IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Tax competition, location, and horizontal foreign direct investment

  • Kristian Behrens


    (CORE, Université catholique de Louvain, 34 voie du Roman Pays, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium)

  • Pierre M. Picard

    (Université catholique de Louvain; Belgium; and University of Manchester, UK)

We develop a model of capital tax/subsidy competition in which imperfectly competitive firms choose both the number and the location of the plants they operate. The endogenous presence of horizontal multinationals is shown to attenuate the “race to the bottom” and yields some results that are opposite to traditional findings in the tax competition literature. First, in the presence of horizontal multinationals, increasing subsidies decrease firms' profits by exacerbating price competition due to more firms ‘going multinational’. Second, instead of being always subsidized, capital may actually be taxed in equilibrium. Third, taxes/subsidies become strategically independent policy instruments, instead of being strategic complements. Last, there may exist multiple equilibria with either low or high subsidies.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by University of Kentucky, Institute for Federalism and Intergovernmental Relations in its series Working Papers with number 2006-08.

in new window

Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ifr:wpaper:2006-08
Contact details of provider: Postal: Lexington, KY 40506-0027
Phone: (859) 257-5741
Fax: (859) 323-1937
Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Jonathan Haskel & Holger C. Wolf, 2001. "The Law of One Price - A Case Study," CESifo Working Paper Series 428, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Krugman, Paul, 1980. "Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 70(5), pages 950-59, December.
  3. Haufler, Andreas & Wooton, Ian, 1999. "Country size and tax competition for foreign direct investment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 121-139, January.
  4. Markusen, James R. & Venables, Anthony J., 2000. "The theory of endowment, intra-industry and multi-national trade," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 209-234, December.
  5. Michael P. Devereux & Rachel Griffith & Alexander Klemm, 2002. "Corporate income tax reforms and international tax competition," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 17(35), pages 449-495, October.
  6. Rodney D. Ludema & Ian Wooton, 1998. "Economic Geography and the Fiscal Effects of Regional Integration," International Trade 9801001, EconWPA.
  7. Baldwin, Richard & Krugman, Paul, 2000. "Agglomeration, Integration and Tax Harmonization," CEPR Discussion Papers 2630, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  8. Fujita, Masahisa & Thisse, Jacques-François, 1996. "Economics of Agglomeration," CEPR Discussion Papers 1344, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  9. Gianmarco Ottaviano & Takatoshi Tabuchi & Jacques-FranÁois Thisse, 2002. "Agglomeration and Trade Revisited," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(2), pages 409-436, May.
  10. WILDASIN, David, . "Nash equilibria in models of fiscal competition," CORE Discussion Papers RP 804, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  11. Michael Devereux & Harold Freeman, 1995. "The impact of tax on foreign direct investment: Empirical evidence and the implications for tax integration schemes," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 85-106, February.
  12. Horst Raff, 2002. "Preferential Trade Agreements and Tax Competition for Foreign Direct Investment," CESifo Working Paper Series 763, CESifo Group Munich.
  13. Hines, James R, Jr, 1996. "Altered States: Taxes and the Location of Foreign Direct Investment in America," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1076-94, December.
  14. Rainald Borck & Michael Pflüger, 2004. "Agglomeration and Tax Competition," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 408, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  15. Masahisa Fujita & Paul Krugman & Anthony J. Venables, 2001. "The Spatial Economy: Cities, Regions, and International Trade," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262561476, June.
  16. Ottaviano, Gianmarco I.P. & van Ypersele, Tanguy, 2005. "Market size and tax competition," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 25-46, September.
  17. Keith Head & Thierry Mayer, 2000. "Non-Europe: The magnitude and causes of market fragmentation in the EU," Review of World Economics (Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv), Springer, vol. 136(2), pages 284-314, June.
  18. Haufler, Andreas & Wooton, Ian, 2006. "The effects of regional tax and subsidy coordination on foreign direct investment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 285-305, February.
  19. Michael P. Devereux & R. Glenn Hubbard, 2000. "Taxing Multinationals," NBER Working Papers 7920, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Krugman, Paul, 1991. "Increasing Returns and Economic Geography," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(3), pages 483-99, June.
  21. Baldwin, Richard & Ottaviano, Gianmarco, 1998. "Multiproduct Multinationals and Reciprocal FDI Dumping," CEPR Discussion Papers 1851, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  22. Jason Cummins & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1995. "The Tax Sensitivity of Foreign Direct Investment: Evidence from Firm-Level Panel Data," NBER Chapters, in: The Effects of Taxation on Multinational Corporations, pages 123-152 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  23. Markusen, James R. & Venables, Anthony J., 1998. "Multinational firms and the new trade theory," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 183-203, December.
  24. OTTAVIANO, Gianmarco & THISSE, Jacques-François, . "Agglomeration and economic geography," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1725, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  25. Wilson, John Douglas, 1999. "Theories of Tax Competition," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 2), pages 269-304, June.
  26. J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), 2004. "Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 4, number 4.
  27. Görg, Holger & Greenaway, David, 2002. "Much Ado About Nothing? Do Domestic Firms Really Benefit from Foreign Investment?," CEPR Discussion Papers 3485, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  28. Michael Keen, 1993. "The welfare economics of tax co-ordination in the European Community : a survey," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 14(2), pages 15-36, February.
  29. Andrew Charlton, 2003. "Incentive Bidding for Mobile Investment: Economic Consequences and Potential Responses," OECD Development Centre Working Papers 203, OECD Publishing.
  30. Wilson, John D., 1986. "A theory of interregional tax competition," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(3), pages 296-315, May.
  31. Xavier Vives, 2001. "Oligopoly Pricing: Old Ideas and New Tools," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 026272040x, June.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ifr:wpaper:2006-08. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (David E. Wildasin)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.