nep-pbe New Economics Papers
on Public Economics
Issue of 2012‒01‒25
nineteen papers chosen by
Keunjae Lee
Pusan National University

  1. Oates' Decentralization Theorem with Household Mobility By Francis Bloch; Unal Zenginobuz
  2. Nice Guys Finish Last: Are People with Higher Tax Morale Taxed More Heavily? By Doerrenberg, Philipp; Duncan, Denvil; Fuest, Clemens; Peichl, Andreas
  3. Fiscal Consolidation: Part 6. What Are the Best Policy Instruments for Fiscal Consolidation? By Robert Hagemann
  4. How is Tax Policy Conducted over the Business Cycle? By Carlos A. Vegh; Guillermo Vuletin
  5. Nonlinear Income Tax Reforms By Alan Krause
  6. Less Income Inequality and More Growth – Are They Compatible?: Part 3. Income Redistribution via Taxes and Transfers Across OECD Countries By Isabelle Joumard; Mauro Pisu; Debbie Bloch
  7. Fiscal Consolidation: Part 5. What Factors Determine the Success of Consolidation Efforts? By Margit Molnar
  8. The Regulation of Hunting: A Population Tax By Jens Abildtrup; Frank Jensen
  9. Fiscal policy, public expenditure composition and growth. theory and empirics By Willi, Semmlero; Alfred, Greiner; Bobo, Diallo; Anand, Rajaram; Armon, Rezai
  10. Environmental Taxation and Redistribution Concerns By Rafael Aigner
  11. Aspirations of the middle class: voting on redistribution and status concerns By Kai A. Konrad; Florian Morath
  12. Fiscal Consolidation: Part 1. How Much is Needed and How to Reduce Debt to a Prudent Level? By Douglas Sutherland; Peter Hoeller; Rossana Merola
  13. Less Income Inequality and More Growth – Are They Compatible?: Part 1. Mapping Income Inequality Across the OECD By Peter Hoeller; Isabelle Joumard; Mauro Pisu; Debbie Bloch
  14. Short-run distributional effects of public education in Greece By Panagiotis Tsakloglou; Christos Koutsampelas
  15. Less Income Inequality and More Growth – Are they Compatible?: Part 4. Top Incomes By Peter Hoeller
  16. Welfare improving taxation on savings in a growth model By Long Xin; Pelloni Alessandra
  17. Fiscal Consolidation: Part 3. Long-Run Projections and Fiscal Gap Calculations By Rossana Merola; Douglas Sutherland
  18. Less Income Inequality and More Growth – Are They Compatible?: Part 2. The Distribution of Labour Income By Isabell Koske; Jean-Marc Fournier; Isabelle Wanner
  19. Less Income Inequality and More Growth – Are they Compatible?: Part 5. Poverty in OECD Countries By Mauro Pisu

  1. By: Francis Bloch (Department of Economics, Ecole Polytechnique - CNRS : UMR7176 - Polytechnique - X); Unal Zenginobuz (Bogazici Universitesi - {-])
    Abstract: This paper studies how Oates' trade-off between centralized and decentralized public good provision is affected by changes in households' mobility. We show that an increase in household mobility favors centralization, as it increases competition between jurisdictions in the decentralized regime and accelerates migration to the majority jurisdiction in the centralized regime. Our main result is obtained in a baseline model where jurisdictions first choose taxes, and households move in response to taxb levels. We consider two variants of the model. If jurisdictions choose public goods rather than tax rates, the equilibrium level of public good provision is lower, and mobility again favors centralization. If jurisdictions maximize total utility rather than resident utility, the equilibrium level of public good provision again decreases, and mobility favors centralization when the size of the mobile population is bounded.
    Keywords: Oates' decentralization theorem, Fiscal federalism, Household mobility, Spillovers, Tax competition
    Date: 2012–01–09
  2. By: Doerrenberg, Philipp (University of Cologne); Duncan, Denvil (Indiana University); Fuest, Clemens (University of Oxford); Peichl, Andreas (IZA)
    Abstract: This paper is the first to provide evidence of efficient taxation of groups with heterogeneous levels of 'tax morale'. We set up an optimal income tax model where high tax morale implies a high subjective cost of evading taxes. The model predicts that 'nice guys finish last': groups with higher tax morale will be taxed more heavily, simply because taxing them is less costly. Based on unique cross-country micro data and an IV approach to rule out reverse causality, we find empirical support for this hypothesis. Income groups with high tax morale systematically face higher average and marginal tax rates.
