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Optimal Taxation and Constrained Inefficiency in an Infinite-Horizon Economy with Incomplete Markets

  • Piero Gottardi
  • Atsushi Kajii
  • Tomoyuki Nakajima

We study the dynamic Ramsey problem of finding optimal public debt and linear taxes on capital and labor income within a tractable infinite horizon model with incomplete markets. With zero public expenditure and debt, it is optimal to tax the risky labor income and subsidize capital, while a positive amount of public debt is welfare improving. A steady state optimality condition is derived which implies that the tax on capital is positive, when savings are sufficiently inelastic to returns. A calibration of our model to the US economy indicates positive optimal taxes and a small but positive optimal debt level.

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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 3560.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_3560
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  1. Jones, Larry E & Manuelli, Rodolfo E, 1990. "A Convex Model of Equilibrium Growth: Theory and Policy Implications," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(5), pages 1008-38, October.
  2. Piero Gottardi & Atsushi Kajii & Tomoyuki Nakajima, 2014. "Constrained inefficiency and optimal taxation with uninsurable risks," CIGS Working Paper Series 14-002E, The Canon Institute for Global Studies.
  3. Conesa, Juan Carlos & Kitao, Sagiri & Krueger, Dirk, 2006. "Taxing Capital? Not a Bad Idea After All!," CEPR Discussion Papers 5929, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Kenichi Fukushima, 2010. "Quantifying the Welfare Gains From Flexible Dynamic Income Tax Systems," 2010 Meeting Papers 410, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  5. Julio Davila & Jay H. Hong & Per Krusell & José-Victor Rios Rull, 2005. "Constrained efficiency in the neoclassical growth model with uninsurable idiosyncratic shocks," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00196183, HAL.
  6. Albert Marcet & Francesc Obiols-Homs & Philippe Weil, 2007. "Incomplete Markets, Labor Supply and Capital Accumulation," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/8623, Sciences Po.
  7. Marco Bassetto & Narayana Kocherlakota, 2010. "On the Irrelevance of Government Debt When Taxes are Distortionary," Levine's Working Paper Archive 506439000000000295, David K. Levine.
  8. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/8623 is not listed on IDEAS
  9. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00196183 is not listed on IDEAS
  10. Tom Krebs, 2003. "Human Capital Risk and Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(2), pages 709-744.
  11. Zhu, Xiaodong, 1992. "Optimal fiscal policy in a stochastic growth model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 250-289, December.
  12. Larry E. Jones & Rodolfo E. Manuelli & Peter E. Rossi, 1993. "On the Optimal Taxation of Capital Income," NBER Working Papers 4525, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Philippe Weil, 1990. "Nonexpected Utility in Macroeconomics," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 105(1), pages 29-42.
  14. Constantinides,George & Duffie,Darrel, 1992. "Asset pricing with heterogeneous consumers," Discussion Paper Serie A 381, University of Bonn, Germany.
  15. Eva Carceles Poveda & Arpad Abraham, 2004. "Endogenous Trading Constraints with Incomplete Asset Markets," 2004 Meeting Papers 667, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  16. Larry E. Jones & Rodolfo Manuelli, 1990. "A Convex Model of Equilibrium Growth," NBER Working Papers 3241, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  17. Lars Ljungqvist & Thomas J. Sargent, 2004. "Recursive Macroeconomic Theory, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 026212274x, December.
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