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Wealth Distribution and Optimal Inheritance Taxation in Life-Cycle Economies with Intergenerational Transfers

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  • Heer, Burkhard

Abstract

We introduce intergenerational transfers into a general equilihrium life-cycle model in order to explain observed levels of wealth heterogeneity. In our overlapping generations model, heterogenous agents face uncertain lifetime and leave both accidental and voluntary bequests to their cinldren. Furthermore, agents face stochastic employment opportunities. The model is calibrated with regard to the characteristics of the US economy. Our resuits indicate that hequests onl account for a sniall proportion of ohserved wealth heterogeneitv. The introduction of an inheritance tax increases both welfare are measured by the average value of the newborn and equality of the wealth distribution. Preliminary versions of this paper have been presented at conference on 'Intergenerational transfers, taxes and the distribution of wealth´ in Uppsala 1999 and the Econoinetric Societv European Meetirig in Santiago dc Compostela 1999. We would like to thank Michael Kaganovieli. John Laitner, James Smith, Frank Stafford, and Carl Cristian von Weizsäcker for comments on earlier versions of the paper. All remaining errors are ours.

Suggested Citation

  • Heer, Burkhard, 2000. "Wealth Distribution and Optimal Inheritance Taxation in Life-Cycle Economies with Intergenerational Transfers," Discussion Papers in Economics 25, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:lmu:muenec:25
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    File URL: https://epub.ub.uni-muenchen.de/25/1/0010_heer.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:bpj:bejmac:v:18:y:2018:i:1:p:19:n:2 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Mauro Baranzini, 2005. "Modigliani's life-cycle theory of savings fifty years later," BNL Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 58(233-234), pages 109-172.
    3. Christoph Winter, 2014. "Accounting for the Changing Role of Family Income in Determining College Entry," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 116(4), pages 909-963, October.
    4. Cagetti, Marco & De Nardi, Mariacristina, 2008. "Wealth Inequality: Data And Models," Macroeconomic Dynamics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 12(S2), pages 285-313, September.
    5. Modibo Sidibe, 2012. "The Contribution of Housing to the Dynamics of Inequalities," Working Papers 2012-08, Center for Research in Economics and Statistics.
    6. Grossmann, Volker & Strulik, Holger, 2010. "Should continued family firms face lower taxes than other estates?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(1-2), pages 87-101, February.
    7. Mariacristina De Nardi, 2015. "Quantitative Models of Wealth Inequality: A Survey," NBER Working Papers 21106, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Mariacristina De Nardi, 2004. "Wealth Inequality and Intergenerational Links," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 71(3), pages 743-768.
    9. Bossmann, Martin & Kleiber, Christian & Walde, Klaus, 2007. "Bequests, taxation and the distribution of wealth in a general equilibrium model," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(7-8), pages 1247-1271, August.
    10. Mauro Baranzini, 2005. "Modigliani's life-cycle theory of savings fifty years later," Banca Nazionale del Lavoro Quarterly Review, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro, vol. 58(233-234), pages 109-172.
    11. Barua, Sepul K. & Kuuluvainen, Jari & Uusivuori, Jussi, 2011. "Taxation, life-time uncertainty and non-industrial private forest-owner's decision-making," Journal of Forest Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 267-284, August.
    12. Heer, Burkhard, 2002. "The German Unemployment Compensation System: Effects on Aggregate Savings and Wealth Distribution," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 48(3), pages 371-394, September.
    13. Michele Catalano & Emilia Pezzolla, 2016. "The effects of education and aging in an OLG model: long-run growth in France, Germany and Italy," Empirica, Springer;Austrian Institute for Economic Research;Austrian Economic Association, vol. 43(4), pages 757-800, November.
    14. Edouard Challe & Xavier Ragot, 2010. "Aggregate Consumption in Times of Crisis: The Role of Financial Frictions -super-1," CESifo Economic Studies, CESifo, vol. 56(4), pages 627-648, December.
    15. Heer, Burkhard & Sussmuth, Bernd, 2007. "Effects of inflation on wealth distribution: Do stock market participation fees and capital income taxation matter?," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 277-303, January.
    16. Aaron Cooke & Hyun Lee & Kai Zhao, 2017. "Houses Divided: A Model of Intergenerational Transfers, Differential Fertility and Wealth Inequality," Working papers 2017-22, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
    17. Heer Burkhard, 2018. "Optimal pensions in aging economies," The B.E. Journal of Macroeconomics, De Gruyter, vol. 18(1), pages 1-19, January.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Wealth Distribution ; Overlapping Generations ; Bequests ; Optimal Taxation;

    JEL classification:

    • D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • H21 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Efficiency; Optimal Taxation
    • C68 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Computable General Equilibrium Models
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth

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