    Keywords: tax morale, tax compliance, optimal taxation, political economy
    JEL: H2 H3 D7
    Date: 2012–01
  3. By: Robert Hagemann
    Abstract: OECD countries face daunting fiscal challenges following the substantial surge in debt-GDP ratios during the past four years, from already high levels in many cases. Fiscal consolidation is now the order of the day, and it takes on greater urgency against the backdrop of imminent budgetary pressures from population ageing. While strong growth would help, the bulk of consolidation will require specific structural reforms to spending and revenue programmes to stabilise and then reduce debt-GDP ratios. On the spending side, many reform options offer budgetary savings through improved efficiency, without loss of desired outcomes or adverse equity impacts. Areas examined in this paper include health care, education, infrastructure, general public services, and transfer programmes. On the revenue side, countries’ tax systems are perforated by tax expenditures that cause inefficiencies, reduce revenue, and undermine fairness. Reducing the scope and scale of tax expenditures remains one of the most promising means of boosting revenues while improving economic performance. Shifting taxation toward less inefficient tax bases also holds much promise, including raising the importance of both property taxation and environmental levies. Even without quantifying all possible measures, the cumulative cuts in spending and increases in taxation could yield 6% of GDP on average across countries in consolidation, with somewhat more on the spending side.<P>Consolidation budgétaire : Partie 6. Quels sont les meilleurs instruments de la consolidation budgétaire ?<BR>Les pays de l’OCDE sont confrontés à de considérables difficultés budgétaires par suite du brusque gonflement, depuis des niveaux dans bien des cas déjà élevés, de la dette publique par rapport au PIB ces quatre dernières années. L’assainissement budgétaire est désormais la priorité du moment et devient de plus en plus pressant du fait de l’imminence des tensions budgétaires dues au vieillissement de la population. Si une croissance vigoureuse constituerait une aide incontestable, on ne pourra faire l’économie, pour assainir les finances publiques, de réformes structurelles spécifiques des programmes de dépenses et de recettes afin de stabiliser, puis de faire baisser les ratios dette/PIB. Du côté des dépenses, de nombreuses voies de réforme permettent de réaliser des économies budgétaires en améliorant l’efficience, sans annihiler les résultats attendus ou avoir d’impacts défavorables du point de vue de l’équité. Au nombre des domaines étudiés dans ce document figurent la santé, l’éducation, les infrastructures, les services publics généraux et les programmes de transfert. Du côté des recettes, les régimes fiscaux des différents pays sont grevés par les dépenses fiscales qui sont sources d’inefficiences, amputent les recettes et sapent l’équité. Réduire la portée et l’ampleur des dépenses fiscales reste l’un des moyens les plus prometteurs de gonfler les recettes tout en améliorant la performance économique. La réorientation de l’imposition vers des assiettes fiscales moins inefficientes, notamment en donnant plus d’importance à l’imposition foncière et aux prélèvements environnementaux, est également très prometteuse. Même sans quantifier toutes les mesures possibles, les réductions de dépenses cumulées et le relèvement de l’imposition pourraient rapporter 6 % du PIB en moyenne dans les pays procédant à un assainissement de leurs finances publiques, la part de ce pourcentage attribuable aux réductions de dépenses étant un peu plus importante.
    Keywords: fiscal policy, public finances, fiscal consolidation, politique budgétaire, finances publiques, consolidation budgétaire
    JEL: H61
    Date: 2012–01–10
  4. By: Carlos A. Vegh; Guillermo Vuletin
    Abstract: It is well known by now that government spending has typically been procyclical in emerging economies but acyclical or countercyclical in industrial countries. Little, if any, is known, however, about the cyclical behavior of tax rates (as opposed to tax revenues, which are endogenous to the business cycle and hence cannot shed light on the cyclicality of tax policy). We build a novel dataset on tax rates for 62 countries for the period 1960-2009 that comprises corporate income, personal income, and value-added tax rates. We find that, by and large, tax policy is acyclical in industrial countries but procyclical in developing countries. We show that the evidence is consistent with a model of optimal fiscal policy under uncertainty.
