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Where Does Multinational Profit Go with Territorial Taxation? Evidence from the UK

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  • Dominika Langenmayr
  • Li Liu

Abstract

In 2009, the United Kingdom abolished the taxation of profits earned abroad and introduced a territorial tax system. Under the territorial system, firms have strong incentives to shift profits abroad. Using a difference-in-differences research design, we show that profits of UK subsidiaries in low-tax countries increased after the reform compared to subsidiaries of non-UK multinationals in the same countries, by an average of 2.1 percentage points. The increase in profit shifting also leads to increases in measured productivity of the foreign affiliates of UK multinationals of between 5 and 9 percent.

Suggested Citation

  • Dominika Langenmayr & Li Liu, 2020. "Where Does Multinational Profit Go with Territorial Taxation? Evidence from the UK," CESifo Working Paper Series 8047, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_8047
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    Cited by:

    1. Fuest, Clemens & Hugger, Felix & Neumeier, Florian, 2022. "Corporate profit shifting and the role of tax havens: Evidence from German country-by-country reporting data," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 194(C), pages 454-477.
    2. Bilicka, Katarzyna & Qi, Yaxuan & Xing, Jing, 2021. "Real Responses to Anti-tax Avoidance: Evidence from the UK Worldwide Debt Cap," CEPR Discussion Papers 16068, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Makoto Hasegawa, 2019. "Territorial Tax Reform and Profit Shifting by US and Japanese Multinationals," KIER Working Papers 1016, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
    4. Katarzyna Bilicka, 2021. "Labor Market Consequences of Antitax Avoidance Policies," Upjohn Working Papers 21-354, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
    5. Ruud Mooij & Li Liu, 2020. "At a Cost: The Real Effects of Transfer Pricing Regulations," IMF Economic Review, Palgrave Macmillan;International Monetary Fund, vol. 68(1), pages 268-306, March.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    profit shifting; territorial tax system; multinational firms;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies
    • H87 - Public Economics - - Miscellaneous Issues - - - International Fiscal Issues; International Public Goods
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business

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