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Redistribution, Fiscal Competition, and the Politics of Economic Integration

  • Anke S. Kessler

    (University of Bonn)

The paper examines the redistributive consequences of the economic integration of factor markets. We consider two countries that redistribute income among their residents. The social benefits in each country are financed by a source based tax on capital which is democratically chosen by its inhabitants. If either capital or labour is internationally mobile, the countries engage in fiscal competition, i.e., the partial integration of capital or labour markets is detrimental to the countries' redistributive ability. A move from partial to full integration, however, may alleviate rather than intensify fiscal competition, particularly, if the two countries face sufficiently similar economic and political conditions. In such a situation, for example, increased integration of labour markets will soften the incentives compete for mobile capital. As a result, there is more redistribution in equilibrium and a majority of the population in each country is strictly better off.

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Paper provided by Econometric Society in its series Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers with number 0629.

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Date of creation: 01 Aug 2000
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Handle: RePEc:ecm:wc2000:0629
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  1. Myers, Gordon M., 1990. "Optimality, free mobility, and the regional authority in a federation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 107-121, October.
  2. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre, 1996. "Distributive implications of European integration," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(3-5), pages 747-757, April.
  3. Gordon, Roger H, 1983. "An Optimal Taxation Approach to Fiscal Federalism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(4), pages 567-86, November.
  4. Wildasin, D.E., 1987. "Nash equilibria in models of fiscal competition," CORE Discussion Papers 1987020, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  5. Wilson, John Douglas, 1987. "Trade, Capital Mobility, and Tax Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(4), pages 835-56, August.
  6. Robin W. Boadway & Frank R. Flatters, 1982. "Efficiency and Equalization Payments in a Federal System of Government: A Synthesis and Extension of Recent Results," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 15(4), pages 613-33, November.
  7. Perotti, Roberto, 1993. "Political Equilibrium, Income Distribution, and Growth," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 755-76, October.
  8. Edwards, Jeremy & Keen, Michael, 1996. "Tax competition and Leviathan," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 113-134, January.
  9. Bucovetsky, S., 1991. "Asymmetric tax competition," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 167-181, September.
  10. Keen, Michael, 1987. "Welfare effects of commodity tax harmonisation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 107-114, June.
  11. Wilson, J.D., 1990. "Tax Competition With Interregional Differences In Factor Endowments," Working Papers 4, John Deutsch Institute for the Study of Economic Policy.
  12. Torsten Persson & Guido Tabellini, 1990. "The Politics of 1992: Fiscal Policy and European Integration," NBER Working Papers 3460, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Bucovetsky, S., 1995. "Rent seeking and tax competition," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 337-363, November.
  14. Wildasin, David E, 1991. "Income Redistribution in a Common Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 757-74, September.
  15. Bolton, Patrick & Roland, Gérard, 1995. "The Break up of Nations: A Political Economy Analysis," CEPR Discussion Papers 1225, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  16. Epple, Dennis & Romer, Thomas, 1991. "Mobility and Redistribution," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(4), pages 828-58, August.
  17. Burbidge, John B. & Myers, Gordon M., 1994. "Population mobility and capital tax competition," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(4), pages 441-459, August.
  18. Flatters, Frank & Henderson, Vernon & Mieszkowski, Peter, 1974. "Public goods, efficiency, and regional fiscal equalization," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 99-112, May.
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