    JEL: E32 E62 H20
    Date: 2012–01
  5. By: Alan Krause
    Abstract: WThis paper addresses questions of the following nature: under what conditions does a welfare-improving reform of a nonlinear income tax system necessitate a change in a particular agent's marginal tax rate or total tax burden? Our analysis is therefore a study in tax reform, rather than in optimal taxation. We consider a simple model with three types of agents (high-skill, middle-skill, and low-skill) who have preferences that are quasi-linear in labour. Under these assumptions and using our methodology, specific characteristics of the initial suboptimal tax system can be determined when all welfare-improving tax reforms require specified changes in a particular agent's tax treatment. Some other necessary features of the tax reform can also be determined. Thus, unlike many tax reform analyses in the literature, we are able to reach a number of clear-cut conclusions.
    Keywords: tax reform; nonlinear income taxation.
    JEL: H21 H24
    Date: 2012–01
  6. By: Isabelle Joumard; Mauro Pisu; Debbie Bloch
    Abstract: Taxes and transfers reduce inequality in disposable income relative to market income. The effect varies, however, across OECD countries. The redistributive impact of taxes and transfers depends on the size, mix and the progressivity of each component. Some countries with a relatively small tax and welfare system (e.g. Australia) achieve the same redistributive impact as countries characterised by much higher taxes and transfers (e.g. Germany) because they rely more on income taxes, which are more progressive than other taxes, and on means-tested cash transfers. This paper provides an assessment of the redistributive effect of the main taxes and cash transfers based on a set of policy indicators and a literature review. It also identifies empirically four groups of countries with tax and transfer systems that share broadly similar features. The paper then assesses potential trade-offs and complementarities between economic growth and income redistribution objectives associated with various tax and transfer reform options.<P>Moins d'inégalités de revenu et plus de croissance – Ces deux objectifs sont-ils compatibles ? : Partie 3. Redistribution du revenu par le biais de l'impôt et des transferts dans les pays de l'OCDE<BR>Les impôts et les transferts amènent les inégalités de revenu disponible à un niveau inférieur à celles du revenu marchand. Cet effet redistributif des impôts et transferts n’a pas la même ampleur dans tous les pays de l’OCDE. Il dépend de la taille, de la composition des impôts et transferts ainsi que de la progressivité de chaque composante. Certains pays ayant un système fiscal et de protection sociale relativement peu importants (comme l’Australie, par exemple) obtiennent le même effet redistributif que des pays où les impôts et les transferts sont beaucoup plus élevés (comme l’Allemagne) du fait qu’ils recourent davantage aux impôts sur le revenu, plus progressifs que les autres impôts, et à des transferts en espèces ciblés sur les ménages les plus démunis. Ce document donne une évaluation de l’effet redistributif des principaux impôts et transferts à partir d’une série d’indicateurs de l’action publique et d’une revue des études existantes. Il identifie aussi, de manière empirique, quatre groupes de pays dont les systèmes fiscaux et de protection sociale présentent des caractéristiques à peu près similaires. Le document évalue ensuite les arbitrages et complémentarités potentiels entre les objectifs de croissance économique et de redistribution du revenu relatifs aux diverses possibilités de réforme des systèmes fiscaux et de protection sociale.
    Keywords: taxes, transfers, redistribution, income inequality, cluster analysis, welfare system, transferts, redistribution, impôt, système de protection sociale, inégalité des revenus, analyse par clusters
    JEL: H2 H23 H53 I3 I38
    Date: 2012–01–10
  7. By: Margit Molnar
    Abstract: The global economic and financial crisis exacerbated the need for fiscal consolidation in many OECD countries. Drawing lessons from past episodes of fiscal consolidation, this paper investigates the economic environments, political settings and policy measures conducive to fiscal consolidation and debt stabilisation using probit, duration, truncated regression and bivariate Heckman selection methods. The empirical analysis builds on the earlier literature and extends it to include new aspects that may be of importance for consolidating governments. The empirical analysis confirms previous findings that the presence of fiscal rules – expenditure or budget balance rules – is associated with a greater probability of stabilising debt. Crucial in determining the causal link behind the association, the results also reveal an independent role for such rules over and above the impact of preferences for fiscal prudence. Also, while the analysis confirms that spending-driven adjustments vis-à-vis revenue-driven ones are more likely to stabilise debt, it also reveals that large consolidations need multiple instruments for consolidation to succeed. Sub-national governments, in particular state-level governments can contribute to the success of central government consolidation, if they co-operate. To ensure that state-level governments do co-operate, having the right regulatory framework with the extension of fiscal rules to sub-central government levels is important.