Who pays commodity taxes? Evidence from French reforms, 1987-1999
The point of this paper is to measure empirically the distribution of the commodity tax burden between consumers and producers. For that purpose, two French reforms are studied. These reforms are steep decreases of the VAT rate on housing repair services on the one hand, and on new car sales on the other hand, the last sector being far more concentrated. The consumer share of the commodity tax burden is 77% in the housing repair services market and 52% in the new car sales market. That confirms the theoretical result of the consumer share increasing with the competition level. This result may influence recommendations about differentiated commodity tax rates.
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