist natural experiment," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 27(1), pages 223-246, January.
    8. Diego Martínez López, 2011. "How different are the Spanish self-employed workers by underreporting their incomes?," Working Papers. Serie EC 2011-09, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).
    9. Torregrosa-Hetland, Sara, 2016. "Sticky Income Inequality In The Spanish Transition (1973-1990)," Revista de Historia Económica / Journal of Iberian and Latin American Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 34(1), pages 39-80, March.
    10. Bonggeun Kim & John Gibson & Chul Chung, 2017. "Using Panel Data to Estimate Income Under-Reporting by the Self-Employed," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 85(1), pages 41-64, January.
    11. Aristidis Bitzenis & Vasileios Vlachos & Friedrich Schneider, 2016. "An Exploration of the Greek Shadow Economy: Can Its Transfer into the Official Economy Provide Economic Relief Amid the Crisis?," Journal of Economic Issues, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(1), pages 165-196, January.
    12. Thomas Åstebro, 2017. "The private financial gains to entrepreneurship: Is it a good use of public money to encourage individuals to become entrepreneurs?," Small Business Economics, Springer, vol. 48(2), pages 323-329, February.
    13. Adam, Antonis & Kammas, Pantelis, 2012. "(Tax evasion) power to the people: does "early democratization" increase the size of the informal sector?," MPRA Paper 43343, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Paulus, Alari, 2015. "Income underreporting based on income-expenditure gaps: survey vs tax records," ISER Working Paper Series 2015-15, Institute for Social and Economic Research.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Income under-reporting; Nonparametric estimation; Engel curve; C14; D12; O17;

    JEL classification:

    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements

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