<P>Consolidation budgétaire : Partie 5. Quels sont les facteurs qui conditionnent la réussite des efforts d'assainissement budgétaire ?<BR>La crise economique et financiere mondiale a exacerbe l.imperatif d.assainir les finances publiques dans de nombreux pays de l.OCDE. Tirant les enseignements des episodes passes de reequilibrage budgetaire, ce document analyse les facteurs economiques, politiques et strategiques favorables a l.assainissement des finances publiques et a la stabilisation de la dette en utilisant la methode des probits, les modeles de duree, de regression tronquee et de selection en deux etapes de Heckman. L.analyse empirique s.inspire de travaux anterieurs qu.elle enrichit en integrant d.autres aspects qui peuvent etre importants pour les autorites qui optent pour une trajectoire d.assainissement budgetaire. Cette analyse empirique confirme les resultats anterieurs qui montraient que l.existence de regles budgetaires . regles de depenses ou d.equilibre budgetaire . est associee a une plus forte probabilite de stabilisation de la dette. Essentiels pour determiner le lien de causalite qui sous-tend cette association, les resultats revelent par ailleurs que ces regles jouent un role independant au-dela des effets d.une politique axee sur la prudence budgetaire. En outre, l.analyse confirme que les mesures de restriction des depenses sont plus susceptibles de stabiliser la dette que celles fondees sur l.augmentation des recettes, mais elle revele egalement que, pour reussir, les reequilibrages de grande ampleur doivent s.appuyer sur de multiple instruments. Les autorites infranationales, et notamment les autorites regionales ou des Etats, peuvent contribuer au succes des efforts deployes par l.administration centrale en cooperant. Pour garantir cette cooperation, il est important de disposer d.un cadre reglementaire adequat qui applique les regles budgetaires aux autorites infranationales.
    Keywords: taxation, fiscal federalism, fiscal rules, fiscal consolidation, government spending, dépenses publiques, règles budgétaires, fédéralisme budgétaire, consolidation budgétaire, taxation
    JEL: E62 H2 H5 H6 H7
    Date: 2012–01–10
  8. By: Jens Abildtrup (INRA, Laboratoire d´Economic Forestiere, Nancy, France); Frank Jensen (Institute of Food and Resource Economics, University of Copenhagen)
    Abstract: Within hunting, wildlife populations are estimated to be too high in many countries which is assumed to be due to the market failure, that each hunter harvests too little compared to what the regulator wants. This may be due to the existing regulation which, among other things, requires knowledge of the individual harvest. However, information about the individual harvest may be costly to obtain. Thus, we may have to look for alternatives to the existing system. This paper proposes a population tax/subsidy as an alternative which is the difference between the actual and optimal population multiplied by an individual, variable tax rate. The variable tax rate is, among other things, based on the difference in marginal value of the population between the hunter and the regulator. The paper shows that the population tax/subsidy secures a first-best optimum. Thus, the population tax is a good alternative to the existing regulation.
    Date: 2012–01
  9. By: Willi, Semmlero; Alfred, Greiner; Bobo, Diallo; Anand, Rajaram; Armon, Rezai
    Abstract: This paper responds to the development policy debate involving the World Bank and the IMF on the use of fiscal policy not only for economic stabilization but also to promote economic growth and increase per capita income. A key issue in this debate relates to the effect of the composition of public expenditure on economic growth. Policy makers and some researchers have argued that expenditure on growth-enhancing functions could enhance future revenue and justify the provision of "fiscal space" in the budget. But there are no simple ways to identify the growth-maximizing composition of public expenditure. The current paper lays out a research strategy to explore the effects of fiscal policy, including the composition of public expenditure, on economic growth, using a time series approach. Based on the modeling strategy of Greiner, Semmler and Gong (2005) we develop a general model that features a government that undertakes public expenditure on (a) education and health facilities which enhance human capital, (b) public infrastructure such as roads and bridges necessary for market activity, (c) public administration to support government functions, (d) transfers and public consumption facilities, and (e) debt service. The proposed model is numerically solved, calibrated and the impact of the composition of public expenditure on the long-run per capita income explored for low-, lower-middle- and uppermiddle-income countries. Policy implications and practical policy rules are spelled out, the extension to an estimable model indicated, a debt sustainability test proposed, and the out-of-steady-state dynamics studied.
