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Factors to Curb Tax Evasion: Evidences from the TAXSIM Agent-Based Simulation Model

Listed author(s):
  • Laszlo Gulyas

    ()

    (AITIA International, Inc.)

  • Tamás Mahr

    ()

    (AITIA International, Inc.)

  • Istvan Janos Toth

    ()

    (Institute of Economics - Centre for Economic and Regional Studies Hungarian Academy of Sciences)

Registered author(s):

    Agent based models are proposed as an adequate tool for analysing tax payer decisions and, thereby, the consequences of such decisions as they manifest themselves at the macro level. TAXSIM models the conduct of agents of three types, i.e. employers, employees and the government, in an economy of a single sector. Using this model, we examine the conduct of each individual agent and the impact of their decisions on the size of tax evasion and aggregated tax revenues. The main objective is the analysis of the relations between the government and tax payers, as well as the identification of how this relationship affects tax evasion. In this paper, the operation of several factors affecting the incidence of non-registered employment is studied with the help of an improved version of the TAXSIM agent-based simulation model. We analyse the effects of unemployment experience, the quality of government services and the audit strategy of the tax authority on totally hidden, mixed (hidden and legal) and totally legal payments. We start by a brief overview of the TAXSIM model and introduce the novel components in detail. This is followed by a thorough analysis of a vast series of computational experiments, analysing the behavior of the base model, as well as the effect of the newly introduced components (i.e., unemployment experience, adaptive audit strategy, etc.) and their various parameters. Our computational results suggest that the government can use effective tools to improve tax morale and curb tax evasion. Beyond improving the frequency and precision of tax audits the implementation of an adaptive tax audit strategy, the reduction of the exposure to unemployment or, on the motivation side, the improvement of the quality of government services can also be effective.

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    File URL: http://econ.core.hu/file/download/mtdp/MTDP1521.pdf
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    Paper provided by Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences in its series IEHAS Discussion Papers with number 1521.

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    Length: 44 pages
    Date of creation: Apr 2015
    Handle: RePEc:has:discpr:1521
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    1. Srinivasan, T. N., 1973. "Tax evasion: A model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 2(4), pages 339-346.
    2. Pickhardt, Michael & Seibold, Goetz, 2014. "Income tax evasion dynamics: Evidence from an agent-based econophysics model," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 147-160.
    3. Frey, Bruno S. & Torgler, Benno, 2007. "Tax morale and conditional cooperation," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 136-159, March.
    4. Sandmo, Agnar, 1981. "Income tax evasion, labour supply, and the equity--efficiency tradeoff," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 265-288, December.
    5. Eduardo Engel & James R. Hines Jr., 1998. "Understanding Tax Evasion Dynamics," Documentos de Trabajo 47, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
    6. Brennan, Geoffrey & Buchanan, James M., 1977. "Towards a tax constitution for Leviathan," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 255-273, December.
    7. Tonin, Mirco, 2011. "Minimum wage and tax evasion: Theory and evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(11), pages 1635-1651.
    8. Alm, James & McClelland, Gary H. & Schulze, William D., 1992. "Why do people pay taxes?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 48(1), pages 21-38, June.
    9. Zsombor Z. Méder & András Simonovits & János Vinczeb, 2012. "Tax Morale and Tax Evasion: Social Preferences and Bounded Rationality," Economic Analysis and Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(2), pages 171-188, September.
    10. Feige, Edgar L. & Cebula, Richard, 2011. "America’s Underground Economy: Measuring the Size, Growth and Determinants of Income Tax Evasion in the U.S," MPRA Paper 29672, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Kertesi, Gábor & Köllő, János, 2004. "A 2001. évi minimálbér-emelés foglalkoztatási következményei
      [The employment consequences of the 2001 rise in the minimum wage]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(4), pages 293-324.
    12. Kirchler, Erich & Hoelzl, Erik & Wahl, Ingrid, 2008. "Enforced versus voluntary tax compliance: The "slippery slope" framework," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 210-225, April.
    13. Henrik Jacobsen Kleven & Martin B. Knudsen & Claus Thustrup Kreiner & Søren Pedersen & Emmanuel Saez, 2011. "Unwilling or Unable to Cheat? Evidence From a Tax Audit Experiment in Denmark," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(3), pages 651-692, 05.
    14. Gaetano Lisi, 2012. "Unemployment, tax evasion and the slippery slope framework," International Review of Economics, Springer;Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations (HEIRS), vol. 59(3), pages 297-302, September.
    15. Sascha Hokamp & Michael Pickhardt, 2010. "Income Tax Evasion in a Society of Heterogeneous Agents - Evidence from an Agent-based Model," International Economic Journal, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(4), pages 541-553.
    16. Alm, James & Jackson, Betty R. & McKee, Michael, 1993. "Fiscal exchange, collective decision institutions, and tax compliance," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 285-303, December.
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