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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Toder & Viard: A Call for Structural Reform of the U.S. Corporate Income Tax

Eric Toder (Tax Policy Center) & Alan D. Viard (American Enterprise Institute), Major Surgery Needed: A Call for Structural Reform of the U.S. Corporate Income Tax:

Corporate tax system flaws are amplified by the high US statutory tax rate. Here are two ways to fix it:

  1. Eliminate corporate income tax, but tax US shareholders at ordinary income tax rates on their dividends and accrued capital gains.
  2. Seek international agreement on allocating income of multinational corporations among countries to determine tax obligation.

April 8, 2014 in Scholarship, Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, February 24, 2014

TRAC-IRS: The Decline of the District Court as a Tax Litigation Forum

The Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University has released a report, Tax Lawsuits Edge Downward:

TRAC 2The latest available data from the federal courts show that during January 2014 the government reported 68 new civil filings under the category of "Taxes." According to the case-by-case information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), this number represents a decline of nearly 10 percent from one year ago. Tax lawsuits have declined a total of 32.4 percent from the levels reported five years ago in January 2009. The January 2014 figure is however up 9.7 percent over the previous month, when the number of civil filings of this type totaled 62.

The comparisons of the number of civil filings for tax lawsuits are based on case-by-case court records which were compiled and analyzed by TRAC (see Table 1). Note that the cases covered by this report exclude suits dealing with summonses on third-party witnesses under 26 USC 7609.

  TRAC

February 24, 2014 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (2)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Official Statistics on Inequality, the Top 1%, and Redistribution

Tax Foundation logoTax Foundation, Official Statistics on Inequality, the Top 1%, and Redistribution:

President Obama will reportedly focus much of his State of the Union speech on addressing inequality and mobility in America. Undoubtedly, these issues will generate a considerable amount of rhetoric by pundits and politicians on both sides of the aisle in the days ahead. Much of this rhetoric will not be supported by data or facts.

In order to bolster this discussion with data, we’ve summarized some of the recent work done on inequality and mobility by the Congressional Budget Office and the IRS. Links are provided to the original source material.

Inequality: CBO data shows that inequality today is slightly higher than the average of the past thirty years, but less that it was during the last two years of the Clinton administration.

 

Progressivity:  According to the CBO’s progressivity index, the federal tax code is as progressive today as it has been at any time during the past thirty years.

 

The Top 1%:  The Top 1% continues to pay a larger share of the federal income tax burden than the bottom 90 percent combined.

 

Redistribution:  Using 2006 data, CBO found that tax and spending policies combined to redistribute $1.2 trillion in income from the top 40 percent of non-elderly households to the bottom 60 percent of non-elderly households.

 

Mobility:  IRS panel data that tracked the same group of taxpayers between 1999 and 2007 showed that Americans can move from one economic group to another fairly quickly.

More than 50% of Taxpayers Moved Out of the Bottom Quintile Between 1999 & 2007

1999 Income Quintile/Percentile

2007 Income Quintile/Percentile

Lowest

Second

Third

Fourth

Fifth

Total

Lowest

42.5%

25.1%

16.3%

10.4%

5.7%

100.0%

Second

32.2%

34.7%

17.3%

10.8%

5.0%

100.0%

Third

14.4%

26.0%

32.8%

17.8%

8.9%

100.0%

Fourth

7.7%

10.7%

25.7%

37.7%

18.3%

100.0%

Fifth

3.1%

3.8%

7.5%

23.3%

62.3%

100.0%

Tax Foundation calculations based on IRS data from the 1999-2007 SOI Individual Tax Panel.

January 28, 2014 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (2)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Unmasking the Mortgage Interest Deduction

MortgageReason Foundation, Unmasking the Mortgage Interest Deduction: Who Benefits and by How Much?:

The deduction of mortgage interest from federal income taxes subsidizes homeownership, making it more affordable to become a homeowner. It is a highly popular tax break, yet one that is not without criticism. For example, the mortgage interest deduction (MID) primarily benefits those who would choose to own homes anyway while encouraging them to simply buy bigger and more expensive homes. Those who are on the margin between renting and owning tend not to itemize deductions, thus they cannot benefit from the MID. As a result, if the goal is to increase the homeownership rate, the MID is an ineffective tool. Furthermore, it creates a distortion in the choice between financing owner-occupied housing with debt or other assets, and in the choice between investing in residential real estate or other assets.

Despite its popularity among voters, the mortgage interest deduction has long been a target for elimination. Most recently, President Obama’s deficit reduction commission (Simpson-Bowles) had it in its sights. While there is general sentiment among voters that the mortgage interest deduction is a good idea, there is little understanding of its effects. In order to understand the potential effect of closing this loophole, this study examines specifically who benefits from the MID and how much they benefit. It also provides an estimate of how much tax rates could be reduced if the deduction were eliminated but revenues were held constant.

Chart

December 19, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Bernstein: The Impact of Inequality on Growth

Jared Bernstein (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities), The Impact of Inequality on Growth:

InequalityThere are numerous reasons for policymakers and citizens to be concerned about the rise of inequality, not the least of which are its impact on the basic American social contract that says that work pays off; the diminishing of opportunity; the rise in societal unrest; and its impact on political functionality. But the concern of this paper is the impact of inequality on macroeconomic growth.

The review of the evidence suggests that while some of the traditional channels by which inequality affects growth have solid theoretical backing, empirical evidence is elusive. Intuitive and historically verified growth-accounting methods predict that if inequality, through its impact on diminished educational opportunity, leads to a less-well-educated workforce against a counterfactual with less inequality, growth will be diminished. But for a number of reasons stated in the text, there is no correlation, even with the requisite lags between trends in inequality and trends in labor quality.

