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Optimal income taxation with asset accumulation

  • Abraham, Arpad
  • Koehne, Sebastian
  • Pavoni, Nicola

Several frictions restrict the government's ability to tax assets. First of all, it is very costly to monitor trades on international asset markets. Moreover, agents can resort to non-observable low-return assets such as cash, gold or foreign currencies if taxes on observable assets become too high. This paper shows that limitations in asset observability have important consequences for the taxation of labor income. Using a dynamic moral hazard model of social insurance, we �find that optimal labor income taxes typically become less progressive when assets are imperfectly observed. We evaluate the effect quantitatively in a model calibrated to U.S. data.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 38629.

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Date of creation: 03 May 2012
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:38629
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  3. Sebastian Koehne & Nicola Pavoni & Arpad Abraham, 2010. "On the First-Order Approach in Principal-Agent Models with Hidden Borrowing and Lending," 2010 Meeting Papers 947, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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  10. Peter Diamond & Emmanuel Saez, 2011. "The Case for a Progressive Tax: From Basic Research to Policy Recommendations," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 25(4), pages 165-90, Fall.
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