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Lifetime Incidence and the Distributional Burden of Excise Taxes

  • James M. Poterba

This implies that low-income households in one year have some chance of being higher-income households in other years, and significantly affects the estimated distributional burden of excise taxes. This paper shows that household expenditures on gasoline, alcohol, and tobacco as a share of total consumption (a proxy for lifetime income) are much more equally distributed than expenditures as a share of annual income. From a longer-horizon perspective, excise taxes on these goods are therefore much less regressive than standard analyses suggest.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2833.

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Date of creation: Jan 1989
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as The American Economic Review, Vol. 79, No. 2, pp. 325-330, (May 1989).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2833
Note: PE
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