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Does the Composition of Wage and Payroll Taxes Matter Under Nash Bargaining?

  • Erkki Koskela
  • Ronnie Schöb

Using the Nash bargaining approach to wage negotiations this paper shows that conventional wisdom, according to which the total tax wedge is the sum of wage and payroll taxes, is valid for equal tax bases, e.g., when the tax exemption takes the form of a tax credit. However, the equivalence result ceases to hold when the tax bases are unequal due to tax allowances. In this case a revenue-neutral restructuring of labour taxes toward a narrower tax base decreases the gross wage and is thus good for employment.

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Paper provided by Government Institute for Economic Research Finland (VATT) in its series Discussion Papers with number 203.

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Date of creation: 01 Jan 1999
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Handle: RePEc:fer:dpaper:203
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  1. Koskela, Erkki & Vilmunen, Jouko, 1996. "Tax progression is good for employment in popular models of trade union behaviour," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(1), pages 65-80, August.
  2. Holm, Pasi & Honkapohja, Seppo & Koskela, Erkki, 1994. "A monopoly-union model of wage determination with capital and taxes: An empirical application to the Finnish manufacturing," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 285-303, February.
  3. Layard, Richard & Nickell, Stephen & Jackman, Richard, 2005. "Unemployment: Macroeconomic Performance and the Labour Market," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199279173, March.
  4. Lockwood, Ben & Manning, Alan, 1993. "Wage setting and the tax system theory and evidence for the United Kingdom," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 1-29, August.
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