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Tax differentials and inflow of foreign direct investments : evidence from foreign operations of U.S. multinational companies

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  • Watanabe, Yuichi

Abstract

This paper concerns the measurement of the impact of tax differentials across countries on inflow of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) by using comprehensive data on the foreign operations of U.S. multinational corporations that has been collected by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), the U.S. Department of Commerce. In particular, this research focuses on examining: (1) how responsive FDI locations are to tax differentials across countries, (2) how different the tax effect on FDI inflow is between developed and developing countries, and (3) whether investment location decisions have become more or less sensitive to tax differences between countries over time ranging from the late 1990s to the early 2000s. Estimation results suggest that high rates of corporate income taxation are associated with reduced foreign assets of U.S. multinational firms in all industries by decreasing the return to foreign asset investment. Further, foreign assets of U.S. multinationals in all industries have become more responsive to non-income tax differentials across countries than to income tax differences from 1999 to 2004. Empirical estimates also indicate that foreign investment by American firms is associated with higher tax sensitivity more in developed countries than in those that are developing.

Suggested Citation

  • Watanabe, Yuichi, 2010. "Tax differentials and inflow of foreign direct investments : evidence from foreign operations of U.S. multinational companies," IDE Discussion Papers 263, Institute of Developing Economies, Japan External Trade Organization(JETRO).
  • Handle: RePEc:jet:dpaper:dpaper263
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    File URL: https://ir.ide.go.jp/?action=repository_action_common_download&item_id=37909&item_no=1&attribute_id=22&file_no=1
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Auerbach, Alan J & Hines, James R, Jr, 1988. "Investment Tax Incentives and Frequent Tax Reforms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(2), pages 211-216, May.
    2. 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 1076-1094, December.
    3. Hines, James R. Jr., 1999. "Lessons From Behavioral Responses to International Taxation," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 52(2), pages 305-322, June.
    4. Desai, Mihir A. & Foley, C. Fritz & Hines, James Jr., 2004. "Foreign direct investment in a world of multiple taxes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(12), pages 2727-2744, December.
    5. Hines, James R. (ed.), 2001. "International Taxation and Multinational Activity," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226341736.
    6. Altshuler, Rosanne & Hubbard, R. Glenn, 2003. "The effect of the tax reform act of 1986 on the location of assets in financial services firms," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(1), pages 109-127, January.
    7. Tanzi, Vito & Zee, Howell H., 2000. "Tax Policy for Emerging Markets: Developing Countries," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 53(2), pages 299-322, June.
    8. Hines, James R. Jr., 1999. "Lessons from Behavioral Responses to International Taxation," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 2), pages 305-22, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Developing countries; United States; Foreign investments; International business enterprises; Taxation; Tax differentials; FDI inflow; Developed/Developing countries; Income/Non-income taxation; Developed countries;

    JEL classification:

    • F21 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - International Investment; Long-Term Capital Movements
    • F23 - International Economics - - International Factor Movements and International Business - - - Multinational Firms; International Business
    • H25 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Business Taxes and Subsidies

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