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Fiscal Competition over Taxes and Public Inputs: Theory and Evidence

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  • Sebastian Hauptmeier
  • Ferdinand Mittermaier
  • Johannes Rincke

Abstract

We set up a model to characterize the reaction functions of governments competing for mobile capital by simultaneously setting both the business tax rate as well as the level of provision of a productive public input. Using a rich data set of local jurisdictions, we then test the predictions of the model with respect to the nature of strategic interaction among governments. Our findings from efficient estimation of a system of spatially interrelated equations for both policy instruments support the notion that local governments use both the business tax rate and public inputs to compete for capital. In particular, we find that if neighbors cut their tax rates, governments try to restore competitiveness by lowering their own tax and increasing spending on public inputs. If neighbors provide more infrastructure, governments react by increasing their own spending on public inputs.

Suggested Citation

  • Sebastian Hauptmeier & Ferdinand Mittermaier & Johannes Rincke, 2008. "Fiscal Competition over Taxes and Public Inputs: Theory and Evidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 2499, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2499
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Janeba, Eckhard & Osterloh, Steffen, 2012. "Tax and the city: A theory of local tax competition and evidence for Germany," ZEW Discussion Papers 12-005, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    2. Yongzheng Liu & Jorge Martinez-Vazquez, 2015. "Public Input Competition under Stackelberg Equilibrium: A Note," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 17(6), pages 1022-1037, December.
    3. Kappeler, Andreas & Solé-Ollé, Albert & Stephan, Andreas & Välilä, Timo, 2013. "Does fiscal decentralization foster regional investment in productive infrastructure?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 15-25.
    4. Janeba, Eckhard & Osterloh, Steffen, 2013. "Tax and the city — A theory of local tax competition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 89-100.
    5. Hansjörg Blöchliger & José Maria Pinero Campos, 2011. "Tax Competition Between Sub-Central Governments," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 872, OECD Publishing.
    6. Hauptmeier, Sebastian & Mittermaier, Ferdinand & Rincke, Johannes, 2012. "Fiscal competition over taxes and public inputs," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 407-419.
    7. Yongzheng Liu & Jorge Martinez-Vazquez, 2011. "Public Input Competition, Stackelberg Equilibrium and Optimality," International Center for Public Policy Working Paper Series, at AYSPS, GSU paper1123, International Center for Public Policy, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, Georgia State University.
    8. Benny Geys & Steffen Osterloh, 2013. "Borders As Boundaries To Fiscal Policy Interactions? An Empirical Analysis Of Politicians’ Opinions On Rivals In The Competition For Firms," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(4), pages 583-606, October.
    9. Baskaran, Thushyanthan, 2013. "Identifying local tax mimicking: Administrative borders and a policy reform," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 157, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    10. Dima, Bogdan & Dima, Ştefana Maria & Barna, Flavia, 2014. "The signaling effect of tax rates under fiscal competition: A (Shannonian) transfer entropy approach," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 373-381.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    tax competition; public input; competition; system estimation;

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • H72 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - State and Local Budget and Expenditures
    • H77 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Intergovernmental Relations; Federalism

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