The IMF Working Papers series is designed to make IMF staff research available to a wide audience. Almost 300 Working Papers are released each year, covering a wide range of theoretical and analytical topics, including balance of payments, monetary and fiscal issues, global liquidity, and national and international economic developments.
Ben Lockwood, Michael Devereux, and Michela Redoano
INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND
This paper studies whether exchange controls, particularly on the capital account, affect the choice of corporate tax rates, using a panel of 21 OECD countries over the period 1983-99. It builds on existing literature by (1) using a unique dataset with several different measures of the corporate tax rate calculated from the actual parameters of the tax systems, and (2i) allowing exchange controls to affect the intensity of strategic interaction between countries in setting taxes, as well as the levels of tax they choose. We find some evidence that (1) the level of a country’s tax, other things equal, is lowered by a unilateral liberalization of exchange controls; and (2) that strategic interaction in taxsetting between countries is increased by liberalization. These effects are stronger if the country is a high-tax one and if the tax is the statutory or effective average one. There is also evidence that countries’ own tax rates are reduced by liberalization of exchange controls in other countries.