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Bunching and Non-Bunching at Kink Points of the Swedish Tax schedule

  • Bastani, Spencer

    ()

    (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies)

  • Selin, Håkan

    ()

    (Uppsala Center for Fiscal Studies)

The compensated taxable income elasticity at a given income level is proportional to the number of individuals who bunch at a convex kink point. This holds true even in the presence of optimization frictions if the jump in marginal tax rates is suciently large. In this paper we estimate bunching of taxpayers at a very large kink point of the Swedish tax schedule. During the period of study the change in the log net-of-tax rate reached a maximum value of 45.6%. Interestingly, we nd no economically signi cant bunching of wage earners at this large kink. Self-employed individuals, on the other hand,display clear bunching, but the implied elasticities are not very large. Following Chetty (2011) we calculate an upper bound on the structural elasticity for wage earners consistent with our estimate. If wage earners on average tolerate 1% of their disposable income in optimization costs, the upper bound on the taxable income elasticity is 0.39. We also evaluate the performance of the bunching estimator by performing Monte Carlo simulations.

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Paper provided by Uppsala University, Department of Economics in its series Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies with number 2011:12.

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Length: 44 pages
Date of creation: 12 Dec 2011
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:hhs:uufswp:2011_012
Contact details of provider: Postal: Department of Economics, Uppsala University, P. O. Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Phone: + 46 18 471 25 00
Fax: + 46 18 471 14 78
Web page: http://www.nek.uu.se/
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  1. Karin Edmark & Roger H. Gordon, 2013. "The choice of organizational form by closely-held firms in Sweden: tax versus non-tax determinants," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(1), pages 219-243, February.
  2. Bastani, Spencer & Selin, Håkan, 2014. "Bunching and non-bunching at kink points of the Swedish tax schedule," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 36-49.
  3. Blundell, Richard & Macurdy, Thomas, 1999. "Labor supply: A review of alternative approaches," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 27, pages 1559-1695 Elsevier.
  4. Henrik Jacobsen Kleven & Camille Landais & Emmanuel Saez, 2013. "Taxation and International Migration of Superstars: Evidence from the European Football Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(5), pages 1892-1924, August.
  5. Feldstein, Martin, 1995. "Effect of Marginal Tax Rates on Taxable Income: A Panel Study of the 1986 Tax Reform Act," Scholarly Articles 2766676, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  6. Håkan Selin, 2010. "Marginal Tax Rates and Tax-Favoured Pension Savings of the Self-Employed - Evidence from Sweden," CESifo Working Paper Series 3059, CESifo Group Munich.
  7. Feldstein, Martin, 1995. "The Effect of Marginal Tax Rates on Taxable Income: A Panel Study of the 1986 Tax Reform Act," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 551-72, June.
  8. Bradley T. Heim, 2009. "Structural Estimation of Family Labor Supply with Taxes: Estimating a Continuous Hours Model Using a Direct Utility Specification," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 44(2).
  9. le Maire, Daniel & Schjerning, Bertel, 2013. "Tax bunching, income shifting and self-employment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 1-18.
  10. Åsa Hansson, 2007. "Taxpayers' responsiveness to tax rate changes and implications for the cost of taxation in Sweden," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 14(5), pages 563-582, October.
  11. Guido Imbens & Charles F. Manski, 2003. "Confidence intervals for partially identified parameters," CeMMAP working papers CWP09/03, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  12. Blomquist, Sören & Selin, Håkan, 2008. "Hourly Wage Rate and Taxable Labor Income Responsiveness to Changes in Marginal Tax Rates," Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies 2009:1, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  13. repec:oup:qjecon:v:129:y:2013:i:1:p:333-378 is not listed on IDEAS
  14. Raj Chetty, 2009. "Bounds on Elasticities with Optimization Frictions: A Synthesis of Micro and Macro Evidence on Labor Supply," NBER Working Papers 15616, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  17. Engström, Per & Nordblom, Katarina & Ohlsson, Henry & Persson, Annika, 2011. "Loss evasion and tax aversion," Working Paper Series, Center for Fiscal Studies 2011:11, Uppsala University, Department of Economics.
  18. Raj Chetty & Emmanuel Saez, 2009. "Teaching the Tax Code: Earnings Responses to an Experiment with EITC Recipients," NBER Working Papers 14836, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  19. Henrik Jacobsen Kleven & Camille Landais & Esben Schultz, 2014. "Migration and Wage Effects of Taxing Top Earners: Evidence from the Foreigners' Tax Scheme in Denmark," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 129(1), pages 333-378.
  20. Raj Chetty & John N. Friedman & Emmanuel Saez, 2013. "Using Differences in Knowledge across Neighborhoods to Uncover the Impacts of the EITC on Earnings," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(7), pages 2683-2721, December.
  21. Soren Blomquist & Whitney Newey, 2002. "Nonparametric Estimation with Nonlinear Budget Sets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(6), pages 2455-2480, November.
  22. Emmanuel Saez, 1999. "Do Taxpayers Bunch at Kink Points?," NBER Working Papers 7366, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Jukka Pirttilä & Hakan Selin, 2011. "Tax Policy and Employment: How Does the Swedish System Fare?," CESifo Working Paper Series 3355, CESifo Group Munich.
  24. Henrik J. Kleven & Mazhar Waseem, 2013. "Using Notches to Uncover Optimization Frictions and Structural Elasticities: Theory and Evidence from Pakistan," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(2), pages 669-723.
  25. Raj Chetty & John N. Friedman & Tore Olsen & Luigi Pistaferri, 2009. "Adjustment Costs, Firm Responses, and Micro vs. Macro Labor Supply Elasticities: Evidence from Danish Tax Records," NBER Working Papers 15617, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Burtless, Gary & Hausman, Jerry A, 1978. "The Effect of Taxation on Labor Supply: Evaluating the Gary Negative Income Tax Experiments," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(6), pages 1103-30, December.
  27. Gelber, Alexander, 2010. "Taxation and the Earnings of Husbands and Wives," MPRA Paper 20345, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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