December 17, 2013 in Scholarship, Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Nearly Half of All Taxpayers Are Over 45

The Tax Foundation:  Nearly Half of All Taxpayers Are Over 45:

Tax Foundation

November 30, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (4)

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Implications of a Switch to a Territorial Tax System

BRGBerkeley Research Group, Implications of a Switch to a Territorial Tax System in the United States: A Critical Comparison to the Current System:

Berkeley Research Group released a new report today that examines the likely effects of a change in the U.S. corporate tax system from the current worldwide approach to a territorial approach similar to those used by other developed countries. ... The report finds that a switch to a territorial tax system would increase the repatriation of foreign earnings by U.S. multinational companies, generate economic growth and jobs in the United States, enhance the international competitiveness of many U.S. companies, and increase corporate tax revenues, at least in the short run.

(Hat Tip: Bruce Bartlett.)

November 9, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (3)

Saturday, October 5, 2013

The IRS Scandal, Day 149

IRS Logo 2

Heritage Foundation:  Protecting the First Amendment from the IRS, by Hans A. von Spakovsky (Senior Legal Fellow, Heritage Foundation; Former Member, Federal Election Commission):

The targeting of conservative citizen organizations by the IRS should concern every American. As one of the most powerful federal agencies, the IRS can devastate associations of like-minded individuals, such as nonprofit Tea Party groups, that form a fundamental part of America’s political culture. Citizens use these groups not only to assert their views and opinions under the protection of the First Amendment, but also to advance the social welfare of the country. Government employees who willfully violate the tax code to retaliate against First Amendment–protected expression and activity should lose their jobs—at the very least—and federal law governing tax applications and returns should be strengthened by making IRS auditors personally liable for First Amendment–type violations and clarifying and simplifying the rules governing exemptions. 

Prior TaxProf Blog coverage:

Continue reading

October 5, 2013 in IRS News, IRS Scandal, Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (2)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

CTJ: Tax Reform Goals: Raise Revenue, Enhance Fairness, End Offshore Shelters

CTJ Logo (2013)Citizens for Tax Justice, Tax Reform Goals: Raise Revenue, Enhance Fairness, End Offshore Shelters

Most Americans and politicians probably like the idea of “tax reform,” but not everyone agrees on what “tax reform” means. If Congress is going to spend time on a comprehensive overhaul of America’s tax system, this overhaul should raise revenue, make our tax system more progressive, and end the breaks that encourage large corporations to shift their profits and even jobs offshore.

Tax measures before Congress generally begin as proposals before the House Ways and Means Committee, and the current chairman, Dave Camp of Michigan, has defined tax reform as a process by which Congress would lower tax rates on corporations and wealthy individuals and then offset the cost by eliminating or reducing “tax expenditures” (subsidies provided through the tax code) so that the net result is no increase in revenue. Camp argues that the goals of tax reform should be to make the tax code simpler and to make American companies more “competitive,” although neither of these vague terms addresses the greatest problems with our tax system.

CTJ

September 24, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (5)

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

CBPP: Ten Estate Tax Myths and Realities

CBPP Logo (2013)Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:  10 Myths and Realities About the Estate Tax (Aug. 29, 2013):

The estate tax is a tax on property (cash, real estate, stock, or other assets) transferred from deceased persons to their heirs. Only the wealthiest estates in the country pay the tax because it is levied only on the portion of an estate’s value that exceeds a specified exemption level, currently $5.25 million per person (effectively $10.5 million per married couple). The estate tax thus limits, to a modest degree, the large tax breaks that extremely wealthy households get on their wealth as it grows, which can otherwise go completely untaxed. Though the estate tax has been an important source of federal revenue for nearly a century, a number of myths continue to surround it:

  1. The estate tax is best characterized as the “death tax"
  2. The estate tax forces estates to turn over half of their assets to the government
  3. Weakening the estate tax wouldn’t significantly worsen the deficit because the tax doesn’t raise much revenue
  4. The cost of complying with the estate tax nearly equals the amount of revenue the tax raises
  5. Many small, family-owned farms and businesses must be liquidated to pay estate taxes
  6. The estate tax constitutes “double taxation” because it applies to assets that already have been taxed once as income
  7. If policymakers decide to retain the estate tax, the logical top rate would be 20%, the same as the capital gains rate
  8. Eliminating the estate tax would encourage people to save and thereby make more capital available for investment
  9. The United States taxes estates more heavily than do other countries
  10. The estate tax unfairly punishes success

September 3, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1)

Friday, August 30, 2013

The 47 Percent Is Now the 43 Percent

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

A Brief History of Tax Expenditures

Tax Foundation logoThe Tax Foundation:  A Brief History of Tax Expenditures, by William McBride:

The concept of “tax expenditures” began in the 1960s when Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Stanley Surrey noted that many tax preferences resemble spending. Congress mandated in 1974 that these tax expenditures be recorded annually as part of the federal budget. Since the birth of the concept, tax expenditures have been defined as the deductions, credits, exclusions, exemptions, and other tax preferences that represent departures from a “normal” tax code. As we will see, “normal” is in the eye of the beholder, and the two government agencies responsible for tracking tax expenditures, Treasury and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT), often provide different answers when asked what is “normal.” However, the two agencies’ methods are largely consistent with each other from year to year. Thus, the annual tax expenditure reports produced during the budgeting process reveal something about how the tax code has changed over the years and provide some guidance for tax reform.[3]

Attempts to reduce tax expenditures have not been met with great success. The Tax Reform Act of 1986 did not significantly reduce the number of tax expenditures, though it did reduce their real dollar value by about one-third. However, beginning in the mid- to late 1990s, numerous tax expenditures were added, expanded, or otherwise allowed to grow. Today, the tax expenditure budget is $1.2 trillion, which represents real dollar growth of 44 percent since 1986 and 96 percent growth since 1991 when tax expenditures were at their lowest. All of the growth has been in the individual tax code, with about two-thirds of real dollar growth coming from just three provisions: the earned income tax credit, the child credit, and the exclusion for employer-provided healthcare. Corporate tax expenditures have actually declined since 1986 in real dollar terms such that their share of the tax expenditure budget is now about 9 percent, half of what it was in 1986.

