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The Capital Levy in Theory and Practice

  • Eichengreen, Barry

This paper shows how in theory, if the contingencies in response to which it is imposed are fully anticipated, independently verifiable and not under government control, then saving and investment should not fall following the imposition of a capital levy. Nor should the government find it more difficult to raise revenues subsequently, even if its non-recurrence cannot be guaranteed. In practice, however, serious problems stand in the way of implementation. Property owners are sure to delay its adoption and engage in capital flight, reducing the prospective yield and allowing the special circumstances providing the justification for the levy to recede into the past.

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File URL: http://www.cepr.org/active/publications/discussion_papers/dp.php?dpno=350
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Paper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 350.

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Date of creation: Nov 1989
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Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:350
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  1. Chari, V V & Kehoe, Patrick J, 1990. "Sustainable Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(4), pages 783-802, August.
  2. Herschel I. Grossman, 1988. "The Political Economy of War Debts and Inflation," NBER Working Papers 2743, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. V.V. Chari, 1988. "Time consistency and optimal policy design," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Fall, pages 17-31.
  4. Herschel I. Grossman & John B. Van Huyck, 1985. "Sovereign Debt as a Contingent Claim: Excusable Default, Repudiation, and Reputation," NBER Working Papers 1673, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Prescott, Edward C., 1977. "Should control theory be used for economic stabilization?," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 7(1), pages 13-38, January.
  6. Henry Shavell, 1948. "Postwar Taxation in Japan," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56, pages 124.
  7. Thomas J. Sargent, 1981. "The ends of four big inflations," Working Papers 158, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  8. Abreu, Dilip, 1988. "On the Theory of Infinitely Repeated Games with Discounting," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(2), pages 383-96, March.
  9. Alberto Alesina, 1988. "Macroeconomics and Politics," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1988, Volume 3, pages 13-62 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Fischer, Stanley, 1980. "Dynamic inconsistency, cooperation and the benevolent dissembling government," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 93-107, May.
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