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The Distributional Consequences of Supply-Side Reforms in General Equilibrium

  • Konstantinos Angelopoulos
  • Bernardo X. Fernandez
  • Jim Malley

Using a heterogeneous agent model allowing for different degrees of complementarity between capital, skilled and unskilled labour, this paper evaluates supply-side reforms consistent with lower public debt-to-GDP in the long-run. We find that, relative to the other tax reforms, capital tax cuts lead to the highest aggregate welfare but are skill-biased and can thus increase inequality in the long-run. Depending on the elasticity of substitution between capital and unskilled labour, falls in the capital tax can result in welfare losses for unskilled workers, even in the absence of other frictions and increases in other forms of taxation. On the other hand, reductions in labour taxes can hurt the capitalists. We also show that including the transition period in the welfare evaluation lowers the inequality effects of capital tax reduc-tions since the complementarity between capital and all labour inputs is higher in the short- than in the long-run. Finally, our results suggest that a form of "irrational exuberance" can arise after a tax cut under heterogeneous learning in the initial conditions after the reform.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3504.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3504
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  1. Giannitsarou, Chryssi, 2006. "Supply-side reforms and learning dynamics," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(2), pages 291-309, March.
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  3. Lansing, Kevin J., 1999. "Optimal redistributive capital taxation in a neoclassical growth model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(3), pages 423-453, September.
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  5. Konstantinos Angelopoulos & Jim Malley & Apostolis Philippopoulos, 2008. "Tax Structure, Growth and Welfare in the UK," Working Papers 2008_05, Business School - Economics, University of Glasgow, revised Apr 2008.
  6. Seppo Honkapohja & Kaushik Mitra, 2006. "Learning Stability in Economies with Heterogeneous Agents," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 9(2), pages 284-309, April.
  7. Stephanie Schmitt-Grohe & Martin Uribe, 1995. "Balanced-budget rules, distortionary taxes, and aggregate instability," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 95-44, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  8. Juan Carlos Conesa & Timothy J. Kehoe & Kim J. Ruhl, 2007. "Modeling Great Depressions: The Depression in Finland in the 1990s," NBER Working Papers 13591, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. 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.
  10. Guo, Jang-Ting & Lansing, Kevin J., 1999. "Optimal taxation of capital income with imperfectly competitive product markets," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 23(7), pages 967-995, June.
  11. Konstantinos Angelopoulos & Jim Malley & Apostolis Philippopoulos, 2011. "Time-consistent Fiscal Policy under Heterogeneity: Conflicting or Common Interests?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3444, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Philippe Aghion & Abhijit Banerjee & Thomas Piketty, 1999. "Dualism and Macroeconomic Volatility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(4), pages 1359-1397.
  13. Per Krusell & Lee E. Ohanian & JosÈ-Victor RÌos-Rull & Giovanni L. Violante, 2000. "Capital-Skill Complementarity and Inequality: A Macroeconomic Analysis," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 68(5), pages 1029-1054, September.
  14. Paul Klein & Per Krusell & José-Víctor Ríos-Rull, 2008. "Time-Consistent Public Policy," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(3), pages 789-808.
  15. Teresa Garcia-Milà & Albert Marcet & Eva Ventura, 2010. "Supply Side Interventions and Redistribution," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(543), pages 105-130, 03.
  16. Klein, Paul, 2000. "Using the generalized Schur form to solve a multivariate linear rational expectations model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 24(10), pages 1405-1423, September.
  17. Juan Carlos Conesa & Sagiri Kitao & Dirk Krueger, 2009. "Taxing Capital? Not a Bad Idea after All!," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 25-48, March.
  18. Carceles-Poveda, Eva & Giannitsarou, Chryssi, 2006. "Adaptive Learning in Practice," CEPR Discussion Papers 5627, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  19. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1990. "Supply-Side Economics: An Analytical Review," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 42(2), pages 293-316, April.
  20. Pierpaolo Benigno, 2008. "Price stability with imperfect financial integration," Proceedings, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  21. Eva Carceles Poveda & Chryssi Giannitsarou, 2006. "Asset pricing with adaptive learning," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 25, Society for Computational Economics.
  22. Oded Galor & Joseph Zeira, 2013. "Income Distribution and Macroeconomics," Working Papers 2013-12, Brown University, Department of Economics.
  23. Chamley, Christophe, 1986. "Optimal Taxation of Capital Income in General Equilibrium with Infinite Lives," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(3), pages 607-22, May.
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