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Distribution Effects of the Austrian Tax and Transfer System 2007-2016


  • Silvia Rocha-Akis


  • Viktor Steiner
  • Christine Zulehner



The tax reforms of 2009-10 and 2015-16 each increased the degree of progression of the income tax. Indirect taxes, which make for the greatest tax burden in lowest-income households, are regressive. While the degree of regression had slightly diminished between 2007 and 2010, in recent years the burden inflicted by indirect taxes on low incomes was enhanced due to the strong rise in rental and food prices. Altogether, the redistributive effect of the tax system (income tax and indirect taxes) has increased. Nevertheless, the burden imposed by social contributions rose in the lower income deciles between 2007 and 2016, while declining in the upper deciles, thus weakening the redistributive effect generated by the social contribution system. With income tax growing ever more progressive as a consequence of the tax reforms, the redistributive effect associated with social contributions became consistently weaker. The overall redistributive effects of the tax and social contribution system increased slightly between 2007 and 2010, but remained unchanged between 2010 and 2016.

Suggested Citation

  • Silvia Rocha-Akis & Viktor Steiner & Christine Zulehner, 2016. "Distribution Effects of the Austrian Tax and Transfer System 2007-2016," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 89(5), pages 347-359, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:wfo:monber:y:2016:i:5:p:347-359

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kakwani, Nanok C, 1977. "Measurement of Tax Progressivity: An International Comparison," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 87(345), pages 71-80, March.
    2. Bach, Stefan & Beznoska, Martin & Steiner, Viktor, 2016. "Wer trägt die Steuerlast? Verteilungswirkungen des deutschen Steuer- und Transfersystems," Study / edition der Hans-Böckler-Stiftung, Hans-Böckler-Stiftung, Düsseldorf, volume 127, number 347.
    3. Alois Guger & Ewald Walterskirchen & Wilfried Puwein, 1987. "Aus WIFO-Gutachten: Umverteilung durch öffentliche Haushalte in Österreich," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 60(11), pages 673-678, November.
    4. Suits, Daniel B, 1977. "Measurement of Tax Progressivity," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(4), pages 747-752, September.
    5. Gerlinde Verbist & Francesco Figari, 2014. "The Redistributive Effect and Progressivity of Taxes Revisited: An International Comparison across the European Union," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 70(3), pages 405-429, September.
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