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Tagging and Redistributive Taxation

  • Robin Boadway


    (Queen's University)

  • Pierre Pestieau


    (Universite de Liege)

We study the optimal redistributive tax structure when the population can be disaggregated into tagged groups. We begin with the case in which the tag has no normative significance, but simply separates the population into identifiable groups with different distributions of ability-types. Under reasonable circumstances, the tax system will be more redistributive in the tagged group with the higher proportion of high-ability persons. We then extend the analysis to the case where the tag reflects differences in needs, that is, differences in the resources required to achieve a given level of utility, for example, due to a medical condition or a disability. The amount of compensation given for needs depends on whether the income tax structure is differentiated by needs groups.

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Paper provided by Queen's University, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number 1071.

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Length: 34 pages
Date of creation: May 2006
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:qed:wpaper:1071
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  1. Nicholas Rowe & Frances Woolley, 1999. "The Efficiency Case for Universality," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 32(3), pages 613-629, May.
  2. Robin Boadway, 2003. "The Theory and Practice of Equalization," Working Papers 1016, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  3. Jonathan Hamiltonet & Pierre Pestieau, 2005. "Optimal Income Taxation and the Ability Distribution: Implications for Migration Equilibria," Post-Print halshs-00754106, HAL.
  4. Alan D. Viard, 2001. "Some Results on the Comparative Statics of Optimal Categorical Transfer Payments," Public Finance Review, SAGE Publishing, vol. 29(2), pages 148-180, March.
  5. BOADWAY, Robin & LEITE-MONTEIR, Manuel & MARCHAND, Maurice & PESTIEAU, Pierre, . "Social insurance and redistribution," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1643, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  6. Robert A. Pollak, 1971. "Additive Utility Functions and Linear Engel Curves," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(4), pages 401-414.
  7. Robin Boadway & Michael Keen, 1999. "Redistribution," Working Papers 983, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  8. Stiglitz, Joseph E., 1982. "Self-selection and Pareto efficient taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 213-240, March.
  9. Parsons, Donald O., 1996. "Imperfect 'tagging' in social insurance programs," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(1-2), pages 183-207, October.
  10. Ritva Immonen & Ravi Kanbur & Michael Keen & Matti Tuomala, 1994. "Tagging and taxing: the optimal use of categorical and income information in designing tax/transfer schemes," IFS Working Papers W94/05, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  11. Robin Boadway & Pierre Pestieau, 2002. "Indirect Taxation and Redistribution: The Scope of the Atkinson-Stiglitz Theorem," Working Papers 1005, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  12. Diamond, P., 1994. "Optimal Income Taxation: An Exemple with a U-Shaped Pattern of Optimal Marginal Tax Rates," Working papers 94-14, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  13. Keen, Michael, 1992. "Needs and Targeting," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 102(410), pages 67-79, January.
  14. Laurence Jacquet & Bruno Van der Linden, 2006. "The Normative Analysis of Tagging Revisited: Dealing with Stigmatization," FinanzArchiv: Public Finance Analysis, Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 62(2), pages 168-198, June.
  15. Immonen, Ritva, et al, 1998. "Tagging and Taxing: The Optimal Use of Categorical and Income Information in Designing Tax/Transfer Schemes," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(258), pages 179-92, May.
  16. CREMER, Helmuth & PESTIEAU , Pierre & ROCHET, Jean-Charles, . "Direct versus indirect taxation: the design of the tax structure revisited," CORE Discussion Papers RP 1528, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  17. Virginia Hernanz & Franck Malherbet & Michele Pellizzari, 2004. "Take-Up of Welfare Benefits in OECD Countries: A Review of the Evidence," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 17, OECD Publishing.
  18. Viard, Alan D, 2001. " Optimal Categorical Transfer Payments: The Welfare Economics of Limited Lump-Sum Redistribution," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 3(4), pages 483-500.
  19. Guesnerie, Roger & Seade, Jesus, 1982. "Nonlinear pricing in a finite economy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 157-179, March.
  20. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David, 1994. "Information and Intergroup Transfers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(2), pages 440-47, May.
  21. Atkinson, A. B. & Stiglitz, J. E., 1976. "The design of tax structure: Direct versus indirect taxation," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(1-2), pages 55-75.
  22. J. A. Mirrlees, 1971. "An Exploration in the Theory of Optimum Income Taxation," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(2), pages 175-208.
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