IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

How Low Business Tax Rates Attract Multinational Headquarters: Municipality-Level Evidence from Germany

  • Sascha O. Becker
  • Peter Egger
  • Valeria Merlo

Most existing empirical evidence on the impact of profit taxation on multinational firm activity is based on cross-country data. One major drawback of such data is that countries differ not only with regard to taxes but along other dimensions which might be hard to capture by means of observable characteristics. We compile a database of more than 11,000 municipalities in Germany to analyze the sensitivity of the location decisions of foreign MNEs with respect to business tax rates which are levied directly by the municipalities. Using count data models suited for cross-sectional and panel data, we find that higher business tax rates have a negative effect on the number of foreign MNE headquarters, after controlling for other determinants of firm location decisions. On average, a one-percent reduction of the municipal business tax rate (equivalent to a decline by about 0.14 percentage points) leads to an increase in the number of headquarters of foreign MNEs by about 0.05. Hence, the average municipality needs to reduce its business tax rate by 20% to attract one foreign MNE.

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: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2009/wp-cesifo-2009-01/cesifo1_wp2517.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 2517.

as
in new window

Length:
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_2517
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Poschingerstrasse 5, 81679 Munich

Phone: +49 (89) 9224-0
Fax: +49 (89) 985369
Web page: http://www.cesifo-group.de
Email:


