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Optimal Policy and (the Lack of) Time Inconsistency: Insights from Simple Models

  • Jorge Soares, Marina Azzimonti, Pierre-Daniel Sarte

    (Department of Economics, University of Iowa)

  • Pierre-Daniel Sarte

    ()

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond)

  • Jorge Soares

    ()

    (Department of Economics,University of Delaware)

In the standard neoclassical model with a representative agent, a benevolent planner who can commit to future policies will, if feasible, levy a single confiscatory tax on capital in the initial period and commit never to set positive taxes thereafter. We show that this policy, which allows for the disposal of distortional taxes entirely, can arise even when sequential governments are unable to credibly promise future tax rates, regardless of how public expenditures are determined.

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File URL: http://graduate.lerner.udel.edu/sites/default/files/ECON/PDFs/RePEc/dlw/WorkingPapers/2006/UDWP2006-08.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Delaware, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 06-08.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:dlw:wpaper:06-08
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Web page: http://www.lerner.udel.edu/departments/economics/department-economics/
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  1. Carlos Garriga, 2001. "Optimal Fiscal Policy in Overlapping Generations Models," Working Papers in Economics 66, Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia.
  2. Xie, Danyang, 1997. "On Time Inconsistency: A Technical Issue in Stackelberg Differential Games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 412-430, October.
  3. Per Krusell & Burhanettin Kuruscu & Anthony A. Smith Jr., 2001. "Equilibrium Welfare and Government Policy with Quasi-Geometric Discounting," Temi di discussione (Economic working papers) 413, Bank of Italy, Economic Research and International Relations Area.
  4. Chari, V V & Kehoe, Patrick J, 1990. "Sustainable Plans," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(4), pages 783-802, August.
  5. John Hassler & José V. Rodríguez Mora & Kjetil Storesletten & Fabrizio Zilibotti, 2003. "The Survival of the Welfare State," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 87-112, March.
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  7. 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.
  8. Andrew Atkeson & V.V. Chari & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1999. "Taxing capital income: a bad idea," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue Sum, pages 3-17.
  9. Klein, Paul & Krusell, Per & Ríos-Rull, José-Víctor, 2004. "Time Consistent Public Expenditures," CEPR Discussion Papers 4582, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Mateos-Planas, Xavier, 2009. "Demographics and the politics of capital taxation in a life-cycle economy," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0909, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
  11. Chamley, Christophe, 1986. "Optimal Taxation of Capital Income in General Equilibrium with Infinite Lives," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(3), pages 607-22, May.
  12. Atkinson, A B & Sandmo, A, 1980. "Welfare Implications of the Taxation of Savings," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(359), pages 529-49, September.
  13. Judd, Kenneth L., 1985. "Redistributive taxation in a simple perfect foresight model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 59-83, October.
  14. Renstrom, T., 1999. "Optimal Dynamic Taxation," Discussion Papers 99-21, Department of Economics, University of Birmingham.
  15. Jones, Larry E & Manuelli, Rodolfo E & Rossi, Peter E, 1993. "Optimal Taxation in Models of Endogenous Growth," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 101(3), pages 485-517, June.
  16. Paul Klein & JosÈ-VÌctor RÌos-Rull, 2003. "Time-consistent optimal fiscal policy," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 44(4), pages 1217-1245, November.
  17. V.V. Chari & Lawrence J. Christiano & Patrick J. Kehoe, 1993. "Optimal fiscal policy in a business cycle model," Staff Report 160, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
  18. Kydland, Finn E. & Prescott, Edward C., 1980. "Dynamic optimal taxation, rational expectations and optimal control," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 79-91, May.
  19. Correia, Isabel H., 1996. "Should capital income be taxed in the steady state?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 147-151, April.
  20. 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.
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