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The Laffer Curve in an Incomplete-Market Economy

  • Fève, P.
  • Matheron, J.
  • Sahuc,J-G.

This paper investigates the characteristics of the Laffer curve in a neoclassical growth model of the US economy with incomplete markets and heterogeneous agents. The shape of the Laffer curve changes depending on which of transfers or government debt are varied to balance the government budget constraint. While the Laffer curve has the traditional shape when transfers vary, it looks like a horizontal S when debt varies. In this case, fiscal revenues can be associated with up to three different levels of taxation. This finding occurs because the tax rates change non-monotonically with public debt when markets are incomplete.

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Paper provided by Banque de France in its series Working papers with number 438.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bfr:banfra:438
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  1. Mathias Trabandt & Harald Uhlig, 2009. "How Far Are We From The Slippery Slope? The Laffer Curve Revisited," NBER Working Papers 15343, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Heathcote, Jonathan, 1999. "Fiscal Policy with Heterogeneous Agents and Incomplete Markets," SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Economics and Finance 319, Stockholm School of Economics, revised 28 Jul 1999.
  3. Ljungqvist, Lars & Sargent, Thomas J., 2008. "Taxes, benefits, and careers: Complete versus incomplete markets," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 98-125, January.
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  9. Feldstein, Martin, 1986. "Supply Side Economics: Old Truths and New Claims," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 26-30, May.
  10. Barillas, Francisco & Fernandez-Villaverde, Jesus, 2007. "A generalization of the endogenous grid method," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(8), pages 2698-2712, August.
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  12. Edward C. Prescott, 2003. "Why do Americans work so much more than Europeans?," Staff Report 321, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  13. Sigrid Röhrs & Christoph Winter, 2011. "Wealth inequality and the optimal level of government debt," ECON - Working Papers 051, Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
  14. 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.
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  17. David Domeij & Jonathan Heathcote, 2004. "On The Distributional Effects Of Reducing Capital Taxes," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 45(2), pages 523-554, 05.
  18. Trabandt, Mathias & Uhlig, Harald, 2011. "The Laffer curve revisited," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(4), pages 305-327.
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