    Keywords: Infrastructure investment; Economic growth; Compostion of the public budget; Financing public expenditures; Public deficit; Public debt
    JEL: H4 E2 H1 H5 H2 E6 H3
    Date: 2011–07
  10. By: Rafael Aigner (Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn and University of Cologne)
    Abstract: This paper shows how the optimal level of Pigouvian taxation is influenced by distributive concerns. With second-best instruments, a higher level of income redistribution calls for a lower level of Pigouvian taxation. More redistributionimplies that tax collection via the income tax creates higher distortions, which in turn makes revenues from Pigouvian taxation more valuable. Contrary to naive intuition, this reduces the optimal level of Pigouvian taxation. The social planner trades off environmental tax revenues against the marginal social damage and accepts a lower tax if the welfare created per dollar is higher. The paper also shows that the relation between levels of redistribution and Pigouvian taxation is reversed in first-best. It thus highlights that second-best Pigouvian taxes are very different from their first-best counterpart – despite apparently identical first order conditions.
    Keywords: Optimal Income Taxation, Pigouvian taxation, comparative statics, externalities, second-best
    JEL: H21 D62 H23
    Date: 2011–07
  11. By: Kai A. Konrad; Florian Morath
    Abstract: This paper analyzes the role of narrowly selfish and other-regarding preferences for the median voter in a Meitzer-Richard (1981) framework. We use computerized and real human co-players to distinguish between these sets of motivations. Redistribution to real co-players has a negative effect on the median voter's tax rate choice. Further, perceived income mobility decreases the desired amount of redistribution. Our results suggest the importance of concerns about own mobility as well as status concerns of the median voter who tends to keep distance to the low-income group, whereas inequity aversion does not play a role in the political economy context.
    Keywords: redistribution, other-regarding preferences, median voter, experiments
    JEL: C91 D03 D72 D78 H20
    Date: 2011–07
  12. By: Douglas Sutherland; Peter Hoeller; Rossana Merola
    Abstract: The economic and financial crisis was the catalyst for a fiscal crisis that engulfs many OECD countries. In most countries, budget deficits soared as a result of the economic slump, weaker revenues and the policy response to the crisis. Consolidating the public finances is an important challenge for many countries. Estimates of fiscal gaps suggest that substantial and sustained fiscal tightening will be needed in nearly all countries to bring debt down to prudent levels. However, given a weak global economy, implementing a large fiscal tightening could be particularly costly. Structuring consolidation packages to use instruments with low multipliers initially and enhancing the institutional framework for fiscal policy to lend greater credibility to the commitment to consolidate over time may help minimise the trade-offs with growth in the short run. In most countries there is scope to target spending programmes more effectively and eliminate distortions in taxation and re-orientate taxation to minimise distortions. Such measures, buttressed by structural reforms, such as to unsustainable pension systems, can underpin fiscal sustainability, while minimising the costs to long-run growth.<P>Consolidation budgétaire : Partie 1. Quel est le degré d'assainissement nécessaire et comment ramener la dette à un niveau prudent ?<BR>La crise économique et financière a servi de catalyseur pour une crise budgétaire qui engloutit de nombreux pays de l’OCDE. Dans la plupart des pays, les déficits budgétaires ont fait un bond en raison du marasme économique, de la diminution des recettes et des mesures prises en réponse à la crise. Assainir les finances publiques représente un enjeu majeur pour bon nombre de pays. Sur la base d’estimations des écarts budgétaires, il semble qu’il faudra un resserrement budgétaire important et durable dans presque tous les pays pour ramener la dette à des niveaux prudents. Cependant, compte tenu de la faiblesse de l’économie mondiale, la mise en oeuvre d’un vaste programme de restriction budgétaire pourrait être particulièrement coûteuse. Structurer les programmes de consolidation de façon à utiliser au départ des instruments à multiplicateurs faibles et, à terme, à améliorer le cadre institutionnel de la politique budgétaire afin de rendre plus crédible l’engagement à assainir les finances publiques pourrait aider à réduire au minimum les arbitrages avec la croissance dans le court terme. Dans la plupart des pays, il est possible de cibler plus efficacement les programmes de dépenses et d’éliminer les distorsions dans la fiscalité et de réorienter cette dernière afin de réduire au minimum les distorsions. Ces mesures, étayées par des réformes structurelles telles que la réforme des systèmes de retraite, qui ne sont plus tenables, peuvent soutenir la viabilité budgétaire tout en réduisant au minium les coûts pour la croissance à long terme.
