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.
This paper examines the implications of European fiscal harmonization for the French economy using a general equilibrium model. The latter extends the overlapping generations simulation model of Auerbach and Kotlikoff in three ways. A well-developed external sector is included. Households face constraints in their borrowing. The population comprises “rich” and “poor” households with different labor productivities. The harmonization policy that involves cuts in VAT and savings taxes leads to welfare losses for both rich and poor approximately equivalent to one percent of GDP.