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Audit publicity and tax compliance: a quasi-natural experiment

Listed author(s):
  • Pietro Battiston
  • Denvil Duncan
  • Simona Gamba
  • Alessandro Santoro

We use confidential data on Value Added Tax payments at the sector level, in two large Italian cities, to estimate the effect of audits publicity on tax compliance of local sellers. By employing a Difference-in-Differences identification strategy, we find that such publicity has a positive effect on fiscal declarations made shortly after. The results suggest that increasing awareness on future audits via the media can be an important instrument in the hands of tax authorities.

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Paper provided by Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy in its series LEM Papers Series with number 2016/40.

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Date of creation: 12 Jul 2016
Handle: RePEc:ssa:lemwps:2016/40
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  1. Myles, Gareth D. & Naylor, Robin A., 1996. "A model of tax evasion with group conformity and social customs," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 12(1), pages 49-66, April.
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  3. Philipp Doerrenberg & Denvil Duncan, 2012. "Experimental Evidence on the Relationship between Tax Evasion Opportunities and Labor Supply," Cologne Graduate School Working Paper Series 03-10, Cologne Graduate School in Management, Economics and Social Sciences.
  4. Wojciech Kopczuk & Justin Marion & Erich Muehlegger & Joel Slemrod, 2016. "Does Tax-Collection Invariance Hold? Evasion and the Pass-Through of State Diesel Taxes," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 8(2), pages 251-286, May.
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  6. Dina Pomeranz, 2015. "No Taxation without Information: Deterrence and Self-Enforcement in the Value Added Tax," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(8), pages 2539-2569, August.
  7. Alberto Abadie & Javier Gardeazabal, 2003. "The Economic Costs of Conflict: A Case Study of the Basque Country," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 93(1), pages 113-132, March.
  8. Johannes Rincke & Christian Traxler, 2011. "Enforcement Spillovers," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 93(4), pages 1224-1234, November.
  9. Mittone, Luigi, 2006. "Dynamic behaviour in tax evasion: An experimental approach," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 813-835, October.
  10. M. Rosaria Marino & Roberta Zizza, 2012. "Personal Income Tax Evasion in Italy: An Estimate by Taxpayer Type," Chapters, in: Tax Evasion and the Shadow Economy, chapter 3 Edward Elgar Publishing.
  11. Pietro Battiston & Simona Gamba, 2013. "Is Tax Compliance a Social Norm? A Field Experiment," Working Papers 249, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2013.
  12. Slemrod, Joel & Blumenthal, Marsha & Christian, Charles, 2001. "Taxpayer response to an increased probability of audit: evidence from a controlled experiment in Minnesota," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(3), pages 455-483, March.
  13. Nigar Hashimzade & Gareth D. Myles & Binh Tran-Nam, 2013. "Applications Of Behavioural Economics To Tax Evasion," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 27(5), pages 941-977, December.
  14. Henrik Jacobsen Kleven & Martin B. Knudsen & Claus Thustrup Kreiner & Søren Pedersen & Emmanuel Saez, 2011. "Unwilling or Unable to Cheat? Evidence From a Tax Audit Experiment in Denmark," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 79(3), pages 651-692, 05.
  15. Alm, James & Jackson, Betty R. & McKee, Michael, 2009. "Getting the word out: Enforcement information dissemination and compliance behavior," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(3-4), pages 392-402, April.
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  17. Dirk Bethmann & Michael Kvasnicka, 2016. "International Tax Evasion, State Purchases of Confidential Bank Data and Voluntary Disclosures," FEMM Working Papers 160001, Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg, Faculty of Economics and Management.
  18. Battiston, Pietro & Gamba, Simona, 2016. "The impact of social pressure on tax compliance: A field experiment," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 78-85.
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