    Keywords: fiscal consolidation, fiscal gaps, consolidation budgétaire, écarts budgétaire
    JEL: H62 H63 H68
    Date: 2012–01–10
  13. By: Peter Hoeller; Isabelle Joumard; Mauro Pisu; Debbie Bloch
    Abstract: Countries differ widely with respect to the level of labour income inequality among individuals of working age. Labour income inequality is shaped by differences in wage rates, hours worked and inactivity rates. Individual labour income inequality is the main driver of household market income inequality, with family formation as well as self-employment and capital income dispersion playing a smaller role. Household disposable income dispersion is lower in all OECD countries than household market income inequality, due to the redistributive effect of tax and transfer systems, but redistribution differs widely across countries. This paper maps income inequality for all OECD countries across various inequality dimensions and summarises them in inequality outcome diamonds. It also provides a cluster analysis that identifies groups of countries that share similar inequality patterns.<P>Moins d'inégalités de revenu et plus de croissance – Ces deux objectifs sont-ils compatibles? : Partie 1. Cartographie des inégalités de revenu dans les pays de l'OCDE<BR>Les inégalités des revenus du travail entre les personnes en âge de travailler varient largement selon les pays. Elles reflètent les écarts de salaire, de nombre d‘heures ouvrées et de taux d‘inactivité. Ces inégalités sont le principal facteur d‘inégalité du revenu marchand des ménages, la composition de la famille, l‘emploi indépendant et la répartition des revenus du capital jouant un moindre rôle. La répartition du revenu disponible des ménages dans tous les pays de l‘OCDE est moins importante que l‘inégalité du revenu marchand des ménages en raison de l‘effet redistributif de l‘impôt et des systèmes de transfert, mais cette redistribution est très variable selon les pays. Ce document dresse une cartographie des inégalités de revenu dans tous les pays de l‘OCDE en distinguant les différentes composantes de revenus et en les synthétisant sous forme de figures en diamant rendant compte des résultats obtenus. Il présente en outre une analyse par clusters mettant en évidence les groupes de pays ayant en commun les mêmes structures d‘inégalité.Countries differ widely with respect to the level of labour income inequality among individuals of working age. Labour income inequality is shaped by differences in wage rates, hours worked and inactivity rates. Individual labour income inequality is the main driver of household market income inequality, with family formation as well as self-employment and capital income dispersion playing a smaller role. Household disposable income dispersion is lower in all OECD countries than household market income inequality, due to the redistributive effect of tax and transfer systems, but redistribution differs widely across countries. This paper maps income inequality for all OECD countries across various inequality dimensions and summarises them in inequality outcome diamonds. It also provides a cluster analysis that identifies groups of countries that share similar inequality patterns.
    Keywords: poverty, welfare, cluster analysis, inequality, pauvreté, bien-être, inégalité, analyse par clusters
    JEL: C38 D30 D6 D63 E24 I24 I3
    Date: 2012–01–10
  14. By: Panagiotis Tsakloglou (Athens University of Economics and Business); Christos Koutsampelas (Economics Research Centre, University of Cyprus)
    Abstract: The paper examines the short-run distributional impact of public education in Greece using the micro-data of the 2004/5 Household Budget Survey. The aggregate distributional impact of public education is found to be progressive although the incidence varies according to the level of education under examination. In-kind transfers of public education services in the fields of primary and secondary education lead to a considerable decline in relative inequality, whereas transfers in the field of tertiary education appear to have a small distributional impact whose size and sign depend on the treatment of tertiary education students living away from the parental home. When absolute inequality indices are used instead of the relative ones, primary education transfers retain their progressivity, while secondary education transfers appear almost neutral and tertiary education transfers become very regressive. Finally, we use the EUROMOD tax-benefit microsimulation model in order to estimate the first-round distributional effects of a graduate tax imposed on the current stock of graduates. The main policy implications of the findings are outlined in the concluding section.
    Keywords: Public education, inequality Greece
    JEL: I24 D31
    Date: 2012–01–17
  15. By: Peter Hoeller
    Abstract: Over the past decades, top incomes have soared, especially in the English-speaking countries. Despite a considerable amount of research on top income developments, there is still substantial disagreement about the causes for their rapid increase. Potential explanations include changes in taxation, technical progress, globalisation and changes in way the remuneration of top income recipients is set.<P>Moins d'inégalités de revenu et plus de croissance – Ces deux objectifs sont-ils compatibles? : Partie 4. Hauts revenus<BR>Au cours des dernières décennies, le nombre de titulaires de hauts revenus est monté en flèche, notamment dans les pays anglophones. Malgré les nombreuses études consacrées à l’évolution des ménages à hauts revenus, les analyses divergent quant aux facteurs qui sous-tendent leur augmentation rapide. Parmi les explications possibles, on peut citer les changements dans le régime fiscal, les progrès techniques, la mondialisation et la modification du mode de rémunération des titulaires de hauts revenus.
