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Estimates of employment and welfare effects of personal labour income taxation in a flat-tax country: The case of Estonia

Karsten Staehr ()

No 2008-03, Bank of Estonia Working Papers from Bank of Estonia

Abstract: This paper presents estimates of the employment and welfare effects of personal labour income taxation in Estonia. The labour supply decision of individuals is estimated based on data from the 2005 Estonian Labour Force Survey. Economic incentives are found to affect the participation decisions of individuals, but not the number of hours worked by individuals already working. The participation elasticities are higher for individuals in the middle income groups than for individuals in the low and high income groups. Increasing the proportional tax rate by 1 percentage point is found to reduce total employment by 0.35 percentage points. The baseline estimate of the marginal cost of public funds is 1.6 if the proportional tax rate is increased and 1.8 if the basic exemption is lowered. The marginal cost of public funds varies across different income groups, which may suggest possible gains in efficiency from reallocating the taxation burden of the existing system of proportional taxation. The employment and welfare estimates are subject to substantial

Keywords: taxation; labour supply; welfare; excess burden (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: H21 H24 J21 J22 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-lab and nep-pbe
Date: 2008-10-30, Revised 2008-10-30
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