Expends

August 27, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Growth in State Tax Collections, 2001-2011

Friday, August 2, 2013

Viard: Capital Income Taxation: Reframing the Debate

AEI LogoAlan D. Viard (American Enterprise Institute), Capital Income Taxation: Reframing the Debate:

Although capital income taxes penalize saving and slow long-run growth, the federal tax system imposes multiple such taxes. Seven increases in capital income taxes took effect at the beginning of 2013, and President Obama’s 2014 budget plan proposes further increases. In upcoming decades, rising revenue needs fueled by entitlement growth will create pressure to further expand capital income taxation despite its negative economic effects. Opponents of capital income taxation must reframe the policy debate by explaining the economic disadvantages of capital income taxes and proposing alternative budgetary measures that maintain tax fairness.

August 2, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 29, 2013

CTJ: Reforming Individual Income Tax Expenditures

Citizens for Tax Justice, Reforming Individual Income Tax Expenditures: Congress Should End the Most Regressive Ones, Maintain the Progressive Ones, and Reform the Rest to Be More Progressive and Better Achieve Policy Goals:

To restore funding for public investments, Congress should enact a tax reform that reduces tax expenditures (subsidies provided through the tax code) to raise revenue. Some lawmakers have debated whether or not revenue saved from reducing tax expenditures should be used to reduce tax rates rather than finance needed public investments, an issue that has been addressed in previous CTJ reports. Less attention has been given to how Congress should prioritize which tax expenditures should be limited or reformed. This is particularly true of tax expenditures for individuals. (A future CTJ report will address tax expenditures for businesses.) 

Tax expenditures can be evaluated based on three criteria: cost, progressivity and effectiveness in achieving non-tax policy goals. This report takes cost into account by focusing on the ten most costly tax expenditures for individuals, illustrated in the bar graph on the following page. This report evaluates these tax expenditures based on progressivity and effectiveness in achieving non-tax policy goals — which include subsidizing home ownership and encouraging charitable giving, increasing investment, encouraging work, and many other stated goals. Based on data from Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), this report

  1. Tax expenditures that take the form of breaks for investment income (capital gains and stock dividends) are the most regressive and least effective in achieving their stated policy goals, and therefore should be repealed.
  2. Tax expenditures that take the form of refundable credits based on earnings, like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Child Tax Credit, are progressive and achieve their other main policy goal (encouraging work) and therefore should be preserved.
  3. Tax expenditures that take the form of itemized deductions are regressive and have mixed results in achieving their policy goals, and therefore should be reformed.
  4. Tax expenditures that take the form of exclusions for some forms of compensation from taxable income (like the exclusion of employer-provided health insurance and pension contributions) are not particularly regressive and have some success in achieving their policy goals, and therefore should be generally preserved.

CTJ

This report draws partly on recent data from the Congressional Budget Office on the ten largest tax expenditures affecting individuals, which CBO concludes will cost more than $900 billion in 2013 and make up two-thirds of the cost of all federal tax expenditures. The graph above illustrates the revenue foregone in 2013 for each of the top ten tax expenditures for individuals in 2013.

These revenue amounts do not necessarily indicate how much would be raised by repealing one or more of these tax expenditures. (This is because people may respond to the repeal of one tax break by utilizing another more heavily or changing their behavior in other ways.) Nonetheless, these figures are useful for comparing the relative importance of tax expenditures.

July 29, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, July 13, 2013

CBPP: The Problem With Deficit-Neutral Tax Reform

CBPPCenter on Budget and Policy Priorities, The Problem With Deficit-Neutral Tax Reform, by Chuck Marr, Chye-Ching Huang & Nathaniel Frentz:

Given the nation’s long-term fiscal pressures, increases in revenues need to make a significant contribution to deficit reduction, alongside reductions in spending for mandatory programs.  Deficit-neutral tax reform would, as a result, be highly problematic.

Continue reading

July 13, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, July 11, 2013

TPC: Evaluating Broad-Based Approaches for Limiting Tax Expenditures

Tax Policy Center LogoTax Policy Center: Evaluating Broad-Based Approaches for Limiting Tax Expenditures, by Eric Toder, Joseph Rosenberg & Amanda Eng:

This paper evaluates six options to achieve across-the-board reductions to a group of major exclusions and deductions in the income tax: (1) limiting their tax benefit to a maximum percentage of income, (2) imposing a fixed dollar cap, (3) reducing them by fixed-percentage amount, (4) limiting their tax saving to a maximum percentage of their dollar value, (5) replacing them with fixed rate refundable credits, and (6) including them in the base of the existing Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT). We discuss issues of design, implementation, and administration, and simulate the revenue, distributional, and incentive effects of the various options.

July 11, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

ITEP: Immigration Reform Would Increase State Tax Revenues By $2 Billion Per Year

ITEPInstitute on Taxation and Economic Policy, Undocumented Immigrants’ State and Local Tax Contributions:

The potential fiscal costs of legalizing undocumented immigrants have been central to the immigration reform debate. This report contributes the most reliable figures available about the potential benefits to state governments, showing that the 11.2 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States are already paying a significant share of their income in state and local taxes, and that figure would rise under immigration reform.

A report from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated the impact the immigration bill passed in the Senate would have at the federal level and found that it would decrease the deficit and generate more than $450 billion in additional federal revenue over the next decade.

This report provides state-by-state estimates of the state and local tax contributions of the 11.2 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States.

The key findings are:

  • Undocumented immigrants currently contribute significantly to state and local taxes, collectively paying an estimated $10.6 billion in 2010 with contributions ranging from less than $2 million in Montana to more than $2.2 billion in California. This means these families are likely paying about 6.4 percent on average of their income in state and local taxes.
  • Allowing undocumented immigrants to work in the United States legally would increase their state and local tax contributions by an estimated $2 billion a year. Their effective state and local tax rate would also increase to 7 percent on average, which would put their tax contributions more in line with documented taxpayers with similar incomes.

