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Behavioural responses to a wealth tax

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  • Advani, Arun

    (University of Warwick, CAGE, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), and the LSE International Inequalities Institute (III))

  • Tarrant, Hannah

    (London School of Economics III)

Abstract

In this paper, we review the existing empirical evidence on how individuals respond to the incentives created by a net wealth tax. Variation in the overall magnitude of behavioural responses is substantial: estimates of the elasticity of taxable wealth vary by a factor of 800. We explore three key reasons for this variation: tax design, context and methodology. We then discuss what is known about the importance of individual margins of response and how these interact with policy choices. Finally, we use our analysis to systematically narrow down and reconcile the range of elasticity estimates. We argue that a well-designed wealth tax would reduce the tax base by 7–17 per cent if levied at a tax rate of 1 per cent.
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  • Advani, Arun & Tarrant, Hannah, 2021. "Behavioural responses to a wealth tax," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 577, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
  • Handle: RePEc:cge:wacage:577
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    Cited by:

    1. Arun Advani & George Bangham & Jack Leslie, 2021. "The UK's wealth distribution and characteristics of high‐wealth households," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 397-430, September.
    2. Demetrio Guzzardi & Elisa Palagi & Tommaso Faccio & Andrea Roventini, 2023. "In search of lost time: An ensemble of policies to restore fiscal progressivity and address the climate challenge," LEM Papers Series 2023/28, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    3. Nick O'Donovan, 2021. "One‐off wealth taxes: theory and evidence," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 565-597, September.
    4. Florian Scheuer & Joel Slemrod, 2021. "Taxing Our Wealth," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 35(1), pages 207-230, Winter.
    5. Advani, Arun & Summers, Andy, 2022. "Measuring and taxing top incomes and wealth," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 1403, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
    6. David Burgherr, 2021. "The costs of administering a wealth tax," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 677-697, September.
    7. Kruschwitz, Lutz & Löffler, Andreas & Lorenz, Daniela & Uttscheid, Moritz, 2023. "Costs of capital and wealth tax: Remarks on Bjerksund and Schjelderup (2022)," arqus Discussion Papers in Quantitative Tax Research 279, arqus - Arbeitskreis Quantitative Steuerlehre.
    8. Emma Chamberlain, 2021. "Who should pay a wealth tax? Some design issues," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 599-613, September.
    9. Stuart Adam & Helen Miller, 2021. "The economic arguments for and against a wealth tax," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 457-483, September.
    10. Andy Summers, 2021. "Ways of taxing wealth: alternatives and interactions," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 485-507, September.
    11. Arun Advani & Helen Hughson & Hannah Tarrant, 2021. "Revenue and distributional modelling for a UK wealth tax," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 699-736, September.
    12. Dominik Bernhofer & Michael Ertl & Katharina Bohnenberger & Franziska Disslbacher & Julia Hofmann & Petra Innreiter & Markus Marterbauer & Patrick Mokre & Matthias Schnetzer, 2022. "Tax me if you can. Potenziale moderner Vermögensbesteuerung in Österreich," Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft - WuG, Kammer für Arbeiter und Angestellte für Wien, Abteilung Wirtschaftswissenschaft und Statistik, vol. 48(2), pages 207-230.
    13. Sarah Perret, 2021. "Why were most wealth taxes abandoned and is this time different?," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 539-563, September.
    14. Elena N. Timchenko & Alexander I. Pogorletsky, 2022. "Property Taxation: Transformational Changes in the Digital Era and Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic," Finansovyj žhurnal — Financial Journal, Financial Research Institute, Moscow 125375, Russia, issue 3, pages 28-43, June.
    15. Stephen Daly & Helen Hughson & Glen Loutzenhiser, 2021. "Valuation for the purposes of a wealth tax," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 615-650, September.
    16. Krenek Alexander & Schratzenstaller Margit, 2022. "A Harmonized Net Wealth Tax in the European Union," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 242(5-6), pages 629-668, December.
    17. Sergio Beraldo & Enrico Colombatto, 2023. "Do People Really Dislike Wealth Taxes more than Other Types of Taxes? Evidence from a Survey-Experiment Representative of the Italian Population," CSEF Working Papers 671, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
    18. Jakurti, Edison & Süssmuth, Bernd, 2023. "Behavioral responses to wealth taxes: Evidence from the Spanish Survey of Household Finances," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 223(C).
    19. Margit Schratzenstaller, 2023. "Behavioral Responses to Inheritance Taxation. A Review of the Empirical Literature," WIFO Working Papers 668, WIFO.
    20. Arun Advani & Helen Miller & Andy Summers, 2021. "Taxes on wealth: time for another look?," Fiscal Studies, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 42(3-4), pages 389-395, September.

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    9. Spencer Bastani & Daniel Waldenström, 2018. "How should capital be taxed? The Swedish experience," Working Papers hal-02878153, HAL.
    10. Goupille-Lebret, Jonathan & Infante, Jose, 2018. "Behavioral responses to inheritance tax: Evidence from notches in France," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 168(C), pages 21-34.
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    Keywords

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    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household

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