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Optimal taxation and constrained inefficiency in an infinite-horizon economy with incomplete markets

  • Piero Gottardi
  • Atsushi Kajii
  • Tomoyuki Nakajima

We study the dynamic Ramsey problem of finding optimal public debt and linear taxes on capital and labor income within a tractable infinite horizon model with incomplete markets. With zero public expenditure and debt, it is optimal to tax the risky labor income and subsidize capital, while a positive amount of public debt is welfare improving. A steady state optimality condition is derived which implies that the tax on capital is positive, when savings are sufficiently inelastic to returns. A calibration of our model to the US economy indicates positive optimal taxes and a small but positive optimal debt level.

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Paper provided by European University Institute in its series Economics Working Papers with number ECO2011/18.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:eui:euiwps:eco2011/18
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  1. Julio Davila & Jay H. Hong & Per Krusell & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull, 2005. "Constrained efficiency in the neoclassical growth model with uninsurable idiosyncratic shocks," PIER Working Paper Archive 05-023, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
  2. Piero Gottardi & Atsushi Kajii & Tomoyuki Nakajima, 2014. "Constrained Inefficiency and Optimal Taxation with Uninsurable Risks," KIER Working Papers 694, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
  3. Larry E. Jones & Rodolfo E. Manuelli & Peter E. Rossi, 1993. "On the Optimal Taxation of Capital Income," NBER Working Papers 4525, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. George-Marios Angeletos, 2007. "Uninsured Idiosyncratic Investment Risk and Aggregate Saving," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 10(1), pages 1-30, January.
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  7. Albert Marcet & Francesc Obiols-Homs & Philippe Weil, 2007. "Incomplete Markets, Labor Supply and Capital Accumulation," Sciences Po publications info:hdl:2441/8623, Sciences Po.
  8. Zhu, Xiaodong, 1992. "Optimal fiscal policy in a stochastic growth model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 250-289, December.
  9. Ábrahám, Árpád & Cárceles-Poveda, Eva, 2010. "Endogenous trading constraints with incomplete asset markets," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 145(3), pages 974-1004, May.
  10. Bassetto, Marco & Kocherlakota, Narayana, 2004. "On the irrelevance of government debt when taxes are distortionary," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 299-304, March.
  11. Atsushi Kajii & Antonio Villanacci & Alessandro Citanna, 1998. "Constrained suboptimality in incomplete markets: a general approach and two applications," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 495-521.
  12. Tom Krebs, 2003. "Human Capital Risk And Economic Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 118(2), pages 709-744, May.
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  14. Lars Ljungqvist & Thomas J. Sargent, 2004. "Recursive Macroeconomic Theory, 2nd Edition," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 2, volume 1, number 026212274x, June.
  15. repec:spo:wpecon:info:hdl:2441/8623 is not listed on IDEAS
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