IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

Explaining output volatility: The case of taxation

  • Olaf Posch


    (School of Economics and Management, University of Aarhus, Denmark and CREATES)

This paper studies the effects of taxation on output volatility in OECD countries to shed light on the sources of observed heterogeneity over time and across countries. To this end, we derive tax effects on macro aggregates in a stochastic neoclassical model. As a result, taxes are shown to affect the second moment of output growth rates without (long-run) effects on the first moment. Taking the model to the data, we exploit observed heterogeneity patterns to estimate effects of tax rates on macro volatility using panel estimation, explicitly modeling the unobserved variance process. We find a strong empirical link between effective tax rates and output volatility, with some evidence of a cointegrating relationship. In accordance with theory, taxes on labor income and corporate income empirically are found to be negatively related to volatility of macro aggregates whereas the capital tax ratio has positive effects.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University in its series CREATES Research Papers with number 2008-04.

in new window

Length: 73
Date of creation: 18 Jan 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:aah:create:2008-04
Contact details of provider: Web page:

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Alan J. Auerbach & Joel Slemrod, 1997. "The Economic Effects of the Tax Reform Act of 1986," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(2), pages 589-632, June.
  2. Florin Bilbiie & G. Mueller & A. Meier, 2006. "What Accounts for the Change in U.S Fiscal Policy Transmission ?," Working Papers hal-00515666, HAL.
  3. Jean Jacod & Yingying Li & Per A. Mykland & Mark Podolskij & Mathias Vetter, 2007. "Microstructure Noise in the Continuous Case: The Pre-Averaging Approach - JLMPV-9," CREATES Research Papers 2007-43, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
  4. Laurence Ball, 1990. "Why Does High Inflation Raise Inflation Uncertainty?," NBER Working Papers 3224, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 2002. "Solving Dynamic General Equilibrium Models Using a Second-Order Approximation to the Policy Function," NBER Technical Working Papers 0282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1982. "Time to Build and Aggregate Fluctuations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(6), pages 1345-70, November.
  7. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James & Thaicharoen, Yunyong, 2003. "Institutional causes, macroeconomic symptoms: volatility, crises and growth," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 49-123, January.
  8. Jesús Fernández-Villaverde & Juan F. Rubio-Ramírez, 2007. "Estimating Macroeconomic Models: A Likelihood Approach," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 74(4), pages 1059-1087.
  9. Long, John B, Jr & Plosser, Charles I, 1983. "Real Business Cycles," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(1), pages 39-69, February.
  10. Nelson, Daniel B, 1991. "Conditional Heteroskedasticity in Asset Returns: A New Approach," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 59(2), pages 347-70, March.
  11. Nir Jaimovich & Henry E. Siu, 2009. "The Young, the Old, and the Restless: Demographics and Business Cycle Volatility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(3), pages 804-26, June.
  12. Giorgio Primiceri & Alejandro Justiniano, 2006. "The Time Varying Volatility of Macroeconomic Fluctuations," 2006 Meeting Papers 353, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Stock, James H. & Watson, Mark W., 1999. "Forecasting inflation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 293-335, October.
  14. Cevdet Denizer & Murat Iyigun & Ann Owen, 2000. "Finance and Macroeconomic Volatility," Macroeconomics 0004015, EconWPA.
  15. Banerjee, Anindya, 1999. " Panel Data Unit Roots and Cointegration: An Overview," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 61(0), pages 607-29, Special I.
  16. Klaus, WAELDE, 2003. "Endogenous growth cycles," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2004012, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES), revised 15 Mar 2004.
  17. Peter Pedroni, 2004. "Panel Cointegration: Asymptotic and Finite Sample Properties of Pooled Time Series Tests with an Application to the PPP Hypothesis," Department of Economics Working Papers 2004-15, Department of Economics, Williams College.
  18. Chang, Fwu-Ranq, 1988. "The Inverse Optimal Problem: A Dynamic Programming Approach," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(1), pages 147-72, January.
  19. Olaf Posch & Klaus Wälde, 2009. "On the non-causal link between volatility and growth," Economics Working Papers 2009-10, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
  20. Fabio Canova, 2004. "What explains the Great Moderation in the US? A structural analysis," Economics Working Papers 919, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Dec 2007.
  21. Olaf Posch, 2007. "Structural estimation of jump-diffusion processes in macroeconomics," CREATES Research Papers 2007-23, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
  22. Chang-Jin Kim & Charles R. Nelson, 1999. "Has The U.S. Economy Become More Stable? A Bayesian Approach Based On A Markov-Switching Model Of The Business Cycle," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 608-616, November.
  23. Merton, Robert C., 1973. "An asymptotic theory of growth under uncertainty," Working papers 673-73., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