July 10, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, July 6, 2013

State & Local Taxes & Fees on Wireless Service: Highest in NE, WA (19%), Lowest in ID, OR, NV (2%)

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Brookings Program on Evaluating the Homebuyer Tax Credit

BrookingsThe Brookings Institution hoasted a program yesterday on Tools for Supporting the Housing Market: Evaluating the Homebuyer Tax Credit and Other Policies:

After the bursting of the home price bubble in the mid-2000s sent the housing market into a downward spiral, the government introduced a variety of new measures aimed at sustaining the flow of mortgage credit and boosting housing demand. One such measure was a program that provided a tax credit to homebuyers of up to $8,000. Although advocates of the program argued that it was a critical tool for absorbing excess inventories, critics complained that it simply accelerated sales that would have occurred anyway. Other measures aimed at stabilizing the housing market included various foreclosure prevention and mitigation initiatives, programs that facilitated refinancing, and the Federal Reserve’s considerable efforts to reduce interest rates.

With several years of experience of these policies now behind us, it is time to take stock of their effects. Establishing a better understanding of how they worked will help us learn what tools to use to combat future episodes of housing market distress and what measures the government should have in place now to encourage the nascent housing market recovery that has emerged over the past year.

Co-Directors of Economic Studies Karen Dynan and Ted Gayer presented a new paper on the impact of the federal and state homebuyer tax credits [An Evaluation of Federal and State Homebuyer Tax Incentives (Presentation]. A panel discussion followed to discuss how it compared to other government efforts to help the housing market:

  • William G. Gale (Co-Director, Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center) (moderator)
  • Ed Brady (National Association of Home Builders)
  • Jonathan Hanks (Sr. Vice President and COO, Utah Housing Corporation)
  • Jed Kolko (Chief Economist and Vice President of Analytics, Trulia)
  • Christopher J. Mayer (Professor, Columbia Business School)

June 29, 2013 in Conferences, Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Percentage of Each State's Federal Tax Returns Filed Jointly

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Federal Aid as a Percentage of State General Revenue

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Dubay's New Tax Papers

HeritageCurtis S. Dubay (Heritage Foundation):

  • PEP and Pease Hurt Larger Families Most and Slow Growth:  "In the fiscal cliff deal, President Barack Obama and Congress surprisingly reinstated two long dormant tax policies: the personal exemption phaseout (PEP) and “Pease,” a cap on itemized deductions. The 2001 Bush tax cuts rightfully abolished them because they are bad policies. Now they are back, raising taxes on larger families and reducing the incentives to work and save. These reduced incentives will slow economic growth and, like the tax increase, hit larger families hardest. Pease is similar to the cap on deductions and exemptions that President Obama has proposed in his budgets. Fundamental tax reform is the best way for Congress to fix its mistake of reviving these policies."
  • CBO Report on “Tax Expenditures” Has It Wrong:  "The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report on the distribution of tax expenditures” that some are wrongly using to push for additional tax increases. This was inevitable because the report takes the wrong approach to the issue."
  • E-sales Tax No Bargain:  "Gov. Bob McDonnell’s transportation plan includes a unique provision. If Congress passes the Marketplace Fairness Act, Virginia would use the new revenue from Internet sales taxes for transportation projects, sparing Virginians an increase of the gas tax. A respite from higher gas taxes sounds good. But Virginia’s businesses will pay a hefty compliance toll if the bill becomes law. And Virginians who shop online will pay the tab that drivers would’ve paid had the bill not become law."
  • Senate Immigration Bill Does Not Require Payment of All Back Taxes:  "There are many serious flaws in the controversial Senate immigration bill, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (S. 744). One such flaw is that it fails a standard of basic fairness to which immigration has long been held: It does not meaningfully require illegal immigrants to pay back taxes, interest, and penalties on all the income they earned while here in the U.S. illegally before being granted legal status."

June 19, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

CBPP: State Income Tax Revenues Surge 17.6%

Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:  States Should React Cautiously to Recent Income Tax Growth April Surge Provides Opportunity to Invest in Infrastructure, Boost Reserves:

Recent tax collections are considerably higher than last year in most states and, in many cases, exceed states’ projections when they adopted their current budgets in the spring of 2012.  In 32 states for which data are available, state tax collections in the first ten months of fiscal year 2013 were 5.7 percent higher than in the same period last year, on average. 

Figure 1

  A closer look into the tax collection reports reveals that: 

  • Much of the recent growth is in the income tax.  With two months left in the fiscal year, the typical state has collected 8.9 percent more personal income taxes than it did in the same period last year.  Sales taxes have grown more slowly.  This is, in part, the latest demonstration of the fact than income taxes rise more rapidly than sales taxes during periods of economic growth. 
  • The revenue growth and particularly income tax growth is nationwide.  Some 26 of the 30 states for which data are available experienced double-digit growth in income taxes between April 2012 and April 2013. 
  • While a portion of the income tax growth reflects the economic recovery, an additional portion reflects wealthy taxpayers shifting income into 2012 that they would have received in 2013 in anticipation of federal tax rate increases in 2013.
  • Even with this recent growth, state tax revenues have not recovered from the Great Recession. Revenues likely still remain more than 3 percent below pre-recession levels, after adjusting for inflation.  And because of the one-time nature of much of the recent revenue growth, revenue growth is likely to slow again.

June 18, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, June 17, 2013

Public Citizen: Industry Lobbyists Dominate Tax Reform Debate

Public Citizen LogoPublic Citizen, Lax Taxes: Industry Has Resource Advantage in Battle over Bills that Would Raise Revenue and Bring Fairness to Tax Code:

Legislation in Congress that would address tax loopholes, raise revenue, increase the fairness of the tax code and provide stability to the financial system are subject to lobbying efforts that are overwhelmingly lopsided in favor of industry interests, a new Public Citizen report shows. The report analyzes lobbying disclosure data to illustrate the number of lobbyists that are working on each of three bills: the Cut Unjustified Tax Loopholes Act (CUT Loopholes), the Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act and the Wall Street Trading and Speculators Tax Act – finding that 331 of the 383, or 86 percent, of lobbyists who have worked on these bills in the past two Congresses represent industry clients.

(Hat Tip: Citizens for Tax Justice.)

