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The hidden costs of tax evasion: collaborative tax evasion in markets for expert services

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  • Loukas Balafoutas
  • Adrian Beck
  • Rudolf Kerschbamer
  • Matthias Sutter

Abstract

In markets where transactions are governed by contractual incompleteness, revealed intentions to evade taxes may affect market performance. We experimentally examine the impact of tax evasion attempts on the performance of credence goods markets, where contractual incompleteness results from asymmetric information on the welfare maximizing quality of the good. We find that tax evasion attempts – independently of whether they are successful or not – lead to efficiency losses in the form of too low quality and less frequent trade. Thus, shadow economies induce an excess burden not only by hampering the collection of tax revenues, but also by reducing market efficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Loukas Balafoutas & Adrian Beck & Rudolf Kerschbamer & Matthias Sutter, 2014. "The hidden costs of tax evasion: collaborative tax evasion in markets for expert services," Economics Working Papers ECO2014/01, European University Institute.
  • Handle: RePEc:eui:euiwps:eco2014/01
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    Cited by:

    1. Balafoutas, Loukas & Kerschbamer, Rudolf, 2020. "Credence goods in the literature: What the past fifteen years have taught us about fraud, incentives, and the role of institutions," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(C).
    2. Doerrenberg, Philipp & Duncan, Denvil, 2014. "Tax Incidence in the Presence of Tax Evasion," IZA Discussion Papers 8137, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Doerr, Annabelle & Necker, Sarah, 2018. "Toward an understanding of collaborative tax evasion: A natural field experiment with businesses," Freiburg Discussion Papers on Constitutional Economics 18/13, Walter Eucken Institut e.V..
    4. Kotsogiannis, Christos & Mateos-Planas, Xavier, 2019. "Tax evasion as contingent debt," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 100941, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    5. Annabelle Doerr & Sarah Necker, 2021. "Collaborative Tax Evasion in the Provision of Services to Consumers: A Field Experiment," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 13(4), pages 185-216, November.
    6. Theodoros Kounadeas & Nikolaos Eriotis & Paraskevi Boufounou & Donta Sofia, 2022. "Analysis of the Factors Affecting Tax Evasion in Greece," International Journal of Economics & Business Administration (IJEBA), International Journal of Economics & Business Administration (IJEBA), vol. 0(1), pages 140-158.
    7. Kaisa ⓡ, Nurminen, Tuomas ⓡ, Miettinen, Topi ⓡ, Metsälampi, Satu ⓡ Kotakorpi & Kaisa Kotakorpi, 2022. "Bearing the Burden - Implications of Tax Reporting Institutions and Image Concerns on Evasion and Incidence," CESifo Working Paper Series 9791, CESifo.
    8. Kaisa Kotakorpi & Satu Metsälampi & Topi Miettinen & Tuomas Nurminen, 2019. "The effect of reporting institutions on tax evasion:Evidence from the lab," Discussion Papers 127, Aboa Centre for Economics.
    9. Lilith Burgstaller & Lars P. Feld & Katharina Pfeil, 2022. "Working in the Shadow: Survey Techniques for Measuring and Explaining Undeclared Work," CESifo Working Paper Series 9810, CESifo.
    10. Christos Kotsogiannis & Xavier Mateos-Planas, 2019. "Tax Evasion as Contingent Debt," Discussion Papers 1903, Centre for Macroeconomics (CFM).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Credence goods; expert services; tax evasion; fraud; experiment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C72 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Noncooperative Games
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance

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