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Optimal taxation and constrained inefficiency in an infinite-horizon economy with incomplete markets

Author

Listed:
  • Piero Gottardi

    (European University Institute)

  • Atsushi Kajii

    (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University)

  • Tomoyuki Nakajima

    (Institute of Economic Research, Kyoto University)

Abstract

How should capital and labor be taxed when individuals' labor income is subject to unin- surable idiosyncratic risks? To address this question, we develop a tractable infinite horizon model with incomplete markets and consider a dynamic optimal taxation problem with linear taxes on the wage and interest income. We derive two general principles for public policy in such an environment: (i) providing an insurance for the idiosyncratic income risks; and (ii) allocating tax burdens efficiently over time. The first principle calls for taxing the labor income. The second principle clarifies when accumulating government debt is welfare improving, and also when the tax rate on physical capital needs to be strictly positive in the long run. We also calibrate our model to the U.S. economy and find that the presence of idiosyncratic income risks significantly affects the optimal tax rates and the optimal amount of the government debt.

Suggested Citation

  • Piero Gottardi & Atsushi Kajii & Tomoyuki Nakajima, 2010. "Optimal taxation and constrained inefficiency in an infinite-horizon economy with incomplete markets," KIER Working Papers 745, Kyoto University, Institute of Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:kyo:wpaper:745
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Marcet, Albert & Obiols-Homs, Francesc & Weil, Philippe, 2007. "Incomplete markets, labor supply and capital accumulation," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 54(8), pages 2621-2635, November.
    2. Constantinides, George M & Duffie, Darrell, 1996. "Asset Pricing with Heterogeneous Consumers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 104(2), pages 219-240, April.
    3. Piero Gottardi & Atsushi Kajii & Tomoyuki Nakajima, 2016. "Constrained Inefficiency and Optimal Taxation with Uninsurable Risks," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 18(1), pages 1-28, February.
    4. Julio Dávila & Jay H. Hong & Per Krusell & José‐Víctor Ríos‐Rull, 2012. "Constrained Efficiency in the Neoclassical Growth Model With Uninsurable Idiosyncratic Shocks," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 80(6), pages 2431-2467, November.
    5. Atsushi Kajii & Antonio Villanacci & Alessandro Citanna, 1998. "Constrained suboptimality in incomplete markets: a general approach and two applications," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 11(3), pages 495-521.
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    12. Juan Carlos Conesa & Sagiri Kitao & Dirk Krueger, 2009. "Taxing Capital? Not a Bad Idea after All!," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 99(1), pages 25-48, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Piero Gottardi & Atsushi Kajii & Tomoyuki Nakajima, 2015. "Optimal Taxation and Debt with Uninsurable Risks to Human Capital Accumulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(11), pages 3443-3470, November.
    2. Piero Gottardi & Atsushi Kajii & Tomoyuki Nakajima, 2016. "Constrained Inefficiency and Optimal Taxation with Uninsurable Risks," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 18(1), pages 1-28, February.
    3. Omer Acikgoz, 2014. "Transitional Dynamics and Long-Run Optimal Taxation under Incomplete Markets," 2014 Meeting Papers 990, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Acikgoz, Omer, 2015. "Transitional Dynamics and Long-run Optimal Taxation Under Incomplete Markets," MPRA Paper 73380, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Alexis Akira Toda, 2015. "Asset Prices and Efficiency in a Krebs Economy," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 18(4), pages 957-978, October.
    6. Acikgoz, Omer, 2013. "Transitional Dynamics and Long-run Optimal Taxation Under Incomplete Markets," MPRA Paper 50160, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    incomplete markets; constrained inefficiency; optimal taxation; Ramsey equilibrium.;

    JEL classification:

    • D52 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Incomplete Markets
    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • D90 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - General
    • E20 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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