June 17, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Hungerford: Corporate Tax Rates and Economic Growth Since 1947

Economic Policy Institute:  Corporate Tax Rates and Economic Growth Since 1947, by Thomas L. Hungerford:

This brief examines corporate income-tax rates, and the argument linking low corporate tax rates with higher economic growth. The principal findings are:

  • Claims that the United States’ corporate tax rate is uniquely burdensome to U.S. business when compared with the corporate tax rates of its industrial peers are incorrect. While the United States has one of the highest statutory corporate income-tax rates among advanced countries, the effective corporate income-tax rate (27.7 percent) is quite close to the average of rich countries (27.2 percent, weighted by GDP).
  • The U.S. corporate income-tax rate is also not high by historic standards. The statutory corporate tax rate has gradually been reduced from over 50 percent in the 1950s to its current 35 percent.
  • The current U.S. corporate tax rate does not appear to be impeding corporate profits. Both before-tax and after-tax corporate profits as a percentage of national income are at post–World War II highs; they were 13.6 percent and 11.4 percent, respectively, in 2012.
  • Lowering the corporate income-tax rate would not spur economic growth. The analysis finds no evidence that high corporate tax rates have a negative impact on economic growth (i.e., it finds no evidence that changes in either the statutory corporate tax rate or the effective marginal tax rate on capital income are correlated with economic growth).
 Chart 3

(Hat Tip: Citizens for Tax Justice.)

June 17, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

State & Local Property Tax Collections Per Capita

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Percentage of Tax Returns Claiming Charitable Deductions

Chart

The Motley Fool: The 6 Most Generous States in America:

  1. Maryland (40.1% of tax returns; $2,969 median contribution)
  2. New Jersey (36.0%; $2,181)
  3. Connecticut (35.9%; $1,916)
  4. Utah (33.1%; $5,255)
  5. Minnesota (32.7%; $2,213)
  6. Virginia (32.5%; $2,790)

June 2, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, May 17, 2013

AEI: Taxing Individuals Rather Than Families

AEI:  The Tax Treatment of the Family, by Aspen Gorry & Sita Nataraj Slavov:

In two recent cases, the U.S. Supreme Court considered constitutional challenges to the federal Defense of Marriage Act—which denies federal recognition of same-sex marriage—and to California’s Proposition 8, a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. Regardless of the outcomes of these two cases, the controversy over same-sex marriage highlights an important tax policy question: should the US tax code treat people as families, as it currently does, or as individuals? This paper considers the costs and benefits of switching to a tax system based on individual, rather than family, income. 

May 17, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

AEI: Tax Policy and the Nobel Prize

AEIAmerican Enterprise Institute Podcast:   Tax Policy and the Nobel Prize:

What will you do with your Nobel Prize Money? On the latest episode of Banter, AEI economist Aparna Mathur discusses the tax policy surrounding academic, scientific, and philanthropic prize winnings. America is the only country that taxes these earnings and as a result, many give their winnings to charity. Should these winners, who’ve contributed so much to society already, be allowed to keep the fruits of their labor or should they be encouraged to contribute to further social good? Plus, Stu and Andrew play a round of “guess the feminist critique.”

May 15, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, May 11, 2013

State Beer Taxes

Saturday, May 4, 2013

State Inheritance and Estate Tax Rates and Exemptions

Friday, May 3, 2013

The Flawed Business Climate Rankings

Gradingplaces coverGood Jobs First:  Grading Places: What Do the Business Climate Rankings Really Tell Us?:

Prominent studies that purport to measure and rank the states’ “business climates” are actually politicized grab-bags of data. They contradict each other wildly, have no predictive value, and should not be used to inform public policies. This is only the third such analysis of pseudo-social science “business climatology” in 27 years.

Press and blogosphere coverage:

For criticism of the Good Jobs First study, see:

May 3, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

CTJ: Stock Option Tax Break Saved Fortune 500 Corporations $27 Billion Over Past Three Years

CTJCitizens for Tax Justice, Executive-Pay Tax Break Saved Fortune 500 Corporations $27 Billion Over the Past Three Years; Apple & Facebook Biggest Beneficiaries of Stock Option Loophole:

Earlier this year, Citizens for Tax Justice reported that Facebook Inc. had used a single tax break, for executive stock options, to avoid paying even a dime of federal and state income taxes in 2012. Since then, CTJ has investigated the extent to which other large companies are using the same tax break. This short report presents data for 280 Fortune 500 corporations that, like Facebook, disclose a portion of the tax benefits they receive from this tax break.

  • These 280 corporations reduced their federal and state corporate income taxes by a total of $27.3 billion over the last three years, by using the so-called “excess stock option” tax break.
  • In 2012 alone, the tax break cut Fortune 500 income taxes by $11.2 billion.
  • Just 25 companies received more than half of the total excess stock option tax benefits accruing to Fortune 500 corporations over the past three years.
  • Apple alone received 12 percent of the total excess stock option tax benefits during this period, enjoying $3.2 billion in stock option tax breaks during the past three years. JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and ExxonMobil collectively enjoyed 10 percent of the total.
  • In 2012, Facebook wiped out its entire U.S. income tax liability by using excess stock option tax breaks.
  • Over the past three years, Apple slashed its federal and state income taxes by 20 percent using this single tax break.

How It Works: Companies Deduct Executive Compensation Costs They Never Actually Paid
Most big corporations give their executives (and sometimes other employees) options to buy the company’s stock at a favorable price in the future. When those options are exercised, corporations can take a tax deduction for the difference between what the employees pay for the stock and what it’s worth (while employees report this difference as taxable wages).

Before 2006, companies could deduct the “cost” of the stock options on their tax returns, reducing their taxable profits as reported to the IRS, but didn’t have to reduce the profits they reported to their shareholders in the same way, creating a big gap between “book” and “tax” income. Some observers, including CTJ, argued that the most sensible way to resolve this would be to deny companies any tax deduction for an alleged “cost” that doesn’t require an actual cash outlay, and to require the same treatment for shareholder reporting purposes.

