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How Does Charitable Giving Respond to Incentives and Income? New Estimates from Panel Data

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Abstract

We estimate the elasticity of charitable giving with respect to persistent and transitory price and income changes using a 1979-2006 panel of tax returns. Our estimation procedure allows for anticipation of and gradual adjustment to tax changes, controls for various potential sources of omitted variable bias via fixed effects and income-class specific year dummies, and allows for a flexible non-linear relationship between income and charitable giving. Our most convincing estimates are identified by differences in the time-paths of tax incentives across states, and suggest a persistent price elasticity in excess of one in absolute value. Classification-JEL: H24, H31, D12

Suggested Citation

  • Jon Bakija & Bradley Heim, 2008. "How Does Charitable Giving Respond to Incentives and Income? New Estimates from Panel Data," Department of Economics Working Papers 2008-01, Department of Economics, Williams College, revised Jun 2011.
  • Handle: RePEc:wil:wileco:2008-01
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    charitable donations; incentive effects of taxation;

    JEL classification:

    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis

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