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Optimal capital taxation for time-nonseparable preferences

  • Koehne, Sebastian
  • Kuhn, Moritz

This paper studies the effect of habit formation on optimal capital taxes in a dynamic Mirrleesian model. We make three distinct contributions. First, we decompose intertemporal wedges (implicit capital taxes) for general time-nonseparable preferences into a wealth effect, a complementarity effect, and a future incentive effect. Second, we provide conditions under which intertemporal wedges are positive. Third, we derive a recursive formulation of constrained efficient allocations and evaluate the quantitative impact of habit formation. In a model parameterized to the U.S. economy, habit formation reduces average intertemporal wedges by about 40 percent compared to the time-separable case. Moreover, intertemporal wedges are close to zero for the largest part of the working life.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 45203.

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Date of creation: 18 Mar 2013
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:45203
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  1. Abel, Andrew B, 1990. "Asset Prices under Habit Formation and Catching Up with the Joneses," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(2), pages 38-42, May.
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  8. Albanesi, Stefania & Sleet, Christopher, 2003. "Dynamic Optimal Taxation with Private Information," CEPR Discussion Papers 4006, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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  10. Mikhail Golosov & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2006. "Designing Optimal Disability Insurance: A Case for Asset Testing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 114(2), pages 257-279, April.
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  12. Köhne, Sebastian & Abraham, Arpad & Pavoni, Nicola, 2014. "Optimal Income Taxation with Asset Accumulation," Annual Conference 2014 (Hamburg): Evidence-based Economic Policy 100406, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  13. Farhi, Emmanuel & Werning, Iván, 2008. "Optimal savings distortions with recursive preferences," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(1), pages 21-42, January.
  14. Messinis, George, 1999. " Habit Formation and the Theory of Addiction," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 13(4), pages 417-42, September.
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  18. Dunn, Kenneth B. & Singleton, Kenneth J., 1986. "Modeling the term structure of interest rates under non-separable utility and durability of goods," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 27-55, September.
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  23. Christopher Phelan & Robert M. Townsend, 1991. "Computing Multi-Period, Information-Constrained Optima," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 58(5), pages 853-881.
  24. Rogerson, William P, 1985. "Repeated Moral Hazard," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(1), pages 69-76, January.
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  26. Diaz, Antonia & Pijoan-Mas, Josep & Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor, 2003. "Precautionary savings and wealth distribution under habit formation preferences," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(6), pages 1257-1291, September.
  27. Heaton, John, 1993. "The Interaction between Time-Nonseparable Preferences and Time Aggregation," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(2), pages 353-85, March.
  28. Harl E. Ryder & Geoffrey M. Heal, 1973. "Optimal Growth with Intertemporally Dependent Preferences," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 40(1), pages 1-31.
  29. Clark, Andrew E., 1999. "Are wages habit-forming? evidence from micro data," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 179-200, June.
  30. Heaton, John, 1995. "An Empirical Investigation of Asset Pricing with Temporally Dependent Preference Specifications," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(3), pages 681-717, May.
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