But instead, rules in place since 2006 maintained the tax write-off, but now require companies to lower their “book” profits somewhat to take account of options. But the book write-offs are still usually considerably less than what the companies take as tax deductions. That’s because the oddly-designed rules require the value of the stock options for book purposes to be calculated — or guessed at — when the options are issued, while the tax deductions reflect the actual value when the options are exercised. Because companies typically low-ball the estimated values, they usually end up with much bigger tax write-offs than the amounts they deduct in computing the profits they report to shareholders.

(Hat Tip: Francine Lipman.)

April 25, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Today Is Tax Freedom Day -- Earlier in MS, LA & TN, Later in CT, NY & NJ

Tax Foundation logoToday is Tax Freedom Day, the day on which Americans will have earned enough money to pay all federal, state, and local taxes for the year:

Tax Freedom Day is the day when the nation as a whole has earned enough money to pay its total tax bill for the year. A vivid, calendar based illustration of the cost of government, Tax Freedom Day divides all federal, state, and local taxes by the nation’s income. In 2013, Americans will pay $2.76 trillion in federal taxes and $1.45 trillion in state taxes, for a total tax bill of $4.22 trillion, or 29.4 percent of income. April 18 is 29.4 percent, or 108 days, into the year.

Tax Freedom Day is five days later than last year, due mainly to the fiscal cliff deal that raised federal taxes on individual income and payroll. Additionally, the Affordable Care Act’s investment tax and excise tax went into effect. Finally, despite these tax increases, the economy is expected to continue its slow recovery, boosting profits, incomes, and tax revenues. ...

The total tax burden borne by residents of different states varies considerably, due to differing state tax policies and because of the steep progressivity of the federal tax system. This means higher income states celebrate Tax Freedom Day later: Connecticut (May 13), New York (May 6), and New Jersey (May 4). Residents of Mississippi will bear the lowest average tax burden in 2013, with Tax Freedom Day arriving for them on March 29. Also early are Louisiana (March 29) and Tennessee (April 2).

 

Rank

 

State

Days Worked

to Pay Taxes

Tax Freedom Day

1

Connecticut

133

May 13

2

New York

126

May 6

3

New Jersey

124

May 4

4

Illinois

115

April 25

4

Massachusetts

115

April 25

6

California

114

April 24

7

Minnesota

113

April 23

8

Maryland

111

April 21

9

Washington

110

April 20

9

Wisconsin

110

April 20

Average

United States

108

April 18

40

Alaska

96

April 6

40

Kentucky

96

April 6

40

Oklahoma

96

April 6

43

Alabama

95

April 5

43

Arizona

95

April 5

45

South Dakota

94

April 4

46

New Mexico

93

April 3

46

South Carolina

93

April 3

48

Tennessee

92

April 2

49

Louisiana

88

March 29

49

Mississippi

88

March 29

Tax Foundation 2

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities criticizes the Tax Foundation's methodology here.

April 18, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

CTJ: Ten Reasons Why We Need Corporate Tax Reform

Citizens for Tax Justice, Ten (of Many) Reasons Why We Need Corporate Tax Reform:

This CTJ report illustrates how profitable Fortune 500 companies in a range of sectors of the U.S. economy have been remarkably successful in manipulating the tax system to avoid paying even a dime of tax on billions of dollars in profits. These ten corporations’ tax situations shed light on the widespread nature of corporate tax avoidance. As a group, the ten companies paid no federal income tax on $16 billion in profits in 2012, and they paid zero federal income tax on $57 billion in profits over the past five years. All but one paid less than zero federal income tax in 2012; all paid exceedingly low rates over five years.

April 18, 2013 in Tax, Tax Profs, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Public Opinions on Taxes: 1937 to Today

AEI LogoAmerican Enterprise Institute, Public Opinions on Taxes: 1937 to Today:

The most comprehensive collection of polls ever compiled on the subject of taxes.

April 14, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

TRAC: IRS to Reduce Audits of Big Businesses by 18%

TRAC-IRS The Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University has released a report, IRS Audits Slump, Staff Down Long-term Impact Uncertain:

The IRS plans to expend 18% percent less effort auditing businesses with assets of $10 million or more compared with just two years ago, according to a very timely IRS planning document.  

For the same period, the IRS also projects a 14% drop in the amount of available time for the specialized revenue agents it needs to conduct these audits in FY 2013 — the year ending on September 30 — compared to what it was in FY 2011.  

These declines — neither of which take into account the probable impact of the sequestration cuts in the months ahead — were described in a special agency report now being made available to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) on a monthly basis. This series of internal IRS management reports — the last one covers the period ending in January 2013 — are provided by the IRS thanks to a court order granted TRAC as a result of a suit filed under the Freedom of Information Act.

IRS Large Business and International Division Direct Examination Staff Years

 
FY 2011
FY 2012
FY 2013
Change 2013 v. 2011
  Annual Plan
Total 3,567 3,320 2,935 -18%
Individual 189 173 306 62%
Corporations 1,103 1,043 807 -27%
Partnership 191 196 159 -17%
Subchapter S Corp 184 180 115 -37%
Coordinated Industry Cases 1,083 1,081 1,011 -7%
Other 816 647 537 -34%
  Actual Revenue Agent Years
Total 3,319 3,155 2,852 -14%
Individual 258 214 283 9%
Corporations 864 912 762 -12%
Partnership 211 215 179 -15%
Subchapter S Corp 185 225 205 11%
Coordinated Industry Cases 1,011 952 865 -14%
Other 790 637 559 -29%

April 9, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack (0)

U.S. Is Third Least-Taxed OECD Country

CTJCitizens for Tax Justice, The U.S. Continues to Be One of the Least Taxed of the Developed Countries:

The U.S. was the third least taxed country in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in 2010, the most recent year for which OECD has complete data.

Of all the OECD countries, which are essentially the countries the U.S. trades with and competes with, only Chile and Mexico collect less taxes as a percentage of their overall economy (as a percentage of gross domestic product, or GDP).

This sharply contradicts the widely held view among many members of Congress that taxes are already high enough in the U.S. and that any efforts to reduce the federal deficit should therefore take the form of cuts in government spending.

As the graph to the right illustrates, in 2010, the total (federal, state and local) tax revenue collected in the U.S. was equal to 24.8 percent of the U.S.’s GDP.

