The Implications of Insurance for the Efficacy of Fiscal Policy
Various tax policies provide consumers with forms of insurance. Social security has the payoff characteristics of an annuity. Income tax provides consumers with a degree of income insurance because the government shares part of the individual’s income risk. Redistributive taxes can be used to spread aggregate income risks across different generations. The effects of these and other tax policies are shown to depend crucially on the nature of existing private insurance arrangements.
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