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Relocation of the Rich: Migration in Response to Top Tax Rate Changes from Spanish Reforms

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  • David R. Agrawal
  • Dirk Foremny

Abstract

A recent Spanish tax reform granted regions the authority to set income tax rates, resulting in substantial tax differentials. We use individual-level information from Social Security records over a period of one decade. Conditional on moving, taxes have a significant effect on location choice. A one percent increase in the net of tax rate for a region relative to others increases the probability of moving to that region by 1.7 percentage points. Focusing on the stock of top-taxpayers, we estimate an elasticity of the number of top taxpayers with respect to net-of-tax rates of 0.85. Using this elasticity, a theoretical model implies that the mechanical increase in tax revenue due to higher tax rates is larger than the loss in tax revenue from the out-ow of migration.

Suggested Citation

  • David R. Agrawal & Dirk Foremny, 2018. "Relocation of the Rich: Migration in Response to Top Tax Rate Changes from Spanish Reforms," CESifo Working Paper Series 7027, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_7027
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Martin Feldstein, 1999. "Tax Avoidance And The Deadweight Loss Of The Income Tax," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 81(4), pages 674-680, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Kleven, Henrik & Landais, Camille & Munoz, Mathilde & Stantcheva, Stefanie, 2019. "Taxation and Migration: Evidence and Policy Implications," CEPR Discussion Papers 13649, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    2. Henrik Kleven & Camille Landais & Mathilde Muñoz & Stefanie Stantcheva, 2019. "Taxation and Migration: Evidence and Policy Implications," NBER Working Papers 25740, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    migration; taxes; mobility; rich; fiscal decentralization;

    JEL classification:

    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • H73 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Interjurisdictional Differentials and Their Effects
    • J61 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Geographic Labor Mobility; Immigrant Workers
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population

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