The total taxes collected by other OECD countries that year was equal to 33.4 percent of combined GDP of those countries....

In 1979, the U.S. had the 16th highest taxes as a percentage of GDP, out of 24 countries at that time.

In 2010, the U.S. had the 32nd highest taxes as a percentage of GDP, out of 34 OECD countries.

April 9, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 5, 2013

Reports Detail Tax Avoidance Through Offshore Bank Accounts

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Multinational Corporations and the Profit-Sharing Lure of Tax Havens

Christian AidChristian Aid, Multinational Corporations and the Profit-Sharing Lure of Tax Havens:

According to the OECD, the present situation calls for a review of the fundamentals of the international tax system. Changes to the current international tax rules should reflect how MNCs operate today, and seek to redress the unjust distribution of the global tax base. MNCs should report their profits and pay their taxes where their economic activities and investment are actually located, rather than in jurisdictions where the presence of the MNC is sometimes fictitious and explained by the adoption of tax-avoidance strategies.

Given the relevance of the analysis provided by the OECD in its report, which is supported by the findings of our own research, we suggest that the OECD and the United Nations Tax Committee jointly explore to what extent would an evolution towards unitary taxation with profit apportionment be more appropriate for the taxation of MNCs and lead to a fairer international tax system.

(Hat Tip: Mike McIntyre.)

April 4, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Corporate Tax Reform and U.S. MNCs: Ensuring a Competitive Economy

PetersonPeterson Institute for International Economics, Corporate Taxation and U.S. MNCs: Ensuring a Competitive Economy (April 2013):

The debate about “tax reform,” a focus of the 2012 presidential race and the congressional budget battles this year, has centered on closing loopholes, creating new incentives for growth, and of course raising revenue through higher personal taxation of well-off Americans. This emphasis is understandable in light of the need to close the federal deficit and the fact that a majority of federal revenue comes from personal taxes. But the debate overlooks an important priority for future U.S. economic growth: the urgent need to reform the corporate tax. Without reform, U.S.-based multinational corporations (MNCs) will continue to be hobbled by an outmoded tax structure as they compete in the age of globalization. Reform would not only make American MNCs stronger competitors in markets abroad but also enable them to expand and invest more at home.

This policy brief proposes that tax rates should be lowered, both on profits earned in the United States and profits earned abroad. These reforms will encourage greater, not less, investment at home, as well as expanded foreign direct investment abroad by American MNCs. This is the best path toward more employment, investment, exports and R&D in the United States. Yes, this proposal might seem counterintuitive to some. Indeed the Obama administration has suggested that taxes should be used to discourage outward FDI by American MNCs, on the ground that such investment hinders U.S. prosperity. We present evidence that the administration’s concern is the wrong starting point for launching corporate tax reforms. This policy brief first summarizes research that shows a complementary relationship between outward foreign direct investment by U.S. MNCs and positive effects in the U.S. economy, and then proceeds to suggest constructive corporate tax reforms. The policy brief argues that fears of lost revenues from lowering taxes on corporate profits earned at home and abroad are exaggerated, and that MNCs which engage in FDI are in the best position to create jobs and promote prosperity at home.

(Hat Tip: Bruce Bartlett.)

April 3, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

CTJ: Who Pays Taxes in America in 2013?

CTJ LogoCitizens for Tax Justice, Who Pays Taxes in America in 2013?:

It is sometimes claimed that many low- and middle-income Americans don’t pay taxes while the richest Americans pay a hugely disproportionate share of taxes, especially after enactment of the “fiscal cliff” deal that allowed some taxes to go up.

As the table ... illustrates, America’s tax system is just barely progressive even after the fiscal cliff deal’s effects. Claims that the rich pay a disproportionate share of taxes often focus only on the federal personal income tax and ignore the other taxes that people pay, like federal payroll taxes, federal excise taxes, and state and local taxes. Many of these other taxes are regres­sive, meaning they take a larger share of income from poor and middle-income families than they take from  the rich.

The table shows the share of total taxes (all federal, state and local taxes) that will be paid by Americans in different income.

CTJ Chart

April 2, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Len Burman Returns as Director of Tax Policy Center

The Urban Institute announced yesterday that Donald Marron, the director of the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, will become the Institute's first director of economic policy initiatives in June. Len Burman, former director of the Tax Policy Center and currently a professor at Syracuse University, will return to lead the center he co-founded in 2002

MarronDonald Marron, Director of Economic Policy Initiatives
A former member of the Council of Economic Advisers and former acting director of the Congressional Budget Office, Marron has led the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center since 2010. This year, he sought a new perch that would enable him to explore a broader range of economic and fiscal policy issues across the Urban Institute. In his new role, Marron will direct a diverse portfolio of research initiatives. His work will deepen the Urban Institute’s engagement with the policy community and bring the Institute’s independent and rigorous research to new audiences.

“Donald Marron has wide-ranging interests and an unparalleled ability to explain clearly complex economic concepts and analyses,” said Sarah Rosen Wartell, president of the Urban Institute. “In his new role, he can design cross-cutting research, drawing upon the breadth of the organization’s expertise and analytic tools, to inform high-level policymakers tackling the biggest spending, revenue, and growth issues facing the nation.”

BurmanLen Burman, Director, Tax Policy Center
Burman served as director of the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center from 2002 to 2009, and he has remained an Urban Institute affiliated scholar while at Syracuse. After working on the Tax Reform Act at the U.S. Treasury Department in the 1980s, Burman went on to the Congressional Budget Office. He later served as deputy assistant secretary of the Treasury in 1998.

“In searching for a successor to Donald, we were thrilled to entice back TPC’s very own co-founder, Len Burman,” continued Wartell. ... Urban Institute Trustee Erskine Bowles has described TPC as a “national treasure,” noting that the Simpson-Bowles Commission recently relied upon the center for assistance in developing the tax elements of its deficit reduction plans. ...

