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Is Tax Policy Coordination Necessary?

  • Kollintzas, Tryphon
  • Philippopoulos, Apostolis
  • Vassilatos, Vanghelis

The answer to this question is "yes". We re-examine noncooperative and cooperative equilibria under perfect capital mobility. To this end, we develop a two-country optimal growth model with endogenous national fiscal policies. The channel for interdependence is distortionary income taxes. We study both the Residence and Source principle of international taxation. National governments play Stackelberg vis-à-vis private agents, while they can play either Nash or cooperate vis-à-vis each other. We solve for Markov-perfect (time consistent) equilibria. We show that the pertinent Nash equilibria are degenerate. Thus, under both the Residence and Source principle, only cooperative equilibria can exist. The driving force is perfect capital mobility. This is a new result that provides a strong argument for world tax coordination. When we solve for cooperative equilibria, we show that it is optimal to set a common tax rate across countries, irrespective of the principle of international taxation (Residence or Source) and differences across countries. A cooperative solution under the Source principle may be more difficult to implement than under the Residence principle.

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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 2348.

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Date of creation: Jan 2000
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:2348
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  1. Giavazzi, Francesco & Pagano, Marco, 1986. "The Advantages of Tying One's Hands: EMS Discipline and Central Bank Credibility," CEPR Discussion Papers 135, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  5. Kollintzas, T. Philippopoulos, A. & Vasillatos, V., 1999. "Normative Aspects of Fiscal Policy in an Economic Union: a Theoretical Review," Athens University of Economics and Business 109, Athens University of Economics and Business, Department of International and European Economic Studies.
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  12. Kollintzas, Tryphon & Philippopoulos, Apostolis & Vassilatos, Vanghelis, 1999. "Normative Aspects of Fiscal Policy in an Economic Union: a Review," CEPR Discussion Papers 2212, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  13. Stokey, Nancy L., 1991. "Credible public policy," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 627-656, October.
  14. Patrick J. Kehoe, 1986. "Coordination of fiscal policies in a world economy," Staff Report 98, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  15. Assaf Razin & Chi-Wa Yuen, 1999. "Optimal International Taxation and Growth Rate Convergence: Tax Competition vs. Coordination," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 61-78, February.
  16. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1991. "The Politics of 1992: Fiscal Policy and European Integration," CEPR Discussion Papers 501, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  17. Kydland, Finn E & Prescott, Edward C, 1977. "Rules Rather Than Discretion: The Inconsistency of Optimal Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 85(3), pages 473-91, June.
  18. Kollintzas, T. Philippopoulos, A. & Vasillatos, V., 1999. "Normative Aspects of Fiscal Policy in an Economic Union: a Theoretical Review," DEOS Working Papers 109, Athens University of Economics and Business.
  19. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1996. "Federal Fiscal Constitutions: Risk Sharing and Moral Hazard," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(3), pages 623-46, May.
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