27 results for Creedy, John, Scholarly text

  • Tax Policy with Uncertain Future Costs: Some Simple Models

    Ball, Christopher; Creedy, John (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper considers the extent to which the standard argument, that the disproportionate excess burden of taxation suggests the use of tax-smoothing in the face of future cost increases, is modified by uncertainty regarding the future. The role of uncertainty and risk aversion are examined using several highly simplified models involving a possible future contingency requiring an increase in tax-financed expenditure.

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  • An Analysis of Benefit Flows in New Zealand using a Social Accounting Framework

    Aziz, Omar; Carroll, Nick; Creedy, John (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper presents a social accounting model to examine the entrants, exits and transitions of individuals among a wide range of benefit categories in New Zealand. Transition rates and flows are estimated separately for periods before the global financial crisis (GFC) and periods following the crisis. The data were obtained from the Benefit Dynamics Dataset maintained by the Ministry of Social Development. The model is used to examine, using simulations, the implications for the time profile of changes in the stock of benefit recipients under a range of counterfactual situations. It is suggested that the model can provide a useful tool for policy analysis.

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  • A Note on Computing the Gini Inequality Measure with Weighted Data

    Creedy, John (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This note sets out some basic results regarding calculation of the Gini measure and its standard error in the context of cross-sectional micro-datasets where sample weights are provided for aggregation from sample to population values.

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  • Population Ageing and the Growth of Income and Consumption Tax Revenue

    Ball, Christopher; Creedy, John (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper investigates the implications of population ageing and changes in labour force participation rates for projections of revenue obtained from personal income taxation and a consumption tax (in the form of a broad-based goods and services tax). A projection model is presented, involving changing age-income profiles over time for males and females. The model is estimated and applied to New Zealand over the period 2011-2062.

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  • A note on Inequality-Preserving Distributional Changes

    Creedy, John (2014)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This note considers the problem of distributing a fixed amount of money (‘income’) among a given number of people, such that inequality (measured by either the Gini or Atkinson measure) takes a specified value. It is well known that simultaneous equations admit of many solutions where the number of variables exceeds that of equations (constraints). However, the approach examines cases where there are just one or two degrees of freedom, clarifying the resulting range of distributions. The properties of simultaneous disequalising and equalising transfers are discussed.

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  • The Welfare Gain from a New Good: An Introduction

    Creedy, John (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This note provides an elementary introduction to the measurement of welfare gains from the introduction of a new good, based on the concept of the ‘virtual price’ and standard expressions for welfare changes arising from price changes.

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  • Measuring Revenue-Maximising Elasticities of Taxable Income: Evidence for the US Income Tax

    Creedy, John; Gemmell, Norman (2014)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    A recent review of empirical estimates of the elasticity of taxable income (ETI) concluded that ‘the US marginal top rate is far from the top of the Laffer curve’ (Saez et al, 2012, p.42). This paper provides a detailed examination of the analysis underlying this conclusion, and considers whether other tax rates in the US income tax system are on the ‘right’ side of the Laffer curve. Conceptual expressions for ‘Laffer-maximum’ or revenue-maximizing ETIs, based on readily observable parameters, are presented for individuals and groups of taxpayers in a multi-rate income tax system. Applying these to the US income tax in 2005, with its complex effective marginal rate structure, demonstrates that a wide range of revenue-maximizing ETI values can be expected for individual taxpayers within and across tax brackets, and in aggregate. For many taxpayers these revenue-maximizing ETIs are well within the range of empirically estimated elasticities.

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  • Debt Projections and Fiscal Sustainability with Feedback Effects

    Creedy, John; Scobie, Grant (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper analyses long-term fiscal sustainability with a model which incorporates a number of feedback effects. When fiscal policy responds to ensure long-term sustainability, these feedback effects can potentially modify the intended outcomes by either enhancing or dampening the results of the policy interventions. The feedbacks include the effect on labour supply in response to changes in tax rates, changes in the country risk premium in response to higher public debt ratios, and endogenous changes in the rate of productivity growth and savings that respond to interest rates. A model of government revenue, expenditure and public debt which incorporates these feedbacks is used to simulate the outcome of a range of fiscal policy responses. In addition the effects of population ageing and productivity growth are explored.

