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Tax rate, government revenue and economic performance: A perspective of Laffer curve

Boqiang Lin () and Zhijie Jia

China Economic Review, 2019, vol. 56, issue C, -

Abstract: The Laffer curve illustrates a theoretical relationship between rates of taxation and the resulting levels of government revenue. This paper explores the relationship between tax rate (direct tax on labor income), government revenue and economic performance in a perspective of the Laffer curve by applying Computable General Equilibrium (CGE) model. The results show that the top of China's Laffer curve is about 40%. The government should consider changes in the entire taxation system and not just changes in direct taxes while increasing direct tax rate. If China wants to maximize tax revenues, the direct tax rate should be 35%. We conduct a variety of sensitivity analyses and conclude that the government tax peak is always 5–10% earlier than the apex of the Laffer curve. So, if a country has reached the top of the Laffer curve, this paper strongly recommends that tax cuts will have positive implications for the economy and government revenue.

Keywords: Computable general equilibrium (CGE) model; Direct tax rate; Government taxation; Laffer curve; Gross domestic product (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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China Economic Review is currently edited by B.M. Fleisher, K. X. D. Huang, M.E. Lovely, Y. Wen, X. Zhang and X. Zhu

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