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Wealth Transfer Taxation: A Survey

  • Helmuth Cremer
  • Pierre Pestieau

The purpose of this paper is to survey the theoretical literature on wealth transfer taxation. The focus is normative: we are looking at the design of an optimal tax structure from the standpoint of both equity and efficiency. The gist of this survey is that the optimal design closely depends on the assumed bequest motives. Alternative bequest motives are thus analyzed either in isolation or combined.

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Paper provided by Levy Economics Institute in its series Economics Working Paper Archive with number wp_394.

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Date of creation: Nov 2003
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Handle: RePEc:lev:wrkpap:wp_394
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  1. CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU, Pierre, 2003. "Intergenerational transfer of human capital and optimal education policy," CORE Discussion Papers 2003030, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "Non-linear taxation of bequests, equal sharing rules and the tradeoff between intra- and inter-family inequalities," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1495, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  3. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre, 1993. "Education for Attention: A Nash Bargaining Solution to the Bequest-as-Exchange Model," Public Finance = Finances publiques, , vol. 48(Supplemen), pages 85-97.
  4. Joseph G. Altonji & Fumio Hayashi & Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1989. "Is the Extended Family Altruistically Linked? Direct Tests Using Micro Data," NBER Working Papers 3046, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  6. Laurence J. Kotlikoff & Avia Spivak, 1979. "The Family as an Incomplete Annuities Market," NBER Working Papers 0362, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. MICHEL, Philippe & PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "Fiscal policy in an overlapping generations model with bequest-as-consumption," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1988, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  8. Judd, Kenneth L., 1985. "Redistributive taxation in a simple perfect foresight model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 59-83, October.
  9. Cremer, H. & Pestieau, P., . "Bequests as a heir ``discipline device''," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1239, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  10. CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "A case for differential inheritance taxation," CORE Discussion Papers RP -799, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  11. H. Cremer & P. Pestieau, 1998. "Delaying Inter Vivos Transmissions Under Asymmetric Information," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 65(2), pages 322-330, October.
  12. Batina, Raymond G. & Ihori, Toshihiro, 2000. "Consumption Tax Policy and the Taxation of Capital Income," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198297901, March.
  13. Cremer, H & Pestieau, P, 1991. "Bequests, Filial Attention and Fertility," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 58(231), pages 359-75, August.
  14. Gary S. Becker & Nigel Tomes, . "Human Capital and the Rise and Fall of Families," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 84-10, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  15. Boadway, Robin & Marchand, Maurice & Pestieau, Pierre, 2000. " Redistribution with Unobservable Bequests: A Case for Taxing Capital Income," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 102(2), pages 253-67, June.
  16. Boadway, Robin & Keen, Michael, 2000. "Redistribution," Handbook of Income Distribution, in: A.B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon (ed.), Handbook of Income Distribution, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 12, pages 677-789 Elsevier.
  17. Pestieau, P. M., 1974. "Optimal taxation and discount rate for public investment in a growth setting," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(3), pages 217-235, August.
  18. Brenner, Gabrielle A., 1985. "Why did inheritance laws change?," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 91-106, June.
  19. Roland Benabou, 2002. "Tax and Education Policy in a Heterogeneous-Agent Economy: What Levels of Redistribution Maximize Growth and Efficiency?," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(2), pages 481-517, March.
  20. Cox, Donald, 1987. "Motives for Private Income Transfers," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(3), pages 508-46, June.
  21. Arrondel, L. & Masson, A. & Pestieau, P., . "Bequests and inheritance: empirical issues and France-U.S. comparison," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1274, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  22. Bernheim, B Douglas & Shleifer, Andrei & Summers, Lawrence H, 1986. "The Strategic Bequest Motive," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 4(3), pages S151-82, July.