More information through EDIRC

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. Horst Raff, 2002. "Preferential Trade Agreements and Tax Competition for Foreign Direct Investment," CESifo Working Paper Series 763, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Head, Keith & Mayer, Thierry, 2002. "Market Potential and the Location of Japanese Investment in the European Union," CEPR Discussion Papers 3455, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Bucovetsky, Sam & Haufler, Andreas, 2008. "Tax competition when firms choose their organizational form: Should tax loopholes for multinationals be closed," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 74(1), pages 188-201, January.
  4. Rainald Borck & Michael Pflüger, 2004. "Agglomeration and Tax Competition," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 408, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  5. Bruce A. Blonigen & Ronald B. Davies, 2004. "The Effects of Bilateral Tax Treaties on U.S. FDI Activity," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 11(5), pages 601-622, 09.
  6. Michael Overesch & Georg Wamser, 2009. "Who Cares About Corporate Taxation? Asymmetric Tax Effects on Outbound FDI," The World Economy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 32(12), pages 1657-1684, December.
  7. Hines, James R, Jr, 1996. "Altered States: Taxes and the Location of Foreign Direct Investment in America," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1076-94, December.
  8. Bruce A. Blonigen & Ronald B. Davies & Keith Head, 2002. "Estimating the Knowledge-Capital Model of the Multinational Enterprise: Comment," NBER Working Papers 8929, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Woodridge, J.M., 1991. "Multiplicative Panel Data Models without the Strict Exogeneity Assumption," Working papers 574, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  10. Ludema, Rodney D & Wooton, Ian, 1998. "Economic Geography and the Fiscal Effects of Regional Integration," CEPR Discussion Papers 1822, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Markusen, James R., 2002. "Multinational Firms and the Theory of International Trade," MPRA Paper 8380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Blundell, Richard & Griffith, Rachel & Windmeijer, Frank, 2002. "Individual effects and dynamics in count data models," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 108(1), pages 113-131, May.
  13. Richard Baldwin; Paul Krugman, 2001. "Agglomeration, Integration and Tax Harmonization," IHEID Working Papers 01-2001, Economics Section, The Graduate Institute of International Studies.
  14. Andreas Haufler & Ian Wooton, . "Country Size and Tax Competition for Foreign Direct Investment," Working Papers 9702, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow.
  15. Bergstrand, Jeffrey H. & Egger, Peter, 2007. "A knowledge-and-physical-capital model of international trade flows, foreign direct investment, and multinational enterprises," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(2), pages 278-308, November.
  16. Harry Huizinga & Gaetan Nicodeme, 2003. "Foreign Ownership and Corporate Income Taxation: An Empirical Evaluation," Public Economics 0310005, EconWPA.
  17. Assaf Razin & Joel Slemrod, 1990. "Taxation in the Global Economy," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number razi90-1, September.
  18. Assaf Razin & Joel B. Slemrod, 1990. "Introduction to "Taxation in the Global Economy"," NBER Chapters, in: Taxation in the Global Economy, pages 1-8 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Wilson, John Douglas, 1987. "Trade, Capital Mobility, and Tax Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 835-56, August.
  20. Frank Windmeijer, 2006. "GMM for panel count data models," Bristol Economics Discussion Papers 06/591, Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK.
  21. Harry Huizinga & Soeren Bo Nielsen, . "Capital Income and Profits Taxation with Foreign Ownerwhip of Firms," EPRU Working Paper Series 95-09, Economic Policy Research Unit (EPRU), University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  22. Ronald B. Davies, 2003. "The OECD Model Tax Treaty: Tax Competition And Two-Way Capital Flows," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(2), pages 725-753, 05.
  23. Papke, Leslie E., 1991. "Interstate business tax differentials and new firm location : Evidence from panel data," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 47-68, June.
  24. Markusen, James R & Maskus, Keith E, 2002. "Discriminating among Alternative Theories of the Multinational Enterprise," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 10(4), pages 694-707, November.
  25. Devereux, Michael P & Hubbard, R Glenn, 2003. "Taxing Multinationals," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 10(4), pages 469-87, August.
  26. Marius BRÜLHART & Mario JAMETTI & Kurt SCHMIDHEINY, 2007. "Do Agglomeration Economies Reduce the Sensitivity of Firm Location to Tax Differentials?," Cahiers de Recherches Economiques du Département d'Econométrie et d'Economie politique (DEEP) 07.13, Université de Lausanne, Faculté des HEC, DEEP.
  27. Michael Devereux & Rachel Griffith, 1996. "Taxes and the location of production: evidence from a panel of US multinationals," IFS Working Papers W96/14, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  28. Joel Slemrod, 1989. "Tax Effects on Foreign Direct Investment in the United States: Evidence from a Cross-Country Comparison," NBER Working Papers 3042, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  29. Ruud A. de Mooij & Sjef Ederveen, 2001. "Taxation and Foreign Direct Investment: A Synthesis of Empirical Research," CESifo Working Paper Series 588, CESifo Group Munich.
  30. David L. Carr & James R. Markusen & Keith E. Maskus, 2001. "Estimating the Knowledge-Capital Model of the Multinational Enterprise," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 693-708, June.
  31. List, John A., 2001. "US county-level determinants of inbound FDI: evidence from a two-step modified count data model," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 19(6), pages 953-973, May.
  32. Mutti, John & Grubert, Harry, 2004. "Empirical asymmetries in foreign direct investment and taxation," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 337-358, March.
  33. Janeba, Eckhard, 1992. "Corporate income tax competition, double taxation treaties, and foreign direct investment," Discussion Papers, Series II 194, University of Konstanz, Collaborative Research Centre (SFB) 178 "Internationalization of the Economy".
  34. Peter Egger & Simon Loretz & Michael Pfaffermayr & Hannes Winner, 2009. "Bilateral effective tax rates and foreign direct investment," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 16(6), pages 822-849, December.
  35. Craig Brett & Joris Pinkse, 2000. "The determinants of municipal tax rates in British Columbia," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 33(3), pages 695-714, August.
  36. Egger, Peter & Pfaffermayr, Michael & Winner, Hannes, 2005. "Commodity taxation in a 'linear' world: a spatial panel data approach," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 527-541, September.
  37. Egger, Peter & Pfaffermayr, Michael & Winner, Hannes, 2005. "An unbalanced spatial panel data approach to US state tax competition," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 88(3), pages 329-335, September.
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:ces:ceswps:_2517. 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: (Klaus Wohlrabe)

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.