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Cash Thresholds, Cash Expenditure and Tax Evasion


  • Francesco Flaviano Russo

    (Università di Napoli Federico II and CSEF)


I investigate whether cash thresholds that forbid cash payments on big transactions are effective at reducing tax evasion. I find that the 1000 euros threshold implemented in Italy in 2011 induced a bigger cash expenditure reduction for the households with self employed members, and the more so in case they work in cash intensive sectors. With the help of a simple model, I show that this empirical evidence suggests a tax evasion reduction, and I compute the tax revenue increase implied by the empirical estimates. Calibrating the model, I also perform a counterfactual exercise to quantify the potential effects of lower thresholds.

Suggested Citation

  • Francesco Flaviano Russo, 2020. "Cash Thresholds, Cash Expenditure and Tax Evasion," CSEF Working Papers 579, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  • Handle: RePEc:sef:csefwp:579

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Giammatteo, Michele & Iezzi, Stefano & Zizza, Roberta, 2022. "Pecunia olet. Cash usage and the underground economy," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 204(C), pages 107-127.

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    More about this item


    Self-employed; Transactions; Payments;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H26 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Tax Evasion and Avoidance
    • E42 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Monetary Sytsems; Standards; Regimes; Government and the Monetary System

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