    Keywords: globalisation, taxation, technological change, income inequality, top incomes, fiscalité, mondialisation, inégalité des revenus, hauts revenus, avancées technologiques
    JEL: D31
    Date: 2012–01–09
  16. By: Long Xin; Pelloni Alessandra
    Keywords: Capital Income taxes, R&D, growth effect, welfare effect
    JEL: E62 H21 O41
    Date: 2011–12
  17. By: Rossana Merola; Douglas Sutherland
    Abstract: During the economic and financial crisis, fiscal positions across the OECD countries deteriorated sharply. This raises the question of what level of primary deficit would ensure long-term sustainability and what degree of consolidation is needed. The purpose of this paper is to gauge the scale of fiscal consolidation that will be needed to ensure long-term sustainability. The analysis uses so-called fiscal gaps to provide a simple metric for how much consolidation is needed under a series of different assumptions and scenarios. The aim is to highlight the scale of the problems, how they differ across countries and the uncertainties surrounding the estimates. A first set of results suggest that lower debt targets provide greater room for manoeuvre to react to shocks in the future. A second set of results shows that growth-enhancing structural reforms | especially reforms of pension systems | can mitigate budget pressures resulting from ageing populations and hence contribute to fiscal consolidation. Furthermore, raising efficiency in the provision of health care and education can reduce budgetary pressures. Finally, achieving debt objectives under shocks to interest rates or to government spending would require additional tightening in most of the OECD countries.<P>Consolidation budgétaire : Partie 3. Projections à long terme et calcul des écarts budgétaires<BR>Durant la crise économique et financière, la position budgétaire des pays de l’OCDE s’est nettement dégradée. La question se pose dès lors de savoir quel niveau de déficit primaire assurerait la viabilité à long terme et quel degré d’assainissement est nécessaire. Ce document a pour objet d’évaluer l’ampleur de l’effort de consolidation budgétaire à consentir pour assurer la viabilité à long terme. L’analyse s’appuie sur les « écarts budgétaires », qui permettent de mesurer simplement l’ampleur de l’assainissement nécessaire suivant divers scénarios et hypothèses. L’objectif est de mettre en lumière l’échelle des problèmes, les différences qui existent d’un pays à l’autre et les incertitudes qui entourent les estimations. Une première série de résultats semble indiquer que des objectifs de dette plus bas offrent une plus grande marge de manoeuvre pour réagir aux chocs dans l’avenir. Une seconde série de résultats montre que des réformes structurelles propres à renforcer la croissance – en particulier les réformes des systèmes de retraite – peuvent atténuer les pressions budgétaires dues aux vieillissement des populations et, partant, contribuer à l’assainissement des finances publiques. Par ailleurs, rehausser l’efficience dans la prestation de services de santé et d’éducation peut atténuer les pressions budgétaires. Enfin, des chocs affectant les taux d’intérêt ou les dépenses publiques nécessiteraient un resserrement budgétaire plus sévère dans la plupart des pays de l’OCDE.
    Keywords: ageing populations, long-term projections, fiscal consolidation, long-term public finance sustainability, public social expenditure, vieillissement de la population, projections à long terme, consolidation budgétaire, viabilité des finances publiques à long terme, dépenses sociales publiques
    JEL: E62 H50 H68 J11
    Date: 2012–01–10
  18. By: Isabell Koske; Jean-Marc Fournier; Isabelle Wanner
    Abstract: This paper explores the role of macroeconomic factors and structural policies in shaping the distribution of labour income. Technological change and globalisation play at least some role in driving inequality patterns, but structural policy can also have an important influence on inequality outcomes, in particular through education and labour market policies. Drawing on empirical analysis of the links between structural policies and the distribution of labour income, the paper looks at potential policy trade-offs and complementarities with respect to the two policy objectives of lowering income inequality and raising economic growth. It concludes that many policies yield a double dividend in the sense that they contribute to achieving both goals simultaneously. This relates in particular to policies that facilitate the accumulation of human capital, that make educational achievement less dependent on personal and social circumstances, that reduce labour market dualism and that promote the labour market integration of immigrants and women.<P>Moins d'inégalités de revenu et plus de croissance – Ces deux objectifs sont-ils compatibles? : Partie 2. La répartition des revenus du travail<BR>Ce papier explore le rôle des facteurs macroéconomiques et des politiques structurelles comme déterminants de la distribution des revenus du travail. Si les mutations technologiques et la mondialisation contribuent, à tout le moins, à la formation des inégalités, les politiques publiques, en particulier l’éducation et les politiques du marché du travail, peuvent aussi avoir une influence importante. À partir de l’analyse empirique des liens entre politiques publiques et répartition des revenus du travail, ce document examine les éventuels arbitrages et complémentarités entre les deux objectifs que sont la réduction des inégalités de revenu d’une part et le relèvement de la croissance économique d’autre part. Il conclut que nombre de politiques sont doublement payantes car elles contribuent à la réalisation simultanée de ces deux objectifs. Cela vaut en particulier pour les politiques favorisant l’accumulation de capital humain, rendant le potentiel d’éducation moins tributaire de la situation personnelle et sociale, réduisant le dualisme du marché du travail et promouvant l’intégration des immigrants et des femmes sur le marché du travail.
