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Taxpayer Search for Information: Implications for Rational Attention

Jeffrey Hoopes (), Daniel Reck and Joel Slemrod ()

No 19482, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: We examine novel data on searches for capital-gains-tax-related information to determine when and how taxpayers acquire information. We find strong seasonal increases in information search around tax filing deadlines, suggesting that taxpayers seek information to comply with tax laws. Positive correlations between stock market activity and information search and year-end spikes in information search on capital losses suggest that taxpayers seek information for tax planning purposes. Policy changes and news events cause noteworthy information search. Overall, these data suggest that taxpayers are not always fully informed, but that rational attention and exogenous shocks to tax salience drive taxpayer information search.

JEL-codes: D80 D83 H24 H31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-acc and nep-pbe
Date: 2013-09
Note: ME PE
References: View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (9) Track citations by RSS feed

Published as Jeffrey L. Hoopes & Daniel H. Reck & Joel Slemrod, 2015. "Taxpayer Search for Information: Implications for Rational Attention," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 7(3), pages 177-208, August.

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Journal Article: Taxpayer Search for Information: Implications for Rational Attention (2015) Downloads
Working Paper: Taxpayer search for information: implications for rational attention (2015) Downloads
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