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Trade, Inequality and Distribution-Neutral Fiscal Policy - An Elementary Framework

Author

Listed:
  • Sugata Marjit
  • Lei Yang

Abstract

Theoretical discussion on compensating mechanisms involving the Pareto criterion that address inequality rather than absolute welfare is non-existent in trade literature. In a simple HOS model we consider tax-transfer policies that keep the pre-trade degree of inequality unchanged between skilled and unskilled workers rather than the absolute income of the losing group. We discuss the problem of existence of such an inequality-neutral tax rate which generates a positive increment in the after tax skilled wage and unskilled wage. Such a mechanism exists and is independent of whether the tax is progressive or proportional. Thus the compensating mechanism that is available in this standard model is stronger than the conventional Pareto criterion.

Suggested Citation

  • Sugata Marjit & Lei Yang, 2017. "Trade, Inequality and Distribution-Neutral Fiscal Policy - An Elementary Framework," CESifo Working Paper Series 6474, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_6474
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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp6474.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Davis, Donald R. & Harrigan, James, 2011. "Good jobs, bad jobs, and trade liberalization," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 26-36, May.
    2. Jones, Ronald W & Engerman, Stanley L, 1996. "Trade, Technology, and Wages: A Tale of Two Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(2), pages 35-40, May.
    3. Subhayu Bandyopadhyay & Sugata Marjit & Lei Yang, 2014. "International oligopoly, barriers to outsourcing and domestic employment," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1372-1386, November.
    4. Chakrabarti, Avik, 2004. "Asymmetric adjustment costs in simple general equilibrium models," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 63-73, February.
    5. Sugata Marjit & Hamid Beladi & Avik Chakrabarti, 2004. "Trade and Wage Inequality in Developing Countries," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 42(2), pages 295-303, April.
    6. Anthony B. Atkinson, 2000. "The Changing Distribution of Income: Evidence and Explanations," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 1(1), pages 3-18, February.
    7. Krugman, Paul R., 2000. "Technology, trade and factor prices," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, pages 51-71.
    8. Paul R. Krugman, 2008. "Trade and Wages, Reconsidered," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 39(1 (Spring), pages 103-154.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    trade model; wage inequality; compensation mechanism; tax policy;

    JEL classification:

    • F11 - International Economics - - Trade - - - Neoclassical Models of Trade
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies

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