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Timing Tax Evasion

Standard models of tax evasion implicitly assume that evasion is either fully detected, or not detected at all. Empirically, this is not the case, casting into doubt the traditional rationales for interior evasion choices. I propose two alternative, dynamic explanations for interior tax evasion rates: Fines depending on the duration of an evasion spell, and different vintages of income sources subject to aggregate risk and fixed costs when switched between evasion states. The dynamic approach yields a transparent representation of revenue losses and social costs due to tax evasion, novel findings on the effect of policy on tax evasion, and a tractable framework for the analysis of tax evasion dynamics.

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Paper provided by Swiss National Bank, Study Center Gerzensee in its series Working Papers with number 04.07.

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Length: 26 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:szg:worpap:0407
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  1. Martin Feldstein, 1993. "The Effect of Marginal Tax Rates on Taxable Income: A Panel Study of the1986 Tax Reform Act," NBER Working Papers 4496, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Eduardo Engel & James R. Hines Jr., 1998. "Understanding Tax Evasion Dynamics," Documentos de Trabajo 47, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  3. MaCurdy, Thomas, 1992. "Work Disincentive Effects of Taxes: A Reexamination of Some Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 243-49, May.
  4. Andreoni, J. & Erard, B. & Feinstein, J., 1996. "Tax Compliance," Working papers 9610r, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
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  8. Slemrod, Joel, 1992. "Do Taxes Matter? Lessons from the 1980's," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 250-56, May.
  9. Agell, Jonas & Englund, Peter & Sodersten, Jan, 1996. "Tax Reform of the Century -- the Swedish Experiment," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 49(4), pages 643-64, December.
  10. Sanford J. Grossman & Guy Laroque, 1987. "Asset Pricing and Optimal Portfolio Choice in the Presence of Illiquid Durable Consumption Goods," NBER Working Papers 2369, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  11. Alan J. Auerbach & Joel Slemrod, 1997. "The Economic Effects of the Tax Reform Act of 1986," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 35(2), pages 589-632, June.
  12. Slemrod, Joel & Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 2002. "Tax avoidance, evasion, and administration," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 22, pages 1423-1470 Elsevier.
  13. Diamond, Peter A & Mirrlees, James A, 1971. "Optimal Taxation and Public Production: I--Production Efficiency," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(1), pages 8-27, March.
  14. Feldstein, Martin, 1995. "Effect of Marginal Tax Rates on Taxable Income: A Panel Study of the 1986 Tax Reform Act," Scholarly Articles 2766676, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  15. Gary S. Becker, 1968. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 76, pages 169.
  16. Frank A. Cowell, 1990. "Cheating the Government: The Economics of Evasion," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262532484, June.
  17. Allingham, Michael G. & Sandmo, Agnar, 1972. "Income tax evasion: a theoretical analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 1(3-4), pages 323-338, November.
  18. Gary Hansen, 2010. "Indivisible Labor and the Business Cycle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 233, David K. Levine.
  19. Constantinides, George M, 1986. "Capital Market Equilibrium with Transaction Costs," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 842-62, August.
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