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Discretionary tax shocks in the United Kingdom 1945-2009: a narrative account and dataset

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  • Cloyne, James S

Abstract

This paper constructs a narrative account of all legislated discretionary policy changes in the United Kingdom from 1945 to 2009. Following Romer and Romer (2009, 2010), evidence of the policymakers’ motivation is presented from U.K. official Budget documents together with technical notes, press releases, Acts of Parliament, the Budget speech by the Chancellor of the Exchequer and related entries in the parliamentary record (Hansard). The historical context in which the decision was made is also discussed. Using the given motives I isolate tax policy changes which were not responding to, or influenced by, current or prospective economic shocks. This ‘exogenous’ category is comprised of actions to improve long-run economic performance, those motivated by ideological or political reasons, rulings from external bodies such as courts, and fiscal consolidation measures based on long-run considerations. By contrast, the ‘endogenous’ changes are actions to manage demand, to stimulate production, to offset a debt crisis and those to fund spending decisions. For all the tax changes I collect information on the announcement, implementation and withdrawal dates as well as the type of the tax (such as income tax). The dataset contains nearly 2,500 tax changes and is aggregated into a quarterly series for analysis. In addition to creating a novel dataset this paper also contributes to the post-war history of U.K. taxation.

Suggested Citation

  • Cloyne, James S, 2010. "Discretionary tax shocks in the United Kingdom 1945-2009: a narrative account and dataset," MPRA Paper 34913, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:34913
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. James Cloyne, 2011. "What are the Effects of Tax Changes in the United Kingdom? New Evidence from a Narrative Evaluation," CESifo Working Paper Series 3433, CESifo Group Munich.
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    Cited by:

    1. Cloyne, James S, 2011. "Government spending shocks, wealth effects and distortionary taxes," MPRA Paper 41689, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. James Cloyne, 2011. "What are the Effects of Tax Changes in the United Kingdom? New Evidence from a Narrative Evaluation," CESifo Working Paper Series 3433, CESifo Group Munich.
    3. Cloyne, James & Surico, Paolo, 2013. "Household Debt and the Dynamic Effects of Income Tax Changes," CEPR Discussion Papers 9649, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    4. Manuel Coutinho Pereira & Lara Wemans, 2015. "Output Effects of a Measure of Tax Shocks Based on Changes in Legislation for Portugal," Hacienda Pública Española, IEF, vol. 215(4), pages 27-62, December.
    5. James Cloyne, 2013. "Discretionary Tax Changes and the Macroeconomy: New Narrative Evidence from the United Kingdom," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 103(4), pages 1507-1528, June.
    6. Etienne Lehmann & Claudio Lucifora & Simone Moriconi & Bruno Van der Linden, 2016. "Beyond the labour income tax wedge: the unemployment-reducing effect of tax progressivity," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 23(3), pages 454-489, June.
    7. Manuel Coutinho Pereira & Lara Wemans, 2013. "The macroeconomic effects of legislated tax changes in Portugal," Economic Bulletin and Financial Stability Report Articles and Banco de Portugal Economic Studies, Banco de Portugal, Economics and Research Department.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    fiscal policy; tax shocks; tax multiplier; narrative approach; business cycles; tax data; economic history;

    JEL classification:

    • E62 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook - - - Fiscal Policy
    • N10 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - General, International, or Comparative
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • H20 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - General
    • E20 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)

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