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Taxing Multinationals

  • Michael P. Devereux
  • R. Glenn Hubbard

This paper analyzes the effects of tax policy on the strategic choices of a domestic multinational company competing with a foreign multinational company in a third country. We demonstrate the role of the effective average tax rate and the effective marginal tax rate on the company's choices. We consider the impact on national welfare of alternative tax policies for outbound investment. Our results differ from existing models. In contrast to Feldstein and Hartman (1979), in our model, taxing foreign source income on accrual with a deduction for foreign taxes is not generally optimal. However, unlike Mintz and Tulkens (1996), the optimal policy for domestic and outbound investment is linked through the strategic choices of the multinational.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 7920.

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Date of creation: Sep 2000
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Publication status: published as Devereux, Michael P. and R. Glenn Hubbard. "Taxing Multinationals," International Tax and Public Finance, 2003, v10(4,Aug), 469-487.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:7920
Note: IFM PE
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  1. James A. Brander & Barbara J. Spencer, 1984. "Export Subsidies and International Market Share Rivalry," NBER Working Papers 1464, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. James A. Brander, 1995. "Strategic Trade Policy," NBER Working Papers 5020, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Joel Slemrod, 1994. "Free-Trade Taxation and Protectionist Taxation," NBER Working Papers 4902, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Devereux, Michael P. & Griffith, Rachel, 1998. "Taxes and the location of production: evidence from a panel of US multinationals," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 335-367, June.
  5. Mihir C. Desai & C. Fritz Foley & James R. Hines Jr., 2005. "Foreign Direct Investment and the Domestic Capital Stock," NBER Working Papers 11075, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Feldstein, Martin & Hines, James R. & Hubbard, R. Glenn (ed.), 1995. "The Effects of Taxation on Multinational Corporations," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226240954.
  7. Julie Collins & Douglas Shackelford, 1995. "Corporate domicile and average effective tax rates: The cases of Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(1), pages 55-83, February.
  8. Jason Cummins & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1995. "The Tax Sensitivity of Foreign Direct Investment: Evidence from Firm-Level Panel Data," NBER Chapters, in: The Effects of Taxation on Multinational Corporations, pages 123-152 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Martin S. Feldstein, 1995. "The Effects of Outbound Foreign Direct Investment on the Domestic Capital Stock," NBER Chapters, in: The Effects of Taxation on Multinational Corporations, pages 43-66 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Michael P. Devereux & Rachel Griffith, 1998. "The Taxation of Discrete Investment Choices," Keele Department of Economics Discussion Papers (1995-2001) 98/08, Department of Economics, Keele University.
  11. James R. Markusen, 1995. "The Boundaries of Multinational Enterprises and the Theory of International Trade," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(2), pages 169-189, Spring.
  12. Feldstein, Martin & Hartman, David, 1979. "The Optimal Taxation of Foreign," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 613-29, November.
  13. Ignatius J. Horstmann & James R. Markusen, 1990. "Endogenous Market Structures in International Trade," NBER Working Papers 3283, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Janeba, Eckhard, 1996. "Foreign direct investment under oligopoly: Profit shifting or profit capturing?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 423-445, June.
  15. Haufler, Andreas & Wooton, Ian, 1999. "Country size and tax competition for foreign direct investment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 121-139, January.
  16. Horst, Thomas, 1980. "A Note on the Optimal Taxation of International Investment Income," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 94(4), pages 793-98, June.
  17. Peter A. Diamond & J. A. Mirrlees, 1968. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production," Working papers 22, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  18. Bruce, N., 1992. "Why Are There Foreign Tax Credits," Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington 92-08, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
  19. Roger H. Gordon, 1990. "Can Capital Income Taxes Survive in Open Economies?," NBER Working Papers 3416, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Motta, Massimo, 1992. "Multinational firms and the tariff-jumping argument : A game theoretic analysis with some unconventional conclusions," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 1557-1571, December.
  21. King, Mervyn A. & Fullerton, Don, 2010. "The Taxation of Income from Capital," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 0, number 9780226436319.
  22. Hines, James R. Jr., 1999. "The Case against Deferral: A Deferential Reconsideration," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 52(n. 3), pages 385-404, September.
  23. Martin Feldstein & James R. Hines Jr. & R. Glenn Hubbard, 1995. "The Effects of Taxation on Multinational Corporations," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number feld95-2, June.
  24. James Levinsohn & Joel Slemrod, 1990. "Taxes, Tariffs, and The Global Corporation," NBER Working Papers 3500, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  25. Devereux, Michael P. & Pearson, Mark, 1995. "European tax harmonisation and production efficiency," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 39(9), pages 1657-1681, December.
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