Burman noted, “Working as a scholar at the Maxwell School of Syracuse University for the past four years, I’ve developed a new appreciation for how TPC’s clear, timely, and impartial analysis informs the tax policy debate outside the Beltway. I’m excited about rejoining the fantastic TPC team at a time when tax policy is sure to be front and center on the national nd state and local agendas." ...

Other original members of the TPC leadership team will remain in their current roles: co-directors Bill Gale (Brookings Institution) and Eric Toder (Urban Institute) as well as Urban Institute Fellow Eugene Steuerle.

March 21, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Sanchirico: Common Sense, Capital Income Taxes, and Growth

Following up on my previous post, Do Capital Income Taxes Hinder Growth?:  Chris William Sanchirico (Pennsylvania), “Common Sense” Aside, What Do We Really Know About Capital Income Taxes and Growth?:

If you’re discussing tax policy with someone who asserts that his or her point is “just common sense,” this could indicate one of two things: Either no deep thought is required—as the person would have you believe. Or no deep thought has been applied. The “common sense” notion that capital income taxes hinder growth seems to be more a case of the latter. Long term capital gains are taxed only when the asset is sold and at roughly half the rate on wages and salaries. Dare to suggest that the rate on investment profits could be raised a bit—so that perhaps the rate on labor income could lowered—and you’re liable to be reprimanded for failing to understand something as plain as the nose on your face: To tax capital income is to tax the reward for saving and thus to discourage saving. Less saving means less investment and less investment means slower growth, fewer jobs, and lower wages.

Everyone knows that.

Everyone, that is, except the people who study the issue.

Economic theory teaches that the impact of capital income taxes on savings is robustly ambiguous. Empirical research has yielded mixed results, but overall the data seem to indicate that reducing capital income taxes decreases rather than increases savings. In addition, lowering capital income taxes is likely to go hand in hand with raising labor income taxes or government borrowing, both of which are arguably at least as harmful to growth as capital income taxation. ... [T]rying to spur growth by keeping capital income taxes low seems—at best—like trying to fix one side of the roof with shingles from the other.

March 18, 2013 in Scholarship, Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

American Prospect: Five Lessons for Progressives From 100 Years of the Income Tax

American Prospect LogoThe American Prospect:  Five Lessons for Progressives From Our First Century of Income Taxes:

  1. Steeply graduated income tax rates can help societies do big things
  2. Progressive tax rates can do much more than raise significant amounts of revenue
  3. Progressive income tax rates don’t just happen. People have to battle for them
  4. Tax loopholes cost our society more than just tax revenue
  5. Just copying our progressive tax-rate past won’t ensure a progressive tax future

By learning the lessons from our income tax past, these and other progressive forces will have a better chance of pushing through the tax changes we need to allow our society to do big things in the century ahead.

March 12, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Mathur Posts Tax Papers on SSRN

Monday, March 4, 2013

TPC Hosts Program Today on State Tax Reform, the ACA, and Sequestration

Tax Policy Center LogoThe Tax Policy Center hosts a program today on States in Flux: State Tax Reform, the ACA, and Sequestration at noon-1:30 p.m. EST (webcast here):

State governments face extraordinary challenges in coming years. Tepid recovery from the Great Recession has limited the ability of state governments to expand and add jobs, unlike past recoveries. Concerned about traditional revenue streams, some governors and state legislatures are proposing drastic changes to their tax structures. And the rapidly changing federal landscape—notably health reforms in the Affordable Care Act and budget caps and threat of sequester from the Budget Control Act—pose further challenges for state governments.

This forum will address key challenges facing states. Topics include:

  • How have state governments contributed to this recovery compared to past recoveries?
  • How might state revenue streams change in the future? What are the consequences of these changes?
  • How will the sequester affect the states?
  • How are states keeping up with new market reforms in the Affordable Care Act?

Panelists

  • Teresa Coughlin (Urban Institute)
  • Zachary Goldfarb (Washington Post) (moderator)
  • Ben Harris (Urban Institute)
  • Joseph Henchman (Tax Foundation)
  • Nick Johnson (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

March 4, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, March 1, 2013

Sanchirico: Do Capital Income Taxes Hinder Growth?

Chris William Sanchirico (Pennsylvania), Do Capital Income Taxes Hinder Growth?:

One of the main arguments against raising capital income tax rates is that doing so discourages savings and investment and hinders economic growth. However, academic research on taxes and growth suggests that this argument has no real basis. And the primary alternatives to capital income taxation—labor income taxes and increased government borrowing—carry their own potentially adverse effects on growth.  

March 1, 2013 in Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, February 28, 2013

TPC Hosts Program Today on The Charitable Deduction

Tax Policy Center LogoThe Tax Policy Center hosts a program today on The Charitable Deduction: A View from the Other Side of the Cliff (free webcast here):

As the vehicle of state leaned over one fiscal cliff, Congress pulled it back but kept the motor running. In this session, we will examine the recent debate over tax changes, the resulting effect on charities, and the likely forthcoming debate in early 2013. Panelists will discuss how federal fiscal policy and proposed changes to tax law, in particular the charitable deduction, may affect charitable giving and the political scene for nonprofits going forward into an uncertain future.

Looking Back at the Cliff
This panel will take a look back at the debate leading up to the “fiscal cliff.” The panelists will discuss the various proposals that would have affected the charitable deduction, the response of the nonprofit sector, and the effect of the ultimate deal that was reached. 

      Moderator: Eugene Steuerle, Urban Institute
          Diana Aviv, Independent Sector
          Jon Bakija, Williams College
          Rick Cohen, Nonprofit Quarterly 
          Joseph Rosenberg, Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center

The Road Forward
This panel will discuss what lies ahead for the charitable deduction in an environment of continued budget pressure. The speakers will describe various proposed reforms to the charitable deduction and discuss how these reforms may affect nonprofits, for better or for worse. 

      Moderator: Elizabeth Boris, Urban Institute
          Joseph Cordes, George Washington University 
          Tim Delaney, National Council of Nonprofits
          Brian Flahaven, Council for Advancement and Support of Education
          Jane Gravelle, Congressional Research Service

February 28, 2013 in Conferences, Tax, Think Tank Reports | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)