IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ces/ceswps/_1311.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Efficiency Effects of Tax Deductions for Work-Related Expenses

Author

Listed:
  • Wolfram F. Richter

Abstract

In this paper it is shown that allowing the deduction of work-related expenses has a strictly positive effect on tax efficiency only if two conditions hold jointly: (i) The expenses should be interpretable as real cost and (ii) the expenses should be required for increasing taxable income. Otherwise deductions are inefficient, neutral or ambiguous. Thus it is argued that the cost of commuting to work should not be deductible as commuting does not increase taxable income. The efficiency enhancing effect of deducting other expenses like educational ones or expenses for housework and child care is challenged on the grounds that these expenses are largely pecuniary costs.

Suggested Citation

  • Wolfram F. Richter, 2004. "Efficiency Effects of Tax Deductions for Work-Related Expenses," CESifo Working Paper Series 1311, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1311
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.cesifo.org/DocDL/cesifo1_wp1311.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Nerlove, Marc & Razin, Assaf & Sadka, Efraim & von Weizsacker, Robert K., 1993. "Comprehensive income taxation, investments in human and physical capital, and productivity," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(3), pages 397-406, March.
    2. Wrede, Matthias, 2001. "Should Commuting Expenses Be Tax Deductible? A Welfare Analysis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 49(1), pages 80-99, January.
    3. Judd, Kenneth L, 1998. "Taxes, Uncertainty, and Human Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 289-292, May.
    4. Brueckner, Jan K., 2005. "Transport subsidies, system choice, and urban sprawl," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 715-733, November.
    5. Julie Hope & Paul Miller, 1988. "Financing Tertiary Education: An Examination of the Issues," Australian Economic Review, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, vol. 21(4), pages 37-57, December.
    6. Lans Bovenberg, A. & Jacobs, Bas, 2005. "Redistribution and education subsidies are Siamese twins," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 2005-2035, December.
    7. Hoyt, William H., 1991. "Competitive jurisdictions, congestion, and the Henry George Theorem : When should property be taxed instead of land?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 351-370, November.
    8. Fujita,Masahisa, 1991. "Urban Economic Theory," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521396455, November.
    9. Peter A. Diamond & J. A. Mirrlees, 1968. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production," Working papers 22, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
    10. Pio Baake & Rainald Borck & Andreas L–ffler, 2004. "Complexity and Progressivity in Income Tax Design: Deductions for Work-Related Expenses," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 11(3), pages 299-312, May.
    11. Trostel, Philip A, 1993. "The Effect of Taxation on Human Capital," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(2), pages 327-350, April.
    12. Krause-Junk, Gerold, 1996. "Umstrittene Kilometerpauschale," Wirtschaftsdienst – Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftspolitik (1949 - 2007), ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, vol. 76(9), pages 461-463.
    13. Jonathan Baldry, 1998. "Income Tax Deductions for Work‐related Expenses: The Rationale Examined," Australian Economic Papers, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(1), pages 45-57, March.
    14. Homburg, Stefan, 2010. "Allgemeine Steuerlehre: Kapitel 1. Grundbegriffe der Steuerlehre," EconStor Books, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, number 92547.
    15. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production II: Tax Rules," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(3), pages 261-278, June.
    16. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production: I--Production Efficiency," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(1), pages 8-27, March.
    17. Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria & Roubini, Nouriel, 1998. "On the taxation of human and physical capital in models of endogenous growth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 237-254, November.
    18. Nielsen, Soren Bo & Sorensen, Peter Birch, 1997. "On the optimality of the Nordic system of dual income taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 311-329, February.
    19. Sandmo, Agnar, 1990. "Tax Distortions and Household Production," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(1), pages 78-90, January.
    20. Matthias Wrede, 2001. "Tax Deductibility of Commuting Expenses and Leisures: On the Tax Treatment of Time-Saving Expenditure," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 57(2), pages 216-224, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Tscharaktschiew, Stefan & Hirte, Georg, 2012. "Should subsidies to urban passenger transport be increased? A spatial CGE analysis for a German metropolitan area," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 285-309.
    2. Salvatore Barbaro & Jens Suedekum, 2009. "Voting on income tax exemptions," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 138(1), pages 239-253, January.
    3. Vera Bünnagel, 2013. "Reformbedarf bei der steuerlichen Berücksichtigung von Kinderbetreuungskosten," Wirtschaftsdienst, Springer;ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, vol. 93(12), pages 846-854, December.
    4. Franco Mariuzzo & Patrick Paul Walsh & Ciara Whelan, 2004. "EU Merger Control in Differentiated Product Industries," CESifo Working Paper Series 1312, CESifo.
    5. Richter, Wolfram F., 2006. "Taxing Human Capital Efficiently: The Double Dividend of Taxing Non-Qualified Labour More Heavily Than Qualified Labour," IZA Discussion Papers 2328, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    6. Santos, Georgina & Behrendt, Hannah & Maconi, Laura & Shirvani, Tara & Teytelboym, Alexander, 2010. "Part I: Externalities and economic policies in road transport," Research in Transportation Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 2-45.
    7. Koehne, Sebastian & Sachs, Dominik, 2022. "Pareto-improving reforms of tax deductions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 148(C).
    8. Heuermann, Daniel F. & Assmann, Franziska & vom Berge, Philipp & Freund, Florian, 2017. "The distributional effect of commuting subsidies - Evidence from geo-referenced data and a large-scale policy reform," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(C), pages 11-24.
