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The Effects of the Minimum Wage in an Economy with Tax Evasion


  • Mirco, Tonin

    () (Institute for International Economic Studies, Stockholm University)


A model of the labor market is built where imperfect detection in case of auditing induces underreporting of earnings. The introduction of the minimum wage makes some workers increase compliance, boosting fiscal revenues. A spike at the minimum wage level appears in the distribution of earnings. The model predicts a positive correlation between the size of the spike at the minimum wage level and the size of the informal economy. Empirical evidence supporting this prediction is presented.

Suggested Citation

  • Mirco, Tonin, 2006. "The Effects of the Minimum Wage in an Economy with Tax Evasion," Seminar Papers 747, Stockholm University, Institute for International Economic Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:iiessp:0747

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Alm, James & Bahl, Roy & Murray, Matthew N, 1990. "Tax Structure and Tax Compliance," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 72(4), pages 603-613, November.
    2. Klepper, Steven & Nagin, Daniel, 1989. "The Anatomy of Tax Evasion," Journal of Law, Economics, and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(1), pages 1-24, Spring.
    3. Bhaskar, V. & To, Ted, 2003. "Oligopsony and the distribution of wages," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(2), pages 371-399, April.
    4. Brown, Charles, 1999. "Minimum wages, employment, and the distribution of income," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 32, pages 2101-2163 Elsevier.
    5. James Andreoni & Brian Erard & Jonathan Feinstein, 1998. "Tax Compliance," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 36(2), pages 818-860, June.
    6. Cowell, Frank A., 1985. "Tax evasion with labour income," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 19-34, February.
    7. Gideon Yaniv, 1998. "Tax Evasion By Misinforming Withholding Agents," Public Finance Review, , vol. 26(4), pages 362-375, July.
    8. Burdett, Kenneth & Mortensen, Dale T, 1998. "Wage Differentials, Employer Size, and Unemployment," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(2), pages 257-273, May.
    9. Meyer, Robert H & Wise, David A, 1983. "Discontinuous Distributions and Missing Persons: The Minimum Wage and Unemployed Youth," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 51(6), pages 1677-1698, November.
    10. Dominik H. Enste & Friedrich Schneider, 2000. "Shadow Economies: Size, Causes, and Consequences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 38(1), pages 77-114, March.
    11. Fugazza, Marco & Jacques, Jean-Francois, 2004. "Labor market institutions, taxation and the underground economy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(1-2), pages 395-418, January.
    12. Yaniv, Gideon, 1988. "Withholding and non-withheld tax evasion," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 183-204, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Andras Simonovits, 2008. "Underreported Earnings and Old-Age Pension: An Elementary Model," IEHAS Discussion Papers 0805, Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
    2. Tonin, Mirco, 2011. "Minimum wage and tax evasion: Theory and evidence," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(11), pages 1635-1651.
    3. Szabó, Péter András, 2007. "A 2000-2001. évi minimálbér-emelés hatása
      [The effects of the 2000-20001 minimum-wage rise on income distribution]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(5), pages 397-414.
    4. Simonovits, András, 2008. "Keresetbevallás és nyugdíj - egy elemi modell
      [Reporting earnings and pension benefits: an elementary model]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(5), pages 427-440.

    More about this item


    minimum wage; tax evasion;

    JEL classification:

    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • H32 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Firm
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy

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