Optimal Taxation and Life Cycle Labor Supply Profile

By Michael Kuklik and Nikita Céspedes

http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:apc:wpaper:2014-008&r=dge

The optimal capital income tax rate is 36 percent as reported by Conesa, Kitao, and Krueger (2009). This result is mainly driven by the market incompleteness as well as the endogenous labor supply in a life-cycle framework. We show that this model fails to account for the basic life-cycle features of the labor supply observed in the U.S. data. In this paper, we introduce into this model non-linear wages and inter-vivos transfers into this model in order to account for the life-cycle features of labor supply. The former makes hours of work highly persistent and helps to account for labor choices at the extensive margin over the life cycle. The latter allows us to account for labor choices early in life. The suggested model delivers an optimal capital income tax rate of 7.4 percent, which is significantly lower than what Conesa, Kitao, and Krueger (2009) found.

One more paper in an everexpanding literature on optimal capital income taxation. And once more, it shows how dramatically sensitive results are to modeling assumptions. Is this literature ever going to come to a conclusion? On one hand, this challenge makes it all the more exciting for the researcher, on the other hand, the lack of robustness of results is quite disheartening.

About these ads

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 301 other followers

%d bloggers like this: