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Unreported employment and tax evasion in mid-transition : comparing developments and causes in the Baltic States

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  • Jaanika Merikull

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  • Karsten Staehr

    ()

Abstract

This paper compares the prevalence and determinants of unreported employment in the three Baltic States in 1998 and 2002 using a hitherto little used dataset. The prevalence of unreported employment varies substantially across the three countries and across the two sampling years. Microeconometric estimations show that firm-related characteristics, such as sectoral activity, firm size and employment trends, are important determinants of unreported employment in all three countries, whereas the impact of individual factors varies across countries and time. It is shown that only 10�30 percent of the changes in unreported employment between 1998 and 2002 can be accounted for by changes in individual characteristics and firm-related factors. Provisional calculations suggest that the net gain for individuals undertaking unreported employment is modest, in particular among individuals who regularly engage in such activities

Suggested Citation

  • Jaanika Merikull & Karsten Staehr, 2008. "Unreported employment and tax evasion in mid-transition : comparing developments and causes in the Baltic States," Bank of Estonia Working Papers 2008-06, Bank of Estonia, revised 28 Nov 2008.
  • Handle: RePEc:eea:boewps:wp2008-06
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    File URL: http://www.eestipank.ee/sites/eestipank.ee/files/publication/en/WorkingPapers/2008/_wp_608.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Schneider, Friedrich, 2004. "The Size of the Shadow Economies of 145 Countries all over the World: First Results over the Period 1999 to 2003," IZA Discussion Papers 1431, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Frank A. Cowell, 1990. "Cheating the Government: The Economics of Evasion," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262532484, January.
    3. Kenneth A. Kriz & Jaanika Meriküll & Alari Paulus & Karsten Staehr, 2007. "Why Do Individuals Evade Payroll And Income Taxation In Estonia?," University of Tartu - Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Working Paper Series 49, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, University of Tartu (Estonia).
    4. European Commission, 2013. "Taxation trends in the European Union: 2013 edition," Taxation trends 2013, Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union, European Commission.
    5. Alm, James & Torgler, Benno, 2006. "Culture differences and tax morale in the United States and in Europe," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 224-246, April.
    6. James Andreoni & Brian Erard & Jonathan Feinstein, 1998. "Tax Compliance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 818-860, June.
    7. Pissarides, Christopher A. & Weber, Guglielmo, 1989. "An expenditure-based estimate of Britain's black economy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 17-32, June.
    8. Schneider, Friedrich, 2002. "The Size and Development of the Shadow Economies of 22 Transition and 21 OECD Countries," IZA Discussion Papers 514, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    9. European Commission, 2007. "Taxation trends in the European Union: 2007 edition," Taxation trends 2007, Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union, European Commission.
    10. Dominik H. Enste & Friedrich Schneider, 2000. "Shadow Economies: Size, Causes, and Consequences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(1), pages 77-114, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Johannes Koettl & Truman Packard & Claudio E. Montenegro, 2012. "In From the Shadow : Integrating Europe's Informal Labor," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 9377.
    2. Leibfritz, Willi, 2011. "Undeclared economic activity in central and eastern Europe -- how taxes contribute and how countries respond to the problem," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5923, The World Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Unreported employment; informal employment; envelope wages; tax evasion;

    JEL classification:

    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • D19 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Other

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