Thursday, March 21, 2019
Council on Foreign Relations, Inequality and Tax Rates: A Global Comparison:
As the 2020 campaign for the presidency of the United States gets underway, candidates have announced a raft of new tax proposals, including increases in the top marginal income tax rate, the creation of a broad wealth tax, and reversing recent cuts to the U.S. estate tax. All three proposals are what economists term “progressive” taxes, meaning they would fall most heavily on wealthier taxpayers, in contrast with “regressive” taxes, which more directly affect lower-income citizens.
Proponents say these measures would address economic inequality, pointing to the United States’ position as one of the most unequal countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), a grouping of industrialized democracies. Opponents, however, say that such proposals would stifle growth and hobble economic innovation. They also argue that the experiences of other wealthy countries show a mixed record for similar policies.