IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ipt/taxref/201802.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Progressive tax reforms in flat tax countries

Author

Listed:

Abstract

Much of the literature on flat tax reforms has highlighted the benefits of introducing flat personal income tax systems in transition economies. The advocated benefits of flat tax systems range from their simplicity, higher compliance and lower distortionary effects on growth and employment. These arguments have often been cited to support policy recommendations favouring the adoption of flat tax systems in Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries in the 1990s and the 2000s. However since income inequality is notoriously high in these countries, the question of introducing some progressivity in the tax system has come to the fore in both policy and academic circles. In this paper, we analyse the fiscal, redistributive and macroeconomic impact of (re-) introducing progressivity in a number of CEE countries with flat tax systems. Combining microsimulation and macro models, we find that a significant reduction in income inequality can be achieved by moving from a flat to a progressive tax system with positive, albeit negligible, macroeconomic and employment impact. The magnitude of these effects depends on country-specificities and tax system characteristics, due in particular to the existence of tax allowances and tax credits.

Suggested Citation

  • Salvador Barrios & Viginta Ivaskaite-Tamosiune & Anamaria Maftei & Edlira Narazani & Janos Varga, 2018. "Progressive tax reforms in flat tax countries," JRC Working Papers on Taxation & Structural Reforms 2018-02, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
  • Handle: RePEc:ipt:taxref:201802
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/sites/jrcsh/files/jrc115044.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Stokey, Nancy L & Rebelo, Sergio, 1995. "Growth Effects of Flat-Rate Taxes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(3), pages 519-550, June.
    2. Peter Diamond & Emmanuel Saez, 2011. "The Case for a Progressive Tax: From Basic Research to Policy Recommendations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 25(4), pages 165-190, Fall.
    3. Michal Horvath & Matus Senaj & Zuzana Siebertova & Norbert Svarda, 2015. "The End of the Flat Tax Experiment in Slovakia," Discussion Papers 15/12, Department of Economics, University of York.
    4. Olivier Bargain & Kristian Orsini & Andreas Peichl, 2012. "Comparing Labor Supply Elasticities in Europe and the US: New Results," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 525, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    5. Marta González-Torrabadella & Josep Pijoan-Mas, 2006. "Flat tax reforms: a general equilibrium evaluation for Spain," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 30(2), pages 317-351, May.
    6. Christoph Lakner & Branko Milanovic, 2016. "Global Income Distribution: From the Fall of the Berlin Wall to the Great Recession," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 30(2), pages 203-232.
    7. Peter, Klara Sabirianova & Buttrick, Steve & Duncan, Denvil, 2010. "Global Reform of Personal Income Taxation, 1981–2005: Evidence From 189 Countries," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 63(3), pages 447-478, September.
    8. David Altig, 2001. "Simulating Fundamental Tax Reform in the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(3), pages 574-595, June.
    9. repec:wly:jpamgt:v:38:y:2019:i:1:p:239-262 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Anna Ivanova & Michael Keen & Alexander Klemm, 2005. "The Russian ‘flat tax’ reform," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 20(43), pages 397-444, July.
    11. Jonathan Heathcote & Kjetil Storesletten & Giovanni L. Violante, 2017. "Optimal Tax Progressivity: An Analytical Framework," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(4), pages 1693-1754.
    12. Ratto, Marco & Roeger, Werner & Veld, Jan in 't, 2009. "QUEST III: An estimated open-economy DSGE model of the euro area with fiscal and monetary policy," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 222-233, January.
    13. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Jorge Martinez-Vazquez & Klara Sabirianova Peter, 2009. "Myth and Reality of Flat Tax Reform: Micro Estimates of Tax Evasion Response and Welfare Effects in Russia," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 117(3), pages 504-554, June.
    14. Salvador Barrios & Mathias Dolls & Anamaria Maftei & Andreas Peichl & Sara Riscado & Janos Varga & Christian Wittneben, 2019. "Dynamic Scoring Of Tax Reforms In The European Union," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 38(1), pages 239-262, January.
    15. Denvil Duncan & Klara Sabirianova Peter, 2016. "Unequal inequalities: Do progressive taxes reduce income inequality?," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 23(4), pages 762-783, August.
    16. Michael Keen & Yitae Kim & Ricardo Varsano, 2008. "The “flat tax(es)”: principles and experience," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 15(6), pages 712-751, December.
    17. Mendoza, Enrique G. & Milesi-Ferretti, Gian Maria & Asea, Patrick, 1997. "On the ineffectiveness of tax policy in altering long-run growth: Harberger's superneutrality conjecture," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 99-126, October.
    18. Lukas Vogel, 2012. "Tax avoidance and fiscal limits: Laffer curves in an economy with informal sector," European Economy - Economic Papers 2008 - 2015 448, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs (DG ECFIN), European Commission.
    19. repec:euf:pfremu:pfr-2017-01 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Olivier Bargain & Kristian Orsini & Andreas Peichl, 2011. "Labor Supply Elasticities in Europe and the US," Working Papers 201114, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
    21. Olivier Bargain & Kristian Orsini & Andreas Peichl, 2014. "Comparing Labor Supply Elasticities in Europe and the United States: New Results," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 49(3), pages 723-838.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Flat tax; microsimulation model; DSGE model; inequality progressivity; employment; growth;

    JEL classification:

    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ipt:taxref:201802. 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: (Publication Officer). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/ipjrces.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.