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The Effects of Taxation on the Location Decision of Multinational Firms: M&A vs. Greenfield Investments

  • Shafik Hebous
  • Martin Ruf
  • Alfons Weichenrieder

In this study, we estimate the impacts of differences in international tax rates on the probability of choosing a location for an affiliate of a multinational firm. In particular, we distinguish between the tax sensitivity of Greenfield and M&A investments. Based on a novel firm-level dataset on German outbound FDI, we find evidence that location decisions of M&A investments are less sensitive to differences in tax rates than location decisions of Greenfield investments. According to our logit estimates, and after controlling for firm and country-specific characteristics, the tax elasticity for Greenfield investments is negative and in absolute value significantly larger than that associated with M&A investments. This finding is consistent with a (partial) capitalisation of taxes in the acquisition price when the FDI project takes the form of M&A.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3076.

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Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3076
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  1. Peter Egger & Simon Loretz & Michael Pfaffermayr & Hannes Winner, 2006. "Corporate Taxation and Multinational Activity," CESifo Working Paper Series 1773, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Neary, J. Peter, 2004. "Cross-Border Mergers as Instruments of Comparative Advantage," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 34, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  3. Huizinga, Harry & Voget, Johannes & Wagner, Wolf, 2009. "International Taxation and Takeover Premiums in Cross-border M&As," CEPR Discussion Papers 7182, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Julian di Giovanni & Contact:, 2003. "What Drives Capital Flows? The Case of Cross-Border M&A Activity and Financial Deepening," International Trade 0303002, EconWPA.
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  10. Nicolas Coeurdacier & Roberto A. De Santis & Antonin Aviat, 2009. "Cross-border mergers and acquisitions and European integration," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 24, pages 55-106, 01.
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  12. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2004. "Market Potential and the Location of Japanese Investment in the European Union," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(4), pages 959-972, November.
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  14. Rmalho, Rita & Ganser, Tim Christian & Shleifer, Andrei & McLiesh, Caralee & Djankov, Simeon, 2010. "The Effect of Corporate Taxes on Investment and Entrepreneurship," Scholarly Articles 8705900, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Büttner, Thiess & Ruf, Martin, 2004. "Tax Incentives and the Location of FDI: Evidence from a Panel of German Multinationals," ZEW Discussion Papers 04-76, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  16. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2003. "Interaction terms in logit and probit models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 123-129, July.
  17. Johannes Becker & Clemens Fuest, 2007. "Taxing Foreign Profits with International Mergers and Acquisitions," Working Papers 0719, Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation.
  18. Javorcik, Beata S. & Wei, Shang-Jin, 2009. "Corruption and cross-border investment in emerging markets: Firm-level evidence," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 605-624, June.
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  21. Becker, Johannes & Fuest, Clemens, 2011. "Tax competition -- Greenfield investment versus mergers and acquisitions," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(5), pages 476-486, September.
  22. Michael P Devereux, 2007. "The Impact of Taxation on the Location of Capital, Firms and Profit: a Survey of Empirical Evidence," Working Papers 0702, Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation.
  23. 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.
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  26. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/c8dmi8nm4pdjkuc9g70aj72cl is not listed on IDEAS
  27. Hines, James R. Jr., 1999. "Lessons from Behavioral Responses to International Taxation," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 2), pages 305-22, June.
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