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The distributional impact of recurrent immovable property taxation in Greece

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  • Andriopoulou, Eirini
  • Kanavitsa, Eleni
  • Leventi, Chrysa
  • Tsakloglou, Panos

Abstract

During the last decade, Greece faced one of the most severe debt crises among developed countries, leading to Economic Adjustment Programs in order to avoid a disorderly default. Public expenditure was cut, tax rates were increased and new taxes were introduced aiming at restoring public finances. Prominent among the latter were recurrent property taxes that were playing a very minor role before the crisis. These taxes helped boosting public revenues but were hugely unpopular. The paper examines in detail their distributional impact and finds that they led to increases in inequality and (relative) poverty. The result is stronger in the case of inequality indices that are relatively more sensitive to changes close to the bottom of the distribution and poverty indices that are sensitive to the distribution of income among the poor.

Suggested Citation

  • Andriopoulou, Eirini & Kanavitsa, Eleni & Leventi, Chrysa & Tsakloglou, Panos, 2020. "The distributional impact of recurrent immovable property taxation in Greece," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 106123, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:106123
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Eirini Andriopoulou & Alexandros Karakitsios & Panos Tsakloglou, 2017. "Inequality and Poverty in Greece:Changes in Times of Crisis," GreeSE – Hellenic Observatory Papers on Greece and Southeast Europe 116, Hellenic Observatory, LSE.
    2. Eirini Andriopoulou & Eleni Kanavitsa & Panos Tsakloglou, 2019. "Decomposing Poverty in Hard Times: Greece 2007-2016," Revue d’économie du développement, De Boeck Université, vol. 27(2), pages 125-168.
    3. Cowell, F.A., 2000. "Measurement of inequality," Handbook of Income Distribution, in: A.B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon (ed.), Handbook of Income Distribution, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 2, pages 87-166, Elsevier.
    4. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production: I--Production Efficiency," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(1), pages 8-27, March.
    5. Richard Almy, 2014. "Valuation and Assessment of Immovable Property," OECD Working Papers on Fiscal Federalism 19, OECD Publishing.
    6. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production II: Tax Rules," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(3), pages 261-278, June.
    7. Atkinson, Anthony B., 1970. "On the measurement of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 244-263, September.
    8. European Commission, 2018. "Taxation trends in the European Union: 2018 edition," Taxation trends 2018, Directorate General Taxation and Customs Union, European Commission.
    9. Marika Cabral & Caroline Hoxby, 2012. "The Hated Property Tax: Salience, Tax Rates, and Tax Revolts," NBER Working Papers 18514, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    10. Charles Blackorby & David Donaldson, 1984. "Ethical Social Index Numbers and the Measurement of Effective Tax-Benefit Progressivity," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 17(4), pages 683-694, November.
    11. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David, 1980. "A Theoretical Treatment of Indices of Absolute Inequality," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 21(1), pages 107-136, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Eirini Andriopoulou & Eleni Kanavitsa & Panos Tsakloglou, 2019. "Decomposing Poverty in Hard Times: Greece 2007-2016," Revue d’économie du développement, De Boeck Université, vol. 27(2), pages 125-168.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    property taxation; inequality; poverty; progressivity; Greece;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence

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