    9. Homburg, Stefan, 2008. "Die Entfernungspauschale als steuertheoretische Herausforderung," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 45-53.
    10. Homburg, Stefan, 2010. "Allgemeine Steuerlehre: Kapitel 1. Grundbegriffe der Steuerlehre," EconStor Books, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, number 92547.
    11. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2011. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses and tax funding in an urban CGE study: the case of German cities," Dresden Discussion Paper Series in Economics 02/11, Technische Universität Dresden, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Economics.
    12. Voßmerbäumer, Jan & Wagner, Franz W., 2013. "Steuerwirkungen betrieblicher Entgeltpolitik," arqus Discussion Papers in Quantitative Tax Research 144, arqus - Arbeitskreis Quantitative Steuerlehre.
    13. Wolfram F. Richter, 2007. "Taxing Human Capital Efficiently – The Double Dividend of Taxing Nonqualified Labour More Heavily Than Qualified Labour," Ruhr Economic Papers 0012, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    14. Matthias Wrede, 2006. "Tax benefits for household services," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 59(02), pages 03-05, January.
    15. Paetzold, Jörg, 2019. "Do commuting subsidies increase commuting distances? Evidence from a Regression Kink Design," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 136-147.
    16. Peter Schwarz, 2017. "Federalism and horizontal equity across Switzerland and Germany: a new rationale for a decentralized fiscal structure," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 28(2), pages 97-116, June.
    17. repec:zbw:rwirep:0012 is not listed on IDEAS
    18. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses in an urban CGE study: The case of German cities," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 11-27.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Homburg, Stefan, 2008. "Die Entfernungspauschale als steuertheoretische Herausforderung," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 45-53.
    2. Lans Bovenberg, A. & Jacobs, Bas, 2005. "Redistribution and education subsidies are Siamese twins," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(11-12), pages 2005-2035, December.
    3. Wolfram F. Richter, 2007. "Taxing Human Capital Efficiently – The Double Dividend of Taxing Nonqualified Labour More Heavily Than Qualified Labour," Ruhr Economic Papers 0012, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    4. Richter, Wolfram F., 2006. "Taxing Human Capital Efficiently: The Double Dividend of Taxing Non-Qualified Labour More Heavily Than Qualified Labour," IZA Discussion Papers 2328, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. repec:zbw:rwirep:0012 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Bas Jacobs & A. Bovenberg, 2010. "Human capital and optimal positive taxation of capital income," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 17(5), pages 451-478, October.
    7. Wolfram F. Richter, 2007. "Efficient Tax Policy Ranks Education Higher than Saving," CESifo Working Paper Series 2106, CESifo.
    8. Chaitali Sinha, 2014. "Human Capital and Public Policy," South Asian Journal of Macroeconomics and Public Finance, , vol. 3(1), pages 79-125, June.
    9. Richter, Wolfram F., 2009. "Taxing education in Ramsey's tradition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(11-12), pages 1254-1260, December.
    10. OBARA, Takuya, 2018. "Optimal human capital policies under the endogenous choice of educational types," CCES Discussion Paper Series 66_v2, Center for Research on Contemporary Economic Systems, Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University.
    11. Voßmerbäumer, Jan & Wagner, Franz W., 2013. "Steuerwirkungen betrieblicher Entgeltpolitik," arqus Discussion Papers in Quantitative Tax Research 144, arqus - Arbeitskreis Quantitative Steuerlehre.
    12. Matthias Wrede, 2009. "A Distortive Wage Tax and a Countervailing Commuting Subsidy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 11(2), pages 297-310, April.
    13. Baumgart, Eike & Blaufus, Kay & Hechtner, Frank, 2023. "The tax treatment of commuting expenses and job-related mobility," arqus Discussion Papers in Quantitative Tax Research 280, arqus - Arbeitskreis Quantitative Steuerlehre.
    14. Borck, Rainald & Wrede, Matthias, 2005. "Political economy of commuting subsidies," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 478-499, May.
    15. Wolfram F. Richter & Peter Bareis & Matthias Wrede & Martin Gasche, 2004. "Is the abolition of tax-deductible transportation costs economically grounded?," ifo Schnelldienst, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 57(05), pages 5-19, March.
    16. OBARA, Takuya, 2017. "Optimal human capital policies under the endogenous choice of educational types," CCES Discussion Paper Series 66, Center for Research on Contemporary Economic Systems, Graduate School of Economics, Hitotsubashi University.
    17. Wolfram F. Richter, 2009. "Taxing Education in Ramsey's Tradition," Ruhr Economic Papers 0140, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
    18. Boone, J. & de Mooij, R.A., 2000. "Tax Policy in a Model of Search with Training," Other publications TiSEM 724e4cf5-a0d4-4da1-80cf-5, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
    19. Tscharaktschiew, Stefan & Hirte, Georg, 2012. "Should subsidies to urban passenger transport be increased? A spatial CGE analysis for a German metropolitan area," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 285-309.
    20. Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria & Roubini, Nouriel, 1998. "On the taxation of human and physical capital in models of endogenous growth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(2), pages 237-254, November.
    21. repec:zbw:rwirep:0140 is not listed on IDEAS
    22. Geir Haakon Bjertnæs, 2006. "Income Taxation, Tuition Subsidies, and Choice of Occupation," Discussion Papers 459, Statistics Norway, Research Department.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    income tax deductions; commuting; housework; child care; educational expenses; efficient taxation; production efficiency;
    All these keywords.

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    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:ces:ceswps:_1311. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    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 bibliographic 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.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Klaus Wohlrabe (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/cesifde.html .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.