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Do empirical studies of budget incidence make sense (الإنجليزية)

Increasing concern with distribution has led to numerous recent estimates of the incidence of aspects of public activity. A broadening in perspective and analysis has led to increased controversy concerning the meaning of incidence and how to measure it. The current outlook fails to recognize the profound symmetry between the incidence of taxes and public spending. Also, incidence work requires comparison between status quo and an imputed state, the implications of which are frequently unclear. This paper analyzes these and related difficulties and attempts to resolve them. Conclusions presented include: (i) budget incidence cannot be estimated for an economy with minimum government; (ii) scientific measurement of differential balanced budget incidence is impossible; (iii) benefit incidence closely approximates community costs; (iv) relative price, techniques, and output incidence should be studied; (v) symmetry of tax incidence and public expenditures must be recognized; and (vi) charging costs to recipients may be a better measure of the overall impact of budget activity on welfare than attempts to measure benefits in value terms.

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نسخة رسمية من الوثيقة (قد تضم توقيعات، الخ)