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  • Labour Supply in New Zealand and the 2010 Tax and Transfer Changes

    Creedy, John; Mok, Penny (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper examines the simulated labour supply responses to the personal tax and transfer policy changes introduced in New Zealand in 2010, and the implications for revenue and income distribution. The main changes examined are the increase in the GST rate from 12.5 to 15 per cent, along with reductions in personal income tax rates and increases in the main benefit payments and assistance to families with children, to compensate for the rise in GST. The simulated labour supply responses were obtained using the Treasury’s behavioural microsimulation model, TaxWell-B. The 2009/10 Household Economic Survey (HES) was used. The combined effect of all policy changes is to increase average labour supply slightly for all demographic groups. Labour force participation of sole parents is simulated to increase by 0.86 percentage points. In considering separate components, the change in income tax rates is found to have the largest effect on labour supply. This is not surprising given that it affected a large proportion of the population while the changes to the benefit system and assistance to families with children apply only to certain groups. The reforms are found to be approximately distribution neutral, in terms of the Gini inequality measure of after-tax income per adult equivalent person.

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  • Long-run Fiscal Projections under Uncertainty: The Case of New Zealand

    Ball, Christopher; Creedy, John; Scobie, Grant (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper introduces uncertainty into a fiscal projection model which incorporates population ageing along with a number of feedback effects. When fiscal policy responds in order to achieve a target debt ratio, feedback effects modify the intended outcomes. The feedbacks include the effect on labour supply in response to changes in tax rates, changes in the country risk premium in response to higher public debt ratios, endogenous changes in the rate of productivity growth and savings. Stochastic projections of a range of policy responses are produced, allowing for uncertainty regarding the world interest rate, productivity growth and the growth rates of two components of per capita government expenditure. The probability of exceeding a given debt ratio in each projection year, using a particular tax or expenditure policy,can then be evaluated. Policy implications are briefly discussed.

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  • Pensions, Savings and Housing: A Life-cycle Framework with Policy Simulations

    Creedy, John; Gemmell, Norman; Scobie, Grant (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    The objective of the paper is to explore the saving and consumption responses of a representative household to a range of policy interventions such as changes in taxes and pension settings. To achieve this, it develops a two-period life-cycle model. The representative household maximises lifetime utility through its choice of optimal levels of consumption, housing and saving. A key feature of the approach is modelling the consumption of housing services as a separate good in retirement along with the implications for saving. Importantly, the model incorporates a government budget constraint involving a pay-as-you-go universal pension. In addition, the model allows for a compulsory private retirement savings scheme. Particular attention in the simulations is given to the potential impact on household saving rates of a range of policy changes. Typically the effect on saving rates is modest. In most instances, it would take very substantial changes in existing policy settings to induce significant increases in household saving rates.

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  • Taxation and the User Cost of Capital : An Introduction

    Creedy, John; Gemmell, Norman (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    The aim of this paper is to provide an introduction to the concept of user cost and its determinants. Particular attention is given to the influence of taxation. The concept of user cost relates to the rental, the rate of return to capital, that arises in a profit maximising situation in which further investment in capital produces no additional profit. This paper sets out in some detail the range of assumptions involved in obtaining alternative expressions for the user cost. The user cost refers to a before-tax capital rental, the rate of return that ensures that the (after-tax) cost of capital is equal to the post-tax returns over its life. Hence, associated with the user cost measure is an effective marginal tax rate. This can differ substantially from the statutory marginal rate applicable to the investor. A related effective average tax rate is also defined.

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  • Interpreting Inequality Measures and Changes in Inequality

    Creedy, John (2014)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper explores, in the context of the Atkinson inequality measure, attempts to make interpretations of orders of magnitude transparent. One suggestion is that the analogy of sharing a cake among a very small number of people provides a useful intuitive description for people who want some idea of what an inequality measure ‘actually means’. In contrast with the Gini measure, for which a simple ‘cake-sharing’ result is available, the Atkinson measure requires a nonlinear equation to be solved. Comparisons of ‘excess shares’ (the share obtained by the richer person in excess of the arithmetic mean) for a range of assumptions are provided. The implications for the ‘leaky bucket’ experiments are also examined. An additional approach is to obtain the ‘pivotal income’, above which a small increase for any individual increases inequality. The properties of this measure for the Atkinson index are also explored.

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  • Can Automatic Tax Increases Pay for the Public Spending Effects of Population Ageing in New Zealand?

