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Distributional Effects of Adopting a National Retail Sales Tax

Author

Listed:
  • Daniel R. Feenberg
  • Andrew W. Mitrusi
  • James M. Poterba

Abstract

This paper describes a new household-level data file based on merged information from the IRS Individual Tax File, the Current Population Survey, the National Medical Expenditure Survey, and the Consumer Expenditure Survey. This new file includes descriptive data on household income as well as consumption. The data file can be linked to the NBER TAXSIM program and used to evaluate the distributional effects of changing the federal income tax code, as well as the distributional effects of replacing the individual income tax with a consumption tax. We use this data file to analyze the long-run distributional effects of adopting a national retail sales tax that raises enough revenue to replace the current federal individual income tax and corporation income tax, as well as federal estate and gift taxes. Our results highlight the sensitivity of the change in distributional burdens to provisions such as lump sum transfers, sometimes called 'demogrants,' the retail sales tax plan, and to the choice between income and consumption as a basis for categorizing households in distribution tables.

Suggested Citation

  • Daniel R. Feenberg & Andrew W. Mitrusi & James M. Poterba, 1997. "Distributional Effects of Adopting a National Retail Sales Tax," NBER Working Papers 5885, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:5885
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Berthold U. Wigger, 2004. "On the Intergenerational Incidence of Wage and Consumption Taxes," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 6(1), pages 1-23, February.
    2. Fullerton, Don & Metcalf, Gilbert E., 2002. "Tax incidence," Handbook of Public Economics,in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 26, pages 1787-1872 Elsevier.
    3. Michael Keen, 1997. "Peculiar institutions: A British perspective on tax policy in the United States," Fiscal Studies, Institute for Fiscal Studies, vol. 18(4), pages 371-400, November.
    4. Besley, Timothy J. & Rosen, Harvey S., 1998. "Vertical externalities in tax setting: evidence from gasoline and cigarettes," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 383-398, December.
    5. Gilbert E. Metcalf, 1998. "A Distributional Analysis of an Environmental Tax Shift," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 9801, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
    6. William M. Gentry & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1997. "Distributional Implications of Introducing a Broad-Based Consumption Tax," NBER Chapters,in: Tax Policy and the Economy, Volume 11, pages 1-48 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Fabio Sánchez Torres & Irina España Eljaiek & Jannet Zenteno, 2012. "Sub-national Revenue Mobilization in Latin American and Caribbean Countries: The Case of Colombia," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 4191, Inter-American Development Bank.
    8. Andrew Mitrusi & James Poterba, 2000. "The Distribution of Payroll and Income Tax Burdens, 1979-1999," NBER Working Papers 7707, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. repec:eee:ecmode:v:68:y:2018:i:c:p:529-542 is not listed on IDEAS
    10. James Poterba, 1997. "The Estate Tax and After-Tax Investment Returns," NBER Working Papers 6337, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    11. George R. Zodrow, 2007. "Should Capital Income be Subject to Consumption-Based Taxation?," Working Papers 0715, Oxford University Centre for Business Taxation.
    12. Isabel Correia, 2010. "Consumption Taxes and Redistribution," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(4), pages 1673-1694, September.
    13. David Albouy, 2008. "Are Big Cities Bad Places to Live? Estimating Quality of Life across Metropolitan Areas," NBER Working Papers 14472, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    14. Alan D. Viard, 2000. "The transition to consumption taxation, part 1: the impact on existing capital," Economic and Financial Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, issue Q3, pages 2-22.
    15. William G. Gale & Joel B. Slemrod, 2001. "Rethinking the Estate and Gift Tax: Overview," NBER Working Papers 8205, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    16. Santos, Marcelo Rodrigues dos & Pereira, Thiago Neves, 2010. "Moving to a Consumption-Based Tax System: A Quantitative Assessment for Brazil," Revista Brasileira de Economia - RBE, FGV/EPGE - Escola Brasileira de Economia e Finanças, Getulio Vargas Foundation (Brazil), vol. 64(2), June.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • H22 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Incidence
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies

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