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Taxes, Tariffs and Transfer Pricing in Multinational Corporate Decision Making


  • Grubert, Harry
  • Mutti, John


Three interrelated aspects of U.S. multinational corporation activity are analyzed here: the ability to shift profits from high-tax countries to low-tax countries; the impact of host country taxes and tariffs on the distribution of real capital; and the influence of these policies on international trade patterns of the United States and host countries. The cross-sectional empirical analysis indicates that the observed pattern of reported profits in high and low-tax countries is consistent with income shifting behavior and that real investment responds to host country effective tax rates and tariffs. The United States appears both to import more from and export more to low-tax countries where MNC investment is greater, but this bilateral focus must be amplified to consider multilateral effects if trade benefits are to be projected. Copyright 1991 by MIT Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Grubert, Harry & Mutti, John, 1991. "Taxes, Tariffs and Transfer Pricing in Multinational Corporate Decision Making," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 73(2), pages 285-293, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:73:y:1991:i:2:p:285-93

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