Saturday, October 29, 2005
Neil Brooks (Osgoode Hall Law School, York University) has published The Share of Income Tax Paid by the Rich, available on the Canadian Centre for Policy Aletrnatives web site. From the Centre's press release:
Despite recent reports to the contrary, Canada’s high-income earners do not pay a disproportionately large share of personal income tax. A new analysis by Prof. Neil Brooks of Osgoode Hall Law School, released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, takes a closer look at the numbers in Statistics Canada’s “Tax Incidence in Canada.” The Stats Can report sparked a series of news stories this spring claiming the top 10% of income earners pay 52% of the total tax bill but Brooks finds these figures both misleading and incomplete in assessing the fairness of the tax system.
The Statistics Canada study showed that the share of federal income taxes paid by the top 10% increased from 46% in 1990 to 52.6% in 2002. Brooks points out, however, that this increase is not a result of the tax system becoming more progressive. Instead, the main reason for the increase was because the share of earned income going to the most affluent among us increased by 12.6% over that same period, while the share going to the bottom 50% of tax-filers declined.