  23. Aaron, Henry J. & Munnell, Alicia H., 1992. "Reassessing the Role for Wealth Transfer Taxes," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 45(2), pages 119-43, June.
  24. Emmanuel Saez, 2002. "Optimal Progressive Capital Income Taxes in the Infinite Horizon Model," NBER Working Papers 9046, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Cremer, Helmuth & Pestieau, Pierre & Rochet, Jean-Charles, 2001. "Direct versus Indirect Taxation: The Design of the Tax Structure Revisted," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 42(3), pages 781-99, August.
  26. N. Gregory Mankiw, 2000. "The Savers-Spenders Theory of Fiscal Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(2), pages 120-125, May.
  27. PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "The role of gift and estate transfers in the United States and in Europe," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1606, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  28. Atkinson, A B & Sandmo, A, 1980. "Welfare Implications of the Taxation of Savings," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 90(359), pages 529-49, September.
  29. Davies, James B, 1981. "Uncertain Lifetime, Consumption, and Dissaving in Retirement," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 89(3), pages 561-77, June.
  30. Atkinson, A. B. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1972. "The structure of indirect taxation and economic efficiency," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(1), pages 97-119, April.
  31. ColemanII, Wilbur John, 2000. "Welfare and optimum dynamic taxation of consumption and income," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1), pages 1-39, April.
  32. Wojciech Kopczuk, 2003. "The Trick Is to Live: Is the Estate Tax Social Security for the Rich?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(6), pages 1318-1341, December.
  33. George M. Von FURSTENBERG, 1988. "Life Cycle Saving: A General Paradigm or a Caricature of the Petite-Bourgeoisie," Annales d'Economie et de Statistique, ENSAE, issue 9, pages 183-198.
  34. Louis Kaplow, 2000. "A Framework for Assessing Estate and Gift Taxation," NBER Working Papers 7775, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  35. Atkinson, A B, 1971. "Capital Taxes, the Redistribution of Wealth and Individual Savings," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(114), pages 209-227, April.
  36. Barro, Robert J, 1974. "Are Government Bonds Net Wealth?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(6), pages 1095-1117, Nov.-Dec..
  37. MICHEL, Philippe & PESTIEAU , Pierre, 1994. "Fiscal Policy in a Growth Model with Both Altruistic and Non Altruistic Agents," CORE Discussion Papers 1994049, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  38. Joseph E. Stiglitz, 1978. "Notes on Estate Taxes, Redistribution, and the Concept of Balanced Growth Path Incidence," NBER Chapters, in: Research in Taxation, pages 137-150 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  39. William G. Gale & Joel B. Slemrod, 2001. "Rethinking the Estate and Gift Tax: Overview," NBER Working Papers 8205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  40. Tomer Blumkin & Efraim Sadka, 2001. "Estate Taxation," CESifo Working Paper Series 558, CESifo Group Munich.
  41. Becker, Gary S & Tomes, Nigel, 1979. "An Equilibrium Theory of the Distribution of Income and Intergenerational Mobility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 87(6), pages 1153-89, December.
  42. Andreoni, James, 1990. "Impure Altruism and Donations to Public Goods: A Theory of Warm-Glow Giving?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 100(401), pages 464-77, June.
  43. MICHEL, Philippe & PESTIEAU, Pierre, 2002. "Fiscal policy with agents differing in altruism and in ability," CORE Discussion Papers 2002049, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  44. Abel, Andrew B, 1985. "Precautionary Saving and Accidental Bequests," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(4), pages 777-91, September.
  45. Poterba, James, 2001. "Estate and gift taxes and incentives for inter vivos giving in the US," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 237-264, January.
  46. Atkinson, A. B. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1976. "The design of tax structure: Direct versus indirect taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 55-75.
  47. MICHEL, Philippe & PESTIEAU, Pierre, 2002. "Wealth transfer taxation with both accidental and planned bequests," CORE Discussion Papers 2002059, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  48. Chamley, Christophe, 1986. "Optimal Taxation of Capital Income in General Equilibrium with Infinite Lives," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 54(3), pages 607-22, May.
  49. Joel Slemrod & Wojciech Kopczuk, 2000. "The Impact of the Estate Tax on the Wealth Accumulation and Avoidance Behavior of Donors," NBER Working Papers 7960, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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