IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/tpr/restat/v77y1995i3p389-406.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Consumption Taxes in a Life-Cycle Framework: Are Sin Taxes Regressive?

Author

Listed:
  • Lyon, Andrew B
  • Schwab, Robert M

Abstract

We construct measures of tax incidence over the life-cycle and compare these measures to traditional measures based on annual data. Annual measures of the incidence of taxes on consumption goods may differ from life-cycle measures for three reasons. First, annual measures of income reflect transitory components which should have smaller effects on consumption than permanent changes in income. Second, income measured in a single period differs from lifetime income due to age-related differences in earnings. Third, consumption of certain items follows life-cycle patterns independent of changes in income. Surprisingly, we find that these effects cause little change in the assessment of the incidence of taxes on cigarettes. For alcohol, we find that a tax on its consumption is slightly less regressive when measured with respect to lifetime income than when measured with respect to annual income. Copyright 1995 by MIT Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Lyon, Andrew B & Schwab, Robert M, 1995. "Consumption Taxes in a Life-Cycle Framework: Are Sin Taxes Regressive?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 77(3), pages 389-406, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:tpr:restat:v:77:y:1995:i:3:p:389-406
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0034-6535%28199508%2977%3A3%3C389%3ACTIALF%3E2.0.CO%3B2-S&origin=bc
    File Function: full text
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to JSTOR subscribers. See http://www.jstor.org for details.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version below or search for a different version of it.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Poterba, James M, 1989. "Lifetime Incidence and the Distributional Burden of Excise Taxes," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(2), pages 325-330, May.
    2. James M. Poterba, 1991. "Is the Gasoline Tax Regressive?," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 5, pages 145-164 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Fullerton, Don & Metcalf, Gilbert E., 2002. "Tax incidence," Handbook of Public Economics,in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 26, pages 1787-1872 Elsevier.
    4. Fullerton, Don & Rogers, Diane Lim, 1991. "Lifetime Versus Annual Perspectives on Tax Incidence," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 44(3), pages 277-87, September.
    5. Lillard, Lee A, 1977. "Inequality: Earnings vs. Human Wealth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 42-53, March.
    6. Sean Becketti & William Gould & Lee Lillard & Finis Welch, 1985. "The Panel Study of Income Dynamics After Fourteen Years: An Evaluation," UCLA Economics Working Papers 361, UCLA Department of Economics.
    7. Hall, Robert E & Mishkin, Frederic S, 1982. "The Sensitivity of Consumption to Transitory Income: Estimates from Panel Data on Households," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(2), pages 461-481, March.
    8. Fullerton, Don & Rogers, Diane Lim, 1991. "Lifetime Versus Annual Perspectives on Tax Incidence," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 44(3), pages 277-287, September.
    9. Lee, Lung-Fei & Trost, Robert P., 1978. "Estimation of some limited dependent variable models with application to housing demand," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 357-382, December.
    10. Atkinson, A B & Gomulka, J & Stern, N H, 1990. "Spending on Alcohol: Evidence from the Family Expenditure Survey 1970-1983," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(402), pages 808-827, September.
    11. Suits, Daniel B, 1977. "Measurement of Tax Progressivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(4), pages 747-752, September.
    12. Becketti, Sean, et al, 1988. "The Panel Study of Income Dynamics after Fourteen Years: An Evaluatio n," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 6(4), pages 472-492, October.
    13. Davies, James B & St-Hilaire, France & Whalley, John, 1984. "Some Calculations of Lifetime Tax Incidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(4), pages 633-649, September.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    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:tpr:restat:v:77:y:1995:i:3:p:389-406. 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: (Ann Olson). General contact details of provider: https://www.mitpressjournals.org/ .

    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 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.

    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.