    Keywords: globalisation, product market regulation, education, technological change, income inequality, labour market institutions, labour income, éducation, mondialisation, inégalité des revenus, institutions du marché du travail, réglementation du marché du travail, revenus du travail, mutations technologiques
    JEL: D31 F16 G18 I24 J31 J58 J71 O33
    Date: 2012–01–10
  19. By: Mauro Pisu
    Abstract: Poverty is an important policy issue in OECD countries and the recent crisis has made it even more pressing. This paper highlights poverty rate differences across countries and reviews the various policies to tackle it. The OECD-wide poverty rate has drifted up, reaching around 11% in the late 2000s. In the majority of OECD countries, children suffer from a higher poverty rate than working-age people and poverty is more wide-spread among women than men. Albeit boosting employment is essential to reduce poverty rates durably, work alone does not suffice to eliminate it as in-work poverty is a problem in many countries The redistribution system is effective in reducing poverty. Countries achieving a greater reduction in market-income poverty tend to redistribute more towards people at the bottom of the income distribution. Policies aiming at facilitating paid work along with employment-conditional cash transfers to top-up the income of low-wage workers can offer effective ways to combat poverty. Child poverty is also a major concern because of its adverse long-term effects. Countries with low levels of child poverty combine low levels of joblessness among parents with effective redistribution policies towards children. This suggests these two policy approaches are complementary and relying exclusively on only one of them is likely to be insufficient to reduce poverty among children significantly.<P>Moins d'inégalités de revenu et plus de croissance – Ces deux objectifs sont-ils compatibles ? : Partie 5. La pauvreté dans les pays de l'OCDE<BR>La pauvreté est une question importante pour les pouvoirs publics dans les pays de l’OCDE et la récente crise a donné une plus grande acuité encore à ce problème. Ce document fait ressortir les écarts de taux de pauvreté entre les pays et examine les diverses mesures qui permettraient de remédier à cette situation. Le taux de pauvreté dans l’ensemble de la zone OCDE a augmenté pour s’établir autour de 11 % à la fin des années 2000. Dans la majorité de pays de l’OCDE, la pauvreté touche davantage les enfants que les personnes d’âge actif et elle est plus répandue parmi les femmes que parmi les hommes. Il est certes essentiel de développer l’emploi pour réduire durablement les taux de pauvreté, mais le travail seul ne suffit pas pour éliminer ce fléau car le problème des travailleurs pauvres touche de nombreux pays. Le système de redistribution est efficace pour lutter contre la pauvreté. Les pays qui arrivent à réduire davantage la pauvreté définie par le revenu marchand redistribuent généralement davantage de revenu à ceux qui se situent au bas de l’échelle. Des politiques visant à faciliter le travail rémunéré, avec des transferts subordonnés à l’exercice d’un emploi pour compléter le revenu des travailleurs à bas salaire, peuvent offrir des moyens efficaces de lutte contre la pauvreté. La pauvreté chez l’enfant pose aussi un problème majeur en raison de ses effets néfastes à long terme. Les pays où les taux de pauvreté chez l’enfant sont bas ont à la fois des taux peu élevés de chômage des parents et des politiques efficaces de redistribution en faveur des enfants. Cela donne à penser que ces deux approches sont complémentaires et que le recours à une des deux seulement ne suffit probablement pas pour réduire sensiblement la pauvreté parmi les enfants.
    Keywords: OECD, poverty, income inequality, child poverty, OCDE, pauvreté, inégalité des revenus, pauvreté chez l’enfant
    JEL: I32 I38
    Date: 2012–01–09

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