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A Knight Without a Sword or a Toothless Tiger? The Effects of Audit Courts on Tax Morale in Switzerland

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  • Benno Torgler

Abstract

The intention of this paper is to analyse how audit courts affect tax morale, controlling in a multivariate analysis for a broad variety of potential factors. Switzerland with its variety of audit court competences among the cantons has been analysed. With data from the ISSP for 1999 evidence has been found that a higher audit court competence has a significantly positive effect on tax morale. Thus, the results in Switzerland suggest that in the cantons where audits courts are not just knights without swords or toothless tigers, they help improve taxpayers? tax morale and thus citizens? intrinsic motivation to pay taxes.

Suggested Citation

  • Benno Torgler, 2004. "A Knight Without a Sword or a Toothless Tiger? The Effects of Audit Courts on Tax Morale in Switzerland," CREMA Working Paper Series 2004-06, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
  • Handle: RePEc:cra:wpaper:2004-06
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jonathan S. Feinstein, 1991. "An Econometric Analysis of Income Tax Evasion and its Detection," RAND Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 22(1), pages 14-35, Spring.
    2. Benno Torgler, 2003. "Tax Morale, Rule-Governed Behaviour and Trust," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 14(2), pages 119-140, June.
    3. Feld, Lars P & Tyran, Jean-Robert, 2002. "Tax Evasion and Voting: An Experimental Analysis," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(2), pages 197-222.
    4. Alm, James & McClelland, Gary H & Schulze, William D, 1999. "Changing the Social Norm of Tax Compliance by Voting," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 52(2), pages 141-171.
    5. Alm, James & McClelland, Gary H. & Schulze, William D., 1992. "Why do people pay taxes?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 21-38, June.
    6. Mark Schelker & Reiner Eichenberger, 2003. "Starke Rechnungsprüfungskommissionen: Wichtiger als direkte Demokratie und Föderalismus? Ein erster Blick auf die Daten," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 139(III), pages 351-373, September.
    7. Torgler, Benno, 2003. "Tax Morale and Tax Evasion. Evidence from the United States," Working papers 2003/02, Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel.
    8. Pommerehne, Werner W & Hart, Albert & Frey, Bruno S, 1994. "Tax Morale, Tax Evasion and the Choice of Policy Instruments in Different Political Systems," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 49(Supplemen), pages 52-69.
    9. Clotfelter, Charles T, 1983. "Tax Evasion and Tax Rates: An Analysis of Individual Returns," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 65(3), pages 363-373, August.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Tax Morale; Tax Compliance; Tax Evasion; Audit Courts Direct Democracy; Local Autonomy;

    JEL classification:

    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H73 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations - - - Interjurisdictional Differentials and Their Effects
    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General

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