    Creedy, John; Gemmell, Norman (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper examines the extent to which projected aggregate tax revenue changes, association with population ageing over the next 50 years, can be expected to finance expected increases in social welfare expenditures. Projections from two separate models, dealing with social expenditures and income tax and GST revenue, are used. The results suggest that the modest projected required increase in the overall average tax rate over the next 50 years can be achieved automatically by adjusting income tax thresholds using an index of prices rather than wages. Based on evidence about the New Zealand tax system over the last 50 years, comparisons of average and marginal tax rates suggest that such an increase may be feasible and affordable. The paper discusses the range of considerations involved in deciding if this automatic increase in the aggregate average tax rate, via real fiscal drag of personal income taxes, is desirable compared with alternative fiscal policy changes.

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  • Alternative Distributions for Inequality and Poverty Comparisons

    Creedy, John (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper provides an introductory review of the alternative possible income distributions which can be used when making cross-sectional evaluations of the effects of taxes and transfers using a household economic survey. This paper attempts to clarify the various alternatives, both for users of data and those wishing to interpret results. Special attention is given to the choice of income unit. The need to avoid spurious comparisons is stressed. The use of adult equivalence scales and the application of an explicit sharing rule are considered. Comparisons over time, where both the tax structure and the populations differ, are also considered. Numerical examples are used to highlight the alternative approaches and distributions.

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  • Inequality in New Zealand 1983/84 to 2013/14*

    Ball, Christopher; Creedy, John (2015)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper provides an empirical analysis of annual income and expenditure inequality in New Zealand over a thirty-year period from the early 1980s. The extent of redistribution through the tax and benefit system is also explored. Household Economic Survey data are used for each year from 1983/84 to 1997/98 inclusive, 2000/01 and 2003/04 , and for each year from 2006/07. Survey calibration methods are used to examine inequality on the assumption that a range of (approximately 50) population characteristics remain constant over the period. Furthermore, decomposition methods are used to examine the separate contributions to changing inequality of population ageing, changes in labour force participation and household structure.

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  • Income redistribution and changes in inequality in New Zealand from 2007 to 2011: Alternative distributions and value judgements

    Creedy, John; Eedrah, Jesse (2014)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper illustrates the effects of using different distributions and summary measures, using New Zealand data for the period 2007 to 2011. Using an annual accounting period, alternative welfare metrics and units of analysis are investigated. In addition, the sensitivity to assumptions about economies of scale within households is examined, and changes in inequality are decomposed into those arising from population and tax structure changes. When considering the period 2007 to 2010 all measures agree that inequality fell, although the extent of the reduction varies. For the period 2007 to 2011 (after the tax reforms of 2010) the answer to the question of whether inequality in New Zealand has risen or fallen depends crucially on the combination of welfare metric, income unit, adult equivalent scale and inequality measure used. In empirical studies it is therefore important to explore a wide range of alternative approaches, providing information for readers to make their own judgements.

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  • Social Expenditure in New Zealand: Stochastic Projections

    Creedy, John; Makale, Kathleen (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper presents stochastic projections for 13 categories of social spending in New Zealand over the period 2011-2061. These projections are based on detailed demographic estimates covering fertility, migration and mortality disaggregated by single year of age and gender. Distributional parameters are incorporated for all of the major variables, and are used to build up probabilistic projections for social expenditure as a share of GDP using simulation methods, following Creedy and Scobie (2005). Emphasis is placed on the considerable uncertainty involved in projecting future expenditure levels.

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  • The Elasticity of Taxable Income, Welfare Changes and Optimal Tax Rates

    Creedy, John (2013)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper provides a technical introduction to the use of the elasticity of taxable income in welfare comparisons and optimal tax discussions. It draws together, using a consistent framework and notation, a number of established results concerning marginal welfare changes and optimal taxes, in addition to presenting some new results, particularly in terms of non-marginal tax changes.

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  • Inequality Comparisons in a Multi-Period Framework: The Role of Alternative Welfare Metrics

    Creedy, John; Halvorsen, Elin; Thoresen, Thor (2012)

    Scholarly text
    Victoria University of Wellington

    This paper considers the use of alternative welfare metrics in evaluations of income inequality in a multi-period context. Using Norwegian longitudinal income data, it is found, as in many studies, that inequality is lower when each individual’s annual average income is used as welfare metric, compared with the use of a single-period accounting framework. However, this result does not necessarily hold when aversion to income fluctuations is introduced. Furthermore, when actual incomes are replaced by expected incomes (conditional on an initial period), using a model of income dynamics, higher values of inequality over longer periods are typically found, although comparisons depend on inequality and variability aversion parameters. The results are strongly influenced by the observed high degree of systematic regression towards the (geometric) mean, combined with a large extent of individual unexpected effects.

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