  24. BOUCEKKINE, Raouf & RUIZ-TAMARIT, Ramon, 2004. "Imbalance effects in the Lucas model: an analytical exploration," CORE Discussion Papers 2004008, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  25. Bental, Benjamin & Peled, Dan, 1996. "The Accumulation of Wealth and the Cyclical Generation of New Technologies: A Search Theoretic Approach," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 37(3), pages 687-718, August.
  26. Tim Bollerslev, 1986. "Generalized autoregressive conditional heteroskedasticity," EERI Research Paper Series EERI RP 1986/01, Economics and Econometrics Research Institute (EERI), Brussels.
  27. Matsuyama, Kiminori, 1996. "Growing Through Cycles," Economics Series 40, Institute for Advanced Studies.
  28. Brock, William A. & Mirman, Leonard J., 1972. "Optimal economic growth and uncertainty: The discounted case," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(3), pages 479-513, June.
  29. Ramey, Garey & Ramey, Valerie A, 1995. "Cross-Country Evidence on the Link between Volatility and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 85(5), pages 1138-51, December.
  30. Margaret M. McConnell & Gabriel Perez Quiros, 1997. "Output fluctuations in the United States: what has changed since the early 1980s?," Research Paper 9735, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  31. Bun, Maurice J.G. & Carree, Martin A., 2005. "Bias-Corrected Estimation in Dynamic Panel Data Models," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 23, pages 200-210, April.
  32. V. V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe & Ellen R. McGrattan, 2002. "Business cycle accounting," Working Papers 625, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  33. Xie Danyang, 1994. "Divergence in Economic Performance: Transitional Dynamics with Multiple Equilibria," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 97-112, June.
  34. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2003. "Understanding Changes in International Business Cycle Dynamics," NBER Working Papers 9859, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  35. Greenwood, J. & Huffman, G., 1991. "Tax Analysis in A Real Business Cycle Model: On Measuring Harberger Triangles and Okun Gaps," UWO Department of Economics Working Papers 9103, University of Western Ontario, Department of Economics.
  36. Engle, Robert F, 1982. "Autoregressive Conditional Heteroscedasticity with Estimates of the Variance of United Kingdom Inflation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 50(4), pages 987-1007, July.
  37. James H. Stock & Mark W. Watson, 2003. "Has the Business Cycle Changed and Why?," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 2002, Volume 17, pages 159-230 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  38. Patrick Francois & Huw Lloyd-Ellis, 2003. "Animal Spirits Through Creative Destruction," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(3), pages 530-550, June.
  39. Xie, Danyang, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Increasing Rates of Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(2), pages 429-35, April.
  40. Enrique G. Mendoza & Assaf Razin & Linda L. Tesar, 1994. "Effective Tax Rates in Macroeconomics: Cross-Country Estimates of Tax Rates on Factor Incomes and Consumption," NBER Working Papers 4864, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  41. Olivier Blanchard & John Simon, 2001. "The Long and Large Decline in U.S. Output Volatility," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 32(1), pages 135-174.
  42. Stephen J. Turnovsky, 2000. "Methods of Macroeconomic Dynamics, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 0262201232, December.
  43. Kevin J. Stiroh, 2009. "Volatility Accounting: A Production Perspective on Increased Economic Stability," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(4), pages 671-696, 06.
  44. Klaus Wälde, 2009. "Production Technologies in Stochastic Continuous Time Models," CESifo Working Paper Series 2831, CESifo Group Munich.
  45. Danthine, Jean-Pierre & Donaldson, John B., 1985. "A note on the effects of capital income taxation on the dynamics of a competitive economy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 255-265, November.
  46. repec:dgr:rugsom:04e05 is not listed on IDEAS
  47. Brock, William A & Turnovsky, Stephen J, 1981. "The Analysis of Macroeconomic Policies in Perfect Foresight Equilibrium," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 22(1), pages 179-209, February.
  48. Patrick Francois & Huw Lloyd-Ellis, 2008. "Implementation Cycles, Investment, And Growth," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 49(3), pages 901-942, 08.
  49. Stephen G Cecchetti & Alfonso Flores-Lagunes & Stefan Krause, 2005. "Assessing the Sources of Changes in the Volatility of Real Growth," RBA Annual Conference Volume, in: Christopher Kent & David Norman (ed.), The Changing Nature of the Business Cycle Reserve Bank of Australia.
  50. Lensink, Robert & Scholtens, Bert, 2004. "Financial development and the transmission of monetary shocks," Research Report 04E05, University of Groningen, Research Institute SOM (Systems, Organisations and Management).
  51. Smith William T, 2007. "Inspecting the Mechanism Exactly: A Closed-form Solution to a Stochastic Growth Model," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 7(1), pages 1-33, August.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:aah:create:2008-04. 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: ()

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 references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link 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 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.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.