The Effect of Corporate Taxes on Investment and Entrepreneurship
We present new data on effective corporate income tax rates in 85 countries in 2004. The data come from a survey, conducted jointly with PricewaterhouseCoopers, of all taxes imposed on "the same" standardized mid-size domestic firm. In a cross-section of countries, our estimates of the effective corporate tax rate have a large adverse impact on aggregate investment, FDI, and entrepreneurial activity. For example, a 10 percent increase in the effective corporate tax rate reduces aggregate investment to GDP ratio by 2 percentage points. Corporate tax rates are also negatively correlated with growth, and positively correlated with the size of the informal economy. The results are robust to the inclusion of controls for other tax rates, quality of tax administration, security of property rights, level of economic development, regulation, inflation, and openness to trade.
The authors are from the World Bank, Harvard University, World Bank, World Bank, and Harvard University, respectively. We are grateful to Mihir Desai for considerable help at the early stages of this project, to Fritz Foley and especially James Hines for help at the later stages, and to Joel Slemrod for extensive comments. We are also grateful to Robert Barro, Bruce Bolnick, Raj Chetty, Laurence Kotlikoff, Rafael La Porta, Gregory Mankiw, James Poterba, Lawrence Summers, and Matt Weinzierl for helpful comments. Shleifer thanks the Kauffman Foundation for support of this research, and Nicholas Coleman for excellent research assistance. The views expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Simeon Djankov & Tim Ganser & Caralee McLiesh & Rita Ramalho & Andrei Shleifer, 2010. "The Effect of Corporate Taxes on Investment and Entrepreneurship," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 2(3), pages 31-64, July. citation courtesy of